The Quick (but not Dirty) Guide to Online Marketing

Jason Clegg is an entrepreneur with over 5 years of experience building business and marketing on the web. He manages a full service Internet Marketing firm and writes about entrepreneurship and business topics at www.JasonClegg.com.

Growing your brandIf you know absolutely nothing or very little about marketing your business online, I’m here to help.  I’ve spent the past 6 years studying online marketing methods for small business owners and, frankly, I know what works.  The truth is lots of stuff works.  There are endless opportunities for bringing more people to your website.

Fortunately for you, I’m not going to waste your time in this guest post.  I am going to focus on just one tactic that you can start today and do absolutely free (or very cheaply) if you do it right.

As Elie has already pointed out on this blog, personal branding is absolutely critical for today’s small business owner.  In the online world, you create trust through one primary means – content.

Blogs are a testament to this fact.  Look around you.  Anyone and everyone is blogging.  Why?  It’s simple: Blogging helps you control your personal brand and builds more credibility with your existing and your potential clientèle.

But everybody’s blogging.  (I hope this includes you, of course!)

The strategy I want you to follow is sort of like blogging but, in some ways, even better.  It’s called article marketing.

Article marketing allows you to build a higher degree of trust and credibility by leveraging the already existing power and authority of very large content websites.

My absolute favorite is EzineArticles.com — this is the best of the best because they have a great relationship with Google and a very clear system for evaluating and publishing only the best content.

How to Start Article Marketing

In the steps that follow, I’m going to show you exactly how you can make use of EzineArticles.com to build your personal or business brand.  And here’s the good news — it’s not going to cost you a dime.

Step One – Setup Your Free Account

Go to EzineArticles.com and start your free account.  You don’t have to pay anything to submit content to their website.  You just have to follow the rules.

Step Two – Write an Article for Your Niche

If you’re selling dog training products, write an article about that.  If you’re a Public Relations expert, write an article about that.  Whatever it is that you do, create some content.  Just be sure that your article is 100% new and unique and is at least 400 words long.

Step Three – Publish Your Article at EZA

The process for submitting articles is easy.  Just login and click “Submit New Article.”  Then copy-and-paste your content into the fields.  Choose a category, add a brief summary, and voila!

Oh, just one more thing.  Be absolutely sure you make the most of that box they call the “Resource Box.”  This is where you’re going to include a little info about you and/or your business.  More importantly, this is where you get to include a link to your website.

Hit submit and you’re done.  The article reviewers will take a look at your submission and your article should be live within a few days.  If you have to make changes, they’ll let you know exactly what to change so you’re not left in the dark.

(NOTE: The *really* quick method for doing this is to hire someone to write your articles for you.  You can even pay a full service firm to submit too.)

Why Articles Are So Effective

Using EzineArticles.com is great because their articles rank high in Google.  These days it’s pretty tough to position a new website without using strategies like this to drive traffic.  In some cases, it’s basically impossible in the short-term.

But the greatest value you will take away from this process is an increased level of credibility.  By the time surfers click through to your website, they will have already established a relationship with you.  The chances of these visitors making a purchase or initiating contact on your website are much higher.

Give it a try.  I’m not saying article marketing is going to transform your business overnight, but it is without a doubt one of the fastest ways to get more exposure for yourself and your brand online!