Many years ago when I worked in camera store, a customer came in one day with a very old roll of unexposed B&W film. He wanted to buy a camera that would fit that type of film so he could use up the film. The film was so old, all camera manufactures had long since quite making cameras that would take that type of film. I explained to him that the roll of film was worth maybe $2.00 (if it was still any good) and suggested he throw out the old film and consider a new camera and wooowooo color film. He thanked and left with his old roll of film.
I think about this story quite often when I am dealing with authors and writers. They have such knowledge and enthusiasm for their ideas and topics, unfortunately many of them, especially new writers and authors seldom give little if any thought to who will be buying their books and where and how they will be getting them.
I often ask these writers, who is going to be the recipient of your book? Most writers simply tell me they are going to sell them. My next question is where will you sell them? Most people respond with bookstores and the Internet. Then the tough question, and how are you going to go about doing this? Thats when I get met with a blank stare.
Many writers, especially new ones, have often given little thought to where and how they are going to go about selling and distributing their books. When you think about it, most new authors and writers are so absorbed in their manuscripts they have little time to even think about selling their books, aside from a few fleeting thoughts. I tell all of them, the purpose of printing your own book is to get it into the hands of readers. Getting books into the hands of readers can be done many ways.
Some people write and print small runs of books, solely for immediate family and friends. Others have more lofty regional, national and international distribution ideas. Both ideas of getting books into readers hands are good, but one takes much more thought and much more work than the other, but both have the right idea.
I was interviewed by a television Creative Director a short time ago; she asked me what advice could you pass along to anyone thinking about writing their first book.
My answer was immediate and definite think about who the audience is for your book and how you will go about getting that book into the hands of your audience. I went on to tell her, if every author thought about who their audience was, and how they were going to market their book, they would have a much better chance of having a more successful book project, that everyone would benefit more from the author, the printer and most of all the readers.
What I hate seeing, are talented authors with wonderful manuscripts or books, trying to determine after the fact how and were they can sell their books. In many ways they are no different than the young man I encountered years ago who had a roll of film and was looking for a place to use it, the film, just like a manuscript not matter how good it is, needs to have place for it to fit in.
Online marketing presents you with an opportunity to get more bang for your buck compared to traditional marketing. This is particularly true for word of mouth marketing.
Word of Mouth Marketing on The Web
Word of mouth marketing refers to a type of marketing that promotes something by enticing independent parties to promote the service, idea or product to friends.
The idea is to create a buzz for the subject matter. In creating the buzz, the goal is to create enough word of mouth momentum to get the idea to spread quickly. People are the sole conduit for the momentum.
If you get it right, an entire product can become an established success with little or no paid marketing.
A classic example of word of mouth marketing, often called viral, is the situation involving Red Bull. Red Bull is an energy drink. When it was first introduced in Europe, rumors spread that the drink was an aphrodisiac. Nobody knows who started the rumors, but Red Bull became very popular. It then evolved into a mixer for alcoholic drinks in nightclubs and the rest is history. It is a hugely popular product and much of the popularity arose through this word of mouth process.
Word of mouth marketing online works in much the same way. The primary difference is it tends to happen much quicker than in the real word. The Internet is full of forums where like minded people congregate. A new, cool product, idea or service can blow up a site over night. If you dont believe me, consider the wild success of the My Space platform, Napster, EBay and so on.
Most of these sites grew into behemoths because of word of mouth endorsements, not paid advertising.
Obviously, this type of marketing can lead to tremendous riches. Unfortunately, it isnt particularly easy to accomplish. Everyone is trying to do it, so you really need to be pushing something unique.
If you can come up with something, it is time to hit forums and other sites to create a buzz.
A traditional way to pursue viral marketing online is to offer a free e-book. The book will detail your thoughts on some subject matter, such as marketing.
One makes the book available for downloading and also allows people to send it to others. If you are offering something of quality, the book should spread quickly to thousands and thousands of people.
The ultimate goal is to promote it over and over until hundreds of thousands of people have read it. At that point, you write another e-book which you sell for $3 to $7.
If people liked the first book, they will buy the second.
If 100,000 read the first one and only 10 percent buy the second, you will have 10,000 sales.
This strategy has been pursued over and over by many authors.
The word of mouth approach is definitely a hit and miss strategy. The large online communities make it a viable strategy, but there are a lot of people trying to do it.
If you fail 50 times, but succeed once, life will be very good.
You are interested in starting a home-based business. You also want to use the Internet for your work-at-home idea. However, you are not sure if you can make money online. To make matters worse, you are confused about what home-based business opportunity to pursue.
If this sounds like you, rest assured that money can be made online with a home-based business. You dont need to study for years until you can reap rewards. There are sound business concepts that have been taught and proven to be true by some of the most highly successful marketers in the world. What is the top sound principle that will ensure your success? It is choosing the right niche market.
You might be wondering what is a niche.
A niche is simply a group of people with similar interests and needs. They are very passionate about their topic of interest. Think of a small pond packed with starving fish and you have the bait specific to their needs; they will like what you have to offer the best. This, in essence, is a niche.
