12 Proven Digital Marketing Strategies (ch. 5)

12 Proven Digital Marketing Strategies (ch. 5)

by David Gaudreault, Serial Entrepreneur, Online Marketer and Personal Branding Passionate

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, which means that at no extra cost to you, I earn a small commission if you click and make a purchase. Please note that to ensure my impartiality, I first make my recommendations and then, I check the possibility of an affiliation. I do it with the sole purpose of financing the costs associated with the creation of more valuable content for this blog. Thanks for your support and understanding.

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Promoting your brand and your content is very, very, VERY important.

You work hard on building your brand and generating your content, and you need to work even harder to bring your audience to your content or inversely, bring your content to your audience.

Too many entrepreneurs, businesses and bloggers believe that blogger work is limited to content writing, but in reality, a big proportion of the work is promoting.

And promoting a brand is not like promoting a product. When you promote a brand you are looking not only to grow your audience but to gain engagement.

You want to stay top-of-mind with your audience which means you need to engage with them through various digital marketing strategies and on a regular basis.

Here are some digital marketing techniques to market your brand (most of those are free!).

12 Digital Marketing Strategies to promote your content and drive insane traffic to your blog + FREE Bonus: 9 tips to build effective lead magnets. #digitalmarketingstrategies #digitalmarketinghacks #digitalmarketingideas #digitalmarketingtutorials #digitalmarketingsocialmedia #digitalmarketingstrategyideas #digitalmarketingstrategysocialmedia #digitalmarketingbusiness #digitalmarketingstrategybusiness #digitalmarketingstrategyblog #digitalmarketingblog

22. Cross-Platform Content Integration

Digital marketing strategy : Cross-platform content integration. Turn each visitor into a multi-platform viewer and boost your social media views & blog visits almost instantly! #contentmarketing #digitalmarketingstrategies #digitalmarketinghacks #digitalmarketingideas #digitalmarketingtutorials #digitalmarketingsocialmedia #digitalmarketingstrategyideas #digitalmarketingbusiness #digitalmarketingstrategybusiness #digitalmarketingstrategyblog #digitalmarketingblog

One marketing strategy that is used by the very best marketers is the cross-platform content integration strategy.

The idea is to integrate all your content across your various platforms.

Embedding YouTube Videos in Your Blog Posts

Embed your YouTube videos into your blog posts. You still provide all the content in writing, but you provide complementary content in one or many videos in which you put into practice what you are talking about in the post.

This way you leverage your blog organic traffic to get more views on your YouTube videos and you keep your readers longer on your blog (the time they watch the video), which is good for SEO.

If you don’t make videos yourself, you should still embed videos from your favorite creators. As long as their content is complementary to yours, it will still contribute to keeping your readers longer on your site, which is great!

Add Your Blog Post URL to Your YouTube Videos Description

Inversely, add your blog post URL to your YouTube video description to turn your YouTube viewers into potential visitors to your blog.

It is also a good idea to invite your viewers to visit your blog post for additional or complementary information.

Add Social Share Buttons to Your Blog

In your blog, make sure to include social share buttons using a plugin like Super Socializer to allow people to share your posts.

Super Socializer Share Buttons

In addition, include Like/Subscribe buttons in your blog post, like the ones below, to allow your readers to like/subscribe to your social pages/channels directly from your blog post.

Each social media platform will provide a script code that you can integrate into your website.

Once again, you leverage your blog organic traffic to get social shares, likes, and subscribers.

Add Tweetable Quotes into Your Blog Posts

Target powerful quotes in your content and make them tweetable using the free plugin Better Click To Tweet.

When your readers tweet your quote, they also tweet your blog post URL and your tweeter username.

So from your readers’ tweets, you potentially get new visitors to your blog posts and new subscribers to your tweeter account.

You can even tweet your quote yourself, which is a creative and effective way to tweet your articles multiple times (with multiple quotes) and get more engagement.

click to tweet

Always Publish Native Content

Keep in mind that each social platform is interested to host your native content. Therefore, post your videos and share your blog posts on all your platforms (Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, LinkedIn etc.).

As a side note, to optimize your content to the specificity of each platform, you should shoot your videos horizontally (for YouTube and Facebook) and vertically (for Instagram feeds). To save time, do it simultaneously using your DSLR camera (horizontally) and your phone camera (vertically).

