How do I market my marketplace?
I have a travel / shipping marketplace startup that I just recently launched (pls see my username handle dot com). Part of the marketing strategy is to post at travel forums, but it is not as effective as it seems as these posts are considered as spam.
The other strategy is to do a guest blog post, but I have not looking into it that much.
Should I consider SEM and SEO? Currently the marketplace is a two sided marketplace, so if I have not had a supply locked in yet, doing an SEM is useless, i would say.
How would I go about promoting my marketplace?
Welcome! You mentioned the posts in the forum were considered spam. Were you told this by the moderator? Are your post promotional in nature? That could be part of the problem.
Guest blogging can work but I don't think it's as effective as it used to be.
The first thing I would ask you is where does your typical customer hang out? In forums? Are there particular blogs in your space that they normally follow? Also, would you ever pay for advertising like Facebook ads or are you only looking for free?
I noticed your blog has two posts that promte your products, but with SEO you also want to target keywords that your audience may search for. So have you done any keyword research to seek out phrases that your potential customer would search for?
Thank you for your prompt response. I tried today post in one travel forum, but within a minute, it got deleted. I am afraid to post on more travel forums because I am afraid with the recent Google Panda algorithm, it may bad rank my site, ziptango.com
Right now, I am currently targeting backlink from travel bloggers. Not sure if it's as effective, but I know backlinks will improve rankings.
Since my startup is a shipping marketplace, so my strategy is before I go all out on the demand, I have to stock up supply first. My customer on the supply side would most probably hang out in forums because they are all travelers.
Since i target budget travelers, I could possibly place an ad in travel deal site to find travelers, but i m not too sure if it's effective marketing.
I have looked in Facebook ads, I am considering it, but I believe putting it on FB ads would only effective on my startup if I have the supply. What do you think?
As for myself, I am not typically a blogger, I never actually blog, but I think I have to start now My background is always in technology as I was a product manager in a technology industry, I understand marketing a bit, but totally new in internet space marketing. Still learning the rope now...
How do I find keywords that my audience may search for?
Thank you again for your advise.
One last thing, any opinion about my website? I accept critiques, inputs, and feedback to further improve.
Last edited by ziptango; 12-18-2013 at 12:13 AM.
Forums: An excellent source of traffic but must be handled very carefully. Make at least 25-50 useful posts in the Forum before you put your link in your signature. Don't even think of posting your link within your post. Check the forum rules first to see what they say about using signatures to promote links/ your own site. If you follow these steps your posts will never be considered spam.
Facebook: Create a fan page and drive traffic through ads using precise interests. Once you gain members on your fanpage you will have visitors too, to your website.
How to find keywords: Here's an easy and quick way to do it with only a fraction of the trouble that others might take. Firstly, identify websites that are in the same niche as yours, or similar sites. Open Google's Keyword Planner and copy the URL of any one of those sites that you have identified and paste it into the box that says "your landing page". It will bring up a list of keywords which you will find in the "keyword ideas' tab (not the "ad group ideas" tab). What you need to look for are long tail keywords (3 words and more) that have a good search volume of say more than 500 but less than 3000. With these keywords you have a high chance of ranking.
To check how much competition these keywords have, use the free version of Traffic Travis, which will actually tell you how easy or difficult it is to rank the keywords. Open the tool, go to the SEO tab and then click on "Competition". Put your keywords in and it will show you the results.
You can do this exercise with a few other URLs too and you will have enough easy-to-rank keywords which you can use.
Another tip- Make a few videos for YouTube with some of the high traffic keywords and optimize the videos by putting the main keyword in the title, the first sentence of the description and some related keywords in a detailed description of at least 200-300 words. Say your keyword when you start the video. There must be a link to your website in your description. If you do this you will get traffic to your website within 24 hours and it will keep on increasing as time goes on. YouTube videos rank high and rank fast.
Hope it helps you. Be sure to post your results here.
Is there such thing as a good timing to do marketing? Or marketing is daily task?
As you can see for my marketplace, it's a travel related. As of now, most people are in holiday mood, so I am not sure if I should concentrate my marketing effort now or wait until new year?