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Site Promotion Tools And The Answer Man

Dec 11, 2007
When we pick up a newspaper we have very specific sections we like to go to. One reader might gravitate toward the classified to look for the latest bargain, for another it is the cartoons, still another always hunts for the sports section or entertainment. Yet there is one more section that is sought every day - the advice columns.

These columns are filled with advice about lost love, wayward children, rude people, classic cars, yard and garden maintenance and a multitude of other life and how-to issues.

Perhaps you can capitalize on the idea of an advice column to act as a unique site promotion tool. Imagine being able to connect with people on a purely help oriented level - and they don't have to buy anything to gain access to the advice.

If, for instance, your business is designed around the idea of lawn and garden care, you could answer questions from site visitors giving them advice about the care and protection of their lawn and plants.

Everybody loves free advice and your advice column could double as a rather fun version of FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions). For list building purposes you could make the current advice column available to all site visitors while the archive is only available to members, but make the membership free. This method simply provides a mechanism to build an organic list.

You can include a little humor in the column while resisting the urge to be rude to customers who may not have a handle on rudimentary skills in lawn care. They could submit photos that show problem areas and you could point out products or plants that could help them correct a problem.

Of course each advice column you post should be chock full of links to products you have available on your site that deals with the issue. You might even throw in a homegrown treatment from time to time. This generosity facilitates increased trust in your ability to be both helpful and gracious.

Getting a column like this started is always the most difficult because no one wants to be the first to ask a question. You may have to come up with your own questions for a while as you wait for the first brave soul to submit their question.

It can be easy to give up when you haven't seen an email in the first few weeks, but the idea is a bit like Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategies. This can take a while for site visitors to find and then it can take a bit longer for them to view this as a spot to come back to on a regular basis.

You should make sure you make the Advice column available through RSS (Real Simple Syndication). The use of RSS provides the best chance for interested, but busy, site visitors to have the chance to review new material. This too remains a potent site promotion tool.

You're an expert in your field - let your voice be heard while you promote your site.
About the Author
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