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We have moved !!

Posted by iMark on April 1, 2008

We have moved to a new domain –

Do visit us there.



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Online Marketing for Search engines or Humans?

Posted by iMark on March 18, 2008

Ask a layman, “Who do you think are websites made for?” and I am sure the prompt reply would be, “of course humans”. Ask a web developer or a webmaster, who does he think of while developing a website, and I am sure the reply would be “Search engines and humans”.

Websites were always meant for humans. But as time progressed and the number of pages on the internet started growing exponentially, it became difficult to locate them. There entered the Search engines and something happened that changed the way people used internet: Google.
Fast forward to the present scenario. SEO (Search Engine Optimization) became more of a norm than an option. Any serious webmaster or business owner will make sure to put as much efforts as possible to please the Google algorithm to hog the maximum attention by getting in the first page of search results. I do not mean to belittle SEO efforts in any manner whatsoever. It has remained and will continue to be an important tool to get your website closer to netizens.
But somewhere down the line the real target audience (humans) of the web took a backseat and it was the search engines for which majority of efforts were directed to, sometimes at the cost of content. Therefore I always like to call SEO as online marketing for search engines.

But then web evolved further and we had social networking sites and social book marking sites. Social networks are a rage, anybody would testify to this fact. Millions of users around the world visit orkut, facebook, myspace. Just imagine the kind of ready audience available at these platforms. I strongly feel in near future marketing on social forums would be a prime method of marketing and not just an option. Webmasters and business owners should concentrate on putting quality content on their websites, which is appealing to the audience and warrants attention and repeat visits. And then having done that, put efforts to devise sustained market campaigns on these forums with equal vigor as they do in their offline marketing campaigns currently. And this especially will benefit to service providers who are ready for customers from a global marketplace.

And who knows if search engines start indexing and searching social network pages in near future, the marketing possibilities on these networks will rise exponentially.

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New 4Ps of marketing in Web 2.0 era

Posted by iMark on March 15, 2008

Marketing is often characterized by 4 Ps concepts namely:

Product: This aspect deals with the specifications and features of the product and these satisfy the needs and wants of the targeted customers.

Price: As the name implies, it stresses upon the right price of the product so that the customer get value for money.

Place: It is also known by distribution. Basically it entails how a product gets to customers. What are the points from where a customer can pick up the product?

Promotion: This concept comprises advertising, branding and selling of the products.

The advent of Web 2.0 and e-commerce has put the whole picture into different perspective. Today marketers have to deal with new market forces which simply did not exist previously. Therefore to cope up with the new trends, 4Ps model has also undergone a change. New 4Ps model was devised by Idris Mootee in 2001 to supplement traditional marketing 4Ps.

Personalization: It is said that the companies should always strive for mass customization to gain more profits. With internet, it has become a reality i.e. customization of products and services to customer’s needs. Famous examples are Amazon and Dell which not only altered the traditional distribution channel (place) but set the benchmark for others to follow.

Participation: Any company exists to fill certain gaps in the value chain by satisfying some or the other need of the customer. Therefore it becomes imperative that the customers decide what a brand should stand for, what would be the product direction. Essentially this concept advocates democratization of information.

Peer-to-Peer: As the name suggests, it refers to customer networks and communities where the brand is being talked about. Brand engagement happens within the conversations among the users. A case in point is where peer-to-peer communications has led to the vast growth of this virtual market.

Predictive Modeling: This refers to intelligent neural network algorithms which are deployed to solve marketing problems.

All these changes in the business environment have kept marketers on toes and on the look out for new untapped greener pastures.

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Internet marketing without web presence?

Posted by iMark on March 11, 2008


Wondering if that’s possible? Yes, why not.

Let me rephrase the question for more clarification…

Can internet marketing be done for businesses which have very limited or no web presence?

Referring back to the first post ,internet marketing is nothing but marketing done over internet, which happens to be just another medium. Therefore if a company wants to market itself over internet, nothing should stop it from going ahead and doing it. If one can move beyond from thinking of Internet as a separate entity and consider it just as another medium like TV, Radio, Print media, everything will fall in place.

To give a very simple application of the concept, consider a jeweler in a market. It typically does its advertising through banners, hoardings, newspaper, pamphlets. All these media cost a lot to small enterprises. Coupled with real world marketing strategies, the store (jeweler) could also use emails to market its services. Email Marketing provides a cost efficient solution to small enterprises which comes at dirt cheap prices. And the best part is it can be done more than once at specific intervals without incurring substantial costs. Email marketing is a kind of direct marketing where each potential customer in the local market gets a customized email. The effectively written email will not only advertise the store but also entice people to visit them.

And this is not to be confused with spamming. What we are talking about here is not a blind bulk email sending process to thousands of recipient everyday. That only harms the image of the sender. What we are talking about is an email marketing campaign to a qualified, targeted mailing list, which in this case would be people interested to buy jewelry. Small criteria in this case would be to select email accounts of people in the age group of 24-30 and are single, as they are more likely to get married and hence may need jewelry. This is just a simple example. Power of having a well targeted email list can give you a great conversion rate of potential customers to actual buyers.  

 Although the above example is more relevant in urban setting, where most of the people have internet access, yet it underlines an important concept – Businesses can reap the benefits of internet marketing irrespective of the status or size of their web presence.

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Why is Internet marketing hot?

