10 Ways to Stay Ahead Of The Game, by Brian Newmark
In order to be successful in your online business you need to stay ahead of the crowd.
There is no dearth of competition in any niche but staying ahead will place you on the top and make you an expert on the topic of your business.
There are certain things that will put you ahead, for example media coverage, guest blogging on A-list blogs, a decent PPC budget etc. but it will also put a dent on your marketing budget.
In this article, we will discuss ten ways to stay ahead of the game without breaking your wallet.
1) Social Media:
Start with the basic; get a good photo of yours as the profile picture of your social media profiles. No one wants to follow someone who has a logo in the profile picture. Write a small yet catchy bio and put a good looking header picture that fits the screen well.
Then, it is time to begin the actual work.
Make a list of businesses and people that are ahead of you in your niche. Check their social profiles. Start following those whom they follow. This is a simple, time taking, repetitive work that will in time build a strong following for your social channels.
Once you have a growing followerâ€™s base, it is also important that you share at least 5 to 8 updates a day and keep the followers active.
SEO isnâ€™t exactly that easy anymore. Search engines are much smarter now and the cheap and free ways to build links and rank isnâ€™t going to help anymore.
However, it still does not cost a lot.
Basic on-page seo is always free, all you need to do is, optimize the content and add some keywords that you are targeting. Get some keywords in the Title tag and the description tags of your pages. Do not over optimize, just make it look natural and yet have a keyword there.
Off site SEO will require some high end backlinks, it is a bit too risky to join the cheap links club and they are getting penalized quickly. Go for quality than quantity.
Haro is just a reminder that there are tools that are free and they still exist. Yes, it involves hard work but it is worth it.
Imagine if you can get featured, for free in a media house in exchange of your knowledge about your field. Wonâ€™t that be worth several thousand marketing dollars? All you have to do is, help a reporter out.
4) Email Marketing:
Email marketing is not an option, it is a must do. But to stay ahead of the game, you need to do it better than the rest of your competition.
Start with an email service like mailchimp, aweber or getresponse. Donâ€™t try to do your email marketing from your own system, it does not works and the chances are that your SMTP will get banned by most email companies.
Then, start an auto-responder series. Feed content to the auto-responder series and make sure that the auto-responder emails run for a few months atleast. This will keep your leads hot and when you finally send them an email, they wonâ€™t start to wonder as to why they are getting these emails?
5) Go for Paid Subscriptions and Products:
There are no dearth of paid products online, while most of them are useless and does not justify the cost, there are some which are absolutely must for staying ahead.
For example, the buffer, warrior forums, manage flitter, Pro-blogger forum, paid social sites, aweber, facebook ads, reddit gold account etc. are the bare minimums for keeping you ahead of the rest.
6) Make your website Responsive:
This will cost money, but before you worry too much about the budget, take a look into the traffic details of your site in the analytics.
Most of the visitors to your site will come from mobile devices, which are the trend as of now. You canâ€™t help it.
Future secure your website and make it responsive.
7) Do a contest:
Yes, it too has a cost, however if you can manage sponsors you can reduce your budget.
A contest is important for any online business as it attracts a lot of attention.
8) Be the first to comment on blogs:
Talking about hard work, this is the hardest of all. Be the first one to comment on any blog post from your niche. Keep the feed of your target blogs saved in an RSS reader and make sure to be the 1st one to comment.
This is free but will take some hard work. The results are worth it.
9) Take part in as many social networks as possible:
Apply this step only if you manage to keep an active profile on the top social sites like facebook, twitter etc.
Niche social sites have an audience of their own which is very helpful. Try to be active on those and bring in some part of that audience to your own blogs.
10) Read top blogs:
Read the best blogs on your niche.
There is a reason why they are at the top. And luckily for you, they are in the business of telling you exactly how they do it.
Read them, learn the secrets and use them well.