There are more myths of Internet marketing than ancient deities. Everyone has their home-grown solution, their tips and tricks, and follow flavor-of-the-month strategies.
But even if you aren’t directly involved with marketing, it is important to acknowledge and dismiss some of the more common myths of Internet marketing:
1 – It works all of the time
Internet marketing, as opposed to common speculation, doesn’t always work. Just because you have a domain name, social media accounts, and a blog doesn’t mean you’re doing everything you can to draw in new customers and retain old ones. For starters, it is still important to buffer online marketing tactics with old-world strategies. Take these, for example:
- Depending on the business, it never hurts to stick with the old business card. Instead of the company name and contact info, you can add in a “Find us on Facebook” and other directions to online assets.
- A lot of marketers overlook snail mail. With the right approach, however, you can easily tailor a series of physical mail-offs to encourage customers to visit online. Slip a coupon in there, too.
- Word-of-mouth and traditional networking are still extremely powerful tools. Become involved with local organizations, fundraisers, and professional societies to develop business-to-business relationships.
2 – It is a costly time sink
No. Marketing online isn’t expensive or time-consuming as long as you think ahead and check out the options. Social media only costs if you’re paying for promoted posts or tweets. Website domains are usually a single lump sum every year. It only takes a few minutes to throw up a post or blog. The idea is to split up the work so it doesn’t become a hassle, a counter used against most of these myths of Internet marketing.
Consider creating a publishing schedule for your social media accounts. In a small office, it’s easy to have everyone write one blog post a day and send them to a media manager or someone Web-savvy. Throughout the day, check on recent posts and analytics to see how things are doing; if there’s a dip, scour the Web for something fun and entertaining to post that ties into your business.
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3 – “Viral” is the end goal
Most people and businesses who create something “viral” do so on accident. These YouTube videos, posts, and tweets all have one thing in common, though, and that is the fact that they are entertaining and generate discussion. Don’t waste your time trying to create that one-shot post of video because it won’t work; instead, keep your current followers interested and, if you’re lucky, your fan base will start sharing on their own.
4 – SEO is dead
SEO, or search engine optimization, is when marketers utilize a combination of keywords and phrases. When queried, Google returns results that best match these. It is a complicated, ever-evolving strategy that, due to recent Google algorithm updates, can penalize your sites and blogs. To do SEO properly, just remember that moderation is key and it never hurts to do in-depth research before making a costly mistake.
5 – I have to make an app!
No, you don’t! Apps are great, but not every company has the right industry angle to make one that pays itself off in downloads and advertising. Forgo the app (unless you’re a corporate giant and already have a marketing team) and stick with in-app advertising.
There are a number of agencies out there that you can pay to have your company appear on their games and apps. It is similar to PPC, which, most of you are overwhelmed by.
6 – PPC is overrated
On the contrary, pay-per-click advertising is a great way to generate new leads to your websites and landing pages. Google AdWords, for instance, charges clients once an Internet searcher clicks on the advertised link (that is positioned above organic search results). With the right management and keyword selection, PPC is an efficient and affordable way to start building up a company and to stay ahead of competition.
7 – Blogging doesn’t work
Blogging is now considered content marketing, or when a company publishes articles and posts that generate additional exposure (and climb page rankings at the same time). Everyone has a blog — at least for a few days. Like with social media, it’s a struggle to keep ahead of publishing. It’s a game of patience and commitment.
You need to take the time to write out informative, highly-searchable blogs that you share on social media and that people actually read. Blogs are usually present on myths of Internet marketing lists. Why? Because blogs, like SEO and PPC, are easily misunderstood.
Photo by: John Thyfault