You may also edit your video to make a shorter version for Facebook & Instagram and share a link to your blog and YouTube video where you make the long version available.

This way you leverage Facebook and Instagram to generate traffic to your YouTube channel and blog while posting native content on each platform.

Leverage Pinterest to Boost your Traffic

To use Pinterest to your advantage, design one or more pins (most marketers use three pins) and post them into your content. Then, pin your rich pins to your Pinterest boards, to your group boards, and to your Tailwind tribes.

As a side note, you don’t need to overdesign your pins!

My most popular pins are often built on a plain light colored background, with a white big headline that raises curiosity, optionally a short catchy description in smaller size text and a call to action.

My advice is to design various models and use Pinterest Analytics to see which ones perform best. Then stick to your best performer designs.

More pins and re-pins mean more potential traffic because anyone seeing your pins in Pinterest may eventually visit your site to read your entire article and, as you can imagine, help increase the traffic on your site.

Keep in mind that Pinterest is a search engine and that your pins are searchable. This means that much of the traffic generated by Pinterest will be valuable traffic composed of people that are actually looking for your content. It means, they will actually read your article and improve your bounce rate.

Check out Chapter 4 – Creating Engaging Visual Content – Photos & Images for additional tips on how to grow your Pinterest, and how to use Pinterest and Tailwind to generate insane traffic to your blog.

In terms of content integration, if some Pinterest users come to your site, they contribute to growing your traffic, but if they may also watch your YouTube videos and contribute to growing your views.

Finally, if they are interested enough in your content, they may subscribe to your channel, meaning by integrating pins in your blog posts, you may end up growing your YouTube channel!

Bonus Marketing Strategy: Content Repurposing

Generating content takes time, from research to writing to proofreading, you put a lot of energy into each publication. Why not do what most pro marketers do and optimize your investment by reusing (repurposing) your content?

After posting your blog post, make a video with the same content and post it on your favorite social media, then create and publish a podcast, create an opt-in pdf (checklist, ebook, cheatsheet, content upgrade etc.), use your content to answer Quora questions and finally, after a few months, slightly modify your content and publish it again on Medium.com.

You spend a lot of time researching and collecting information to write your blog post, so make sure to maximize your return on investment by re-purposing this content into as many platforms as possible to reach a maximum number of people and leverage your content to its full potential.

23. Engage with Your Visitors Using a Chat Plugin

Using a chat application is a very efficient way to engage with your visitors, answer their questions live, help them with their online navigation, promote your brand and potentially turn them into fans. It is another proven marketing strategies that are used by the best marketers, sales teams and online businesses.

Many WordPress chat plugins are available and I tested many of them targeting the best rated and most popular on WordPress among which: WP Live Chat Support, JivoChat Live Chat, Formilla – Real-Time Chat and Tawk.To.

Chat plugins all come in a free and paid plan, but unfortunately, all of them offer too limited features in their free plans. So limited that most of you will need to upgrade to a paid plan to really leverage the benefit of using a chat.

After testing various solutions, I found that the paid version of Tidio was a very good option for most needs.

It is an all-in-one solution that works extremely well and is VERY easy to setup and use.

Benefits of Tidio Chat

·         Personalized colors

You can personalize the label and the color using your brand colors. You can also choose between a round icon at the bottom left or right, or a sidebar icon.

Tidio - Color Personalization
·         Mailchimp Integration & Email List Building

Tidio integrates very easily (in less than 2 minutes) with Mailchimp and is very efficient to build your email list as it includes a pre-chat survey to collect your visitors information before the chat begins.

Tidio Pre-Chat SurveyTidio - Marketing Automation Email Integration
·         Export Data

If you are not using a Marketing Automation Platform in their list of easy integration, you can still generate a CSV file with all the visitor data you’ve collected. Your file will include users who have provided their information. Then you can use this file to import the data in your favorite tool.

Tidio - Data Export
·         Quick Response to FAQ

Quick Responses are previously prepared replies to your most frequent questions. You can call on the responses during a chat with your visitors by using the “/” key. It speeds up the support and ensure consistency in your answers.

Tidio - Quick Responses to FAQ
·         Automation with Track events & Triggers

Automation are great as you can trigger message based on your visitors’ actions.

