We live in some interesting times with the economy, the war, natural disasters and the uncertainty that comes with a Presidential election. It’s enough to keep marketers on their toes that consumer online behaviors and technology change so often, but economic uncertainty makes it even more “interesting“.
The interactive marketing show will go on but in what forms? Marketing budgets are often the first cut during a recession. Yet many online marketers have reported increases in client spending. Factors such as the health of the company and market, as well as tactics need to be considered.
There are many, many ways to market online, giving companies a highly measurable, high impact and low cost option to expensive and often unaccountable traditional advertising. Which leads me to the following Reader Poll:
What 3 internet marketing tactics will you emphasize most in the next 6 months?
- Search engine optimization (13%, 151 Votes)
- Blogging (11%, 138 Votes)
- Pay per click (9%, 108 Votes)
- Email marketing (8%, 91 Votes)
- Social networking (Facebook, LinkedIn) (7%, 86 Votes)
- Blogger relations/blog PR (5%, 57 Votes)
- Affiliate marketing (4%, 51 Votes)
- Microblogging (Twitter, Plurk, Jaiku) (4%, 48 Votes)
- Advertorial (NewsForce, AdFusion) (3%, 40 Votes)
- Free content (white papers, how to's, ebooks) (3%, 31 Votes)
- Corporate web site (2%, 29 Votes)
- Video marketing (2%, 29 Votes)
- Link bait (2%, 27 Votes)
- Behavioral targeting (2%, 26 Votes)
- Viral / buzz marketing (2%, 22 Votes)
- Online communities/forums (2%, 20 Votes)
- Social news/bookmarking (1%, 18 Votes)
- Branded microsites (1%, 18 Votes)
- Widgets (1%, 17 Votes)
- Digital public relations (1%, 17 Votes)
- Online display ads (1%, 14 Votes)
- Contextual advertising (1%, 14 Votes)
- User generated content (1%, 14 Votes)
- Webinars/Teleconference (1%, 13 Votes)
- Blog advertising (1%, 13 Votes)
- Social network advertising (1%, 13 Votes)
- Online contests, giveaways (1%, 12 Votes)
- RSS advertising (1%, 11 Votes)
- eCommerce feeds/comparison shopping (1%, 9 Votes)
- Digital asset optimization (1%, 9 Votes)
- Advergames (1%, 8 Votes)
- Podcasts (1%, 7 Votes)
- Sponsorship/Cross branding (1%, 7 Votes)
- Virtual worlds (1%, 7 Votes)
- Mobile ads (0%, 6 Votes)
- Virtual tradeshows (0%, 6 Votes)
- Online games (0%, 5 Votes)
- Rich media apps/demos (0%, 4 Votes)
- Paid product/service reviews (0%, 4 Votes)
- No holds barred spam (0%, 4 Votes)
- Rich media avatars (0%, 3 Votes)
Total Voters: 417
Of course it’s entirely possible some of the choices above need elaboration or perhaps we’ve missed a few. Please share in the comments!
Michelle Evans says
I chose SEO, Blogger Relations/Blog PR, and advergames. They’re not necessarily the ones I’ll emphasize most, but they’re the ones I’m actively working on – the newest ones that require the most energy. (not that SEO is new, but my site still needs some optimizing since it’s launch last winter). Others on the list are done and working… kind of don’t need as much effort put in there.
SEO and PPC are great place to promote your site…
Lee Odden says
Hey Michelle, that’s a good point, some of these tactics, once put in play do not require “new” attention.
I guess it depends if the poll is being taken as a client side marketer or as an agency serving multiple clients.
Greg Beddor says
Although business is down in many sectors, we’ve even lost a few clients this year noting the economy, several of our clients have seen grown with their online business. I chose PPC, SEO and Affiliate Marketing to be the main emphasis based off the list above.
Nicholas O'Flaherty says
Hi Lee, SEO is obviously a catch-all for many of the subsequent terms. I am curious about Digital Asset Optimization; can you expand on that please?
Lee Odden says
Hi Nicholas, Digital Asset Optimization is a holistic perspective towards SEO that deals with both individual and collective marketing assets that can be promoted online.
You can read more about DAO here.
Jane Quigley says
The one piece that’s missing here is building community – not just the tactics like Twitter and social networking – but what they all (hopefully!)lead to.make that my #1 😉
Michael Dorausch says
Interesting results. I didn’t even notice “No holds barred spam” until after.
Good point – I voted for the top three that I am most actively working on, too. Although I do think SEO is the most important element.
Andrew (Internet Marketing) says
Great list and nice info, i really enjoyed by reading your content. Thanks a tonne for your useful information and hope to read more from you. 🙂
SEO, blog relations and blogging are my three choices.
I guess it really has to do with the preferences made by the website/business owner.
The list has given me additional internet marketing options too!
