Internet for lead generation
There’s a number of ways you can increase business through the Internet. One effective approach is to target certain websites or services as platforms for advertising. Another method is to compete for search engine keywords by generating keyword rich content on your website. Lastly, you post your company on the variety of directory websites that display professional services. Each option has it’s own benefits and can/should be used in tandem with one another.
Each method has its’ own cost/benefit and area of efficacy. Depending on your strategy, you will invest time or money. In areas that cost money, you will look for the lowest cost for acquiring a customer. Of you spend time, you will want to maximize the benefit of what you do.
For advertising, you typically pay for a number of impressions. The goal of any advertising campaign is to find a high number of relevant viewers. In the case of online advertising, relevancy means geographic location and customer need. Your advertising provider will sell you inventory based on keywords on pages. For example, google will sell you advertisements on google products when your selected advertisement display criteria are displayed on a page.
Of course, because there is limited inventory for advertisements, the higher demand advertisements cost higher. High demand keywords are more expensive than unusual keywords. Think of it as displaying a billboard on a busy street, verses a rural driveway.
The Internet is different in that high demand keywords are not always most favorable for you. You may think “Los Angeles psychiatry” is the best keyword for you. It contains both geographic and topic relevance. The obvious match makes it a high demand keyword set and consequently expensive target.
For cost-effective advertising, you need to think like your customer. If advertising on a search engine, rather than selecting the obvious keyword match, target something your customer would type. This can be a question, sentence or fragmented thought. By targeted more words, your ad will come up less and consequently cost less. Similarly, your audience will be specific enough that they are typing exactly what you are targeting. Some example targets may be “I’m feeling depressed about (enter a topic)”, “who do I talk to about my middle school (choose a incident)”, or “sad related personal support”. The goal is to indirectly target your audience through insight that you can infer.
You must be wondering where to purchase these advertisements or where the advertisement lead. In general, google’s Adwords program is a safe place to experiment. Just google Adwords and it will link you to the process. Adwords let you target audiences through setting keywords and determining what regional areas will display your advertisements. The regions are targeted by IP addresses and are generally correct.
Targeting online destinations
Another route is to look at specific websites you believe your target demographic uses. This could be a forum, web application, log, or news source. Platforms like these will have a specific area on their site to advertise. From there, you often pay to have your banner or link displayed for a set period of time. Again, like the keywords, it’s best to target places that are indirectly related to your audience. The advertisements you purchase will run for a week/month/etc. the advertisement host should have some details regarding the potential audience’s demographic.
Back to the other part of the question, where do these advertisements lead to? Rather than squeezing all your contact information and a catch phrase into a small space, you will display advertisements with some “hook” and a link to a webpage you set. Often this page should be a landing page in your website. This lets you display a specific message to the advertisement leadvertisements, as well as offer access to other resources that may convince them to contact you.
Landing pages are very typical. They contain: a short sentence selling the customer, a short contact form, a few details about your services, a set of testimonials, and another contact form. These pages have been heavily tested for efficacy, so there’s no need for creating a new method.
When running any campaign, it’s also good practice to measure the traffic on your site. This is the field of web analytics. There are numerous free products that allow you to gain rich insight into your your websites visitors.
Search engine optimization
In addition to advertising, you can focus on generating search engine traffic. This is a natural process that can generate massive traffic. The method is similar to keyword targeted advertisements. The difference is that you generate content on your website that will trigger search engines to display your website for targeted keywords.
Specifically, this requires you to be doing some kind of writing that is posted on your website. The writing can be in the form of blog posts that review topics your audience may be searching about. The key is to write in a way that makes search engines easily associate your content to your desired keyword. To do this, you focus on writing semantic articles that have marked up headings with you keywords. In addition, the article piece Gould naturally repeat the target keyword multiple time. This may seem like an impediment to the wrong process, but it is relatively normal on most Internet writing.
Rich data attributes
In addition to generating content, you can configure your existing site to leverage any rich attributes that search engines may look for in a webpage. Rich attributes are marked up pieces of information that may be displayed in a search result. Examples are author names, addresses, business hours, site maps, and other information. Some search engines, also reward users for being loyal to their services. For instance, displaying a Google+ account on your website’s pages will increase your search ranking.
The goal for optimizing search engine visibility is to help make a robot understand the content of your webpage. The search engines goal is to display the most appropriate search results for any keywords. One major part is the existence of relevant content. The next important part is inbound links from other websites. In particular, the links need to come from resources that are associated to your websites topic. By having inbound links from relevant sources, search engines can effectively perceive your website’s topic.
Listing in professional directories
Lastly, you can also list yourself on a variety of professional services directory websites. This includes, but is no where limited to, websites like Yelp.com, YellowPages, Craigslist or whatever other sites come up when you do general searches for professionals in your field. The key on these sites are to have your existing customers write positive feedback. The Internet is designed to reward people with higher ratings, rarer than give fresh people an opportunity for exposure. In other words, there are many people on directory websites or service listing websites that get very little attention. Rather a small group of people get a majority of the traffic through the juxtaposition of being positively rated. Having 3-6 ratings can make all the difference.
The sites that are most effective for you to list will often require you to register and submit company descriptions. To expedite your registration process, identify what is commonly required (business name, description, services offered, hours of operation, location, etc) and have them in a document to copy and paste. This will let you expedite the registration process. Keep in mind, many of these I recorded are under operation from very few individuals, so you will need to resolve issues yourself.
There are endless more means for utilizing modern media to drive business traffic. The three points I mentioned are the most general. I hope that helps and let me know if you have any more questions!!