Many of us hold down two or more jobs to make sure we have more than enough for our expenses and savings. This is the situation for a lot of people who are unable to find better paying jobs because of the lack of education or experience.
A few more enterprising individuals will start their own business. They will sell a product or a service to people they know or to the community they’re part of.
Although traditional marketing channels are still in use, a basic level of online presence has become essential. These days you need to have at least an email address and you definitely need a social media page. This key requirement of having an online presence has blurred the border between traditional businesses and those that are purely online.
As the whole world continues to become even more connected, having an online presence maybe eventually become more important than having a storefront. The new normal will probably be where startup retail businesses establish themselves online before even building up their own brick and mortar stores.
Marketing your online home business ideas is somewhat more cost-effective and efficient online. There are several approaches to this and you’ll need to test which one is the best for you.
Here are a few established marketing techniques for your online home business ideas:
Network or Referral Marketing
You can market your products through word of mouth; selling to someone you’re comfortable talking to and asking them to recommend you to another person they know. Basically, if they like what you have to offer, you can ask them put in a good word to their friends.
Word of mouth has always been a huge factor in the growth of small business. Communities are where ideas are first tested then launched. A community maybe the literal community where you live or an online community of people who share the same interests as you. Whichever type you market it to, establishing good word of mouth is the best way to build up starting momentum.
Mailing List Marketing
In a nutshell, mailing list marketing is building up a mailing list and selling to its members. Its sounds simple but building up a targeted and responsive mailing list is time intensive. It also ties up with your other marketing activities since any customer you get from your other channels can be added to your list.
Mailing lists may sound antiquated in this age of Social Media and Web 2.0, but it has the advantage of being more direct than other channels. We usually ignore a lot of ads posted on websites, and on our own social media page’s walls simply because we become accustomed to treating them as noise. We only take the time to view them if they are related to our interests.
We tend to give more attention to emails especially from people who are relevant to our interests. It’s more direct and targeted to a specific need. A vintage car enthusiast checking their inbox knows that an email from an auto parts vendor will likely have something they’re interested in. This is why a mailing list can be more effective than any online banner or advertisement even if it’s posted on a high traffic site.
People go online to find information on topics that are useful to them. They actively search for topics that are applicable to their current needs. When they find a reliable source of information online, they tend to bookmark it for further visits. A food blog that focuses on local restaurants in a city would be a good resource to bookmark for people who live in that city. Those subscribers would be a very good audience to market a new restaurant to.
The type of traffic you get from blogs, Q & A sites and forums are highly targeted. The users who visit these sites are already interested on the site’s subject matter. If you put up a blog that focuses on DIY carpentry projects, you can probably sell them power tools as they will generally have a need for these types of tools.
The great thing about content marketing is that once you’ve put in a very useful post or page, you tend to get repeat traffic without having to do more. This is especially true for instructional “how-to” type articles. A user who stumbles on a great recipe will bookmark it for their own use and likely even share it to friends.
You can take advantage of this steady traffic by putting up banner ads for your retail, affiliate, or drop shipping business. You can also use it to get opt-ins to your mailing list. As long as you keep producing useful and relevant content, you’ll always have traffic to your site.