Marketing Study Outline—What you need to know
In order to be able to conduct a decent targeting and marketing campaign, you must first understand the fundamentals of finding out who they are. They only way to do this is to follow a specific guideline for you to follow. Check out the guideline below.
Your Objective to the Research
- Explain in one paragraph why the research is being done, what you hope to learn and for what purpose the information that you attain may be used.
Description of the Market
This should be general like one paragraph
Who is your Target Market(s)
- Why you chose this particular market
- Get a complete profile of your market (e.g., demographics, psychographics, behaviors)
- What benefits does your market seek (i.e., what points-of-pain or problems are being solved)
- What factors can affect their decision to purchase or use your product/service
- What attitudes do they have about the products/services that are currently not on the market
- How is the product used
- Products and Services that appeal to the target market
- In general terms, what is currently so appealing to this market
- If there are no current providers, what types of products/services may appeal to this market in the future (i.e., what is used now to solve the problem).
Get many Size estimates (current and future) for all of the following:
- Overall market
- Current size as it stands
- Potential size for the future
- Actual penetration of current products/service within the entire market
Individual market segments
- Current size
- Potential size
- Actual penetration of current products/service within the total market
- Usage rates
- Frequency of product purchases
- Growth estimates (current and in the future) for:
- Overall market
- Individual market segments
You must include a Summary of who your Current Competitors are
Listing the competition by market share ranking (by each target market if possible) is a good way to size them up. You can also be more specific by searching for individual points listed below.
Current Competitors – full analysis of top competitors including:
- Products & Services (e.g., description, uniqueness, pricing, etc.)
- Their Market share at current
- Current customers (targeted audience)
- Positioning and promotion strategies
- Recent news
SWOT Analysis – Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats
It is extremely important to focus attention on the SWOT section of this report. While most other information in this report can be gleaned from company and secondary materials, much of what appears in the SWOT section is based on the researcher’s own opinions of the competitor based on the information that is collected. Consequently, this is often one of the hardest areas of the report to write as well.
Potential Competitors (any competition in the future)
- You will need to get an explanation (though it need not be as detailed as Current Competitors) on who they are or maybe and why they are seen as potential competitors
- Extraneous Variables
- Discuss factors that may affect this market (e.g., technological, social, governmental, competitive, etc.)
- Market Trends and what is expected to happen in the future
If you can follow these basic tips for finding and selecting your target market, you should be ready to search online and check out the competition and their rankings in the search engines. Below are some general guidelines for you to follow in creating your competitive analysis which is the most important factor in being an affiliate marketer. Knowing your competition just as well as your audience is the key point which is going to keep you on top of the competition.
How To Find The Best Affiliate Programs
The best way to try to explain this to you is to give you some of my personal experiences when looking for an affiliation program.
“When I first started searching for and implementing affiliations with various companies; it was one of the largest parts of time wasted during my day when it came to managing my website. I spent a disgusting amount of hours searching for suitable affiliate programs, implementing the links and then keeping track of what they did”.
If you are hoping that marketing a website affiliation is going to get you rich quickly, forget about it. You will have to spend a lot of time in your project if you want to make it work for you. Then again, all money making ventures do, just ask Donald Trump.
“Of course, the income that was generated from each program was actually pretty low at that time because at that time the number of visitors to my site was not high either. With this in mind, it was not particularly uncommon for companies to disappear on me without warning me about it and since most affiliate programs only pay out at around the $25 mark, I would lose a lot of revenue in the end.
The other part of affiliation that I was not happy with was the idea of another companies banner’s being plastered all over my site, if you place too many of them on any given page it only serves to confuse and irritate your visitors. think about it; how do you like it when you visit a site. Any more than one animated element on a web page can be very distracting which leaves you with nothing gained at all, and many affiliate programs insist upon this type of bargain when signing on. By now, you must realize that I learned a lot just by trial and error.
Affiliate tracking can also a problem. After you have successfully applied to become an affiliate for a company, they will usually supply you with some personalized code or link. It is very important that this code is implemented correctly into your page; because otherwise you may be sending the company visitors without being reimbursed. Most snippets of code contain a unique user id; which is used by the company to distinguish which site sent traffic. Even if you do implement this code in the right way, it has been my experience on occasion for it not to function correctly”.
