Summer Games

The Summer Games is fast approaching and are you still looking for a sermon series to preach on this occasion? Every preacher knows that there is a need to be relevant in his preaching and to make the message hit home, it must be abreast with the current events. You don't need to be an expert in Christian marketing to know this and for this reason; we have made available the Go for the Goal: Becoming a Spiritual Champion Sermon Series CD. Here are some of the advantages of preaching this sermon series:

1. Impeccable timing with the Summer Games - The Go for the Goal: Becoming a Spiritual Champion Sermon Series CD is can be preached in tandem with the Sumer Games which will start on July 27 and end on August 12. You will be preaching the most relevant and most up to date sermon series and for sure, this will have a great impact to your church outreach and congregation because they can absolutely relate to what you are talking about.

2. Leverage the media attention with your preaching - Preachers are always on the lookout for outreach ideas. The Sumer Games is expected to have great media coverage and to be able to ride on this wave will be a great advantage to your out reaches efforts. While your hearers watch the games on TV, they will remember your preaching on the topic. And do you know what this will amount to? Impact!

3. Solid Scriptural base - This sermon series is based on Hebrews 12:1-13, which is a very solid springboard to preach a series of messages on becoming spiritual champions. From July 27 to August 12, you will have a ready message that will encourage your congregation like a huge athletic team.

If you will order this sermon series, you will have in your repertoire a toolset that will inspire your hearer to have that champion mind-set. They will have that enthusiasm that will mobilize them to win the world for the Kingdom. So what are you waiting for? Order your copy of the Go for the Goal: Becoming a Spiritual Champion Sermon Series CD or contact Pathmaker Marketing for more information. 


Digital Outreach

Understandably, the first question that might come to mind is, “Why should we add a Digital Outreach to our church?”  Well, there are a host of reasons you might want to pursue new ideas for outreach, and the reasons for Digital Outreach are indicated below:

  1. You will have the ability to reach out beyond the confines of your church to a greater, broader community.
  2. If your church currently ‘serves” those in a ten mile radius, your Digital Ministry can go nationwide, or even international 
  3. It will allow you to better fill the Great Commission, per Acts 1:8 “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth.”
  4. Allow you a way of ministering to a vast mission field!

After wondering “why” to go Digital, the next natural concern is “what to do” to go Digital. You may want to establish a Digital Outreach Team, which will coordinate with those in charge of creating other ideas for church outreach.  Together, they can create a plan to implement all your outreach ministry ideas.  Following are fifteen suggestions to help you create a Digital Ministry

1. Launch Prayer Walls - An excellent way to facilitate outreach to people’s needs can be added to the website or church Facebook page.  

2. Establish an E-Mail Campaign - That people can receive for free, like “40 Days to a  Happier Marriage”.

3. Set up a Facebook Page For your Church

4. Offer Free Downloads - White papers on various topics such as “Three Weeks to overcoming a Negative Thought Life” or “10 Biblical Steps to Getting your Financial House in Order.”

5. Offer Electronic Bible Studies - “How to Establish & Improve Your Prayer Life.”

6. Translate your Website into a Foreign Language - Preferably the predominant one in the area you serve.

7. Turn Pastor’s Sermon Series into e-books

8.  “Stream” your Services on your Website and/or upload videos to You Tube

9.  Place “Teaching Videos” on You Tube  - Pastor having a “conversational chat” on various topics via digi-cam.

10. Develop an “Articles Archive” - Written on a variety of topics, you are basically creating an “Online Library”.

11. Develop an “Online” Bookstore

12. Develop a “Bulletin Board Forum” to discuss various topics/issues

13. Establish an “e Learning Center” - Classes on virtually any topic:  Bible Studies

14. Create a “Christian Calendar” - Upcoming Events, Local & National

15. Have a Church Blog - Discuss current events and life today from a Biblical point of view (Movies, Political Issues).

AND HERE’S A “BONUS” STEP!!!

1. Create a Prayer Chain - “Text Message” Prayer Chain

Now that you know “why” and “what,” visit Pathmaker Marketing  to learn “how!”

