Start Small, Capitalize on What You Know and Focus on Content: Your Questions Answered
I have never indicated that I am offering any consulting, but for some reasons, some people think I am worthy enough to give them advice. I am truly honoured – and a bit daunted at first. Nevertheless, I try my best to share what I know.
Recently, I started giving advices (answers to questions, to be exact) to an Internet Marketer, a small business owner and two others looking for business startup tips. I think what they asked me about is interesting, simply because those are what popping on people’s mind when it come to online entrepreneurship. So, I’d like to share the 4 issues raised about Internet marketing, blogging as a business, business growth and how to start a business with little or no investment – with a little hint of personal development advice…
1. Startup tip: Start small
Punith (via Facebook) ask a question (or make a statement?)
“I have a lot of dream… but I am poor.”
Punith, being poor is not an excuse for you not to be successful :) There are many opportunities you can take even without involving money. Don’t spend too much time on Facebook (lol) and start searching for ideas on http://www.noobpreneur.com/ or any other good sites offering ideas and tips.
2. Small business growth tip: Cross-promotion
Ricky (via Facebook):
“Hello sir, I’m from an electrical retail shop. Please tell me how I can improve my business.”
Hi, I do have an experience in retail shop, and I understand how difficult it is to grow your business. However, I do have some tips… try cross-promotion; it is the way to go. For example, try to partner with other small businesses offering electrical installation services. They can source items from you, while you promote their business on your shop – and vice versa.
3. Internet marketing tip: Do reviews
Shaun (via LinkedIn):
“I just had a look at your websites. I was impressed. It’s obvious you are a serious professional internet marketing entrepreneur. I also am trying to build a presence as an internet marketer but I am not having any success at it. I have to admit, though, I’m fairly new at this. Can you offer some pointers to help people such as myself who are unsure about what to do to get going in the right direction?”
From my experience, traffic from search engines is superior, because they are targeted and comprised of people who are willing to buy from you.
Of course, you need to aim to rank in the top 3 of the search results for your main keywords to get the best results.
Other than search engines, I also learn that StumbleUpon delivers such traffic. You might want to try using Google Adwords or Facebook ads, but in my case StumbleUpon converts better.
To get people to at least click on your affiliate links, in my opinion, the best way is by writing a review on the product. Of course, you need traffic to that review page too… so promote it on your social media accounts – Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.
Placing affiliate banners that pay on per-conversion basis on my sites doesn’t convert well – so you might want to take the review route.
Hint: You might want to look at CPL affiliate programs (those that pay you for the leads sent via your site. In my case, lead-based affiliate programs (CPL) convert better than action-based affiliate programs (CPA).
4. Business blogging tips: Create content focusing on what you know
John (via e-mail):
“I am a Christian business owner who had a side business fail and it may cost me our house. I have a few years to try to make some good extra money to try and pay down some of what we now owe and I am looking into affiliated marketing and blogging with my existing business (hand tools manufacturer – since 1937). I need to re-do our current website and Ebay has been doing very well for me. Is there any advice you can give on affiliated marketing? I am also a newbie and need to educate myself on it but it does seem like a good way to make money on the internet and also being able to stay home as well.”
Since you are vastly experienced in hand tool for woodcarver, I’d suggest you to establish an informational website (or blog) on woodcarving offering tips on choosing tools and so on.
Then you might want to promote products via your site – your own products or affiliate products. You can try monetizing your blog with ads from a network, such as Google Adsense.
Check out this great site: http://www.askthebuilder.com/ – Tim, the owner, is giving DIY advices and making money via affiliate programs, Adsense and Chitika. And although I’m not sure what’s inside the newsletter, I’m sure it contains both advice and special offers.
It’s a long hurdle to make things work. “Just build it and they will come” won’t work – you need to promote your site to get traffic, as to an informational site, the money is in the traffic.
So, there you go – 4 tips that I truly hope can help you in some ways. If you have any questions that bug you days and night about small business, online business and entrepreneurship, just give me a shout and I try my best to help you out!
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