You can message your first time visitors differently as your returning visitors. You can even trigger a specific message to people visiting specific pages.

Tidio - Automation
·         Desktop and Mobile app

This is a must, and will certainly be the primary reason why you will switch to a paid plan with most of the chat app plugins.

Most of them make their desktop and mobile app available in their paid plan only.

These app are essential to ensure a constant presence on your website.

Tidio - Desktop and Mobile App

5 Characteristics of a good instant message (to trigger a discussion)

  1. Avoid overused impersonal formulas (e.g. If you need any help our support team is here to support you)
  2. Rather start with a question (e.g. Hey there, did you start building your personal brand? Did you meet any difficulties while implementing the 35 Tips?)
  3. Be personal as much as possible
  4. Message specific and appropriate to the user
  5. Be polite, but yet friendly

24. Connect and Collaborate with Influencers

Once you get an audience, you should connect and collaborate with other influencers and marketers, and take advantage of each other’s fan base to grow each other’s brand.

Nowadays, connecting with influencers is easier and more accessible thanks to Social Media.

In order to fully benefit from this marketing strategy, identify the influencers or marketers you would like to connect with and follow their blogs and their social media accounts.

Comments, like and share their posts, their tweets, and their videos to make yourself visible.

You can also write about them and get them to share your posts. If you succeed, it will be the first step toward a more elaborated collaboration.

Then, think of what motivates these influencers and figure out the kind of collaboration that would help them reach their goals.

Put together a collaboration plan and contact them directly by email, using a LinkedIn direct message or their website contact form with an interesting offer.

Make sure you really highlight the benefits they will be getting out of this collaboration and how the collaboration will help them grow their brand.

25. Build your Email List Using Lead Magnets

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Building an email list is very important and should be one of your top priorities.

All world’s best marketers agree that an email list is crucial and that the way you use it to connect with your audience is even more important.

The way you built your list is by offering a lead magnet to your audience when they sign up to your list.

A lead magnet is usually a free piece of digital, downloadable content, such as a free PDF checklist, report, eBook, whitepaper, video, etc., that will encourage your visitors to give their name and email address in exchange for a freebie.

These days, most businesses and blogs use lead magnets to build their email list, so people are constantly bombed with various offers.

Therefore, to stand out you should offer enormous value or offer something very practical that your reader will use right away.

In order to build great value, put a lot of work and efforts to make something great, so good that you would feel comfortable selling it for 50$ or so, like an online course or an ebook for example.

On the other hand, a practical lead magnet is often a content upgrade directly related to your content. Something your user will be able to use right away to put your tips into practice, like a template, a tool, an app, etc.

Of course, a catchy headline with an intriguing topic may be enough to generate leads, but it will never be enough to build trust and credibility with your audience.

Offering high quality pays over the long run. Beyond the idea of getting emails, you want your audience to trust you, continue to read your posts and follow you for as long as possible.

9 Tips to Build an Effective Lead Magnet

9 lead magnet design tips to blow up your email list with freebies that really convert and take your email marketing to the next level! #leadmagnets #leadmagnetsbusiness #leadmagnetdesign #leadmagnettips #emailmarketingtips #emailmarketingstrategy #emailmarketingbusiness #emailmarketingtools #emailmarketingideas
  1. Give a lot of value to your audience.
  2. The headline makes the value obvious and clear to your audience, and raise curiosity
  3. Add time constraint to create urgency (Limited time offer)
  4. Solve top of mind problems
  5. Help your audience reaching a goal or achieving results very quickly
  6. Provide new, updated, surprising or unexpected information
  7. Choose the format depending on the audience you want to build
  8. The subject of your lead magnet should be closely related to your site and post content
  9. Provide a lead that will be the first step to a future engagement between you and your audience

+Two bonus tips that happen to be very efficient:

  • Content upgrade. e.g. you write a post on how to make a business plan. In your message, you offer a downloadable PowerPoint business plan template that your readers may download if they accept to subscribe to your list. In order to be effective, a content upgrade should be very practical and actionable. Things that you readers can use right away to put your advice into practice.
  • Use a tool like TryInteract to embed interesting quizzes in your blog. After finishing the quizzes, the readers must provide their email to receive the results.
  • Embed an app into your blog that your users can use for free upon subscribing to your list. Apps will require some upfront investment but will help generate additional traffic. For example, if your niche is in the video production industry, you could provide a free online teleprompter. This app would be fairly easy to develop as it just displays rolling text on a screen and would be useful to many people shooting home videos (possibly your target audience?). The great advantage of such an application is that it also helps generate recurring traffic. People keep coming back to use the app.