 


eFundraising

One of the paramount challenges for churches and para-churches is fundraising.  While there are a number of “tried and true” methods available, the advent of the Internet and email has created paradigm shifts that mandate to enjoy continued success it is going to be necessary to stay on the “cutting edge” of technology.  Since ministry is the major concern of these institutions, it is probable that they will want to benefit from the experience and expertise of an email-marketing specialist with a successful email marketing firm such as Randall Mains and PATHMAKER MARKETING LLC.

            Randall, a PK, grew up understanding the importance of fundraising.  If you're like his Dad, the Rev. David Mains, asking for money isn't your favorite pastoral activity. But, you do it because that's how you fund everything from keeping the lights on in the sanctuary to paying salaries to supporting ministries that present the life-changing message of the Gospel to hungry souls.

Over the past 25+ years, God has blessed Randall to help numerous churches and ministries with their fundraising needs through some specific skills that he has learned in life. His experience spans a variety of areas... radio, direct mail, various fundraisers, publishing, product sales, but (most recently), raising hundreds of thousands of dollars through online efforts such as email fundraising.

Here's what he was able to accomplish for one growing church in Chicago:

The church retained him to help them open up new channels for funding their growing outreach ministry, which includes a church, radio ministry, television ministry, international humanitarian efforts, and the sale of the pastor's books and teachings.

His first step was to help them build their email list. They were sending people to their website, but they weren't capturing as many email addresses as they could. In addition to offering general technical support for their store, he installed 3 important things.

1. He upgraded their website with an eNewsletter sign-up form and dedicated, benefits-oriented landing page to secure new email addresses. Together, these have gotten them thousands of new emails addresses - both to add to their mailing list and to replace those that inevitably fall off of mailings lists when people change email addresses or simply move on.

2. He installed an eight-week series of welcome emails. Not only do these emails run on autopilot for ease of use, but they also introduce new acquaintances to the various aspects of their ministry.

3. He went to work raising funds from the people on their email list. He writes, designs, codes, installs, and blasts a regular eAppeal for them that raises over $10,000 each month. 

Below are several Email Fundraising Case Studies that will give you a solid idea as to what Randall can accomplish:

A. For a church in Chicago, who contracted with them to do their email fundraising, they recently filed a recent report that showed they helped the church raise $127,739 through email in 2010.

B. For a large broadcast ministry in Phoenix, they conducted a 13-month email campaign that reaped 1,816 gifts for a total of $190,887 in income, netting them $158,387 after considering all expenses.

C. They also have served several television ministries. One from the East Coast first contacted them for help with good web communications. That quickly grew into a successful eMail Marketing effort that has generated $750,000  in email donations from 9,000 gifts during their 53-month relationship to help them fund their ministry endeavors. For 2011, their email fundraising income was over $200,000 in an otherwise dismal economy.

            As you can see, it would probably behoove you to make arrangements to work with email marketing experts like Randall and PATHMAKER MARKETING LLC sooner rather than later!


Prayer Wall

A prayer wall is a web application where you can conveniently post prayers and pray for others as well. It’s so easy to use and the convenience will put prayer chains to shame. Updates on past prayers are easy to do; you don’t need to send hundreds of emails to keep people informed. Talk about Church outreach ideas, this is the best there is. Here is how to use it:        

1. Post your prayer request like a tweet - The best way to post a prayer is to make it concise so that those who will pray for you will not have a hard time remembering your request. Added to that, there are also details that you want to intentionally miss out especially if they are too personal. You can think of this as a tweet except that it’s a prayer.

2. Post a prayer for others too- Don’t just pray for yourself, pray for others as well. Intercession is a virtue that is highly encouraged in the church and what better way to help your brethren than to pray for them and encourage others to pray for them too? 

3. Avoid correcting the prayers of others  - If you disagree with other peoples’ prayer request, there is no point in correcting them. You have to remember that the prayer wall is a public environment and making a public correction to someone else’s prayer is just too insulting.

