OBS Discussion Forum

"Marketing Online" by Marcia Yudkin

Message on July 28, 1995

28-Jul-95 07:19 EDT
Sb: Hi, Marcia! Info for your book/www
Fm: Cheri Y. Sigmon [76554,2234]

Hi, Marcia & fellow Netizens! Hmm... schmoozing.

It's really like attending an 'online' social function. People who have similar interests chat with one another in various size groups (e.g., forums/roundtables). Can you imagine someone charging in there, announcing their 'ad?' Do you think behaving like this would be considered rude? You bet. Usually this will get you 'flamed-' that is, you'll receive email 'nastygrams.' (In some extreme cases, for example- the 'green card lawyers,' Canter & Siegel- you'll get complaints by phone as well).

* Actually, it's really simple. Here's what you do: introduce yourself, engage in polite conversation, establish some sense of rapport, THEN when appropriate, talk about your line of work. It's the ultimate 'soft-sell.' By participating in online forums, chat rooms, conferences, or roundtables, you'll make new friends & potential customers in cyberspace. Major online services have already organized these areas where people who have common interests can congregate & socialize. The World Wide Web is the ideal 'interactive' medium, as we're experiencing with Marcia Yudkin's unique, innovative website. Clever.

Regardless of the service or online medium you choose, the bottom line is to be 'socially acceptable,' <g> participate, & provide _content_ to the online community.

Don't forget that the "online culture" perceives community as one of the primary reasons for being online. Online, people want one or more of the following: a sense of belonging, a sense of community, information (true content), entertainment, social connections, & interactivity. What people don't seem to want is to be easily "targeted" by savvy marketers. We're bombarded by enough blatant advertising during the average day as it is!

Moreover, if you're considered "intrusive," you'll not only alienate the people you're attempting to attract, but you'll damage your professional reputation in cyberspace. Some may play a numbers game, as with this bulk email, which I find most irritating. They may actually receive *some* business this way, in the short-term. However, because you're serious about your online presence & your professional image, you'll want to avoid this bulk email technique.

It's just not the same as sending mail through the postal service. People can't simply "trash it." Often, people have to 'pay' to receive their email. Now, think about this.

Who wants to pay postage due to get 'junk mail,' i.e., unsolicited advertising? When I personally get a 'postage due' email message, I immediately hit the delete key.

This emerging medium termed "Internet Marketing" is going through some growing pains. The potential is incredible, especially for the professionals who take the time to learn about & understand the culture. It's a *long-term* proposition. The 'get-rich-quick' crowd is obviously not welcome here.

Talk to you later- 'ttyl.' - Cheri Sigmon =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
Cheri Y. Sigmon, cheri@jit.com
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usa Tel 803.628.0015; web@jit.com