Launch a PR Campaign
There are others on the Web who stand ready to help you get the word out about your new Web presence: online news sites, e-zines, and press-release services like PRNewswire, PRWeb and PR Leap. The e-sales site Avangate has a “Top 50” list of more sites where you can submit press releases, most of them for free.
Some more effective publicity tools and tips:
- Postcards. Send postcards to everyone in your business database and announce your new site. Include your company logo, URL and maybe a screenshot of your home page.
- Discounts. Offer a discount on your products or services just for visiting your new Web home, and a bigger one if visitors bring you new business through a “Tell a Friend” promotional page on your site.
- Voicemail. Re-record your company’s voicemail greeting to include your Web address.
- Stationery. Include your Web address in all printed marketing materials – business cards, letterhead, advertising, invoices – everyplace it fits.
- Links. External links to your site can drive more traffic. Ask professional organizations, your local Chamber of Commerce, local business publications and relevant industry journals if they’ll include a link to your site - be sure to explain to them why your site's content would be relevant and valuable to their audience. The more sites that are linked to yours, the higher your search engine rankings.
If you’ve included an advertising budget in your planning, consider pay-per-click or PPC marketing – at least in the early days – for instant Web traffic to your site.
Pay-per-click advertising providers charge a small fee, adjusted according to the competition for your chosen search keywords, for each potential customer who clicks on your ad to visit your site.
Some advantages and benefits:
- Affordability. Whatever your budget, simple online tools tailor (and limit) your spending to what you can afford.
- Performance. You only pay for people who click on your ad.
- Targeted Campaigns. You can aim your ads at very specific market segments, and geographic areas as small as 10 square miles.
- Adaptability. You can change your ad daily or weekly to compare response rates and effectiveness.
- Performance Testing. You can run two ads for the same keyword to see which performs better, and then discontinue the lower performing ad. You can do this continually throughout your campaign.
- Simplicity. Because these keyword ads are text based, you don’t need a high-priced creative director to design your ads. Can you type? With a little bit of imagination you can effectively run a campaign.
Start with PPC programs from the major search engines: Google AdWords, Yahoo! Search Marketing and Microsoft adCenter.