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The StartupNation Blog Trends, tips and real-life anecdotes from industry experts

Archive for April, 2009

Ready to Make Your Blog Headlines Irresistible?

Want more people to read your blog? Start with the headline. If you can intrigue your audience with tantalizing headlines, your readership should soar. To that end, here are 5 tactics for making delicious headlines that your readers will eat up! Ask a Question Make your blog entry relevant to your target audience by asking [...]

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Do it…because it feels good.

Do it once a year. Do it once a month. Do it twice a week.   Pro Bono, I mean…what were you thinking?   Especially in this time, when things are tight for everyone, time is valuable. Give it freely. Find a way to connect with those in your community. I’ve noticed messages being targeted [...]

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Get some…(free) education!

Recalling my earlier post about (FREE being a good price, and FREE love… I’m a big fan of “if you have a gift at something, you share it.” Perhaps it’s all that Catholic school (no lights under a bushell, and such) but I think this journey is a lot easier when people give one another [...]

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Some Laid Off Workers Turn to Franchising

The past 18 – 24 months have been tough on corporate America. I’m based in Charlotte (home of Bank of America and Wachovia/Wells Fargo) and many of my friends that work for the bank are always nervous. A lot of these people were also able to store up a nest egg and once they get [...]

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Can CPM (cost per thousand) banner advertising keep up with current online marketing trends?

A few years ago, banner advertising was at the forefront of online marketing resources. As banner advertising rose to popularity, more and more business owners began to incorporate the costs of banner advertising into their marketing budget, enticed by the fact that they would be able to quantifiably track which ads their website visitors were clicking on. And, with the emergence of banner ads came the beginning of ROI driven advertising.

Considering recent improvements in online marketing strategies, as an entrepreneur with a start-up company, you may be asking yourself if so-called ‘traditional’ online marketing (CPM banner ads) is still a relevant and efficient way to reach your target market.

Marketing strategies are definitely not cut and dry so the answer to any marketing strategy question will almost always begin with “It depends.” If you are a small to mid-sized businesses, you have many options in the realm of online marketing, in which case traditional banner advertising can be put at the bottom of your list of priorities.

Keeping today’s economy in mind, every business, including start-ups, should create a marketing plan with programs correlated to immediate ROIs. Here are several recommended marketing strategies that are typically useful to start with:

  • If it is possible, always start with affiliate relationships. Affiliates or lead generation companies (usually defined as another company that will sell or refer your services or products for a share of your received revenue) can be helpful in that they do not cost you an up-front investment for the customers you can attain through them. If you can find good affiliates, it is imperative that you treat them well, as they will not likely stay with you if you do not provide them any value in return for their services.
  • Businesses with sales departments should maximize their pay-per-lead advertising budget. There are hundreds of thousands of companies that utilize this service because it works, and it is also tied to immediate ROI.
  • Consider PPC and CPA advertising, which only require you to pay for an action. For example, you would only pay Google if a visitor clicked on your site.
  • Don’t forget about social media and SEO as they are great channels for promoting your business.
  • Google is now recognizing video in search results and SEO experts believe video will help efforts more and more in the future. If you’re working with an SEO company, make sure they offer video at a relatively low-cost. One option I recommend is Running Stills.
  • When it comes to most marketing strategies, starting small, tracking your results, finding a sales approach that works, and then expanding, can best lead to success.

If you’re still wondering whether or not you should use CPM banner advertising, consider the size of your business. For larger companies, banner ads are a very effective way to drive traffic as well as enhance your ROI in every aspect of your advertising agenda. Smaller companies and start-ups should consider implementing programs that are tied to a direct return of investment rather than jumping right in to banner ads.

The bottom line is that CPM banner advertising is not a thing of the past and it probably never will be. But, as it goes with all types of advertising mediums, it isn’t for everyone.

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A few years ago, banner advertising was at the forefront of online marketing resources. As banner advertising rose to popularity, more and more business owners began to incorporate the costs of banner advertising into their marketing budget, enticed by the fact that they would be able to quantifiably track which ads their website visitors were [...]

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America’s Most Promising Social Entreprenuers

From Business Week: America’s Most Promising Social Entreprenuers “Social entrepreneurs—enterprising individuals who apply business practices to solving societal problems such as pollution, poor nutrition, and poverty—are now 30,000 strong and growing, according to B Lab, a nonprofit organization that certifies these purpose-driven companies. Together, they represent some $40 billion in revenue. Not surprising, then, that [...]

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