The Niche Marketing Blog

Tools for understanding and reaching your market

Archive for February, 2011

Geo Tracking, Location Based Marketing and the Home Based Business Owner

Home based business

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An often overlooked, and under written, subject in niche marketing is the home-based business. Today’s article focuses on location based marketing for the home-based business owner.

Geo Tracking or location based marketing is a relatively new social media platform that allows small business owners to engage and reward their customers. Home based business owners have different concerns for safety and promotions than those small business owners that operate a store front.

Three tips for using location based marketing as a home based business owner:

  1. If you are a home based business you must use your own discretion on deciding if you will participate in listing your business on the various location based marketing sites. Remember, social media is about “compound friending” so friends of friends will see that they are at your business and know where you are located. If you meet with clients at a public place consider using that address. Encourage your clients to sign in for their outdoor fitness class or program.
  2. You can still reward your customers by using Merchant Circle coupons, Twitter Coupons or other various applications. Do you have a referral or rewards program? As a home based business owner you can encourage loyalty by having a rewards program. It is ok to let your customers know that you appreciate their loyalty. You may offer a program where after so many purchases they get an item for free or receive a discount. Incorporate a discount day. You can use social networking to promote a product or discount on a certain day of the week such as Twitter Tuesday and provide a discount for your Twitter followers or Facebook Friday for your Facebook followers.
  3. If you are a home based business owner you can still actively participate in location based marketing. Use this as an opportunity to promote other business owners and engage them in conversation. Use it as a rapport building tool or use it to keep an eye on the competition. Review what your competitor who has a store front is offering.

Location based marketing is growing. Is your business ready to embrace this new avenue to promote your business online? Are you ready to let your loyal customers help you promote your business by increasing your online presence? When you employ my three tips for the home based business owner you will be able to make the decision that is right for you and your small business.

Jaynine Howard is a retired United States Marine and former psychotherapist. She is the owner of Dream Catcher Business & Life Coaching. Founded in 2006, Dream Catcher Business & Life Coaching helps business owners, nonprofits, and individuals nationally and internationally turn their dreams into wealth and success. Coach Jaynine and her team of associate coaches will help you jump start your business and life through business, career, and life coaching. Jaynine is a member of the Jacksonville-Onslow Chamber of Commerce, the Carteret Chamber of Commerce, the American Psychological Association, 24/7 Coaching, and Coachville. You can learn more about Dream Catcher by visiting

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70 Percent Of Local Businesses Use Facebook For Marketing

Niche Marketing and Facebook

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Strapped for time and cash, small local businesses are increasingly turning to free and low-cost social media tools for their marketing efforts. Not surprisingly, the world’s biggest social networking site tops of the list of preferred tools.

Seventy percent of local businesses use Facebook for marketing, according to a new report from Merchant Circle, a network of U.S. local business owners. This represents a 20% increase over the previous year.

The report notes that for the first time, Facebook is being used more than Google by local businesses for online marketing.

Facebook also seems to have an advantage in the location check-in space, with 32% of small businesses saying they use the feature, compared with just 9% who have tried Foursquare.

This new data comes just as ChompOn, a group buying site, revealed its own data showing that Facebook updates are three times more effective than tweets when it comes to getting consumers to make purhcases online.

Nearly 40% of respondents in the Merchant Circle survey said they used Twitter for marketing, putting the microblogging site behind Facebook and Google.

The increased use of social marketing by small businesses should come as no surprise, considering the massive popular adoption of social networks and the low – often nonexistent – costs of using them. Web marketing companies in general have also been courting local businesses, about 51% of whom say that they’re cold-called about online marketing services at least once per week.

The Merchant Circle survey is based on a random sample of 8,456 small business business owners in the United States.