Paula (NetBooster Asia) says
SEO takes the cake. While excellent FREE content and link building comes second and third, respectively.
SEO is definitely staying for good while marketing tactics such as content creation and link building will be the norm that continously needs improvement and development.
Thanks for the article. 😉
Engago Team says
What can be done in B2B without spending money:
– SEO is obvious, but that is a continuous process
– Blogging: Ok but difficult to draw the right audience in B2B
– Social networking – more difficult for B2B
– E-mail marketing: in case you don’t have lists, it costs money.
– Micro blogging: short interesting content. However in many cases the content is a link to your last blog post. And those on Twitter are not your B2B customers.
– Link bait: there is little chance to get link bait going on a B2B subject
– Free content: the more content the higher the chance people will find your company.
All in all: it is mainly pulling people to your company or product website.
Thus you need to identify the website visitors by company name. As only 2-3% completes a form online, you need other tools.
Great List. It was hard to choose just three, but I think the the key is getting more visitors which brings in the SEO and other white hat methods.
Juile Roads says
Just one thing…while Twitter is microblogging – it is still a HUGE social networking source!!!
Given the nature of the business I’m starting I choose:
Blogging – something I recently started and need to keep up
SEO – Something I haven
I think your poll is a bit slanted.
Being able to touch 50+ clients Internet Marketing, at first i went thru and checked all but:
Link bait (9%, 16 Votes)
Virtual tradeshows (1%, 1 Votes)
Rich media avatars (0%, 0 Votes)
Virtual worlds (0%, 0 Votes)
No holds barred spam (0%, 0 Votes
Then i saw.. “check 3”
Where company website, SEO, and Email marketing are staples of an advertising/pr/internet marketing/SMO firm, those are where most companies will continue to budget.
Me thinks your poll for traditioonal people may not show accurate results.. had you said.. pick 3 NEW things you are going to do.. then maybe you might get the results you are looking for.. because the website retainer for multiple clients will be the constant, but the MySpace/Facebook Campaign will be the biggest expediture.
I think he said it right “What 3 internet marketing tactics will you emphasize most in the next 6 months?”
He ask what you will emphasize most in the next 6 months. Not what you are doing or what works.
It clearly stated to check 3!!!
Dana Todd says
Thank you for including Newsforce Network in the poll! But, I do want to clarify for your readers that Newsforce is not an advertorial placement.
The difference between paid placement and advertorial is the
Lee Odden says
That’s an interesting clarification Dana and after reading I would agree NewsForce product appearance and format is different than advertorial like AdFusion.
However, it’s still payment for visibility and not editorial and not like any other kind of advertisement.
Also, I’d like to find a journalist anywhere that would consider paid placement “real PR”. Paid placement is no more real PR than advertorial is real editorial.
You’re doing something new, no doubt, but I wouldn’t call it public relations because it’s not. It’s advertising.
Richard Burckhardt says
No way can I just pick three. Pretty much everything is on the table these days.
that was horrible and mean. It was extremely hard to only pick 3. I had like 15.
bright side though, it helped me realize that I should narrow some of my tactics down to a strong few (or more 🙂 ).
Robert Kingston says
This is great, Lee.
As with my entry on LinkedIn, I picked email marketing first. Second to that I picked SEO and PPC as I think they’re fantastic for lead generation and attracting new visitors.
Gina Kay Landis says
Well, I couldn’t pick just 3 since many of the others are under investigation as to how substantial the ROI would be and if they will be used over the next 6 months. Still out for the final vote, I’d say. Nice list though!
Janet Johnson says
It’s very satisfying to see the responses here – in a recession, the most important function marketing can provide is lead generation and deal support. The top tactics all support both with awareness thrown in. Thanks for the post!
Hmm, many of my top priorities weren’t listed. Marketing automation- automating all email campaigns and ensuring a full closed-loop program is in place. Also, lead conversion analysis will be high on my list.
yeah.. i choose blogging and SEO cuz i like blogging.. i’m so happy if i do it.. and i don’t know if blogging have 2 rank in the top blog
Alister Cameron // Blogologist says
If I chose 3 of the top 4 ranked results it might mean I’m going the right thing, or it may have revealed that I’m doing the wrong think, like everyone else!!
I’m just saying that we may all share the lowest common denominator, for argument’s sake!
Perhaps the real “gold” is somewhere down in the long tail where most of us are not looking 🙂
SEO and blog bring color to your site!
Lee Odden says
When we finally get to 400 respondents, the poll results will be published.
Pattie Simone says
It’s hard to narrow down to three! There are MANY digital to-do’s on my personal list, which I will recommend in my columns and to my clients, especially: SEO, twitter, branded microsites, webinars and podcasts.
Chris Kovac says
Wow, I appreciate the rank-order of all 41 Interactive marketing tactics. Very interesting.
Jignesh Padhiyar says
I Think Search Engine Optimization & Social Media are the best way to promote your site.