 4. Avoid gossips in your prayers requests - It’s easy to fall into this trap. What was intended to be a genuine concern that needs to be prayed for progresses into a gossip. If you think that a request is a gossip in the making, you can flag it as such. The admins of the church website will then remove it from the prayer requests and decide if it is indeed a gossip. Just like other Outreach Ideas, this too has to be protected from misuse.

5. Truly pray - If you want to pray for a request, all you need to do is press the “pray” button and the number of those who prayed will increase. On the downside, you can actually just press the button without actually praying and the person on the other side will actually believe that the number of those who prayed are actually a lot. This just defeats the purpose of a prayer wall and should be avoided. We have to remember that we are accountable to God and dishonesty just doesn’t pay.

 A prayer wall is just a web app that makes the job of prayer warriors a little easy. This will encourage more prayers and a great way to see your ministry being fruitful. All you need to do get in touch with Pathmaker Marketing and have it installed in your Church's website or ministry blog. If you have any other Church Outreach Ideas, we would like to hear about it too. 

 

For examples of some Prayer Walls we've installed, go here:


5 STEPS TO SUCCESSFUL BLOGGING

Blogging is an excellent way to use the Internet to promote you and your business, church or charity.  As with any “tool,” however, to be most beneficial it has to be used properly.  Below are five basic thoughts you need to keep in mind when using blogging as a effective internet marketing tool.

 1)      Write About What You Know About—in Detail!

Blogging helps you establish yourself as an expert in your field.  As a result, you will want to concentrate on making sure your posts demonstrate your areas of expertise.  The key is to share in-depth on a particular topic rather than addressing a lot of topics without sharing any real information.  The catch phrase here is “Depth is more important than Breadth.” Be as articulate as you can, because for many prospective clients, your blog will be your first impression to them, and you want to demonstrate your areas of expertise.

If writing content is a real challenge for you, you may want to opt to have someone ghost write your posts, either someone on your staff with more flair for copywriting, or by retaining a professional. You could constent to be interviewed on your topics of expertise, so your specific thoughts come through in the final copy.

 2)      Be Genuine—Not Promotional!

This is not a time to “hype” yourself and/or your company.  Share real information regarding the topic you have chosen.  For example, if you are operating a sporting goods store and are blogging about the five best flies for trout fishing in June, elaborate on the various merits on the different flies, not on why everyone should come to your store to purchase them!  If your blog is a ministry blog, then make your outreach real, not just hype or hyperbole, If you share valuable and valid information in your posts, people will be drawn back to your blog and, eventually, to your website or online store, or even to the phone meet you in person and get more information—and, hopefully, the five flies too!

3)      You need to be Consistent—and if possible, Prolific!

Blogging is often like exercise—we know we should do it, and have every intention of doing it—when we can get around to it!  Also like exercising, it is only truly beneficial when we do it consistently.  A minimum of one to two blog posts per week will give you the kind of content quantity you need, but if you can ramp up to three-four a week, that would be even better. In other words, be consistent first, then increase your volume over time. One rule of thumb to consider is that Google will start to notice your blog after about 50 posts, and then revisit you for updates. Once your blog is initially spydered and ranked, you can train Google to return more frequently, by posting new content consistently.

4)      Choose the Right Blogging Tool

There are two basic blog services you can use—fee-based tools like Compendium and free blog tools like WordPress.  While the latter has the upside of being free, the former may be far more beneficial for your needs.  Understand that a major goal of blogging is to win “Page Rankings” in Google, Yahoo, Bing (and lesser Search Engines) on your target terms.

It's important to remember that tools like WordPress, Blogger, Typepad may require you to manually search engine optimize your posts to puruse your page rankings, while a Premier Blogging Service like Compendium is engineered from the ground up to optimize your posts for targeting  keywords.  Based on return on investment in getting you search engine rankings results, Compendium is generally a better blogging tool than WordPress, even though it costs, because of the fact that it helps you search engine optimize your blog posts while writing in order to succeed at getting your desired page ranking results. In other words, a free blog tool is a great deal, only if you are getting ranked in the search engines, or you can generate readership independently. 