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How To Write Article Headlines That Get The Click

Headlines and Niche Marketing

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[Editor’s note: Today’s guest article focuses on the use of headlines for attracting traffic to your website, blog, or sales page.  This is the lifeblood for any niche marketer. Without a steady stream of qualified traffic, you simply won’t have the number of sales you need to sustain your business. Following are several good tips for identifying great headline ideas.  ~Scott]

Writing totally original article headlines that get the click can be real tough sometimes. However, thankfully, there are some shortcuts that can help you write powerful headlines for your articles.

The easiest way to start writing great article headlines is to copy the top pros in your niche and adapt their headline to your article. How do you do that? There are several sources of this kind of inspiration:

1. Go to Yahoo News or MSN News or Google News and do a search for the keyword you are targeting in your article. Take some of the headlines from their articles and put in the information for your topic and see how you feel about it. These three do extensive testing to see how much their headlines are being clicked. Their headline writers are real pros. Copy their headlines and substitute their subject with the subject matter of your specific article.

2. Go to YouTube and punch in your keyword. You will find some good ideas there. Look for the video with the most views. People don’t click on videos unless the title attracts their attention. Since these are videos, not articles, you can conceivably use the popular video headline as your article headline and no one will mind.

3. You can also go to, and other book selling sites. Look at the titles for the top selling books, ebooks, DVD’s and CD’s. Base your article around the top titles and make a headline out of the title if appropriate.

4. and other magazine sites can be a good source of article headlines that you can get from the covers they show for niche magazines.

5. Magazine directories for Yahoo, MSN, Google and others can be a great source of headline ideas.

6. Then there are specific magazines that are known for their great headline writers like The New York Times, Cosmopolitan, National Enquirer, World News, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and others. Look for the top magazines in your niche and adapt their stories and headlines for them to your article.

7. Be sure to look at niche specific magazines by typing in your niche + directory or niche + magazines into Google and look at the results.

8. Don’t forget about the newsletters in your niche. Do a search for any of the above ideas and replace the word magazines with newsletters. There are many paid and free newsletters that have some really great headlines and article topics.

9. Next, you can look at the Google Adwords ads that you’ll find on the right side of the page of any Google search. These are paid ads so you know people are putting their best into the headlines. Be careful with these ads though. Many people don’t know what they are doing. Watch the top Adwords ads over a span of several days, if not several weeks. If you find an ad being repeated over time it’s probably getting a lot of clicks.

10. Google Adwords ads are another source of some really good inspiration if you click on the ad and look at the headlines they are using in their sales letters, on the website, landing page, menu items, etc. Adwords ads are placed in order of popularity from top to bottom by Google so you know the top ads are the ones people are clicking on the most. Be careful here because it is possible to buy the top position by paying more. On the other hand, if an ad stays at the top for a long period of time, it must be working or they would get tired of paying the big bucks for something that doesn’t sell.

11. The last but certainly not the least source of good ideas are the social networking sites. Look at sites like, propeller and others to see what people are rating as the best. Look for which ones get the most views, the ‘likes’ and other ways of expressing popularity. You’ll find some great ideas there!

Hope that helps get your wheels turning and you find some great inspiration to write article headlines that get the click.

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About the Author:
For more ideas on how to write attention getting headlines and articles that help you sell your products click here. You can get a free course on how to make money online here.

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QR Codes and Niche Marketing: A Primer

By Scott Spooner

Lately, there has been a lot of buzz going around about “QR Codes“.

A “QR Code” (for “quick response” code) is a 2-D extension of the traditional bar codes. The difference is that a QR Code can carry a lot more information than a traditional bar code. For example,  the following QR Code contains my contact info (name, address, phone), web site, email and more.

ProActive Management Systems
An example of a QR Code

Now here is where it gets real interesting: if you are a niche marketer and part of your strategy includes location-based, or promotion-based, marketing, then you’ll want to take a close look at QR Codes. Why? Because these codes can also carry promotional content. That means you can create a promotion for your store, products, or services, and carry that promotion through to your QR Code. Since QR Codes are easy to create, you can change promotions often and still use these codes to help with the marketing.