26. Subscribe to a Marketing Automation Platform

To build your email list, create opt-in forms and automatically send emails, you need a marketing automation platform.

MailChimp is the world’s largest platform and offers a free plan for up to 2,000 contacts, up to 12,000 emails per months.

Since 2017, they give full access to their automation features, so it is a very good option to start with.

However, one limitation of Mailchimp is that there is no smart way to handle multiple email opt-ins (lead magnets) with one single list of contacts.

It means, if you have multiple freebies personalized to your content, which is a must to really leverage this marketing strategy to its full potential, MailChimp won’t let your readers sign up for more than one freebie. Once signed up to the list, a contact cannot sign up again.

One way around this problem is to create separate lists and opt-in forms. This way, your readers can sign up for multiple freebies because they actually sign up to different lists each time.

Mailchimp list

The drawback of this method is that you need to manually transfer subscribers into your main list following their subscription and delete them from other lists to avoid duplicates.

This method is not perfect, but it is a fair alternative and more importantly, a free way to achieve your goal.

Once you get more established and get more subscribers to justify a paid plan, you may consider ConvertKit. The platform allows you to easily offer content incentives (lead magnets) with email signup forms.

It’s subscriber-centric so you have only one list to manage and no matter the number of freebies a person signs up for, you’re only paying for one subscriber without any “manual turn around”.

27. Start Sending Automated Emails

To send emails, you need an email strategy. The first step toward a good strategy is to define your goals. Do you want more exposure to your brand, more traffic to your website or do you want to sell something?

A good way to start is by sending a series of emails that will provide valuable content to your readers.

For example, if you promote a marathon that takes place in the 5 major cities of your country, you can start with a series of emails teaching how to improve performance in 30 days.

As always, you must offer high-value content to your readers, because you want them to learn something useful and then, look forward to your next email.

You build your emails in your automation system and set it up so that, each email is sent to your subscribers following a pre-determined schedule. You can send the first email upon subscription and then send your other emails every 12-24 hours for 5-7 days.

To take full advantage of this marketing strategy, you first need to send a drip of 3-5 emails with your best content at an interval of 12-24 hours.

This way, your readers will quickly get to know you and expect your emails.

Then you reduce the frequency to one or two emails a week.

After sending your high-value educational series, the next step depends on your goal.

If you want traffic to your website, you may want to continue sending your very best articles.

If you want to sell, you may want to continue with a drip of sales emails, which over time, will increase in intensity with regular emails to offer discounts, countdown offers, limited time subscriptions, etc., with the idea of creating urgency.

How to Segment your Email Lists

Professional marketers create personalized content to address the various segments of their list.

A segment can be based on genders, interests, locations, age groups, etc. As a blogger, your most popular posts in men might be different from the ones popular in women.

In the same vein, the people who signed up for a freebie “10 tips to stay mentally healthy” might not have the same interests as the ones who signed up for “10 tips to get rich online”.

Similarly, if you promote your marathons in 5 major cities, you want to segment your list to reach the right people for the right cities.

The strategies vary from one another, but all strategies start with one common and crucial element: building trust, credibility and provide value. Only then, you can start selling!

Characteristics of a Good Email

  1. Text only
  2. Directly and naturally addressed to the person (the same way you would email a colleague)
  3. An intriguing subject that raises curiosity
  4. High value practical and actionable content
  5. Include social proof to build up credibility
  6. Introduce the next email (topic & date) at the end of each email. In my next email, I will be giving you amazing tips on…

28. Start Sending Web Push Notifications

Web push notifications are those tiny notification boxes that appear on your desktop, tablet or mobile.

These messages come from a website independently of if the website is open or not in your browser. These messages can only be sent after receiving a permission from the user.

A notification is usually composed of an icon, a title, a description, and a link although some browsers will allow the addition of a media attachment.

