Which Online Marketing Strategy Should You Master First?

While there is no right or wrong online marketing strategy that you should master first, there are a few things to consider before jumping in full force. The first of course is to make sure you know your business goals and fully understand your target market. Once you’ve done that, your next question might be:

“Which marketing strategy should I use to reach this audience and build my business?”

With so many options available, it can be easy to get overwhelmed about where to start. Many people mistakenly believe they need to learn every type of strategy to make it work, but the truth is it is way better to stay focused on ONE or TWO strategies at most until you master them. When you try to learn and do too much at once, it tends to keep you stuck in forever student mode as opposed to action taking mode.

Which Online Marketing Strategy Should You Master First?

Are you new to marketing your business online and don't quite know which marketing strategy you should master first? In today's video and blog post, I cover some crucial things to consider before you go full force with your marketing plan. Doing this in advance can help save you a lot of time, money, and headache!Full blog post here: http://dustinandtracy.com/which-online-marketing-strategy-should-you-master-first/

Posted by Dustin & Tracy Wisnowski on Monday, March 21, 2016

Now there are a few key questions to ask yourself when making the decision about which strategy to start with.

Is there a certain strategy you prefer over others?

Our first piece of advice when it comes to choosing your online marketing strategy is to first and foremost listen to your intuition. Is there a strategy that you are already passionate about? If so, start there! You are far more likely to be consistent and take action on that strategy every day if you actually enjoy what you do.

If you are someone who has high energy and loves being on camera, then you will likely find video marketing to be the easiest method to stick to. Do you have a passion for writing? Maybe blogging is your thing. Start there and find out. Or maybe you’re a visually creative person who makes incredible and inspiring images. In that case, Instagram would be an awesome strategy for you to learn and apply.

Even though we strongly recommend everyone utilizes blogging and video in their marketing because they are so powerful in creating long-term results, there is nothing wrong with getting started with a strategy that works best for YOU in the beginning.

The more passionate you are about the strategy, the stronger the likelihood that you will stick with it for an extended period of time. The goal is to always be adding and expanding to your marketing skill set over time. You don’t need to learn or do it all in a day. 🙂

Where does your target audience hang out online?

Another thing you want to factor is where your target audience actually spends their time online. Depending on the demographics and interests for your audience, you might find that they spend more time searching Google than being social on Facebook.

social-1206614_1280

For example, if I had a product geared towards teens or people in their 20s, I would likely factor Snapchat into my marketing strategy since a large portion of that site is made up of that age group. If I had a product geared towards young women planning their wedding, I might tap into Pinterest as my first marketing strategy since it is a popular social site where my ideal audience spend a large chunk of time. If I had a product geared towards middle aged men wanting to lose weight, I could run some paid ads to people in that niche who are searching for weight loss solutions on Google.

As you can see, there is no one perfect answer when it comes to choosing your strategy. It’s more important to factor in where your audience spends their time online and what interests them. Then once you know where they spend their time your primary goal is to help them solve their problems by getting in front of them with the right messages.

What are effective online marketing strategies currently being used?

It sounds silly, but when you’re choosing your strategy it’s really important to consider whether that strategy has documented results. Yes, you can reinvent the wheel and try something new, BUT when you’re first getting started, it is a much better idea to just plug into systems and strategies that you know already work.

Once you get some results under your belt with proven strategies, then you have more wiggle room to get creative and try new methods.

So what are some of the more popular marketing strategies being used right now? They include social media, content marketing, and paid advertising. Let’s cover some of the pros and cons of each.

Social Media Marketing – Organic Growth

Social media marketing involves building your business and driving traffic through the use of social media sites. These include sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

twitter-292994_1920

Some of the main benefits of social media marketing are that it:

  • Costs very little (or free)
  • Allows you to reach a LARGE and diverse audience
  • Focuses on interaction and engagement
  • Creates brand loyalty
  • Fun and fairly simple to get started
  • Has a more personal feel than traditional marketing (family & friends)

Some of the drawbacks of social media marketing are that it:

  • Can be time consuming (content creation, responding to messages, etc)
  • Is more difficult to track the ROI of your efforts
  • Has the risk of inappropriate or unwanted feedback on your site

FACEBOOK GETTING-STARTED CHEAT-SHEET

Content Marketing – Video/Blogging/SEO

Content marketing involves solving your target market’s problems through the creation and distribution of high quality, relevant, and useful content on a consistent basis. Some forms of content marketing include: blog posts, videos, powerpoint presentations, images, and more.

