Marketing TOOLS: They only work if you use them

There is a weird thought that people have about the Internet.  I hear the whispers of it all the time, the ghost voice from that Field of Dreams Movie… You know the line “Build it and they will come“.  But if you build an Ice Cream Shop on difficult to travel road, up the side of a snow-covered mountain, you gotta let folks know you are there.

And, you can't just keep repeating an offer, “Buy One, Get One Double Scoop Free”.  That doesn't work.  It's not just about using the tools, it's about using them correctly.

So, let's go with the ice cream shop example.  Because I think it explains the Internet well.  The World Wide Web is just that, worldwide.  And, if you build a site on it, that site is sitting there in the middle of nowhere, just as much as that Ice Cream Shop on the Mountain (Let's call the shop Sweet Snow).

So, Sweet Snow could do the old school thing and spend lots of money trying to get the word out about their special offer (think traditional marketing.  This works if you happen to be in the right place at the right time, and in the mood).  But why would I go out of my way to get ice cream in the middle of the winter?

They could make sure if someone was looking for ice cream on top of the mountain that they were the first place that showed up (think Search Engine Optimization).  And, that is good

Well, sorry to break the news to you, but there is a bit more to it than that.  In fact, there is a lot more to it than that.  But, it doesn't have to be hard and you can chunk out your tasks, do things in Phases.

There are great systems and strategies you can put in place, to make it all easy.  And, with some good planning and automation tools, you will find it to be fun.  Well, for me it's fun (most of the time), but if not fun, how about doable?

In my last post, Getting Started: Walking the Talk, I discussed making sure you understand your company, your audience, and your goals.

I mentioned some of the tools that I have decided will work best for me, but they are pretty typical.  They include: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Constant Contact (for my email newsletter), and WordPress for my blog.  There are definitely more tools that come into play, but let's start with the basics.

I get folks calling with the same requests, “drive people to my site‘ and ‘get awareness for the site‘ was the way a prospective client began our conversation. So, I began with questions from UniqueThink's New Client Questionnaire.  When I got to the one about goals, she used some more of those types of terms.  I completely understand – we hear this is what we are supposed to be doing.  But this is when I had to dig a bit deeper.  I said, “I hear why you are building the site, but what are your goals, your reason to start the site.”

“You mean my personal goals?”  She questioned.  Sure, personal, professional, whichever works.  I could tell were getting somewhere, so I just encouraged her to go with that and she began to explain her ‘dream' and talk about her passion.

Now, we can get started.  I understand what specifically she is trying to accomplish, for herself, for her project.  And, now we can talk about what tools make sense to use, how to use them, when to use which, and how to coordinate the efforts.  Things like integrating what she is talking about where, so we can take advantage of her knowledge and extend the reach of who hears it.

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