In truth, our company uses both, with Compendium being the premier blogging service tool we lean on most, and consider to the best blogging service out there, while WordPress, Blogger, Typepad, LiveJournal and others are also used frequently or judiciously, when budget or other reasons need to be carefully considered. See a side by side comparison I did recently on the topic recently.

5)      Pick the Right Terms to Blog About.

Using the right search terms by targeting keywords in your business or ministry blog posts will result in increased page rankings in the search engines.  This is accomplished by determining your winnable keywords via careful and comprehensive keyword research, and then incorporating those words and terms into the text as you write.  You can do this keyword research on your own, using the Google keyword research tool (Google: Google Keyword Tool), which is one of the best keyword research tools to start with. You can also retain a pro services company like Pathmaker, that is adept at the process, to ensure you get it done correctly. Once proper research is done, any company can usually identify a total potential keyword pool of about 1500 terms to pursue. Then you have to rank those terms by winnability: determining their potential for you to win a page one ranking on each of them. Some will be winnable. Others will not be winnable without an enromous budget.

And here's one final bonus step to Successful Blogging:

 
 6)  Protect Your Content

WordPress has a documented habit of just closing down blog sites if they determine that the user has violated their usage standards for one reason or another.  Unfortunately, bloggers often don really know what those “standards” are, nor do they give you the opportunity to change your content to adhere to their prerequisites, once your site is down.  This is one of the hidden little secrets to the free tools out there...you could lose all your content since it's hosted on their servers, not yours.

The best way to protect your content is to install a tool like WordPress on your own web server rather than on theirs.  Then blog away. Your content resides on your own servers, not theirs, and you can rest easier knowing that it's safer.  A simple task, this is truly a worthwhile endeavor as a precautionary measure to protect your content. Obviously, you should always have local PC backups too for all content posted on your company or church blog.

For more assistance with blogging, don't hesitate to call Pathmaker Marketing, LLC in Phoenix, Arizona at 1-623-322-3334, and we'll be happy to help you sort this out further.


            At the request of my Pastor I created a 20 Step program for Marketing our Church on the Internet. To make it as inclusive as possible, I recruited the assistance of Randall Mains, CEO of Pathmaker Marketing LLC. Realizing that the results of our efforts would be beneficial to a number of churches, charities or small companies, I decided to do a 20 part series and place it on the Internet so as many people as possible could benefit!

            I trust that as you read my posts regarding launching your blog, doing comprehensivek keyword research, and SEO-ing your website, that you have come to realize that the Internet really can work for not for profit organizations, and that the Internet is also a pretty good church outreach idea. A church blog is a major part of this, as it as it allows you to be targeting keywords

           The next thing I want to discuss with you is how link building serves well as a church, charity, or small business marketing strategy. After all, church marketing 101 teaches us that a church is, in fact, a small business and therefore the Internet business marketing promotions that work for companies work equally well for churches.


            Have you ever noticed that invariably some of the most important things we need to do are also the most time consuming and the most boring? That is exactly the situation with your website and link building! While an excellent way to strengthen your website's rankings in the search engines, the process of link building back links is often laborious at best. 

            “Why,” you may be wondering, “is link building relevant to our church, charity or small business?” 

Actually, there are two significant reasons that you should plan on making link building a part of your core Internet marketing plan. The first is somewhat obvious - - the more listings you have with backlinks to your website, the more opportunities exist for people to find your website in various locations online, thus bringing you qualified visitors. With a dynamite website, each time someone visits your website you have the chance of having them become a visitor to your church, charity or company.

            The second reason deals with the fact that a well-developed and properly implemented link building campaign will increase your page rankings within Google search results. This, of course, is clearly to your advantage, so link building should be an on-going part of your search engine marketing program (to be discussed in a subsequent post), thus allowing your website to be that much more available online.