Web Push Notifications Benefits:

  1. Wide reach across internet users
  2. High conversion rates
  3. Real-time communication
  4. Increase top-of-mind awareness
  5. Turn inactive users into active ones
  6. Improve brand recognition
  7. Increase retention rate (users will keep coming to your site)
  8. Increase user engagement
  9. Increase traffic

You can implement Web Push Notifications on your website very easily using Subscribers. All you need to do is to open an account and install the plugin.

Once installed, you can instantly start getting your visitors’ permissions and send notifications to notify them of new posts, videos, events, etc.

What makes this marketing strategy very powerful is that Google ranks better sticky websites, those on which people keep coming back. Push notifications do just that.

You send a push notification every time you post to ask your readers to come back to your site to read your post. Neil Patel, one of the World’s best marketer generates a large proportion of his traffic using Subscribers.

29. Get Exposure by Guest Blogging

There are leading websites with large audiences in your industry that accepts contributor posts. You need to identify these websites, reach out to them and try to become one of their contributors.

As an example, the site Entrepreneur.com accepts contributors. How do I know? I Google searched Entrepreneur Contributor and found their contributor sign up page in a second.

Entrepreneur Contributor Google Search

Interestingly, their sign up form asks for your LinkedIn and Twitter accounts and request links to samples of your work. It means, they want to measure the ground of your personal brand to determine if they want to associate their brand with yours.

It is, therefore, a good idea to perfect your personal brand before reaching out to those big sites.

Entrepreneur Contributor Screen

Entrepreneur.com provides guidelines of what they are looking for in a contributor. Some of their key points are fairly common to most editors and are worth considering if you want to take advantage of this marketing strategy.

Guest Blogging Guidelines

  • Length of article: No more than 1,200 words.
  • Topics: Articles that inspire, give insight into current trends and offer actionable takeaway tips.
  • Distinct message: Fresh perspectives on topics readers care about. Personal experience. Problems you have overcome. Unique perspectives you can bring. Tell a story.
  • Actionable advice: Usable, numbered tips readers can put to use right away. Clear enough tips for a reader to put into action right away.
  • Trustworthy sources: Primary sources as much as possible.
  • Support your argument with multiple examples: Use more than just one example to illustrate any point you make.
  • Submit original work. Work you didn’t write is not acceptable. Warmed over posts (something you published previously with just a few new tweaks added) are also unacceptable.
  • Make sure your article isn’t overly self-promotional. Mentions of your assets used to demonstrate your expertise on a topic and should serve to educate, not advertise.

The most valuable advice out of this list is to write distinct articles.

If you share the same opinion as everybody else, if you don’t distinguish in any way, if you are fade and boring, you have no chance to be considered.

However, if you come up with something new, inspired by recent trends in your industry and back it up with solid examples and data, and if you provide actionable pieces of advice, then you will stand out and have a very good chance to be selected.

30. Get Exposure with LinkedIn

The great benefit of LinkedIn is that you can send connection requests to your targeted prospects and get over 40% acceptance rate. (Source: Josh Turner, founder, and CEO of LinkedSelling – Free Webinar – Advanced LinkedIn Masterclass).

Lately, I personally get 49% acceptance rate.

That is to say that you can grow your network very quickly and reach a large group of collaborators and prospects in your niche. People that might be interested in your content, webinars, services, products or any other offers.

To automate the process, you can use a tool called Linked Helper*. This tool will send a connection request automatically to a list of preselected leads.

*Note: please use this tool with precaution. If you are too aggressive in your approach LinkedIn can close or limit your account. Linked Helper provides recommendations of their blog and you should follow them rigorously.

6 Actionable LinkedIn Tips

  1. Use a powerful headline for your profile Title | Company Name | I help [your target audience] … get, achieve, generate [result or benefit]
  2. Position yourself as an expert and build your authority and credibility in your niche.
  3. Use the LinkedIn search filter to target professionals in your niche and connect with them. Send them a short message saying: “Hi [name], I came across your LinkedIn profile and thought we could benefit from being connected…”
  4. Share links to your free lead magnets and invitations to your free webinars, and build your email list.
  5. Send automated emails providing free and very valuable content to further strengthen your authority and credibility, and connect more closely with your audience. You want to remain top-of-mind.
  6. Build strategic partnerships and collaborations.