Having heard of my experiences, you can see why I would not really recommend that you hunt around and sign up without much research and thought first when finding a good affiliate program. Your time is too valuable and could be better spent creating content and updating your site. But there are some excellent individual companies offering affiliate programs out there.
What I have discovered to be very successful is to take advantage of companies like Offers Quest or Google for text link advertising. Text links are a great resource as they are bandwidth friendly, and when they are implemented properly add valuable content to your site which can also assist in search engine rankings.
When it comes to website affiliation, you will also need to know how to conduct a market study because this is how you will find your target audience. Without a targeted audience, your marketing campaign will not be effective. Below I have begun to give you an outline of what you should include in your market study. It is best to write it down; especially if you are hoping to entice someone else into investing in your marketing venture. That and it is a good way to keep track of your objective and provides a good guideline of what needs to be done.
The Fundamentals of Website Affiliation
As you can imagine from the previous article that spends a great of time focusing on the basics of internet marketing, you must realize that it was all just an informed lead in to the affiliation, which is the whole reason that we are here. The first thing that you have to think about when getting into the affiliation game is how to go about it. In order to understand this, you will need to know exactly what it is and get basic knowledge about it.
Affiliate programs are an excellent way to generate income for your site or someone else’s, and it is a pretty good introduction into ecommerce, however but it’s a numbers game. Basically, the more people who visit your site, the greater your chances become for creating a good income, especially if the programs you participate in are related to your site topic. Chances are you have probably come across many commercial sites that claim to offer the best affiliate program. What you will often learn is that this is simply not true.
So what exactly is an affiliate program, you might ask? An affiliate program is where a company offers to pay you a certain amount of money for either a click through from your site, or a fixed amount for a lead (where the visitor signs up for a newsletter, etc.) or a percentage of a purchase made by a visitor as a result of a click through. Even if the visitor does not make a purchase on the advertiser’s site right away, most programs will offer “cookie duration” of usually around 30-90 days.
What this really means is that as long as the visitor has the cookie in their cache; even if they return to the advertisers site one month later, you will still receive the commission from the sale however, as in all things that are business related, cookie duration is not a guarantee when you sign up for an affiliation program and is something that you need to check for before signing on.
Discover The Search Engine Basics
Search engines are computer programs that are used to explore the internet in search of web pages. They do this by using “spiders,” “crawlers,” or “robots” which are used to search for the most up to date information on any given search request. This may seem like an odd place to introduce you to the search engines, but I can assure that this section is well placed. Giving you the basics here will help you to understand what I am saying in the later sections. Anyways…
Back to the basics and explanation of search engine spiders.
These spiders (like those that are used by Google) are able to follow the links present on web pages that are located by specific keywords. When spiders are searching for a new webpage, they copy all or parts of the text present on the page into their search engine database. Other spiders revisit these pages on a regular basis so that they can register changes or dead links. The wait time varies greatly from search engine to search engine. It is for this reason that your website should stay current.
The search engine will have hundreds of millions of web pages in its database. In order to deliver relevant results, the search engine companies have developed special ranking algorithms that calculate the order of search requirement results. The keyword or keyword phrase the visitor enters into the search form of the search engine will determine which web sites get picked up by the query. The pages the search engine find most relevant will be listed first. This will determine where you will be listed upon search requests.
For instance, if you are searching for “Beethoven,” and the search engine finds a main headline on that page containing the phrase “Ludwig von Beethoven,” it will assume that this page is fairly relevant to your needs. If, on the other hand, it finds the phrase only once, and it is buried in a long text, it will ignore it because it will assume that this is not important. That is why so many websites use special keywords more than once in a particular article or webpage, because that is how the spiders pick them up and place them higher in the results of a search.
What does this mean to you as a business person? Well…..this means that in order for you to even consider affiliation; you must first have a website. If you want your website to get attention, you have to appeal to search engines first. Many potential affiliates will not want to associate with just anyone prefer a site that gets traffic. Knowing about search engines and how to appeal to them will get you this traffic. I will offer more on traffic in another section later. Right now I would like to get you started with website affiliation because that is what this book is about and I have already given the basics about marketing in general.