Why a niche market? Well, unless you are a huge corporation with bottomless pockets, niche marketing is the way to go. You see most of the large corporations blow off niche markets because they are not trying to make an additional $1000 to $15000 per month like many home-based business entrepreneurs and other small business owners. They are seeking to make millions per month, which is good for you because you dont have to compete with those companies that have massive marketing budgets.
It really is easy to find potential customers in niche markets. Here are some examples:
Motor Home Owners
Carpet Cleaner Business Owners
Winter Camping Enthusiasts
Siamese Cat Owners
Landscape Company Owners
You get the picture.
Before you decide which niche market to target for your home- based business, here are four important points to consider:
1. Is the market easily defined and reachable? Do you know where they hangout? What kind of trade journals or publications do they read? Do they have clubs or are members of particular organizations?
2. Is the market small enough that you will not have tons of competitors, but still large enough for you to make a good profit?
3. Does the market have the money to spend?
4. Does the group have an insane passion for their hobby or topic of interest? Do they eat, sleep, and breathe their hobby? Are they constantly seeking more information related to their subject?
A great example of this would be golfers and NASCAR enthusiasts!
Doing research related to these questions will help you pick the perfect niche market for your home-based business.
As you think about starting a home-based business and what market to target, follow the above suggestions and you will be way ahead of many other home-based business opportunity seekers who want to start a work-at-home business.
Send Real Paper Greeting Cards To Build Business And More
Most businesses spend a huge amount of time and money looking for NEW customers. We advertise, make phone calls, even travel cross country for meetings, all in the pursuit of the ever elusive stream of new customers.
What we’re probably forgetting is that up to 80 percent of our sales growth can and should come from PAST customers. People who have bought from you before are pre-sold on you, your products, and services. It often just takes a simple reminder to get them
to buy again and again.
A while back I was talking to a group of realtors. When I asked how many followed up with old customers, only a couple of hands went up. Even though most customers will sell their home and buy another within just a few years, hardly any of the realtors
were considering how MUCH that repeat business could increase their sales.
I don’t mean to single out realtors. Just about ALL of us could increase our business simply by getting in touch with our past customers.
I’ve found the most effective way to say, “I’m here and can help you,” is to send a genuine paper greeting card by regular mail. It’s FAR more effective than sending an email, mailing a sales letter, or even placing a phone call.
Paper greeting cards say “I appreciate you.” Everyone loves them! Send cards to past customers to let them know you miss them, send them to employees for a job well done, send cards to prospects on birthdays. These are just a few tried and true ideas, and I’m sure you can think of many more.
Now I’ll admit choosing, buying, and mailing a greeting card can take a lot of time and a fair amount of expense (figure $3 for the card, $4 for the gas to get to and from the store, and even more for postage).
The time and trouble involved is one reason why greeting cards are so effective. First of all, the recipient doesn’t receive many cards, and secondly, they intuitively know just how much trouble you went to.
But let me share a little secret with you. There are new systems now that let you log onto a web site, choose your card, affix your digitized signature, then the service regular mails your card for you. The cost for the entire package can be as little as $1 per card, and it only takes a few seconds to do.
Can’t remember important dates? These same services will let you enter all your dates for months, then send your cards out automatically.
If you’ve got lots of relatives to keep up with, your customers would appreciate this special gesture, or you know your employees would be motivated by a nice pat on the back — then sending paper greeting cards is a communication tool you shouldn’t be without.
In this quick report I will tell you how you can gain link popularity for your website and at the same time your website will be receiving targeted visitors. Increasing your link popularity will increase visitors and you will sale more. For better result promote only one URL and not the entire website. Make sure you have search engine friendly meta tag and URL.
Follow the steps below.
Step 1. Search Engine and Directory Submission
Submit your website to search engines and directories. For best result, it is recommended that you manually submit your website to search engines and directory to the right category. Most search engines and directories offer free submission.
Step 2. Articles Distribution
Create or buy articles with the keyword that you want to advertise. Example, if you have a payday loans website then you should write some articles about it or find someone who can write them for you. I do recommend that you submit about 50 articles related to the keyword that you are advertising. If you do not want to write the articles then for example go to http://www.freelancer.com and post a project asking for articles about the keyword that you are advertising. You must mention that the articles that you are buying are for redistribution. After you get the articles, that you will distribute, at the bottom of every articles you should ad the link of the website that your are promoting. See example below on the bottom of this article.
After all your articles are ready to distribute then go to iSnare.com. They will submit your articles to a network of 1500 niche content sites. There you must buy credit to distribute your articles. 1 = $2 (ezinearticles.com is a free & popular option) You only need one credit per article. Also many websites are looking for articles to add to their own website, so you will getting a link back every time your article is posted to another website.
Step 3. One Way Link Exchange
In this step you will buy a membership at the IndexGuy.com link exchange. Link exchange is not a good practice, but you can buy this account because is like paying to directory to get your website added in certain category.
Click http://www.isnare.com/distribution.php link to go to IndexGuy.com and shop for a membership. I personally recommend the Bronze Membership for $6.95 a month and you will get +3000 inbound links (This number is daily increasing).
That’s it. Now you can wait to get listed at search engines and directories. Some search engine might take up to two months in order to list your website. But your popularity will build up with time. Just be patient.