Written by: Wendy Montes de Oca, Precision Marketing

Precision Marketing eNewsletter

Market With Precision. It’s Proven. It’s Powerful. It’s Free! Oct. 12, 2010
In This Issue
PPC for Research
SEO for PDFs
SMM: Hype or Hidden Treasure?
More for Less

Precision Marketing

Quick Tip

PPC Testing For Market Research and Product Development
Next time you have a concept or direct mail package you are about to launch … test it on pay-per-click (a/k/a display ads) first. This can be done on Google, Yahoo or Bing.
This is a great way to gauge general market sentiment that is cost effective and fast.
You can test headlines or concepts. For example, seeing if a topic is of interest to general public before creating an entirely new product.
Create your ads and run them for about a 2-week period. Make sure all your ads are different but link to same landing page.  The offer can be a short free report of related matter.
You’ll have an idea at the end of the testing period, based on clicks and conversions (or lack thereof) how your package (or concept) may perform before it actually goes live.
Having this insight will help save you money and allow you to tweak copy, offer, landing page and other important conversion elements.
Depending on your keywords used, placement, daily budget, and some other variables, your entire campaign should only cost a few hundred dollars.

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This publication is BY marketing and business professionals FOR marketing and business professionals. So tell us what you want to read about and what you think. Your feedback is welcomed!

In today’s issue, find out how to use pay-per-click to test creative and conceptual ideas.  Also, discover the best ways to measure your social marketing efforts. Finally, learn how to optimize your .pdfs for better search engine results.
Yours for success and profits,
Wendy Montes de Oca, MBA
President, Precision Marketing and Media, LLC.
Publisher, Precision Marketing eNewsletter

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Make Your PDFs SEO Friendly!
There’s a misconception out there that search engines don’t read (spider) PDFs.

They do. Of course, HTML pages are faster to index than a PDF, but they can be indexed. The trick is to know how to set up the PDF to make sure you get maximum pick up by the search engines.

Here are the top 5 tips to help make sure your PDFs on your website are optimized for search engines…

1. Make sure each PDF file is text based and has the correct document properties set up. When the search engines spider a PDF, they extrapolate the text from the information fields within the PDF … so it’s critical what meta data and keywords you have in these fields. The important fields are: author, document title, description, file size and modification date.
2. Remember to tag the PDF and use anchor text and links within the file. Just as SEO best practices tells us for a website, this method is also viable for PDFs. In addition, make sure your links are not buried deep within the PDF file. Have them at the root level … easy to find for search engines.
3. If you have a large PDF file, consider breaking it into smaller relevant groups, sections, chapters, etc. These sections should be tagged accordingly with accurate, relevant keywords. This is not only reader friendly for humans, but also for search engines, since as I mentioned, it takes longer to spider a PDF than HTML.
4. Check the PDF file format version number and make sure it’s readable by search engines. Typically, the version to use is Acrobat 5/Adobe XMP (PDF V. 1.4 or 1.5).
5. Finally, make sure the reading order in your PDF is logical and flows. Again, this is user friendly for humans and search engines. However, your reading order, for a search engine perspective, will give you an idea of what will be displayed in organic search results. To do this, when your PDF is open, select Advanced-Accessibility-Add Tags to Document. Then select Advanced-Accessibility-Touch Up Reading Order. After you do this, the reading order of the PDF will be displayed.
So if you have PDFs on your site already, it’s a good idea to review them to make sure they were originally set up correctly for search engines.
Don’t let your PDF content get overlooked … optimize it today!

Social Marketing: Hype or Hidden Treasure?
My friend, copywriting expert and best-selling author, Bob Bly, had an interesting discussion about social media on his blog.

In a nutshell, there was a comment about how using standard direct response marketers metrics, social marketing is a waste of time.

I disagree and here’s why:

Social media, in my opinion me, is a hybrid between relationship/network marketing as well as direct marketing.

It’s relationship marketing if you know how to be a strategic thinker as well as be creative with your marketing messages. In other words, what to say and where to say it. Targeting is key. You have to look at each social media website to see if it, and it’s users, are the right fit for your marketing message and business. Then, you need to craft your message accordingly. And that requires good creative, copywriting skills.
(Editor’s Note: I’ve had tremendous success with LinkedIn, Twitter, Digg and StumbleUpon, but not so much with Facebook. For my business, Facebook users are not necessarily the decision makers I want to get in front of to help build my consulting business. However, I still promote my website on Facebook and include links to my lead gen and product pages. I get to enjoy ancillary traffic and the backlink (SEO) from a top ranked website, but I don’t count on real, solid leads from this source.)