So, how do they work?  It is simpler than you may think.

You start by going to Google, typing in  “QR Code generator”, and selecting any of several free generators. Enter in your content and generate your code for download. From there, you can print up the code onto anything you want to promote; a flier, a poster, even a business card!

Someone with a smart phone can point their phone’s camera at the code, capture the code with any of a number of free application software, and be sent directly to your web site for detailed information on the product, promotion, and/or company.

So, take a look at QR Codes. They are easy to set-up and they just might help generate the type of traffic (and sales) you are looking for!

I’ve included the following video (below) that helps explain the whole concept.

QR Code Video

Advertising with QR Codes

CNET’s Natali Del Conte showed how QR codes may change the future of advertising. Customers scan the codes with their cell phones to receive information.

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Search Engine Results Pages: The Battle Between Sponsored And Organic Listings

SERP: search engine results page

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[Editor’s note: Today’s guest article takes a hard look at “search engine results pages” {SERP’s), and focuses on the difference between sponsored and organic listings; the former being the core of PPC strategists, and the latter being the realm of SEO masters. Students of niche marketing will do well to understand the uses of each when developing an overall marketing strategy for their businesses. ~Scott]

A quick look at Google (or any one of the other search engines), will show you that the average search engine results page (SERP), has several distinct elements. With Google, these will include:

* Pay-per-click (PPC) or ‘sponsored’ results.
Typically, these are on the far right of the page, arranged vertically. For some search phrases, there will also be PPC results at the top of the page, above the organic results.

* Products, Local and others
Below these paid for (PPC) results in the main area of the results, will be the different kinds of results. These will depend a lot on the particular topic or term you searched for. These results may include local business results, news headlines, social networking results (such as Twitter), and videos from YouTube.

* Organic results
Below these results, is where all the natural search results can be found. In all three of the top search engines (Google, Bing and Yahoo), the organic results do take up more of the page. Interestingly, the less searched for the keywords or search terms, the fewer sponsored links you will find, and the greater the area occupied by the organic results.

Most searched for keywords on the other hand, are handled differently. SERPs for these are often mixed, with a high volume of PPC and organic results. Standing out through all the clutter for such terms is very challenging. An easy short-cut though, is through targeting keywords that are less popular, but that are still relevant.

On the other end of the scale, are niche (and often technical) keywords. For most of these keywords, there are no PPC ads at all, and so all of the results found on the SERP are organic. Doing search engine optimization on your site and your landing pages for such keywords therefore, will result in the greatest conversion rates, because the competition is lower. The majority of the larger organizations and companies online will tend to optimize their websites for the broadest and most popular search terms imaginable, irrespective of the conversion rates they are achieving. With their almost unlimited budgets, they can often afford that type of shotgun approach to marketing.

On a more positive note though, the vast majority of internet users do trust organic search results. Industry bodies and analysts have done lots of research that all come to the same conclusion. Over 60% of internet users click on natural search results more than ads. Power users, and more experienced internet users actually click on the organic results even more often. Pretty much the only industry where this is not the case, is the insurance sector, where the majority of their visitors comes from paid for advertising.

Clearly, using only PPC similar search engine marketing campaigns, means you are not getting the best results from your website advertising efforts. Alongside increasing traffic, you can increase trust for your site and brand through search engine optimization efforts to better your organic search results and ranking. Any up and coming site owner, especially those whose customers are experienced internet users, would therefore do well to invest a fair bit of effort into search engine optimization.

Search engine optimization is really not rocket science. Everyone can do it. You can decide the amount of technical detail you wish to get into when you embark on it, but you should not ignore it.

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About the Author:
James Winsoar is a Budget SEO Consultant in the UK specialising in both on-page and off-page search engine optimisation. He can help to improve your visibility online. Visit his website at or call the SEO hotline on 0115 9400 899.

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