Typically the content that is created is also optimized to rank in the search engines which helps deliver organic (free) traffic to your site.

hands-woman-laptop-working

Some of the benefits of content marketing include:

  • You become an authority figure in your niche
  • You are seen as a trusted and reliable source of information
  • It attracts ideal customers who specifically searched for what you have to offer

Some of the drawbacks of content marketing are that it:

  • Is time consuming (content creation and optimization)
  • Has hidden costs (such as tools or services for your blog or to help you rank)

SEO Madman Blog Button

Paid Traffic

Paid traffic allows you to drive instant targeted traffic directly to your site with the use of advertisements. Types of paid traffic include Facebook Ads, Video Ads, Search Engine Ads, Banner Ads, Pop Up Ads, and Solo Ads. 

paid traffic

Some of the main benefits of paid traffic are that it:

  • Provides instant traffic to your site
  • Can be extremely targeted
  • Allows you to have more time freedom
  • Can be easily scaled to greater profits

Some of the drawbacks of paid traffic are that it:

  • Can be costly if you don’t know what you’re doing
  • Requires lots of testing and tweaking
  • Can be risky depending on the source

Our Top Marketing Strategy Recommendation

Our current marketing strategy is a combination of blog posts with video, SEO, and paid Facebook traffic. These are the areas where we tend to focus the majority of our efforts. While we do leverage other strategies such as Twitter and Instagram for growth, they are not our primary focus at the moment.

Our biggest recommendation is to choose ONE long-term strategy and ONE  immediate results strategy to get started. It is so important to be thinking about the long-term vision for your brand and business, while at the same time we know that many people quit when the results don’t show right away.

Example 1: Blogging + Facebook Ads

For example, you could choose blogging as your long-term primary strategy.  This means you are going to learn everything you need to know about successfully blogging for your business and then apply and master those skills.

However, since blogging for the search engines takes time and is more of a long-term strategy, you could pair this strategy with Facebook ads in order to drive fast traffic and get immediate results.

See how two seemingly different marketing strategies can pair so effortlessly together in order to get the best results?

Example 2: Video + Blogging

Another example is to combine video with blogging. Like in the previous example we mentioned how blogging takes time to get results since your content needs to be found and/or promoted. One way you can promote it and get more traffic is through utilizing video.

For every blog post, you can create a video that goes with it where you can upload to YouTube which has a ton of traffic and is much easier to get your content seen. Just as you will be optimizing your blog posts, you would simply optimize a video as well and utilize the traffic a high ranking website to bring that traffic to your blog posts with a call to action in our video.

Example 3: Instagram + Facebook Fan Page

One more example for those of you who like to get creative with images. You can leverage Instagram as your primary strategy to learn and master and then link up your Instagram account to your fan page. This way every time you upload a message and photo to Instagram, you can effortlessly have it upload to your fan page as well.

Instagram can help bring you fast traffic while building your brand and Facebook page on the backend can contribute to your long-term strategy for growth.

The options are unlimited which is why it is so important to simply focus on what works best for you, your business, and your ideal audience. Once you figure that out and make the decision, go full force with your choice of strategy and don’t stop until you get the results you desire!

When you first got started, what was your go-to online marketing strategy?

10712976_10100601972678859_812092169108435280_n

Dustin & Tracy Wisnowski

www.DustinandTracy.com

Let’s connect on Facebook

Skype: lifebydesigncouple

P.S. If your upline does not have a step-by-step online marketing blueprint for you to follow to generate more leads and sales in your business? If not, be sure to check this out (unless of course you already have plenty of leads) ===> Click here to get instant access

The Top 9 Online Marketing Tools We Use to Build Our Full Time Business from Home

Looking for online marketing tools? For the past few years, we have run multiple online businesses. During those years, we have purchased a good amount of online marketing tools, products, and resources to help us grow those businesses. Some tools we may only need once in awhile or for special projects or we may not end up using them at all.