Your next thought may very well be, “How do we develop a link building battle plan? Well, there are a number of techniques that you can use. First, get your company placed in as many relevant directories as possible - - national, local, and niche.” The purpose of this, of course, it to then have your listing in these communities, and get it linked back to your website, driving traffic in your direction from those sourcs.

            Work diligently to ensure that you get linked in relevant areasTo be listed in places just because they are available may be a waste of time and, in some cases, may even be counter-productive. As in any form of marketing, you need to identify your target market and pursue them with your link building efforts and dollars


            Next, establish links on relevant blogs, community sites, and forumsThese are excellent places to establish your church or charity as a leader in your community for providing services that individuals may be looking for, as you will have the opportunity to interact and dialogue with those individuals who visit the sites, thus making their arrival at your church that much easier. 

            With social media being the latest buzz, it shouldn’t surprise you that you should be incorporating links from social media sites like Facebook and Twitter into your link building rogram as wellIn as much as your Facebook account reaches out to untold thousands, the ability to link back from there to your website should prove to be a major hub in your Internet marketing program as well.

            You may have found that there is more to link building than you ever imagined! I trust that you have also discovered what a viable tool this is in your over-all Internet marketing strategy!

Search Engine Optimize Your Website      
                        
            At the request of my Pastor I created a 20 Step program for Marketing our Church on the Internet. To make it as inclusive as possible, I recruited the assistance of Randall Mains of Pathmaker Marketing LLC. Realizing that the results of our efforts would be beneficial to a number of Churches, I decided to do a 20 part series and place it on the Internet so as many people/churches as possible can be Blessed by it!

            To date we have discussed launching a blogging process and doing keyword research. Today, I want to discuss search engine optimization - both what it is and why it is important to you as part of your church marketing program. As we discussed last time, the paradigm shifts in our society mandates that churches utilize small business marketing strategies, and an effective website is an excellent church outreach Idea!

            In a nutshell, SEO is used to receive Page One rankings on Google, Bing and Yahoo which facilitates more people to “click through” and find your website and all that you have to offer. As many people think they know a lot about SEO, there are three myths that I would like to dispel at this point in regard to the topic:

            MYTH #1: As long as you Google your Church Name and come up “#1” you are in fact, search engine optimized.

            The reality is that the major search engines treat your church name as a  "gimme.” As a result, this means that in the realm of search engine optimization, this gives you virtually zero clout! In fact, if you don’t get page one ranking when you type in your church name you have a real problem!

            MYTH #2: Search engine optimization can be achieved quickly!!!

            Actually, nothing could be further from the truth!! It is a long, slow, and sometimes tedious task that leads you to the finish line in this race! There are, as you will learn, several steps involved, each time consuming in their own right. BUT the results are well worth the effort! As you schedule your SEO Program, you will want to allot at least six months to accomplish the task!

            MYTH #3: You can accomplish SEO for Free!

            The confusion in this realm is the fact that visitors come to your site for free, but the competitive nature of SEO mandates that you either hire professionals to achieve the rankings you desire, or that you plan on investing huge amounts of time and energy to accomplish SEO to your satisfaction!

            The myths aside, SEO can be a tremendous boon to the success of your church. If you, through your SEO efforts, you can attain a #1 ranking on a Google search you will get a lot of click through traffic! This may lead to visitors  who will, of course, greatly “enhance the chance” of your church growing!

           Understanding that there are hundreds, if not thousands, of words related to a church, your goal is to make sure that yours shows up for as many of these words as possible when a potential parishioner is searching them, and that is where your keyword research that we discussed in Part II comes into play!

           While the Internet is evolving daily, SEARCH ENGINES is one of the two items that tends to remain constant. Being well positioned allows people to discover exactly what it is that your church has to offer. To better understand this concept, consider the Internet a Super Highway with millions of people zooming along it every day. Your SEO program serves as a  billboard, advising them of what awaits if they will take the “proper exit” and wind up at your place! Unless they can find you, however, they will always be “potential parishioners ” and never “your parishioners!” If you aren’t showing up in searches, you don’t have a Billboard!  The first step is to conduct a keyword research project, which will allow you to find the rigth terms in order to have a website that is optimized!

