Key Principles of Internet Marketing

Internet Marketing?
Internet marketing is about giving rather than getting. Internet marketing also exploits the networking capabilities of the Web by leveraging online community activities, linking, affiliate marketing, viral marketing, email marketing, and loyalty programs.

Products and Services
Internet marketing is best suited for:

  • Products and services that require a lot of information such as travel.
  • Products and services that people feel strongly about such as books, music, and movies.
  • Products and services that are bought by the Internet demographic. Those working in technology and academia are very well represented.

Online Advertising

Online advertising does not have the same impact as television or glossy media because of bandwidth restrictions. Studies indicate that most consumers avoid interactive ads because they simply take too much time to download. The real power of online advertising is in its ability to reach niche markets and target just the right consumer with just the right product. Advertising success is claimed by opt-in email-based marketing where consumers request information on a particular product or service.

Internet Marketing is Part of the Overall Package
The objective of internet marketing should be to integrate it into the overall marketing strategy. Internet marketing supports offline marketing activities. Offline marketing arouses the consumer’s interest. They have questions. The web site can provide comprehensive information about the company’s products or services. But remember, people are not coming to your web site to read the brochure again.

Email Marketing
Consumers must actively decide to go to a web site, but with email they join a database in which they can be regularly informed of products, services, and offers that the organization has. The key to email marketing success is getting people who want the information to join a database. Of course, the information they receive needs to be of a type and quality that they signed up to get.

The Networking Ability of the Internet
Linking is one of the simplest yet most effective internet marketing devices there is. It underpins affiliate marketing efforts by web sites such as Linking is like embedded work of mouth. Viral marketing is a network effect whereby groups of consumers create a buzz about a particular product of service by emailing friends and/or creating their own web sites.

Common Mistakes

  • Being Flashy. On the web, visitors don’t really care about the graphics. They just want the information. Splash screens, audio, video, and Flash animations should be kept to an absolute minimum.
  • Not Building and Leveraging a Consumer Database. Bringing people to a web site without strongly encouraging them to join some sort of database is a serious mistake. Studies indicate that consumers visit a web site once, rarely if ever to return. It is vital to get them into a database so that ongoing communication can be set up.
  • Focusing on Volume of Visitors Rather than Quality Targeting. In the early years of the web, there was a frantic rush to build visitor traffic to a web site without any real focus on issues such as revenue per visitor and numbers who joined databases. Acquisition costs for visitors did not translate into valuable customers and many business models collapsed.

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