Then there are the tools that we use on a consistent basis to keep our business running efficiently and profitably. Since it is a question that gets asked a lot, we figured it would be a good idea to share exactly what we use on a daily basis to run our business and show you truly how simple it can be.

One of the best parts about an online business is that it requires very little overhead. With just a few simple online marketing tools, you can be on your way to creating a business that you love (and one that pays you too).

Let us save you some of the time and money we spent as well as some of the headache of testing new tools. You can use this list to speed up the process and get yourself up and running right away.

Branded Blog

If you plan to use the internet to build your business, you need a place to send traffic. Your own branded blog becomes your personal online real estate — a place where people can go to learn more about you, your business, your story, and your products and services.

The main components of a branded blog include:

  • Domain name
  • Hosting
  • Blog Platform

You want to make sure you purchase a domain that is branded to your business. If YOU are your business, then be sure to use your name as the domain (such as DustinandTracy.com, TracyWisnowski.com, WorkwithDustinWisnowski.com, etc).

We purchase our domains through Namecheap as we have experienced good service and it keeps all of our domains under one roof. You can buy your domain here.

In order to actually start blogging on that domain, you need to make sure you have a hosting plan. Basically hosting allows your website to be stored online and accessible to the world. We have always used Hostgator for this. They provide 24/7 support and any time we had an issue it was resolved fairly quickly. They also have great affordable plans, including unlimited ones if you have multiple domains. You can purchase hosting here.

Once you have your domain and hosting set up, you are then able to install a blogging platform (such as WordPress) in the backend of your Hostgator account.

If the whole process of setting your blog seems overwhelming to you when reading this, don’t worry! You are totally not alone. I think we all felt like that when we started blogging. The cool thing is there are solutions to help you fast track the process so that you can focus on what’s most important – actually creating content and BLOGGING.

Our current top solution for a plug-and-play blogging platform is MLSP SITES. This platform takes all of the hard work out for you, allowing you to create your blog with the push of a button. The best part is it also includes professional themes, high end plugins, step-by-step video training, and a private community of super friendly and helpful people that you can tap into if you need any help or have questions.

mlsp sites sample
An example of an MLSP Sites blog

Lead Capture System

If you’re building a business online, you need a way to capture leads so that you can follow up with your prospects. Remember that a ton of sales conversions happen on the backend during the follow up process. Very rarely does a person purchase on the first exposure, so if you don’t capture their information there is a good chance they will never find their way back to your content.

Our top capture page creator at the moment is Funnelizer by MLSP. This tool seriously simplifies the process and allows anyone at any skill level to make beautiful and professional lead capture pages. With a few clicks, you can be cranking out leadpages for any niche, allowing you to spend more time creating content and engaging with your leads.

Funnelizer_Templates
A sample of Funnelizer Templates

Customer Relations Management System

Every type of business, whether it be a brick and mortar type or working from home, you need to have a system in place to store relevant information about your leads, clients, and business partners. This can include contact information, notes about a conversation you had, or information about purchases they have made with you.

Having a CRM system in place helps you stand out from the competition and allows you to build a closer relationship with your clients.

Our CRM of choice is actually one that is included in a monthly membership with some of the other online marketing tools we mentioned here. It is the CRM system that you get with an MLSP membership.

Some of the major benefits of this tool include:

  • Online cloud database storage with secure 24/7 access
  • Easily search by clients:
    • first and last names, emails and even phone numbers
  • Create custom email templates with your own pre-written copy
    • you can also send these emails with a simple mouse click to your leads
  • Sync all social media accounts to help really keep you connected:
    • facebook
    • twitter
    • linkedin
    • google +
    • youtube
    • pinterest

Because this tool is under the MLSP system you also have the major benefit of the CRM already tracked within MLSP’s very own tracking system. You can add in the source and place where you connected with them and if you have set up tracking it will automatically update the correct source for you. Really useful for split testing!

Another really nifty feature is the built in scheduler so you can set up professional business meetings with your clients, email them an automated webinar, or invite them to a weekly marketing webinar, as well as much more.

If you are serious about building your business to the 6-figure level and beyond, this is a tool I would definitely recommend checking out.

