|What creative ways can you stretch $100/week into brand signals?|
Websites are not ATMs that just spit out cash. Sure, in the past things were so easy that it might have felt like that. But in reality there has always been some work and investing into your website to turn it into a profitable business. Imagine someone has a small amount of money to invest into their website on a regular basis like $100/week.
Are you creative enough to turn it into long term brand signals?
Example #1 - Create an industry award for bloggers. Nominate the top bloggers in your industry and say that you are going to award the blog with the most votes the title of #1 Industry blog and give them an engraved silver mouse. Bloggers will them encourage their readers to go to your site to vote. You end up getting backlinks from blogs and a bunch of direct traffic. Cost: $50 for silver plated mouse and $20 for voting plugin
Example #2 - Create a best story contest on your website. Ask your customers to submit the best story about how they used your product and the winner each week gets $100 gift certificate for your website and $100 gift certificate donated to the charity of their choice. You gain engaging content for your website, with proper grammar & good length (the weaker entries can be noindexed). You may be thinking that is $200, nope that is $200 of retail prices which is probably going to cost you alot less than $100 in real cost.
Example #3 - Develop a free consumer guide ebook for your industry. I am not talking 20 pages. I am talking over 200 pages that covers the entire industry including things that are not easily found. Go on craigslist or your preferred freelance website and hire a writer. Have them write one chapter each week. After 2-3 months your ebook is ready. Give away the ebook for free on your website and self-publish it via Amazon so people can buy a printed copy if that is their preference. Send out a good press release and directly email journalists that
Example #4 - Set up Google News Alerts for your industry. When the alert goes off, contact the journalist who wrote the story and offer your services in case they need an industry resource for any future stories.
note to self: suck up to Barry for his latest conference live blogging so he mentions me on [seroundtable.com...] :) j/k ;)
I'm sure my examples suck, so what is your most creative way to generate brand signals?
Fiverr is a great resource for a marketer on a tight budget. You can get all sorts of crazy stuff for $5
I always thought this would be fun to do for an ecommerce site, but I never managed to talk any of my clients into actually doing it:
Make a video emphasizing your quality control by showing all kinds of funny things you do to products that didn't measure up to your exacting standards (maybe even use competitor's products) - set fire to em on a BBQ grill, pump em with a shotgun, drop em off a building, etc. Might not go world wide viral, but your industry will probably talk about it and pass it around. And you make the point that you don't just sell any old thing.
I love it! Great ideas. I know one website in the mommy blogging niche that does a yearly top niche blog award and the mommy bloggers go nuts trying to get people to vote for their site. I am sure it causes a great traffic spike, social signals, and a wave of links as the mommy bloggers put their badges on their sites.
A little bit off topic, but maybe this will help spur the creative juices...
My seven-year-old son spends way too much time on youtube.
One of his favorite channels are "game play" channels. they basically have a couple of yobs who play online video games and the video is just them doing a voice over while they are playing. It's pretty stupid, really.
anyway, I noticed that many of those videos have hundreds of thousands of hits.
One person who is pretty well known at doing this decided that they wanted to have their own online game developed, so he solicited donations with a goal of $250K to create the new game.
Well, last I heard they had already collected about $280K in donations.
anyway, all I can say is that if you are pretty sure what your value proposition is, anything that can reinforce that is going to be a big help, even if your value proposition is something like, "watch us play video games so you don't have to..."
One more thing about this (and to borrow a bit from netmegs example above).
There are a LOT of youtube celebrities out there. I am thinking that it might be a good idea for product placement in their videos.