Free Marketing, 101 Low & No-Cost Ways, Part III

free marketing 101 low and no-cost ways to grow your business online and off book cover

Free Marketing, 101 Low & No-Cost Ways, Part III

Free Marketing, 101 Ways BookIn his book, Free Marketing: 101 Low and No-Cost Ways to Grow Your Business Online and Off, Jim Cockrum offers 102 chapters of marketing tips. These tips include ideas for free marketing or low-budget marketing for the do-it-yourself business owner.  Early in his book, he explains that it is divided into three parts: Internet Marketing (Chapters 1-32), Building Trust and Growing Your Circle of Influence (Chapters 33-77), Stay Relevant, Interesting and Potent (Chapters 78-102). However, he continues to mention internet marketing beyond chapter 32. The bulk of this post will summarize chapters 78-102. For an even briefer summary, read the last paragraph. For complete summary of the book, read also Part I and Part II. Here is a summary of his 101 Free Marketing Ideas, Part III:

  • Share your life openly for marketing authenticity (Chapter 78)
  • Small businesses are more approachable than megacorporations. This makes it easier to connect with potential customers online. Use social networks to connect with your customers in personal ways by discussing issues in much the same way that yo might at an informal gathering.
  • Be the guy that asks interesting questions  while not being afraid to reveal his own faults and failures.
  • Are religion and politics off limits? “I would disagree [that religion and politics are off limits]. . . give people some credit for being capable of having a relationship with someone that they don’t see eye-to-eye with on all major issues . . . when I’ve made mention of my stances on issues of faith or politics, inevitably I’m contacted privately or publicly by a ratio of about 20:1 by people that appreciate it and tell me how much more loyal they feel because of my willingness to take a stand on important issues.”
  • Set yourself apart with the X-factor – put your customer’s best interests first no matter the cost. (Chapter 79)
  • Serving and marketing at the same time – donating time, money or resources to a good cause will help you gain new clients. Serve and be irrationally generous. Good news will spread about you. (Chapter 80)
  • Strategically asking for help can be great marketing (Chapter 81). Customers appreciate that you want their opinion. By asking questions you’re more authentic.
  • The limit for a personal Facebook page is 5,000 friends.
  • Be controversial to attract a crowd (Chapter 82). Go against the trends in your industry that are annoying your customers. Colleagues in your industry won’t like it, but your customers will.
  • Become increasingly indispensable (Chapter 83). If you can master the fine art of being sharply opinionated without ever being negative, you will quickly become indispensable.
  • Be creative.
  • Be irrationally optimistic.
  • Be consistently available.
  • Give positive, solution-based commentary on trends related to your niche.
  • Be transparent.
  • Be accessible or be ignored (Chapter 84). Customers want to deal with real people. Not being accessible gives them the impression that you’re too busy for them.
  • The passionate, generous artist in all of us must be released (Chapter 85). Creativity and passion are shared faster than ever before.
  • The Power of Your Why (Chapter 86). Use your core motivation to show authenticity and transparency.
  • There has never been a better time to be an entrepreneur. You should be doing what you love.
  • Appealing to the influential (Chapter 87).
  • Make the experience good for critics.
  • Use Klout.com and TwitterGrader.com to identify influential leaders and give them extra special service. Continue to give good service to everyone, but make it really good for the most influential.
  • Become an expert (Part 19). Conversations about you and your business are already happening online. You have three choices: you can ignore it, you can engage and join in, or you can become an expert and shape the conversation.
  • The perception of who is and who isn’t an expert has shifted thanks to search engines, online video, and the ease of distribution of all  types of information around the world. The first step to becoming an expert is to call yourself one. The second is to earn it by staying up-to-date on your content, and by creating and managing the conversations around your niche. Take baby steps.
  • Make expert videos (Chapter 88)
  • Start a coaching or mentoring program (Chapter 89).
  • The two steps to massive success in the information age: Step one, make a success story out of yourself, Step two, profit as you teach others how you did it.
  • Teaching is free marketing (Chapter 90). Libraries, community centers, small business associations, meetup.com groups, chambers of commerce groups and community colleges all need teachers and presenters.
  • Creating audio and podcasting (Chapter 91). Like any content, it is cheap to publish your audio online and it has the potential to spread virally.
  • Do a Google search for “podcast directories” to see where you can publish your audio files.
  • Make sure your audio file has ID3 tags associated with your file are filled in and accurate. Use an ID3 editor to accomplish this.
  • Look for trends on popular podcasts on iTunes.
  • Use leverage to grow your brand fast (Chapter 92). Dedicate some time every month to reading material by thought leaders. Keep an open mind to the leverage opportunities that are all around you. If you can master the art of leveraging your relationships while keeping the best interests of the other party fully in focus, you will have learned a powerful business and marketing skill.
  • Make a list of all available resources, tools, relationships, and experiences that you could leverage. You should be able to come up with at least 100.
  • Create content and educate others with teleseminars (Chapter 93). They can be planned or impromptu. Once you have the recording you can edit it, distribute it as is, or have it transcribed.
  • Use and offer webinars (internet seminars) as a customer follow-up tool and presentation tool. (Chapter 94). Make the webinar informative, engaging and full of useful information. Don’t use the webinar to sell or pitch beyond a soft sell at the end of the webinar.
  • Store your webinars online where they can be accessed any time. Send an email to your newsletter list informing them that the webinar is available.
  • You can schedule a webinar to repeat. When it is scheduled have someone ready to chat online or answer the phone to ask questions for the people watching.
  • Improve on what worked before (Chapter 95). Revisit ideas that have worked in the past and improve them.
  • Embrace outsourcing for some of your marketing efforts (Chapter 96). Think of the tasks you do during the day that can be passed off to someone else. Pass those tasks off and use your time more wisely.
  • There are many talented and skilled individuals in the Philippines that will work at a fraction of the price of hiring someone in the US and you’re increasing their standard of living by hiring them.
  • Don’t work in your business; work on your business. Dedicate significant time to replacing yourself.
  • Replace ROI with RLC for better marketing monitoring (Chapter 97). RLC stands for Relationships, Leadership and Creativity. What are you giving your customers to talk about online? Focus on how your efforts relate to RLC, especially when ROI is difficult to track or measure.
  • 80% of your results will come from 20% of your efforts.
  • Even when using free marketing resources you should try to track the amount of time and even small monetary investments.
  • Relationships take time.
  • The best ideas for spreading your brand and increasing your customer base are more about relationships and trust than they are about spending money on the correct advertising or marketing systems.
  • Pleasing everyone is impossible. Find creative ways to fire the customers that don’t get it.
  • Play marketing offense with Google Alerts (Chapter 98). Set up alerts at alerts.google.com to monitor your reputation online, industry trends, your competitors’ marketing efforts, and the accomplishments of people you’re associated with (so you can congratulate them).
  • Collaborate (Chapter 99). You can use social media for collaboration. Tools like Google docs can be edited anywhere by anyone with access. Enable blog comments so readers can contribute. Invite people to post comments on your YouTube videos.
  • Use split testing (Chapter 100). Compare the results of two marketing campaigns to determine which approach works better. Use the better one as a new baseline for future testing.
  • A love of learning is a marketing skill (Chapter 102). There are no successful marketers or business people that have a segmented view of education and learning.
  • Never stop learning. Never stop giving. Never stop creating. The world needs what you have to offer. Please share it with us.

