So you want to be an online marketer? The dreams of controlling a million person email list and having thousands of consumers visiting your site daily. Ahh how sweet it sounds 🙂
Before you get too excited let me tell you one certainty I have uncovered regarding online marketing: online marketing is all about partnerships and business development.
The online marketing world really revolves around partnerships, business development deals, and relationships. (we are NOT talking about advertising here)
How do you get your site featured on TechCrunch or Mashable?
I bet having a personal relationship with the editor would help. I am not saying that all high profile tech news sites only cover people they know. What I am saying is the better your relationship with the publisher the higher the probability that they will cover you.
How do you get a publisher to cover and link to you? A give-away is a fantastic tactic. Reach out to the site owner and offer to give free product to his readers. Ideally you team up on a simply Twitter and comment contest.
Readers tweet a predetermined message and comment on the giveaway post to be entered in the contest. Both you and the partner benefit from this exposure.
To setup a giveaway like this you have to essentially sell the partner on the giveaway. There is nothing fancy or challenging about setting up this promo it just requires manning up and pitching publishers.
If the product you are giving away is solid then this makes the entire process much easier. Please don’t try and give-away a crappy product. This makes you look like a cheapskate!
Another hot example is to run a contest with WordPress using Contest Domination. Buy the plugin, install it, and pick an epic prize. Then partner up with a publisher who has some serious reach. You and the partner promote the contest through your channels and BOOM you get a ton of emails via the Contest Domination promo. Your sales/marketing hustle helps you build your email list!
Now can you see why I say online marketing is really about business development and sales? Giveaways and contests are really mini bizdev deals. You are partnering with the publisher.
Yes this is marketing but to set it up requires sales hustle. Another great example of a bizdev marketing partnership is utilizing someone else’s email list.
Promoting your product to 100,000 people via email is a guaranteed way to generate some serious sales. Too bad you have 39 people on your email list.
Well get creative and try to leverage somebody else’s list. Reach out the partner and tell them you’d like to offer his list some amazing free goodies.
Give-away free stuff to this email list in order to a) convert them to your email list b) get them familiar with your product c) try to upsell them more stuff.
Leveraging a 3rd party email list is a much bigger bizdev marketing deal but it is super powerful. A traditional giveaway could lead to a few hundred hits but leveraging the right email list could lead to a few hundred sales!
The final example of a bizdev marketing deal is guest posting. You are essentially pitching someone to post your content on their blog. This still requires the online marketer to man up and make it rain.
In summary, online marketing requires sales hustle and relationship building. To be a top notch online marketer in 2012 you need to be a badass salesman.[Photo credit from Flickr]