Autoresponder

Of course, along with having a way to capture leads, you will also need a place to store those leads and follow up with them through email broadcasts. Without this tool, you will be leaving an incredible amount of money on the table and missing out on the opportunity to attract some stellar business partners.

Our current autoresponder of choice (and the one we have used for the past 4 years) is Aweber.  

Some great things about Aweber are that it is:

  • Affordable ($1 for 30 days, $19+ after the trial)
  • Beginner friendly (easy drag and drop templates)
  • RSS-to-email that instantly converts your blog posts to newsletters
  • Customizable opt-in forms that you can use on your site
  • Integration with MANY third-party applications and software

You can get a 30 day trial here.

Graphics Creator for Marketing

As you start to really build your online brand, you’ll quickly notice how much graphics play a key role in creating engaging content for your audience. You’ll need it for things like your branding, images you create for your fan page, thumbnails for your videos, and much more. Visual content such as photos and videos, on average, drive far more engagement than regular text posts.

What’s great is that it actually is super simple to make really sleek and professional images nowadays even with little to no experience. This is thanks to a free tool called Canva.

Canva_Template

We actually created a training video a while back that shows you a 3-step process for creating eye-popping images with Canva. You can watch that video here and see one of the major ways that we use it.

Link Tracker (MLSP or Bitly)

Perhaps one of the most overlooked parts of an online business when a person first gets started is a link tracker. If you just blindly promote your links around the internet, how will you know where your leads or signups come from once they start showing up? The more data you can collect about the link activity (such impressions, click through rate, sales conversions, source of referral, etc), the more you will be able to fine tune your marketing and increase your conversions.

Our top link tracker is also one included in the MLSP monthly membership. The reason we use this one is because it tracks every statistic we need for our business and integrates seamlessly with MLSP campaigns. You can also use it for any link outside of the MLSP system as well.

If you’re looking for a simple (or free) link tracking system to start off with, two good options are Bitly and Google URL Shortener. Keep in mind that they will not have as much detailed data and will focus on mostly clicks and referrals.

Webinar Platform

A webinar platform will serve two big purposes for your business. It will allow you to hold online team meetings and hangouts where you share new strategies. It will also allow you to run public webinars where you can train on various topics and sell your products or services.

It may seem daunting to think about using a webinar platform if you’ve never hosted a webinar before, but it’s honestly something that anybody can do and it will be necessary as your business starts to grow and you have more and more people to reach.

Our preferred webinar platform at the moment is Webinars on Air.  We enjoy the simplicity, affordability, and ease to use with this tool. Some of its major features include being able to host paid webinars, selling your products with a click of the button at the end of the webinar, capture leads that integrate with your autoresponder, share your screen or Powerpoint, and more.

Social Media Content Calendar & Scheduler

Our final marketing tool to make the list is a social media content scheduler. As you start to build out your brand channel, this tool will help you streamline the process of sharing content across multiple platforms and scheduling posts in advance so that you can free up more time for more important tasks.

The social media scheduler that we are currently using is Hootsuite. This tool allows us to integrate with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google so that we schedule one piece of content and it distribute to all of these channels.

You can also create what are known as “Streams” where you are able to track and respond to certain activities on your accounts, such as messages, replies, comments, shares, likes, etc. This is super beneficial if you have a busy schedule and need to manage all of your social media in one place at one time.

Sign up for a free 30-day trial of Hootsuite Pro.

Hootsuite_Stream

This sums up our list of the Top 9 Online Marketing Tools that we use on a consistent basis to run a full-time business from home. As you can tell, 4 out of the 9 tools we use are actually all included in a single monthly membership with one company (MLSP), which is one of the main reasons we’ve been with them for years.

If you currently run an online business yourself, what are your most essential go-to online marketing tools?

10712976_10100601972678859_812092169108435280_n

Dustin & Tracy Wisnowski

www.DustinandTracy.com

Let’s connect on Facebook

Skype: lifebydesigncouple

P.S. If your upline does not have a step-by-step online marketing blueprint for you to follow to generate more leads and sales in your business? If not, be sure to check this out (unless of course you already have plenty of leads) ===> Click here to get instant access