31. Get your Own Brand of Merchandise

Advantages of Getting your Own Branded Merchandise

  1. It is a good way to make your style unique and distinctive.
  2. It is a wise way to promote your brand in all events you participate
  3. It allows your fans and followers to share your style, your colors, strengthen their engagement with you and show their support through association.
  4. It is a source of passive income!

You can sell products directly and exclusively related to your personal brand, but I recommend to develop other brands to enrich your selection. Don’t expect your fans to wear your logo day after day and nothing else!

Amazon Merch

You can get print-on-demand t-shirts, sweatshirts and Pullover Hoodies from Amazon Merch. You upload your designs and Amazon Digital Services will take care of the printing, packing, shipping, and after-sales service.

However, in order to create an account, you need to request an invite and some people stated that they waited over a year before getting their invites. I personally waited less than two weeks.

Amazon Merch - #selfmade Brand

I believe the message you send with your request is of crucial importance as of how long you will be waiting to get your invite.

I personally mentioned the type of brand I was planning to create and sell, and how it was differentiating from the other brands available for sale on the Amazon website. I also mentioned that I shared Amazon customer-first values and that I was taking Amazon’s policies very seriously.

Tip: Once you get invited, you can sell a maximum of 10 designs and you are limited to one upload a day. To quickly increase to 25 designs and 3 uploads a day, all you need to do is to buy your designs. I personally bought six t-shirts of mine and got upgraded right away.

Shopify Store

Another option is to build a Shopify store with a Print-On-Demand plugin such as Printful and then integrate your store into marketplaces such as Amazon, eBay, and Etsy. This way, you still benefit from the high traffic of marketplace websites, but you have your own online store.

7 Benefits of Selling Merchandise Using Shopify/Printful instead of Merch by Amazon

Have you ever considered selling merchandise to increase your revenue? Here are 7 benefits of using Shopify/Printful instead of Merch by Amazon to sell your merch. #merchbyamazon #shopifymerch #shopifyprintful #shopifyvsamazon #merchbusiness #sellmerchonline #sellmerchandiseonline

1 – You own the asset (the store)

On Shopify, your store is hosted under your domain and is your property. You have full control over it; the design of the store, how it looks, the designs of the products, your upsells & cross-sells, the number of products in your listing, the product range, your suppliers, your opt-in pop-ups, your blogs, your content, etc.

It’s all yours and all under your control. If one day you wake up and decide to switch to another supplier or add new products from new suppliers, you can!

On Amazon, you are fully limited.

You can’t upsell or cross-sell, you can’t collect emails and data about your customers, you can’t stay in touch with your customers to build loyalty and generate repeat sales, you have limitations on the number of products in your listing, you are limited in your product designs & descriptions, your sole supplier will always be Amazon and nobody else, your product range is limited to their offer and that’s it!

Amazon has full control and they can close your account anytime and for any reason; your poor performance, your bad designs, your descriptions, copyrights infringements, or anything else that violate their policy!

2 – Printful ships internationally (Amazon ships in USA, UK, and Germany only)

It is seriously hard to understand why Amazon won’t ship to Canada or any other countries other than USA, UK and Germany!

To get some samples of my own t-shirt designs, I had to ship through stackry.com and FedEx charged me $60 of clearance! Half of the order total price.

What I learned from this experience…

(a) FedEx, never again for international shipments (… same for UPS)! I recommend using the US postal service (USPS).

This way, it will be delivered through your country postal service. To my experience, the clearance fee is much lower when it comes through Canada Post (and I assume it should be the same for your country’s postal service).

(b) That said, even if Printful ships internationally, make it clear to your customers that customs duties and clearance fees may apply.

You want to avoid any surprises or inconvenience especially when your clients are part of your loyal audience!

3 – Your brand and website alone benefits from your advertising efforts

Many vendors choose Merch by Amazon because the Amazon marketplace is popular and generate a lot of traffic, so they expect to get sales with minimal efforts.

But, in reality, it won’t be enough to just post your designs on Amazon and expect sales.

No matter how big and popular Amazon is, you will still need to generate traffic to your products either through paid advertising or social media self-promotion.

Otherwise, you won’t sell anything!

Either way, you will need to invest time or money or both to generate traffic on Amazon (not to your blog).