           As you can see, targeting keywords can lead to more visitors, which strengthens your church outreach. I know this may all seem overwhelming, and would suggest that if you have any questions that you e-mail Randall Mains at randall@pathmakermarketing.net, as he is more of an expert in this realm than even I am.

            At the request of my Pastor I created a 20 Step program for Marketing our Church on the Internet. To make it as inclusive as possible, I recruited the assistance of Randall Mains, CEO of Pathmaker Marketing LLC. Realizing that the results of our efforts would be beneficial to a number of churches, I decided to do a 20 part series and place it on the internet so as many people/churches as possible can be blessed by it!

            In the first installment I mentioned that it would be wise to launch a blogging process. In that, I alluded to the fact that you need to Target Keywords that are winnable, and explained how to do so. The next thing I think you need to concentrate on is doing keyword research.

            Knowing that comprehensive keyword research is the foundation of an effective search engine marketing program will allow you to understand that, basically, you need to “chase down” the people who need the services and programs that your church offers and lead them to your website. The whole idea is to ensure that your church comes up when people type in their search terms.

            You may think that there aren’t all that many words and/or terms, but actually quite the opposite is true. The typical comprehensive keyword search will yield a minimum of 1500 or more keyword variations! Through a variety of filters, you can narrow the number down that you will want to concentrate on regarding your website and your blog posts. The key, of course, is to find “winnable” words, and then prioritize them for your benefit.

            While I certainly can’t list 1500 words/terms here, I will give you an quick example of what I mean, using the top 20 terms found when using Chicago churches as our local example:

churches
bible study
catholic churches
orthodox church
youth ministry
church chicago
church in chicago
willow creek church
willowcreek church
chicago maps
churches chicago
churches in chicago
bill hybels
catholic churches in chicago
catholic churches chicago
baptist churches in chicago
catholic church in chicago
churches chicago il
churches in chicago il
church chicago il

Once you have your list composed, you will want to chose the terms that best describe your ministry, whether it be to teens, seniors, street people or other. These are the terms you want to concentrate on as your church Staff compose their blog posts, and as you “tweak” the copy and contents of your website!

That brings me to my next point - - once you complete your keyword research and acquire your final winnable keyword list the real task has just begun! It will take months - probably six or more - to get you to a point that when an individual types in a term/phrase on your list that your church will come up. Remember I said that this list is the “foundation” of an effective search engine marketing program? While the list is the foundation, the “structure” you will build on it will be all the blog posts that you and your staff write! It is those Church Blogs that will help you acquire page rankings from Google, Yahoo and Bing, and that is what will drive people to your website and eventually your church, making the internet an effective church outreach tool for you! 
                While it may rankle us to have to admit it, “Church Marketing 101” is one of those paradigm shifts that we just need to learn to live with, and Targeting Keywords is one of those internet marketing ideas that will, in fact, allow this to be a viable church outreach idea.

            In closing, I would suggest that you read Part III, as we will deal with SEO - search engine optimization - and how to ensure that your website will, in fact, get Google, Yahoo and Bing page rankings!


          Floyder - - I don't even know what a bloghead is!

          Jim looked pretty pathetic, to say the very least. Somewhat loud, though never obnoxious!, Jim is truly a sensitive soul and that is why the comment that had been leveled at him had been so devastating. It seems that last Sunday, in front of a whole group of people, his pastor slapped him on the back and exclaimed, “Well, Jim, why don’t you head up the committee for Internet presence. After all, you’re the biggest Bloghead in the congregation.”

            “Floyder, will you call Pastor and ask him why he would say something like that about me?”

            His puppy-dog brown eyes made it impossible to say “no,” so I gave Pastor a call. I surmised, and verified, that all Pastor meant was that Jim used Blogging as an Internet Marketing Tool for his business more than anyone else. The fact that “Bloghead” sounds suspiciously like “Blockhead” had made Jim feel like he was being ridiculed, which, of course, was not the case. Finishing up with the call, I explained it to Jim.

