Successful internet marketing without a budget

Written by Lee Munson

Darren Cronian runs a highly successful website,, withoutrepparttar benefit of a marketing budget. Here's how.......

Below are his answers to questions we put to him on June 25th, 2005.

You are successfully promoting Worldwide Holiday Homes, without a marketing budget. Is this a decision you took out of necessity or choice?

Certainly out of necessity - I dream ofrepparttar 145730 day when I can spend thousands of pounds on marketing my business.

When I first hadrepparttar 145731 idea ofrepparttar 145732 business I had no business plan, I hadn't designed a website before, and I'd certainly never heard ofrepparttar 145733 term SEO, never mind what is stood for. All I did know was that I would submit this website to Google, and within days thousands of visitors would be visiting my site.. (I'm being serious!) that's how innocent I was.

It could be argued that someone who looks to promote a site without any kind of budget is either ill-prepared or lacks faith inrepparttar 145734 product or service they are offering. What are your feelings about this?

I would agree with you -repparttar 145735 idea came to me when my parents bought a holiday home in Spain, and I had never thought about building a business before, I was ill prepared and to some degree, I lacked belief thatrepparttar 145736 website and services were going to be successful, and if it wasn't for my own dedication to succeedrepparttar 145737 business wouldn't be inrepparttar 145738 position that it is in today.

Trying to promote your site without spending any money must be extremely difficult. What do you consider to be your biggest challenge in terms of marketing?

I cannot explain how difficult it is - I see my competitors spending thousands (if not millions) on PPC campaigns, television and radio advertisements, etc and sometimes that can be soul destroying, and you do think 'What am I doing wrong?' but these companies have a work force that are dedicated on building and runningrepparttar 145739 company - whilst I'm runningrepparttar 145740 business by myself, in my living room.

The biggest challenge with marketing is persuading clients (villa owners) that I can offer them a service, which is good value for money, has great support and customer care - unfortunately,repparttar 145741 sector I am working within,repparttar 145742 travel industry, has thousands of companies, and many of them have let owners down, and in my opinion made life very difficult for genuine businesses.

The other challenge I face is making sure thatrepparttar 145743 website is regularly visited by holidaymakers - withoutrepparttar 145744 traffic fromrepparttar 145745 likes of Google, Yahoo and MSNrepparttar 145746 business would not exist - fair enough you could say that about 99% of online companies, butrepparttar 145747 owners who advertise their villas, etc. rely on enquiries from holidaymakers, and if I'm not providing owners with enquiries, I'm failing them andrepparttar 145748 business.

Do you feel that having no marketing budget restrains your site from moving forward and competing withrepparttar 145749 leaders in your industry?

It certainly does - I want to be respected byrepparttar 145750 travel industry, and I want everyone to know who Worldwide Holiday Homes are - when someone is looking to rent a villa I want them to say "oh let's go to Worldwide Holiday Homes". Without a marketing budget, I don't haverepparttar 145751 funds to pay for a PR company to raiserepparttar 145752 profile ofrepparttar 145753 business and I think long term this will affectrepparttar 145754 business unless I increaserepparttar 145755 revenue torepparttar 145756 business.

To be able to compete with those webmasters who have large sums of money available for promotion do you feel you need to think smarter or work harder?

Both think smarter and work harder. My working week is working around 14 hours a day, 7 days a week, it doesn't give me much time for a social life, but if I putrepparttar 145757 hard work in now, in years to come that hard work will come to fruition. The great thing about webmaster forums like is that you can learn from other webmasters, and all ofrepparttar 145758 experience and knowledge I have gained running this business has been from more experienced webmasters and search engine specialists.

Online Marketing Matrix

Written by Jeff Beale

Business owners are facing a harsh reality: A website in itself offers no guarantee of business. “If you build it they will come” is a cliché that has misled many into believing all a company needed was an online presence to succeed. However, without a strategic marketing plan and a tactical approach, you’re more likely to fail than to reach your goals. Proper planning will not only improve your chances of success, but it will also keep you from throwing away money on e-commerce fiascos.

The first step of planning is to define your goals in light ofrepparttar target market you aim to reach. As you classify your target, you should determinerepparttar 145687 core needs of that group and observerepparttar 145688 buying behavior that occurs among your potential purchasers. Characterizing their purchasing habits enables you to position your business to appeal to your target market with compelling information before they buy from another resource.

Several online resources can help you place your business inrepparttar 145689 forefront of your target audience. The process, however, can be complex because a variety of online vehicles, if utilized properly, can help you yieldrepparttar 145690 results you desire. Also,repparttar 145691 key to successful online marketing is in developing a diverse marketing plan which takes advantage of several approaches to deliver your message. Components in your marketing plan should include such elements as search engine marketing, pay-per-performance, ad placement, joint ventures, targeted traffic, e-mail marketing, media marketing, optimization and copywriting.

Search engine marketing has been one ofrepparttar 145692 most highly visible forms of online marketing. With millions of businesses employing search engines to gather information daily, search engine placement for key terms has been a major business generator for companies who properly place themselves inrepparttar 145693 search engines underrepparttar 145694 right terms relevant to their market offering. An obstacle to being ranked at or nearrepparttar 145695 top, however, is that thousands can be competing forrepparttar 145696 same position. And withrepparttar 145697 search engines changing their algorithms often, achieving placement onrepparttar 145698 first page forrepparttar 145699 terms relevant is extremely difficult without a solid working knowledge of and experience inrepparttar 145700 search engine marketing field. Consequently, one should not solely rely on ranking.

Another marketing technique onrepparttar 145701 rise is pay-per-performance advertising. This is a method for which you pay per click, impression, or visit that a site refers to your site. The application works best ifrepparttar 145702 placements chosen are locations that directly connect withrepparttar 145703 target market you desire to reach. Advertisement rates are based on an auction format in thatrepparttar 145704 highest bidder obtainsrepparttar 145705 top placement. If your bid is $1.00 for every time someone utilizes your link while your competitor bids $1.01, your competitor will gain a better placement than you. If 100 individuals click your link, you should understand that you will owe $100 whether they buy from you are not. Pay-per-performance advertising clearly requires a full understanding of your conversion ratio to determinerepparttar 145706 budget necessary to commit to such a program.

Ad placement is similar to pay-per-performance in that you pay for advertisement on sites or newsletters. The difference is that you typically pay for impressions and market reach. Impressions encompass how many unique visitors viewrepparttar 145707 location in which your ad is placed. The market reach refers torepparttar 145708 number of individuals accessing that website or newsletter over a period of time. However, you have no guarantee ofrepparttar 145709 number of visitors who will follow your ad to your website. The concept is similar to traditional print ad placement in that advertisers have no guarantee that people exposed to their print ads will visit their places of business. Another method, joint ventures, can be highly effective in helping businesses obtain referral customers. Joint ventures can be as simple exchanging links with another website or as complex as assembling a tiered affiliates program.

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