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Keep In Touch - Newsletter, Blog, Or RSS?

Apr 14, 2008
Keeping in regular contact with your existing and prospective clients is an important part of running an online business. In doing so it's possible to persuade waverers that they should purchase your product or pay for your service. It is also possible to remind past customers that you exist, the products and services you offer, and any new products or discounts that you are currently running. Many options now exist to aid the website owner in keeping their visitors, customers, and leads updated but which is the best, or is it possible to offer all the options?

Email Newsletters

The email newsletter is the traditional technique of offering regular updates and news to all your leads. Capture their name and email address while they're on site, ensure that they've opted in to receive the information you've provided and you have a powerful list. A list is one of the most effective ways to build a positive client base. You can also sell new products to the same customers, which offers the advantage that you haven't had to pay any more in marketing or advertising costs for that particular sale.

The Blog

The blog was one of the forerunners to what is now billed as web 2.0. Social and interactive websites provide more features to the user and they not only enable you to keep in touch with visitors and leads, but they encourage those same visitors and leads to keep returning to your website, or at least a portion of it. Business blogs have been successfully used as a highly beneficial marketing tool for quite some time.

RSS Feeds

Feeds are often associated with blogs, when they are used to inform subscribers of new posts. Feed readers are installed on most people's desktops through browsers and email clients, as well as standalone feed readers. The advantage with this is that almost as soon as you post information, your subscriber gets a brief run down of that message popping up on their desktop. Because they can subscribe and unsubscribe from various feeds they are more inclined to read a new post, news item, or article as soon as they pop up on screen.

Combining Communication Methods

The most effective website marketing campaign will integrate a number of functions into their website. A newsletter can be used to offer advertising as well as a regular communication with visitors, but you must provide potential users with the option to opt in as well as the possibility to opt out whenever they please. Feeds can be used in conjunction with a blog or can be used to inform subscribers of new articles, news items, and any other media placed on your site. The blog has become one of the most powerful Internet marketing and communication tools available but might be considered high maintenance to some potential users.

Determine What You And Your Customer Wants From Your Communication

The big questions are how often you wish to communicate with your subscribers and what type of information do you intend to provide. Newsletters need a rigid time frame to be at their most effective but can be used to serve advertisements as well as general information. Feeds can be used to provide access to new information as regularly or infrequently as you please, but too many adverts placed directly onto people's desktops will be viewed as being intrusive and users will quickly unsubscribe. The blog requires very regular content but it does enable you to combine marketing, advertising, and communication.
About the Author
Omaro Ailoch is a senior software engineer, an internet marketing expert, and the founder of OC IT Services http://www.ocitservices.com/ a highly skilled California based web development, design, and search engine optimization firm. OC IT Services has successfully improved ROI for small to large businesses and corporations through the successful streamlining of core business practices and the implementation of SEO strategies.
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