About Online Marketing
Your first interest in any type of marketing campaign is to start developing a marketing strategy that is going to be focused on who you will need to determine your target market is. This is exactly who you think will be your consumers. For starters, you need to know how to break down your consumers.
Target market is the group of potential customers that will be selected for the reception of your marketing strategy. It certainly makes it easier to develop your strategy if you know exactly who/how old/where people live when trying to sell things to them. If you are looking to segment the market, you need to determine the different target markets for each segment. For example, if you are selling tires, (which everyone needs) you will need to divide your market by knowing how people shop for tires, and who they are.
If you are selling high cost/quality tires, you have to market to a market that is likely to buy them such as middle aged and established consumers as opposed to teens and twenty-something’s who may not be able to afford them.
There are different means that are used by professional marketers that help you to find your target audience. You can use both of them that are within your means. Some of these methods include:
- Researching the market through surveys, interviews, and setting up shop in a mall to see who questions you the most etc. to see who would benefit the most from your product and be most likely to buy.
- Host experimental sessions for people to try out your product and give their opinions for improvements etc. so that you can ensure that you giving the people what they want or need.
- Host trial websites that are geared toward finding the market by letting the market come to you. You can best do this by utilizing keyword centered articles that will let you know who is coming toy our website.
It really doesn’t matter if you stand on your front porch and just ask people what they want in a product or service like yours or not, as long as you get a good handle on who your market audience is. If you are selling T-shirts, you will likely want to appeal to younger people who are more likely to wear them; which means that you should market your wares to those people. To do this, you will have to begin your strategy where you know you will find them….on the internet.
When you are using the internet to market any product or service, you must understand the basics of what internet marketing is. When you are marketing on the internet, you are looking to reach a larger audience and therefore, you need something that will catch their attention and bring them to you. In order to do this, you will have to bring these people to your website.
Once you have your website built, you have to work on getting people to visit not just once, but over and over again. You can start this by using your website to do more than just sell stuff. You should always try to host a website that is also informational. It is generally the website’s that offer up to date information as well as sell wares.
It is through the information that you establish yourself as a trustworthy authority to your consumers. Doing this establishes trust with your consumers and brings them back again all of the time. Nobody wants to visit a website that is profiling outdated information in a month. It is the up to date website’s that get and keep clients. These are also the website that the search engines find relevant during a query.
A nice tip for keeping your information up to date; especially if you are selling a product or service that is rarely updated is to keep a weather program or stock ticker program running on your website because the search engine spiders and robots will view this as new content and still return to your site on a regular basis.
If you are running a website that can sell things directly or order services and make payments there etc. you will want to generate as much sales as possible.
What this means is that you need to make search engines come to your site for a particular product or service before others. It is because of this need that search engines have to become your best friend, which I will explain what these in the next articles.
The Power of Internet Business
If you currently own a business or are thinking of starting one up, chances are, you are going to need some information about how to get the word out about your product or service. That is when you need to think about marketing and building a marketing strategy.
With the World Wide Web being the major source of information sharing and communications in the world, it is natural that you would want to use this as a major focus for building your marketing strategy. That is what this e-book is for; to teach you how to become a major player in the field of business that you choose by taking advantage of the internet and using affiliation as your marketing strategy’s foundation.
Of course, before I can show you how to become a master affiliate, I think it would be best to begin with a basic introduction to marketing in general. So in this introduction to becoming a master affiliate, I will give you a basic explanation into marketing because this will help you to better understand how an affiliation can be done with expert precision.
Most people are aware of what marketing is, but most do not realize everything that is involved in marketing. Marketing is not a temporary thing. Marketing is more than sales. Marketing is actually an entire process of activities that is used to:
Get your potential customer’s attention
Motivate them to buy
Get them to actually buy
Get them to keep buying
Marketing is how you define your product, promote your product, distribute your product, and to maintain a relationship with your customers. All of this is important if you want to run a successful business. When you become an affiliate, you are just gaining access to a world of customers instead of just being available for a local customer base. It simply allows you to reach millions of potential customers instead of hundreds. With this kind of potential, is it a wonder that so many people are relying on the web as their marketing hub.
