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Online Marketing Should Represent Your Offline Marketing

Aug 24, 2008
So you're out of town visiting a new city, and you go online to search for the hottest nightclub in the city. You finally think you have found it. The website is absolutely amazing. Lots of lights, a modern spin on the site, images of people crammed onto a dance floor, and even a limo outside the front door. Your write down the address, hop in the taxi and pull up to a hole in the wall when the driver tells you "That'll be twelve bucks." There is one small bar, the hanging neon sign is about to give out, and you can count the number of occupants on one hand.

This is an extreme example, but the last thing you want your online marketing to do is paint inconsistent picture from your offline marketing. Consistent marketing doesn't mean that the colour on the walls is the same as the website background, and the logo on the front door is the same that's at the top of the web page. If you want a high-end upscale site, then reflect the same offline. If you can't quite get your offline location to match your amazing new flashy site, then tone down the e-marketing just a bit.

The first step in creating a consistent e-marketing presence is to know your industry. You don't want your online presence to reflect that you don't even know your own industry. Chances are, the feel of a nursing home site, is going to differ greatly from the new trendy lofts that just went up downtown. If you business caters to families, don't design your online present to target individuals 18-24. Keep in mind that consumers already have their own idea of what image your industry should convey. You don't want to veer too far off of that path unless you are prepared to take a huge change with your marketing strategy.

A great way measure your online marketing accuracy is by knowing your competition. Research the web presence that your competitors have already created. How is it working out for them? You may also want to look at competitors in other parts of the country. Look at main stream competitors as well as those in your class. How does their web presence differ? While you never want to create a site that looks identical or too close to a competitor the information that you gather from numerous competitors can be combined to create a top of the line, consistent marketing presence, both online and hopefully offline.

Also remember that online marketing can also be applied to search engine marketing (SEM). You want your site to be visible through the proper searches. Spending a lot of time and money on search engine marketing is only a waste if your site isn't coming up with searches consistent to your industry. SEM can also be researched by searching for other businesses within your industry.

Make sure that when you're combining your online and offline presence that you do stand out from the crowd. Chances are there is a sea of businesses within your industry with both a strong online and offline presence. But also make sure that when designing your site, you do not alienate yourself for being "too far out there".
About the Author
Lee Roper offers Search Engine Marketing Services in the UK. Services comprise of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) , Pay Per Click (PPC) Management and e-Marketing Coaching. Lee adds value to his clients online marketing activities by managing SEO, PPC and coaching best practice techniques.
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