Posted by iMark on March 9, 2008

With total global internet users estimated at 1320 million by 2007 year end with growth rate in excess of 265% between 2000 and 2007, internet has become a powerful medium for communications. India boasts of 42 million users with the growth pegged at 28%. Increasing e-commerce has opened up new gates for the companies to target their potential customers through internet marketing. Currently standing at $36 billion, internet marketing is expected to grow at 69% over the next three years. Touted as fastest growing media, internet will overtake magazine marketing by 2010 and is expected to acquire 11.5% of total adspends by the same year.In 2006, e-commerce turnover hit $12.8 trillion, taking up 18% in global trade of commodities. With such robust growth rates in e-commerce, internet marketing is bound to take off in a big way. The figure for India stands at 9000 crore with annual growth rate of 30%.

According to TNS media Intelligence Reports, Internet display advertising posted a 16.7 percent increase to $2.70 billion, as marketers continued to expand their online programs in US. The table has been reproduced below.   

JAN-MAR 2006
TELEVISION MEDIA $15,590.1 $16,020.6 -2.7%
·    NETWORK TV  2 $6,052.5 $6,523.0 -7.2%
·    CABLE TV $3,821.1 $3,593.4 6.3%
·    SPOT TV  3 $3,744.2 $3,905.3 -4.1%
·    SPANISH LANGUAGE TV $985.5 $950.2 3.7%
·    SYNDICATION – NATIONAL $986.8 $1,048.6 -5.9%
MAGAZINE MEDIA 4 $6,699.8 $6,417.7 4.4%
·    CONSUMER MAGAZINES $5,167.5 $4,825.2 7.1%
·    B-TO-B MAGAZINES $957.0 $1,009.1 -5.2%
·    SUNDAY MAGAZINES $429.7 $438.5 -2.0%
·    LOCAL MAGAZINES $109.9 $113.7 -3.3%
·    SPANISH LANGUAGE MAG $35.6 $31.2 14.3%
NEWSPAPER MEDIA $6,282.6 $6,589.8 -4.7%
·    NEWSPAPERS (LOCAL) $5,389.2 $5,649.7 -4.6%
·    NATIONAL NEWSPAPERS $810.0 $855.1 -5.3%
·    SPANISH LANGUAGE NEWSP $83.4 $85.0 -1.9%
INTERNET 5 $2,704.8 $2,317.7 16.7%
RADIO MEDIA $2,293.6 $2,343.2 -2.1%
·    LOCAL RADIO 6 $1,580.0 $1,588.2 -0.5%
·    NATIONAL SPOT RADIO $503.0 $538.1 -6.5%
·    NETWORK RADIO $210.5 $216.9 -2.9%
OUTDOOR $882.2 $861.3 2.4%
FSIs 7 $474.6 $475.2 0.0%
TOTAL 8 $34,927.6 $35,025.5 -0.3%

As clearly visible from the table, internet marketing has seen a robust growth rate in the past and is set to take a sizeable share in the whole pie. Talking about global scenario, according to ZenithOptimedia report, internet advertising is worth $36 billion in 2007 and is expected to grow by 28% in 2008 and 69% over the next three years. For India, the figure currently stands 500 crores and set to explode.


With growing penetration rate across continents coupled with ever increasing per capita time spent on the internet, it becomes a perfect medium for informing potential customers about products and services. Rapid growth in internet marketing is a testimony to this fact. The companies would have to integrate internet marketing in their marketing ecosystem if they want to keep afloat in this ever changing dynamic market.In future, as more and more businesses would go online, internet marketing would take over conventional marketing and would have a major chunk of the whole pie and hence presents an opportunity which needs to be tapped timely.

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What not is Internet Marketing

Posted by iMark on February 26, 2008

When everybody talks so much about Internet Marketing, it often leads to one thing : a confused state of mind! This is a first hand experience of mine. Try explaining to somebody who hasn’t heard of it before, and doesn’t have any clue about it. Chances are he would end up thinking of you as ‘people who sell products on web’. NO. Internet marketers do not sell products or do not perform any e-commerce activities. They also do not build websites for physical businesses to sell stuff on web.

They help business to sell on internet. Internet marketing is both an art and science. There is really no difference between marketing in general in the real world and marketing on internet, just the medium changes. Internet marketing is all about developing strategies for businesses on internet (though not only for businesses) to increase their visibility, bring customers to their websites and help them increase sales.

To help them do this, internet marketers have an arsenal of tools and techniques at their disposal (this is where you hear all the jargon like Link Building, SEO, and Directory Submissions etc.). But frankly, if you are a business owner you should not be concerned about the technology part and focus on your core product or service and leave this to the internet marketing guys (until and unless you have time on your hands and you are really interested in it).

So next time somebody who sells products on internet and claims to be doing internet marketing, you know what to tell him!

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What is internet Marketing?

Posted by iMark on February 24, 2008

Internet marketing is another name for doing marketing over internet. People don’t understand the concept clearly but when explained in business terms, they find it really simple. So basically what is internet marketing?

Every business needs to do some sort of marketing to generate revenues. With the changing times, when more and more businesses are going for having web presence, it becomes important for firms not to consider it a one time standalone activity. They fail to realize the benefits which online presence could provide to their businesses. And doing marketing over internet( which happens to be just another medium) can certainly makes their task very easy.

One parallel which could be drawn from real world marketing and taken over to internet marketing is “word of mouth” which in internet jargon is known as “Viral Marketing”.

There are many more such parallels which could be drawn between both the worlds. Basically whatever be the medium( internet or no internet), the marketing fundamentals don’t change.  

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