This list, along with the Part I and Part II summaries offer a fairly comprehensive summary of the book. In previous posts I mentioned that there are some tips that he cycles through multiple times. Some of these include adding digital products to your services, leveraging, creating videos, and email marketing. This last portion of the book was a little more unique than the other two. However, many of the tips in the bullet list above are repeats. He also cycles through the tips of being irrationally and excessively giving and serving to your customers to create a loyal following. If you buy the book, all proceeds go to HopeVilliageDetroit.com. He also mentions that additional resources can be found at 101FreeMarketing.com.

One of the last pieces of advice in the book (which had also been mentioned previously) is “a good marketer spends most of their time on the headline, and only a portion of their time on the copy.” This is a highly debatable piece of advice. The importance of a good headline cannot be emphasized enough since some readers only read the headline. Yet, if the copy isn’t good enough to maintain the attention of the reader who doesn’t continue reading, then what’s the point? It is a piece of advice that the author clearly practices. The title of the book is one of the best on the market, yet the book itself could use some revising to organize and present the material better. Having mentioned that, most of of the material is worth following, with the exception of some outdated tips that were mentioned in previous posts.

Scattered throughout the book there are also some bullet lists of tips that are very specific for certain marketing strategies. Throughout the month some of those will be included in future blog posts. The next post related to this book will list the exact resources that were mentioned as marketing tools. When I initially picked up the book, this was the list that I was looking for . . .

Share this post

Comments (2)

Leave a Reply