By Shelley Lowery
Creating a successful Internet presence involves much more than designing a great web site or having the "perfect" product. Listing your web site with the Search Engines is your first step; however, you must not solely rely on the Search Engines to bring you traffic.
You must design a complete promotional strategy and work it every day. If you're launching a new web site, your first step will be to submit your site to the Search Engines and Directories.
Although there are many auto-submission software programs available on the Internet, make sure you manually submit your site to the main Search Engines and Directories:
The Open Directory Project
Google: Although you can submit your site map to Google, you will receive a higher ranking by allowing their robots to find your pages on their own.
Once you've manually submitted your main pages, visit SelfPromotion.com to automatically submit your pages to a number of additional Search Engines and Directories.
A good way to organize your promotions is to set up a web page, for your personal use, that will contain your complete strategy. This page should be stored on your hard drive and not uploaded to your server. Your page should contain four sections.
1. Daily Promotions
2. Weekly Promotions
3. Monthly Promotions
4. Miscellaneous Promotions
Each of these four sections should contain the appropriate information for each of your promotional resources, such as web site name, user ID, password (if applicable) and hyperlinked web addresses for each web site you plan to use for your promotions. This will enable you to open your web page each day and visit the sites you have listed.
:: DAILY PROMOTIONS
Visit some popular discussion boards and share your expertise. Although you may not advertise on discussion boards, you can include your signature file with your post. Before you begin posting to discussion boards, make sure you lurk a while and see exactly how the board functions.
Visit Web-Source DiscussionForums for a complete listing of some of the top discussion boards.
:: WEEKLY PROMOTIONS
Ezine Advertising / Ad Swaps
Your weekly promotions should consist of placing a paid ezine advertisement and/or arranging ad swaps with fellow publishers.
Visit the Directory of Ezines for a complete listing of hundreds of publishers and contact information for advertising.
To organize your ad placements and swaps, place the publication names, publisher names, ad dates and hyperlinked web addresses within your weekly promotions list.
:: MONTHLY PROMOTIONS
Your monthly promotions should include writing an article in the area of your expertise, promotional exchanges with similar web sites, and offline promotions.
To organize your monthly promotions, place the names and hyperlinked web addresses for each of your promotional resources within your monthly promotions section.
Writing articles that may be freely published with your bylines is one of the best promotional methods online. Your article may be published in hundreds of ezines, on web sites or even in magazines.
For further information on writing articles, visit: Web-Source.net
Cross promoting is a powerful technique used by many Internet marketers to increase the exposure of their products, services or publications. You simply decide what type of promotional exchange you would be interested in and contact fellow marketers to discuss an exchange.
The most effective technique used in cross promotions is recommendations. By providing each other with a personal recommendation you can increase your response rates tremendously.
Here are some popular cross promoting techniques you can use to boost your business:
Exchange links with web sites similar to yours, but not in competition. Many Search Engines are now utilizing a system that tracks and ranks sites according to the number of quality links pointing to a particular web site. By exchanging links with similar web sites, you will not only increase your Search Engine ranking, but you will also increase your web site traffic.
Ezine Ad Swaps
Exchange subscription ads with other ezine publishers. Ezine advertising is one of the best forms of advertising on the Internet. By swapping ads with fellow ezine publishers, you can run your ad in other publications free of charge.
Exchange subscription information with fellow ezine publishers. Provide recommendations within your ezine's welcome message, thank you page and even on your multiple subscription ezine form.
Partner with a similar publication and provide content for each other. This may be a weekly tips column, question and answer column or whatever you'd like.
Partner with fellow Internet marketers and create free ebooks to freely distribute. The ebook should mutually benefit and promote both of you, while providing valuable information for your visitors.
A ride along is any extra information (advertisements) sent along with a direct mailing. You can use this same technique with any ezine solo mailings you may run by including an exchange recommendation within your mailing. In addition, you can include recommendations within the thank you letters you send out when you deliver your products.
An up sell is used when your customer is in the process of ordering your product. Another product is introduced, for a small additional cost, just as you're closing the sale. This technique is used with many infomercials when the customer calls in their order. The operator will introduce an additional product for a minimal extra charge. You can use this same technique on your order page by trading product recommendations with fellow marketers.
A quality recommendation will pull a much higher response rate than just a link or banner. Cross promote with individuals you truly respect and believe in, as your professional reputation is on the line.
Offline Promotions Promoting your web site offline is another great way to increase your traffic. Below are several resources to assist you:
IDit Plates - Put your web address on your vehicle. IDit Plates are a great way to continuously promote your web site. They're triple chrome plated and blend in well with your vehicle.
Visit iPrint for your printing needs. From business print items to promotional items, iPrint has it all.
Place ads in newspapers, magazines, on the radio, or on TV. Visit these links for complete listings:
For even more promotional products, PromoCity can add your logo to any one of over 500,000 items.
:: MISCELLANEOUS PROMOTIONS
Your miscellaneous promotions might include paying for traffic, text and banner advertising.
Visit the following web addresses for further information:
Once you've implemented your promotional strategy and continuously work it each day, you'll be amazed with the results of your efforts. Consistency will be the key to driving massive traffic to your site.
About The Author
Shelley Lowery is the author of the highly acclaimed ebook series, Web Design Mastery -- An eight volume (500+ pages) in-depth guide to professional web design. Web Design Mastery is being hailed as the "Bible" for professional web design.