Oct 212009

I try not to, but I find myself using Internet buzz words all the time.  For those of you who are not working on websites 7/24 here is a little basic info from Rick Segel about Internet Buzz Words.

The New Marketing Buzz Words We Need to Understand, Incorporate into Our Vocabularies, and USE to Do More Business

Every so often technology introduces something that changes the way we do business and the way we live our lives. We are currently in the midst of an explosion of ideas, models, and methods of doing business.  I want to expose some of these new techniques to you.  You might be familiar with some of these terms while others will be completely foreign to you. However, most of the concepts are deep seeded in some form of traditional marketing with a new high tech interpretation.

Going with the Flow Marketing or the other name I like is “Intuitive Marketing”. This is the more natural way of marketing. For years we have been talking about Contrarian Marketing or swimming upstream. That’ s daring to be different, standing out in the crowd,  or just disagreeing with conventional thinking. That still works but something has changed.  There is a new term we are starting to use, “that’s intuitive.” What that means is “Does it make sense? Is it logical? Is that the way it should work?”

We started saying intuitive when it comes to websites. We want to be able to navigate a website easily. We don’t want a detailed list of instructions on how to maneuver a website. If it requires that, we are gone.  Now this concept has spread to just about everything else we do. It has to make sense.

This applies to the way we use the internet to search for the things we want. We have another new or at least modified term called, “Inbound Marketing”. That just means that we establish a system that fosters customers looking for us as opposed to us reaching out to customers to sell them. The difference between outbound and inbound marketing is the difference between running an ad in the local paper and hoping someone comes into the store. That is “Outbound Marketing” as opposed to creating a “landing page” which is just one page out of your website that is dedicated to a word, phrase, or concept that your perspective clients might be looking for.

“Why do we need landing pages? Don’t we just want all of our traffic to go through our home page?”

That would be nice but it also doesn’t go with the natural flow of things–it’s not “intuitive”. Here is a simple example. Say you own a men’s store and also sell merchandise on the web. (Selling on-line just makes what I am about to say even more powerful.)  You sell casual and dress shirts, pants, blazers, suits, belts, all accessories, etc. You, as a store owner, want your customer to enter your website through the home page, see all of the things that you sell, and have them click onto the page for dress shirts.

There are a couple of problems here. If I am searching for dress shirts, what do you think the chances are for your home page coming up in the top 10 to 20 spots? Slim at best on a “natural search”.(That is any type of search other  than a sponsored link, a.k.a. a “pay for click” campaign where we pay Google or whoever a fee  to have a small add  on various searches.)

OK, so you don’t want to create a separate landing page and you might not need it IF you have a page on your website that just talks about Dress Shirts.  It could be the intro or title page to the dress shirt section. So if you were to “beef up” (add more applicable content that someone might just be searching for), you will have increased your chances of someone finding you, naturally.

Isn’t that the same as advertising?  Perhaps it is advertising but in a very different way.  All you are doing is removing the barriers and streamlining the possibilities for someone who is looking for what you sell to find you. It’s natural and intuitive because you are only appealing to people who have an interest in what you sell. You are not interrupting them, or trying to convert them into buying something else.  You are just making the prospect’s journey easier while putting your business in the most favorable light. When you think about, it’s really a form of “Pinpoint Marketing” (a way of reaching just specific groups or individual customers). It is really the same thing with a different twist or application.

Going along with this more logical or intuitive way of looking (searching) for things, consider this. Using the same menswear example about someone searching for dress shirts, think about all of the ways we could refine a search for dress shirts. How about French cuff dress shirts, monogrammed dress shirts, spread collars, button downed, silk, cotton. Polyester, all white, two tone, and what about all of the different dress shirt vendors? There are a multitude of possibilities for creating simple landing pages that could help someone find what they want and what you sell. You are making it easier for the customer to buy from you.

These pages don’t take long to create. 15 to 20 minute maximum if you have the right software to use or your website was created by someone who has set up the ability to add simple pages. Think of the possibilities. We can start to have websites with hundreds of simple pages.  Sound crazy? It’s happening every day. It’s just a new way of thinking and looking at the world of on-line marketing…Inbound Marketing.

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