It’s direct response as you can measure results. Granted, it’s not as cut and dry as some other online marketing methods, like email.where deliverability, clicks, opens, sales, and ROI is concrete. But, for me (and my business), I can specifically track any leads or sales I get back to specific social media platforms. And I can measure traffic to my website via Google Analytics from those same sites.

As a core direct marketer, I don’t waste my time on something I can’t tie a metric to.

Here’s How I measure Social Media: Look at the “3 O’s”-Outputs, Outcomes and Objectives.
1.    Outputs measures effectiveness and efficiency, such as new subscriber sign-ups and spikes in Web site traffic during your campaign. And it measures analytics, such as referring Web site sources, visits, unique visits and visit percentages.

2.    Outcomes measures behavioral changes such as internal customer/subscriber feedback (calls, e-mails, forum postings) on your Web site, as well as external reputation monitoring or visiting targeted chat rooms during your campaign looking to see the “buzz.”

3.    Objectives compare direct product sales during the time of the campaign to other sales that occurred before the campaign. So it establishes a baseline, giving room for sales assumptions tied to your effort.

Use Free Online Tools:
1.    Google Analytics

-Check the “referring sources page” to see how much traffic was generated by LinkedIn.
-Look at overall traffic to website during same time period of your effort.
-If you have a sign up/email form, look for lead spikes during time period of your effort.
2.    Google Alerts
-Set alert for your name, your company name, and keywords in your content. You’ll get notified via Alert if content/your message gets picked up and goes viral.

3.    Backlink Checkers
-Google Webmaster Tools – Check back links going to site during same time period of your effort.
-Link Popularity Check – Link popularity analysis is one of the best ways to quantifiably and independently measure your website’s online awareness.
-Sample free tools: http://seopro.com.au/free-seo-tools/link-checker/, http://www.iwebtool.com/backlink_checker, http://www.backlinkwatch.com/index.php.

What do you think?

Hot Marketing Ideas: Getting More Leads For Less!

Whether you’re a Fortune 500 company, local proprietor, or online publisher everyone is looking to make more money, get more leads and grow their business … for less.
Below are some ideas to help you do just that.
  1. Online press releases could be a powerful tool that’s often overlooked. There are many free online press distribution services, like PRLog.org, that can help get your message on the web and picked up by media sources, online news aggregators and bloggers. If you have a relevant, useful, newsworthy message…turn it into a press release. In addition to driving traffic to your site, the link you embed into the online release will help you with SEO link-building efforts.
  2. Classified ads and internet bulletin boards are not just for selling items any more. They are a powerful way to create buzz, initiate back-links and drive traffic to your site. Many sites like Craig’s List, which is a “Top 50” site that reaches over 40 million people, offers free postings and many categories to suit your message. Crafting the right ad for your objective just takes some creative thinking. I’ve used this platform successfully for many lead generation efforts.
  3. Leveraging local or regional newspapers with an editorial piece or captivating print ad is also a great trick I’ve used with fantastic results. You simply search online for list of newspapers by city or state, then narrow down your list by newspaper circulation. If you don’t have the budget for advertising you can offer the newspaper valuable content with your name and contact information mentioned in your byline or editorial note. Surprisingly, there are many regional newspapers that sell advertising space dirt-cheap. Years ago, I was targeting high net worth individuals. I researched the richest counties in America, and then those respective newspapers and publications within those counties. Aspen, Colorado was one area where a print ad cost me roughly $500. That ad generated several sales (I only needed 1 lead to breakeven) and produced an ROI of more than 1000%.
  4. Partnering with synergistic companies is often a tactic that doesn’t get as much priority as it should. In my opinion, at least 25% of a marketing professional’s role should be business development and relationship cultivation (including affiliate marketing). Reaching out to “friendly competitors” opens the door to a plethora of possibilities including revenue share deals, joint venture agreements, guest editorials, and reciprocal ad swaps (in ezines). These efforts cost virtually nothing and help with both your sales and lead generation efforts.
  5. Advertising on blogs and ad networks with either banners or text ads is another great way to target a particular prospect (by either channel or genre) and costs a reasonable fee. There are many high traffic blogs for almost any niche out there and some rates are under $1/CPM. With this, research and strategic targeting as well as relevant, powerful creative copy is essential. I’ve been advertising on select blogs for many years with great results. Some cost-effective networks worth checking out are: BlogAds.com, Burst Media and AdBrite.com.
  6. My SONAR Content Distribution Model TM is another cost effective, yet powerful, way of repurposing and synchronizing content (albeit text, audio, video) distribution into various, targeted channels. And it allows companies, publishers, entrepreneurs … basically anyone with content on their website … the ability to ultimately turn traffic into sales. For more information, check out http://www.precisionmarketingmedia.com/sonar.html.
    Pay
  7. Pay Per Click can be a viable way to bring in leads and sales. Although in my experience, it’s hard to get a conversion with a “cold lead” that is over $99. The “sweet spot” seems to be products between $19.99 – $59.99. This is ideal for lead generation efforts of low cost info-publishing products, like paid eBooks. And you don’t need to break the bank either. With a robust keyword selection and bid management tool as well as engaging text ad and landing page copy, you could bring in several thousand names per month and spend less than $2,000 (which is about a $1/CPL). Note: for saturated markets (such as real estate related terms), certain keywords may cost a little more to get exposure.
There’s many more ways to market your business effectively … and “cost” effectively. It’s just a matter of being a creative marketer.

