Every business is as unique as the people within the business so there will be lots of exceptions but as long as you understand what I have written then you should be able to make a more educated decision as to what marketing should work for your company. I will cover some of the big exceptions just in case any of them apply to you.
If you operate in a niche and there isn’t much work out there then Google Adwords probably won’t work for you. People only click on the paid ads about 10% to 20% of the time. You may have noticed this about yourself when searching the internet. Therefore if there isn’t enough work out there for you to make a living from maybe 5% of the market you probably need to consider other types of marketing. SEO / linkbuilding will help you get access to the other 80 – 90% of the traffic. Alternatively you may want to consider expanding the geographical area you operate in and offer a wider range of related services.
If your product or service is new and unique and people aren’t actively searching for your service then you would need to consider a different form of marketing that is not search based like advertising on a social networking site like Facebook or LinkedIn.
If you have a very specific target market like you sell a product that only Dentists use then advertising on social networking sites set so that the ads only show to these people would be a good way forward.
If you are lucky enough to work in an industry which a lot of people are interested in and is popular then you would fair better from Viral Marketing then most others but it is still risky. Check out what videos are popular on youtube. Industries like Music, Film, TV, Well known and frequently used Consumer Goods, Big Chain Retail Stores, companies that already have brand awareness or are about to spend a lot to get it. Brand awareness is an all or nothing approach; unfortunately companies often use it as an excuse for marketing that didn’t work! Like an ad in the newspaper that didn’t generate any enquiries. There is only room for a few top brands for each product / service.
If you sell information in some form and you provide some of it free through social networking and blogging then you will definitely get site visitors and followers in those areas. It is important to have a strategy from the outset on how to turn these followers in to customers / clients. It may not be hard once they have been following you for a while and have trust in you. Sometimes you just need to remember to ask.
I hope you found this article useful. If you have any questions please submit a comment or email me.