Network Marketing Archives

For a number of years now people have been talking about “the next best thing” that is going to replace email marketing to be in contact with customers and use as a sales tool. At the moment the main contender is social media marketing, but there are certain drawbacks to it as well as some benefits which makes the comparison between the two different media’s quite interesting. Once you understand what social media marketing can offer it becomes easier to compare the two options and then make a decision on which one would be better for your particular type of online income business.

Let’s take a look at some of the key differences between the two and what affects their overall values.

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Some reasons why email marketing is still the best way to go.

Messages do not last for any great length of time on social media sites.
This can be a huge drawback for the simple reason that your message in some cases may only be avalailable to your viewers for a few minutes, whereas an email can be kept and re-read any number of times. The other great thing with email is that you can create a set of say 10 – 15 introductory emails which can be set up in your auto-responder ready to send out to each new subscriber who joins your email list. There is no opportunity to do anything like this with social media.

Social Media does not offer a direct line of communication.
A huge drawback with social media is that there is no way for you to communicate directly with an individual person or a group of people. You usually just send a message to your particular followers or fans. Although you are usually just sending messages to your followers and you are communicating with them by commenting there is still a lack of one-on-one settings.

With an email you are communicating directly with one particular person, irrespective of how many people you are sending the email to. For this reason social media makes it much harder to build a proper relationship with anyone, other than in a group setting.

Some reasons why social media could be more popular that email marketing.

It is easier to subscribe.
For someone to follow you on Facebook or Twitter only takes a couple of seconds, and they don’t need to give you any personal details, such as their real name or their email address. To get a person to follow you on Facebook requires just one click, but for them to opt in to your to your email subscriber list takes longer and means giving more information. Therefore getting a thousand followers is far easier than trying to build a list for the same amount of subscribers.

People want something in return for giving their email address etc.
The majority of people who sign up to your list will only do so if you are giving something of value away. This also means more time and effort on you part to get it all set up against setting up a social media profile. Plus people who follow you don’t really expect to receive anything immediately; they just decide to
follow you because they find you interesting.

There is no need for you to train your followers.
When people subscribe to your email list it is because they expect you to give them something and this is where the last advantage of social media marketing is over email marketing as there is no need to train your followers. The thing with email marketing is that it is essential to get your list of subscribers into the
habit of expecting your emails say once a week or three times a week. Social media marketing does not need this as people will see your messages whether they are looking for them or not.

There are many areas online that are synonymous with facilitating networking opportunities such as social network groups, forums and boards. Many of them are completely public, where anybody can click through to the URL, read the messages and even if they have no desire to contribute, will still be able to hang around and read. Other sites will require that you register and become a member, and then at least participate in some small way. These forums, social network sites or boards differ from paid membership sites because there is no cost involved in order for you to network.

Many of these sites are set up for particular interests or niches and are open to social interaction, but others are purely directed at online businesses. There are forums online for every topic that you could possibly imagine. For example you will find forums that deal with online business, web design, and work at home Moms, internet marketing and virtual assistants, to name just a few.                                                                                                                         

It is very easy to get totally involved and spend most of your working day online networking with other like minded people and this is where time management skills become essential. If you don’t take control of the amount of time spent on these sites, the whole of your day that should be spent working on your online business will be totally unproductive and you will miss out on the real income opportunities that your business needs to be successful.

There are two main reasons that you must consider participating in forums, social networking sites etc, from a business point of view; the first being that having a network of like minded people will help your business. If you are an online business owner, by hanging out with other business owners you will be able to help and support one another and the second thing, especially if you are new to it, this is a wonderful opportunity to learn from the pros.

An important point to remember though is that you cannot just hang out with other business owners. You will never succeed by trying to promote your business services or products to other online businesses. Visit other boards and check new posts of interest, or ask questions then leave. Move on to other groups who may require your products or services. Discover where your target market is and hang out there for a while. Just a quick word of caution when you visit these different forums boards and social network sites DO NOT SPAM! If you go to these forums for the sole purpose of spamming the people there, you will be tossed out before you can blink.

People will always choose to do business with people that they know and trust or that they have at least heard of and had good reports on. Whatever your product or service, if you just pop in to one of these sites, spew your sales pitch all over the boards and then expect any sort of return from it, then you are missing the whole point of networking online.

The important word to remember here is “networking” it is not advertising! Your job here is to build a rapport with other like minded people, and then if the need arises and they know that someone in their group of forum members or social networkers and the necessary skills or product that they require, you can guess who will be the first person they call. Hopefully it will be you. So begin networking today towards online business success.

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Search engines are beginning to take more notice of social media sites and many people have begun abandoning the traditional search engines in favor of social search engine optimization. The main question to consider here is whether this is a good move for viability over the long term. Although it is obvious that social networking has become equally huge for both consumers and online marketers what is important to think about is if they are established sufficiently to actually replace normal SEO rankings.  Many of us are excited with the idea of social media for business, but it may not be prudent to abandon SEO completely just yet.           

So let’s discuss some of the reasons why traditional SEO is still going to be effective for a long time to come.

The first point is which source of traffic is more valuable to you? Although traffic from the social media sites has definitely increased, there is still strong evidence that organic traffic has more value.

There are some reasons for this, the biggest one being that top ranking search results will invariably bring in a substantially larger amount of targeted traffic, and in terms of volume the search engines still win hands down, particularly when you compare Google, Bing and Yahoo against any of the social media sites you choose. Also search engine traffic tends to be more sustainable over time.

Even though search engines continuously change their algorithms to prevent online marketers exploiting the system, the basic principles remain pretty much unchanged, while the social sites are unable to provide any consistent long term results and the reason for this is that they are based on real-time popularity rather than any proven commodities.

Another thing to keep in mind is that with a solid SEO strategy you will have a foundation for setting up campaigns, especially if you use content as your main SEO marketing strategy which gives you many different ways for people to find you, whereas with a social media site you are limited to just one or two ways for anyone to find your website.

One of the main ways in which social search differs from organic traffic is that socially the traffic is fleeting. Even if your Facebook page is wildly popular today by next week things could have changed and although it may be easier for a while to jump ahead of your competition, by the same token it is just as easy for them to get ahead of you. While it is really difficult to imagine Facebook ever shutting down or becoming less popular that does not mean that it won’t change its demographics which could affect the way you get to your target audience.

Last but not least traffic coming from social sites is less likely to respond when it comes to a conversion standpoint. What this means is that even if you generate the same volume of traffic, your number of conversions will be less. Generally this is because people will leave a social media site to look at a specific page, they are not going there to browse some else’s website. While your bounce rate may be higher you can partly compensate for this by creating landing pages specifically for social traffic.

Although social media sites for business may not replace traditional search engine optimization and all its benefits, it would still be worth your while to pay more attention to social site optimization.

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