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Attn: New subscribers … welcome aboard!

Don’t worry about missing past issues. There’s been some great articles on marketing and business building that I’m sure you will find valueable.  All you need to do is ask!

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Is Your Business Leaving Money On The Table?

Let Me Help Give Your Business A Boost: Powerful Solutions. Affordable Rates.

If you’re looking for a proven marketing consultant to help build your business or turn things around, contact me at wendy@precisionmarketingmedia.com.

I’d be happy to discuss your specific objectives and work with you on a custom solution that fits your need and budget.

Soon To Hit eTailers and Retailers Nationwide…
I’m working on a new book that is slated to hit stores and online retailers next Fall.

This is very exciting for me.  Although I’ve had many articles published in top business and Internet marketing publications as well as written several eBooks … it’s my first ‘real’ book … and I am the sole author.
The book will be based on my acclaimed SONAR Content Distribution Model TM and will have loads of useful, practical, & proven strategies I’ve used for the last decade to make more than $150 million in total revenues for the companies and consulting clients I’ve worked for.
I’ll release the name soon as well as keep you posted on my progress.
Stay tuned!

Follow Me…

Are you intrigued with the world of Virtual Assistants and like the idea of getting away from having to commute into work each day? Yet, you still need an income?  I was in that position when I typed “Assistant” under Google search and “accidently” came across  links to virtual assistant websites, so I typed “Virtual Assistants”  under Google and Yahoo search and found several more virtual assistant website along  with a few organizations.  I was pleasantly surprised and it gave me hope.  But I wouldn’t be hasty and quit your job.  In the article written by Carolyn Moncel, “Starting a Virtual Assistant Business, Sharon B. Williams say:

Before packing up the office cubicle and giving notice to your boss, know that becoming a virtual assistant isn’t an easy job that just anyone can do. Sharon B. Williams of The 24-Hour Secretary cautions, “To become successful, you need a good marketing strategy in addition to that phone, PC and Internet connection.” Many virtual assistants work between 14 and 18 hours a day during the startup phase. Even after establishing solid practices, one-third of these business owners admit to working nontraditional hours, including weekends and holidays.

I needed the income, so didn’t quit my job, but I leveraged the time to read and research thereby becoming acquainted with several Virtual Assistant organizations and observe the interactions between the VA’s.  I also checked out several virtual assistant web-sites to get an idea of their niche and how they presented themselves. VA’s are professional and savvy. I was encouraged to give it a try.  I looked at my resume and saw that I could sell myself as a VA, and to be honest, I winged it.  What I know now is: Don’t be hasty. Do your homework and try to get started on the right foot.  I recommend that you join several VA sites.  I recommend the following:

International Virtual Assistant Association (IVAA); Virtual Assistant Association-Virtual Assistance Chamber of Commerce (VACOC); Virtual Assistant Networking Association (VANA).

There are many more available which I will mention through out my blog. What I want to convey is that it is important that you are clear about your business model and to have a plan. I will blog later this week and provide a few links from VACOC and other VA sites with their own version of recommendations and steps to follow in starting out as a VA.

Even though I “winged it”, I considered myself successful, because I did land a few VA positions and through those experiences, learned what my strengths and weaknesses were, likes and dislikes, and learned to be bold about my rates. Daniel Keister, founder and Chief Virtual Officer of VACOC has been an advocate for Virtual Assistants and has encouraged VA’s to educate clients, family, and friends that Virtual Assistas ADD value to a business owner and are experts in their field. We do not do clerical work, we have brains, style, technique and finesse.

Stay tuned for additional blogs regarding steps to take for your VA business and more stories about my journey!