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Breakout of the Classified Ocean - With Alternative Promotion Methods

By Joe Bingham
Posted Wednesday, October 13, 2004

So, you just can't seem to write an effective ad?

Either that or there are just too many other classified ads out there, and nobody really pays attention to them anymore.

Have you ever felt like this?

Well, fortunately, there are alternatives. You don't have to rely solely on classified advertising to promote your business.

Here is a discussion, including advantages and disadvantages, of a few other ways of getting your promotional job done.


A very popular alternative, and it's popular because it can really work, is to start your own affiliate program. By sharing the profits of your business with those who get business for you, you essentially access the promotional territory of everyone who signs up as your affiliate. When a person signs up, he or she will promote your opportunity to all of their contacts, and across the Net in a variety of ways. This is an excellent way to get promotion without having to pay for it until you share a sale with your affiliate.

Obviously, if you are simply promoting an affiliate program this is not an option. Also, you still need to get people to your site to sign them up for your affiliate program in the first place. There is still an advantage to offering one, though, because all that do sign up will be promoting for you.


If you are a good content writer, you can promote your business for free through writing articles that are of value to ezine editors and webmasters. The content should be valuable to the readers, so that editors will want to use it, and should also be related to your business. Then, at the end of the article, you attach a resource box that has your name, a brief description of your business, and a link to your site. If you do your job right, the content of your article should lead right in to the content on your web site.

However, do not just make a direct sales pitch. You have to write something of value or it will not be read, or even published.

The difficulty here is getting published enough to make it worthwhile. If you write one article and nothing more, you may have trouble competing with those who have built a name by continually writing articles. Also, if you can't write a decent ad, you may not be interested in writing articles either.

The good part of this tactic is that it is free, and that it can continue to bring you traffic for a long time if the article is good enough to be passed around a lot.


Another method of promotion is to offer free e-books. You can write your own if you can produce the content, or put one together from free reprint sources, or download free e-books from others and offer them as promotional resources.

Again, you have to get people to your site to offer them your e- book, or you have to advertise it. Plus, you may not want the work of writing or putting one together.

The advantage being, that people who download your e-book will be re-exposed to your offer when they read the e-book, if it's your own. Also, it can help to persuade people to visit your site to begin with.


Contact other webmasters and offer to exchange links with them. Spreading your link around on other sites will help to promote what you have to offer.

The problem here is that you can only put so many links on your site without cluttering it up, and that you have to have something to offer others in order to get them to exchange with you. Therefore, this can be a hard thing to start out with. Also, if you are promoting an affiliate site, you can't add anything to it anyway.

The good thing about this is that it will expose your link to a different market.


There are programs for purchasing Guaranteed Hits to your site. This will bring you visitors with no worries and literally no work. The distinct advantage over other methods of promoting is that the visitor will be at your site. You don't have to coax them to visit as with other advertising, they will be taken to your site. Also, this can work for promoting affiliate sites whereas many of the other methods are only useful for those with their own web site.

It is an expense, and while the visitors are generally online business owners and buyers, they may not be specifically targeted to your particular interest.

However, if you believe your site or program is good and are only lacking in getting visitors this may be the best solution. Guaranteed Hits usually come in groups of 1000s. 5-10 thousand often being a minimum purchase. So, even with a terribly low sales percentage you can still see how guaranteed hits can be very effective. Just compare the price of the guaranteed hits to how many sales you would have to get to make it all worth it. If even a low 1-3% sales ratio makes you a profit, then this may be the answer for you.

The other advantage here is that you don't have to do promotional work to get these visitors. Therefore, you will be left with more time to work on the other aspects of your business.


Targeted Banner Impressions have similar advantages and disadvantages to guaranteed hits. These are banners that are placed on other's sites with content similar to your own. In fact, they may even end up on a direct competitor's site. People are not guaranteed to visit your site, but the banners are presented to an audience of people that are targeted to your specific business whereas guaranteed hits are more general.

This also has a cost, but again compare it to the cost of classified ads and see if a low 1-3% sales ratio will still make you a profit above that of the cost of the Banner Impressions. Once again, this method of promotion leaves you more time to work on the other aspects of your business.

Each of these methods can be useful, it just depends on your abilities and interests. Some of these require work, others require no work, but incur an expense. Consider each of them and how they might fit into your plans. It's certainly possible to integrate multiple ways of promotion, and in fact it makes sense to do so.

Still, considering these other methods may just get you out of having to write anymore classified ads, or having to compete in the Classified Ocean.

About the Author
To Totally REMOVE the Work of Promotion at a LOW Cost check out the QUALITY Advertising available from Charles Schurman. GUARANTEED VISITORS available at ( Or TARGETED BANNER IMPRESSIONS available at ( Written byJ oe Bingham, editor of the NetPlay Newsletters. (


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