            A visual sigh of relief crept across Jim’s face, making it as placid as a crystal clear lake. As I watched, however, the metamorphosis continued, and the placidity was replaced with a look of total confusion. I waited, as I knew another question/ request would be forthcoming.

            “Floyder, is there such a thing as a Church Blog?” indicating by the question that he was accepting Pastor’s offer to head the committee.

            “Certainly, Jim,” I assured him.

            “Well, what does a church Blog about?”

            “Oh,” I explained easily, “there are several ways a church can use a Blog as an outreach tool. They might want to simply employ Christian Blogging to post content that is relevant to members of their congregation. Or they might want to develop their blog into an outreach tool, so that in that case it actually becomes a Ministry Blog.”

            “How would that work?”

            “Well, it could actually take several forms. For example, they might use the Blog as a discussion forum to facilitate small groups discussions on the pastor's weekend sermons.

            “They might also use the blog to feature and highlight the special ministries a church offers their community, such as children's activities, helping the homeless or their outreach to military families.”

            "Or they could use the blog as a vehicle for outreach, discussing subjects that matter the public at large, with a biblical point of view.

            Jim cogitated on what I had said for a while, and then asked,

            “Floyder, should I seek Pathmaker’s help?

            Jim was referring to Pathmaker Marketing, which promotes a Premier Blogging Service for churches (LEARN MORE >>). Jim and I have discussed numerous aspects of Internet Marketing, and, on several occasions, he retained Randall to help him with suggestions.

            “Well, it wouldn’t hurt.”

            Jim smiled and went to a world of his own where he was contemplating his course of action. Me, I was just glad he no longer looked pathetic!


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

      I marvel at how often clients come to us at Pathmaker Marketing and do not have a firm grasp of exactly what they want us to accomplish for them.  This seems to be as true for those companies who are seeking a small business marketing strategy as those charities who are interested in non-profit fund raising. 
     For whether they are looking for an online marketing tool, church outreach ideas or search engine optimization services, their goals are often murky and poorly defined.  An example would be those who put together an internet ad without having defined how to evaluate the results of the advertisement, or measure its success.
     First, as you develop your online ad you need to know what, exactly, you are expecting it to accomplish for you. 
     There are basically a few strategic things that you can hope to receive from your internet marketing endeavor - - a list addition, a lead or a sale.  Typically, your product or service will determine which you should expect.  For example, if you are selling your services as an Architect for Church Expansion, you will undoubtedly pursue leads, not sales. 
     On the other hand, if you are selling a $49.95 product titled “6 Steps to 1,000 Perfect Sermons,” the end result is more apt to be a sale than a lead. 
     Once you fully understand your objective you can better measure the results. Making this determination will allow you to decide whether or not your advertising program was a success.
     Second, as you determine your objectives you will find that they may be different depending on whether you are prospecting for new customers or selling to your current ones.  Example: is the list email you are using an “internal” or “external” list.  For an internal list, one where you are contacting current/past customers, you may decide that for a thousand dollar investment you will want to realize $10,000 worth of sales.  It might be more, it might be less - - you should be able to determine this because you will already have a track record with those individuals. 
     However, with an “external” list, a list of potentially new clients, you may be pleased even if you don’t break even!  For the same thousand dollar investment, a return of only $750.00 might be acceptable because you are acquiring new names/clients for future upselling to your internal list.  These individuals will have ongoing upsell potential and a “life time value,” which may be very significant.
     It is vitally imperative that you define your objectives, for without doing so you cannot determine if your campaign was successful or not!  Too, you may want to set up a “scale” of probably/possible success.  If your “goal” is to glean $10,000 on a $1,000 investment, and you only glean $8,500, you might decide that the program was, albeit short of your expectations, still a success.  As with any goal, not reaching the ultimate goal does not mean you failed.
     It is possible that you may need help in defining and refining your objective, and we at Pathmaker would be more than happy to assist you in this.  However, before you invest in an internet advertising be sure you know what you expect it to do for you!
     Give us a call if you need more help to find ways to win on the web.

 

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