Why wouldn’t you do it to generate traffic on your website instead!?

This way you will get a whole lot more benefits.

You will :

  • be in control of your listing, your designs, your descriptions, etc.
  • collect your clients’ information,
  • upsell and cross-sell your products (and your blog posts!),
  • generate traffic on your personal website,
  • track your customers with Pixels,
  • personalize your advertising,
  • build and strengthen your brand
  • build a base of returning customers
  • improve your site SEO
  • collect emails with lead magnets and much more!

4 – You build a brand and a social community around your own store and social media pages

Could you imagine that big brands like Ralph Lauren or Nike wouldn’t have their own sales channels, would have their own website?

Could you imagine that those brands would sell only on Amazon? No way!

It is the same for your brand of merchandise.

You are creating a brand, you have your own website, keep building your brand around your website and link all your social media pages to this branded website! Not to Amazon.

You can certainly sell your product on Amazon, but do it as a merchant, not through Amazon Merch. And name your merchant account the same as your store name.

5 – You own the customer data

That’s a big deal!

The customers are on your website, meaning from the moment they enter your website until the time they make their purchase you can interact with them in various ways.

You can chat with them, you can track them using a Facebook Pixel, you can upsell and cross-sell them with smart recommendations of products or content, you can offer them freebies to get them to subscribe to your email list, you can offer them to subscribe to your push notification list and finally you can possibly make the sale.

But what really matters is that, even though you don’t get the sale, at least you have a chance to get a new subscriber to your email list or push notification list, a subscriber to your social media pages or just a future returning reader interested by your content.

On your website, you can convert your visitors in many different ways all equally valuable one another.

Yes, you invest in paid-advertising or you invest your time to self-promote your products in social media, but once you get your visitors, you get the full benefits, not only the final part of the play; not only the one-time sale!

6 – Printful offers not only t-shirts but a large range of print-on-demand merchandise

Amazon offers only t-shirts, long-sleeve t-shirts, hoodies, and sweatshirts.

Printful carries a large range of products:

Digital Marketing Strategies - Printful Listing

Source: Printful

Complete listing:

  • T-shirts
  • All-over shirts
  • Tank tops
  • Crop tops
  • 3/4 sleeve shirts
  • Long sleeve shirts
  • Embroidered shirts
  • Hoodies
  • Sweatshirts
  • Leggings
  • Skirts
  • Dresses
  • Swimwear
  • Sports bras
  • Bodysuits
  • Trucker hats
  • Snapbacks
  • Dad hats
  • 5-panel hats
  • Mesh hats
  • Beanies
  • Bucket hats
  • Visors
  • Tote bags
  • Drawstring bags
  • Backpacks
  • iPhone cases
  • Samsung cases
  • Socks
  • Embroidered aprons
  • Coffee mugs
  • Throw pillows
  • Pillow cases
  • Posters
  • Framed posters
  • Canvas prints
  • Beach towels

7 – The cost is lower and the profit margins are higher.

There is a major difference in the cost of the products and, as you can image, Printful is lower.

That said, the competition on Amazon is also much higher and customers won’t pay an extra for your brand.

For this reasons, all t-shirts are more or less the same price and the majority of the vendors get only a few dollars on each sale, sometimes less.

On your website, you can have your own pricing strategy, you can provide a volume discount to boost your sales, you can make some extra on the best-seller and high-demand pieces. There is a lot you can do to improve your sales and most importantly, your profits.

It is your playground and you have full control!

In conclusion, it should be clear now why Shopify Printful is a much better option than Merch by Amazon.

You have full control over your store, your suppliers, your listing, your designs, your marketing, your prices, etc., and all the money you invest serves exclusively your brand and your website.

On Merch by Amazon, not only you have no control at all, but you don’t own your store, you can’t leverage your brand and you sell on a very competitive platform where all products are more or less the same price, so you make very little profit.

If you like the idea of selling your own merch to reinforce your brand and make extra money, go ahead and start your store now with Shopify and Printful  ;)

32. Increase Your Visibility with Online Advertising

Most people reading this guide are probably on a budget and don’t have the financial resources to launch an advertising campaign for brand awareness.

However, even if you are on a budget, you should still purchase your brand name in Google Ads and Bing Ads.

