The 5 Pillars of Internet Marketing

Brad Smith

Huge structures dating back to Ancient Egypt have relied on the strength of massive stone columns.

These incredible engineering advances helped propel humans from huts to palaces.

Massive pillars shouldering the load together, as one. They can’t exist seperately. One isn’t good enough. It takes them all working together, each pulling their own weight to get the job done.

Together they form a solid frame, capable of holding immense pressure.

Any structure of significance to date is still built with the frame supporting the load.

As time has passed, humans have discovered that the assembling of individual pieces produces profound results.

Every company, organization, and political system is built upon the same principle.

Internet marketing is no different. It relies upon time-tested principles working together in new ways, to produce significant accomplishments.


Acrópolis (Atenas - Grecia)
Image courtesy of Jorge Orte Tudela

Here are 5 internet marketing pillars that must work together and pull their own weight if you want to flourish.


1. Information

The internet is about information.

You can find anything, anywhere, at anytime.

All it takes is a simple search, or friendly referral. The internet is a content library full of informative, useful, humorous, or educational sources.

It all starts with creating content.

And all content on the internet comes back to text. The written word.

All companies that do business online are media companies. They have to create and publish. And that starts with writing.


2. Targeting & Optimizing

You can’t be all things to all people. Isn’t that how the saying goes?

You can’t please everyone.

That’s fine, you don’t have to.

You’re doing something specific, so you need to reach the appropriate people.

The internet helped create the long tail; where even obscure, niche products can find a home… and more importantly, an audience.

You want to target and optimize for that specific audience.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is about enhancing and optimizing your site for a better specific user experience.

No tricks. No gimmicks. Just more targeted.


3. Relationships and Communities

People are inherently social.

We gather in groups, form clubs, and forge bonds with similar individuals.

The internet makes this easier and quicker. Kinda like speed dating.

Social media is about using new ways to connect with people.

Same principles. Different methods. Like using email years ago, only the channel is different.

However social media has shrunk our world. We’re back to small town rules where what you say and who you say it too will reverberate across the communnity.

New rules. Same importance.


4. Attention & Interaction

You need access to people and communities.

But when you’re first starting out, or have a new idea, you (likely) don’t have the luxury of a pre-existing audience.

You can investment in advertising if you know how and where.

A lot of companies don’t want to spend money on advertising. They think it’s a waste of money.

Most of the time, it is.

But if you know what you’re doing, and know how to calculate the ROI of your budget, then you can add fuel to the fire and accelerate your online growth.


5. Testing & Iterating

At the heart of online marketing is experimentation.

Trying new things, coming up with different solutions, and quickly changing course are every-day occurances.

It’s like the Wild West.

The good news about online marketing is that you can track and measure all of your efforts.

The bad news about online marketing is just that.

We’ve previsouly discussed how internet marketing is like the scientific method.

You often need to experiment, test, draw conclusions, and iterate to find the answer.

We’ll discuss what to look for, and how to read it.

Data by itself means nothing. Traffic and pageviews are useless.

When put into context, you can determine what users like and don’t like. And when you know that, you can go a long way.

These elements don’t exist in silos. Excelling in one area will only get you so far.

It takes the 5 pillars working together to build a strong business.

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