Free Downloads Can Give Your Business a Competitive Edge in Internet Marketing
Providing good, quality information and being successful are unique components to internet marketing. You can’t have one without the other. If your goal is to get more clients and get a better return on your marketing investment then you need to make available relevant content. What kind of content you ask? The kind that comes in the form of free downloads such as e-books or white papers or what we often call “Offers.”
As an Internet Marketing Consultant I have learned that a good offer will set you apart from your competitors. Providing a free offer as part of your overall internet marketing strategy will help your business excel. The free offer sets you apart from your competitors allowing you to demonstrate your professionalism, how articulate you are, and allowing you to look like you are more willing and able to help the potential customer more than all the others in your industry. That means more clients and more profits.
To use this strategy properly you need to understand how a free downloadable offer gives you that competitive edge so you can truly master its value. There are three things about the free offer that are important in a successful internet marketing campaign: What makes up a free offer, what is the difference between a top of the sales funnel offer and a middle of the sales funnel offer, and how detailed these offers have to be.
What is a free offer?
A free offer can be anything that you think is valuable to provide to someone. Make it interesting and potential customers will remember you over other similar websites they visit. For example, let’s say you’re in the real estate industry and you are trying to attract first-time homebuyers. Your free offer might be a white paper checklist of the “Top 11 Questions to Answer Before Purchasing a Home.” Or maybe an e-book that explains “The Home Seekers Guide to Choosing the Right Realtor.” These offers have value because first –time homebuyers always have unanswered questions and they most likely don’t have a realtor they’ve used before, so they are searching for one that fits them.
What’s the different between a top and middle sales funnel offer?
When you are creating offers, you want to have something that reaches people who are at the “top of the sales funnel” and something that reaches people who are in the “middle of the sales funnel.” If someone is at the top of the sales funnel, they are searching for answers to their “what” questions. For instance, What do I need to know? What’s important? Top of the funnel offers are more high level and educational, like the example above the “Top 11 Questions to Answer Before Purchasing a Home.”
Middle of the sales funnel offers answer the questions How and Why. For instance, How do I make a better decision? Why does this matter? They are more specific and provide information to make good decisions, like the example above “The Home Seekers Guide to Choosing the Right Realtor.”
How detailed do these offers have to be?
Your goal is to make the offers relevant and interesting. You want them to be memorable. This might be a one-page whitepaper giving the definitions of jargon used in real estate, a spreadsheet that helps lay out the expenses to plan for when purchasing a home, or an e-book that talks about different loans available. Any offer should be helpful information and appealing to look at. Achieving these things will help establish you and your business as a credible source of information in the industry, hopefully leading people to come back or contact you directly, and ultimately turning them into customers.
As an internet marketing consultant I work with clients to help them improve their marketing to gain more profits. Today in the internet marketing industry, if you truly want to be competitive and above average, you have to be using strategies and techniques that leverage your time and investments. In a comprehensive internet marketing strategy free offers cannot be ignored.