Author: David Meerman Scott
Year Published: 2007
Buy From Amazon.com
Is web marketing really so different from traditional advertising and PR that we need a new set of rules for how they work? David Meerman Scott says “yes” in his new book, The New Rules of Marketing and PR, and then shows you exactly how you can take advantage of those new rules to drive more traffic to your site and generate more leads and sales.
Broken into three main sections, The New Rules of Marketing and PR is really a book on Internet Marketing 101. Scott explains why the web changes the rules of marketing and pr, the tools (like blogs, wikis, podcasts, forums, search marketing and social media) you can use to get the most benefit, and how to create an action plan to start working with these tools right away.
So how is marketing on the web different?
Before the web, the only way you could get the word out about your products and services was to find a journalist to write about you or to spend lots of money buying some sort of advertising (tv and radio commercials, print ads, tradeshow booths, etc). The web changes everything because anyone can publish content on the web and have it read/heard/watched by thousands of people without an intermediary.
On the web, you can talk directly to buyers through your website, blog, podcasts, video, forums, wikis and other social media. But this concept also brings a new shift in thinking – now, instead of pitching and pushing your product or service at every opportunity, you must focus on your web visitors. What types of content are they interested in? What are their top problems and how can you solve them?
If you can offer content focused around those issues, you start to build trust with prospects.
Scott’s book helpfully breaks down web marketing into strategic and tactical components. On the strategic side, he explains how to define your firm’s goals, create buyer personas for your ideal clients, and develop content around your ideal clients’ goals and objectives.
From a tactical perspective, Scott spends time introducing the reader to the different types of social media from blogs and podcasts to wikis and PR distribution sites. When talking about internet marketing, it’s easy to get bogged down in jargon, but Scott keeps things non-technical and focuses on why social media marketing is so useful. The nice thing about these techniques is you don’t have to do them all – just adding one or two to your marketing plan can dramatically increase your web traffic and generate more leads and sales.
The second half of the book is devoted to harnessing the power of the new rules today. Some great tips he offers include:
- Realize that you are what you publish. This includes all your web copy, your blog posts, forum posts, podcasts, videos and pictures. You have the opportunity to publish targeted content directly for your buyers just as a magazine would publish articles for its readers.
- To become a trusted resource, you must develop thought leadership content. This means publishing content that educates your readers about their problems and concerns rather than selling your products and services directly. By doing this, you can reach prospects earlier on in their buying process, educate them so they become more savvy buyers, and start building relationships with them so when they’re ready to hire someone, they hire you.
- Use news releases to reach buyers as well as traditional journalists. When most people think of press releases, they think of writing for journalists. Instead, write directly for your prospects because they can just as easily as journalists find your news releases on the web.
- Create an online media room. Create a press room on your site where you keep track of all news releases about your company and various media like your podcasts, articles published, photos of your staff, and so on. This has been on my to-do list for quite some time.
- Get involved. Even if you aren’t ready to start your own blog, you can still get involved with the blogosphere. Start by reading influential blogs in your industry. When you feel comfortable with the different bloggers’ styles, join in the conversation by leaving comments on their blogs. Eventually, you may even feel compelled to start your own blog.
The New Rules of Marketing and PR is a great overview of web marketing. It’s filled with numerous examples and case studies and is written in a conversational that even less experienced web users can understand. The book is particularly relevant for small businesses who can’t afford to buy expensive advertising or fall under the radar of most journalists. If you want to understand how the web can help you market your products and services at minimal costs, pick up this book.