In order to get the consumer’s attention, you will need to know who they are and where they are. When you use affiliation, you can cut some of that work in half. When you are an affiliate, a lot of your customers will find you. This is a business feat that is just too good to be true, and if you know what you are doing, the benefits are simply awesome!
Trying to create an ebook is something that most authors want to do but they think that you will need to have a big budget. However, you simply just need to have a few things in mind before you start out and create your own ebook.
An ebook is simply a book or a pamphlet that is distributed through the internet. This means that it can be shared with thousands of people and they will pay a fee to read it.
You will be able to make a good amount of money and all you need to do is wait for the money to come in.
People will create an ebook for various reasons and you will need to first determine what your main purpose is.
Whether it is to truly educate or to simply just publicize your brand, you will need to know what your reason is before you start.
The best format to create an ebook in is PDF and this is the best and most common way to do so.
Make sure that you know what you are talking about and that you make it interesting to read and to look at.
A majority of people will be skip readers and so you will need to bold the most important things. Have pictures and graphs on certain things and remember that you can read other ebooks for inspiration.
Though your first ebook may not become a best seller, you will simply need to keep going and to realize that you must keep trying.
If you are able to make your ebook go viral, you will certainly be able to see the money come in on a daily basis and it will be because of your ebook. Make sure you repeatedly edit your ebook and to simply enjoy the process.
Engaging into a new business venture these days can be quite a challenge.
First of all, you have to come up with ways to have your business promoted to the great mass.
However, with the modern innovations nowadays such as the web, there are more means that you can take to advertise all that you’ve got to the offer through the virtual world.
One of the best ways to do so online would be through podcasting. It is easy to do and one of the most trending advertisement tools nowadays.
As you may know, podcasting is like blog posting. The only difference is that you have to put you’re writing into life by turning it into an audio material which your online audience can listen to for essential details on certain products and services that you’re offering.
As mentioned earlier, it is easy to do and you just have to learn the basics. To help you be guided, here is a guide that will teach you how to get started with podcasting:
Plan and Write
As a start, make a blog post or an article about your business. See to it that you have a good intro as that is the most crucial part when it comes to convincing your audience to go on.
Make it brief and understandable in an entertaining way, yet full of content about what you’ve got to offer.
Once done with the planning and writing part, that calls for the recording.
As a tip, match your voice tone to your writing style. Condition your voice and it would be a plus if you try to emulate an outgoing popular radio personality as this will surely give a good impact to your audience.
When you’re done with the recording, the last step would be publishing it on the commercial site where you want your podcast to be heard. Of course, some of your audience would rather download the file rather listening to it online.
That said, have your podcast in different formats for various handheld consoles considering that not all your audience are iPod users.
Podcasting is really easy, yet an effective way to have your business advertised online. If you can follow those guidelines, then you should be good to go for podcasting.
Share On Your Facebook Wall
As simple as this may sound, this is something that will certainly get instant traffic to your site. Though it may not be a lot, it is certainly a good start.
If you are able to start a contest on Twitter, this will definitely get some attention towards your website with ReTweets.
Post videos and have them link back to your site. This will add more sources of traffic and will also be a platform for viral video marketing.
Viral Video Marketing
If you are able to think of a unique and funny way to make a viral video, it will certainly be a great way to get instant traffic. This can lead to millions of hits and so this is certainly a good place to look.
Optimize your site for search engines
If you optimize your website for search engines, you will be able to gain more traffic from people searching those keywords. This is a powerful tool and will lead to a lot of traffic.
When you post on you site consistently, it will lead to more people seeing the content that you make.
Don’t hesitate from posting about current events as this is what people will be searching for on a daily basis.
Get back links
Network with a lot of people and try to have them post links to your site to gain some traffic.
Simply asking your friends and people you meet to visit your website is often an overlooked strategy when it comes to internet marketing.
Include URL in signature
When you post on forums, it is a good idea to post your URL in your signature so that they will be sent to your site.
Try these 10 quick ways to get traffic to your site and you will certainly see a big difference.