These keywords will be low cost and will trigger only if someone searches for your name, your brand name or your site.

In this case, it is worth paying a few cents to redirect this highly valuable traffic to your site.

In addition, if you trademark your brand, it will prevent other advertisers from using your trademark (your name or brand name) as a keyword to generate traffic to their website.

As stated here: “Google abides by local trademark laws and requires that Google Ads ads don’t infringe third-party trademarks. […] If a trademark owner submits a complaint to Google about the use of their trademark in Google Ads ads, we will review it and may enforce certain restrictions on the use of the trademark.”

If you have some extra budget, you can also do additional advertising to generate traffic to your content, boost your subscribers or reinforce for brand awareness.

Facebook, Linkedin, Pinterest, and Twitter ads are good options to reach highly targeted people.

Finally, you should seriously consider this advertising marketing strategy if you have an online product to sell or want to create one.

In this case, advertising will be essential to grow your mailing list by targeting potential customers and prepare for your product launch.

33. Interact in Groups and Forums

One traditional way to syndicate your content is to share the headlines and excerpt of your post or video on social sites like Twitter or Facebook.

Another way is to syndicate your content on websites where people ask specific questions. Examples would be Quora, industry related forums and Facebook groups.

On these sites, you can copy-paste large section of your content to answer people’s questions in details and then, share the link to your blog or YouTube video as the source of the content. It gives your blog inbound links and contributes to traffic generation.

A few months after publishing your blog post on your website, you can also repost your content on medium.com and reach even more people with your content.

Keep in mind that each platform wants native content, so don’t just share your link. It will be perceived as spam and you could be banned from the site or the group. Share your content, then add your link or video as a complement to your answer.

Conclusion

CHAPTER 1: CREATING YOUR BRAND IDENTITY!

1. Draft the Guidelines of Your Brand
2. Choose the Name of Your Brand
3. Write Down a Short Description of Your Mission and Supportive Tag Lines
4. Write Down Your Stories
5. Learn the Basics of Graphic Design and Video Editing
6. Get a Good Camera and Studio Equipment
7. Take an Awesome Picture of Yourself
8. Choose your Brand Colors
9. Design your Logo
10. Secure a Domain
11. Secure Your Social Profiles

CHAPTER 2: BUILDING YOUR BRAND ASSETS!

12. Build a Website & a Blog
13. Setup Google Analytics
14. Setup Facebook Pixel
15. Setup Your Professional Email Address
16. Design Your Social Media Pages
17. Get Your Professional Business Cards

CHAPTER 3: CREATING ENGAGING CONTENT – BLOG POSTS!

18. Creating Engaging Content – Blog Writing

CHAPTER 4: CREATING ENGAGING CONTENT – PHOTOS & VIDEOS!

19. Creating Engaging Content – Videos
20. Creating Engaging Content – Going Live
21. Creating Engaging Content – Photos & Images

CHAPTER 5: DIGITAL MARKETING STRATEGIES!

22. Cross-Platform Content Integration
23. Engage with Your Visitors Using a Chat Plugin
24. Connect and Collaborate with Influencers
25. Build your Email List with Lead Magnets
26. Subscribe to a Marketing Automation Platform
27. Start Sending Automated Emails
28. Start Sending Web Push Notifications
29. Get Exposure by Guest Blogging
30. Get Exposure with LinkedIn
31. Get your Own Brands of Merchandise
32. Increase Your Visibility with Online Advertising
33. Interact in Groups and Forums

CHAPTER 6: CREATING THE PERFECT WEBINARS AND SEMINARS!

34. Get Exposure with Webinars
35. Get Exposure with Seminars

CHAPTER 7: 3 BONUS TIPS!

BONUS #1: Crawl the Web to Monitor Your Brand
BONUS #2: General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Compliance
BONUS #3: How to Setup Rich Pinterest Pins

Who is David Gaudreault?

David Gaudreault Bio - David's Way

I'm an entrepreneur, a maker, an online marketer...and Personal branding passionate.

I help entrepreneurs develop two essentials for building a successful startup: (1) building a strong personal brand and (2) building solid foundations of passive incomes to gain professional freedom.

I also help entrepreneurs find their big ideas, execute them right, impact millions with their businesses, and change the world.

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