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Why in 2007 Internet Marketing Is So Important

Aug 17, 2007
Everyone on the internet has faced the evils of internet marketing. We all have stories of annoyances and humorous misfires when someone who thought we were idiots tried to get us to fall for a con job of some sort, or pop-up ambushes that might even have shut down the computer.

However, there is a real purpose and need for internet marketing. The cost to reach customers is low. The quantity of potential customers to reach is high. It is possible to segment the market to find customers who are much more likely than a random sample to want a given product or service. The trick is to figure out how to reach customers who are interested, preferably without turning potential customers into real complainants.

There are several currently used methods for internet marketing. Some are hopelessly immoral, such as spyware. Others are perfectly reasonable.

The first we'll cover is pay per click. This method is often used in connection with internet search engines and functions. Advertisers bid on key words that they believe those interested in their product will seek. When those words are sought, a targeted ad is placed on the website.

Banner ads are placed on websites and are a small advertisement which links back to the company website. These are an extremely traditional method of advertisement. These must attract attention to function, and in the past this has often been done with pop-up ads. Since most browsers now support blockers to prevent such ads, the current method is to use obnoxious multimedia to flash, make noises and otherwise ensure that the audience will be annoyed. The advertiser hopes this will not be enough to cause negative repercussions while still attracting positive attention from those who notice. This annoyance factor, and the download time that makes these especially painful to dial-up customers, is leading to a rise in proxy servers who block ad sites from appearing on the browsers.

Email marketing is the infamous spam, among other things. This is extremely cheap, and when properly used is the second most effective method in terms of return on investment. Great care must be taken to separate legitimate email marketing companies from illegal spam operations that bill themselves as legitimate email marketing companies. This can be difficult because the illegal operations pretend to be legitimate, the commercial email advocacy groups attempt to make possibly immoral options legal, the sheer, overwhelming volume of spam has made spam filters a necessity and these often catch legitimate and legal commercial email and even legitimate commercial email that has been requested by a customer can be blocked by servers when the operators identify the sender as a spammer, whether correctly or not.

Affiliate marketing is a growing sector in which a site is paid for successfully sending a valid hit to the advertising company. Since this is pay for an actual, testable customer action, companies are happier paying for this method than those that are harder to measure. However, while easy to benchmark, the method hasn't proven to be as predictable as advertisers would like. Currently, the adult, gambling, retail, cell phone, travel and finance sectors are most active in affiliate marketing, though entertainment and internet services are expected to be the next sectors into this field.

The most complicated method is interactive marketing. This theoretically allows a dialogue between the customer and advertising company, though in practice, the methods aren't quite there. In practice, this is often the so-called viral marketing, where the company will attempt to build an ad that is compelling enough that people will voluntarily send it to friends. There have been embarrassing disasters when hip viral marketing schemes turned out to be silly duds, even leading to legal action.

Search engine marketing appears to be the most cost effective method used. This is an attempt to improve the ratings for the advertising company within a search result. This can vary from attempts to ensure the company website is well designed to support the search function in question, to outright payment to the search company to arbitrarily raise the companies results in standing. Some projects tie banners on the search engine pages to the content of the search, but payments to change the search standings are more controversial.

The low cost of internet marketing and the huge potential market, billions of dollars per year being reasonable, will ensure the continued existence and growth of internet marketing, though the shape will certainly continue to mutate as the market forces accommodations.
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Smarter Marketing provides Effective Marketing Strategies.
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