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Tag: marketing strategy

How to alienate your customers

Email blast after email blast with little, if any, content of value. That appears to be the email marketing strategy of business network Fast Pitch. Everyday, another email like this:

Last chance to become a Platinum Member for only $99 per year. 
Offer ends tonight at midnight (Wednesday, March 26, 2008). 

Give your profile top ranking, receive 10x more visibility, make unlimited connections, get ranked higher on search engines, post unlimited press, see who visits your profile and more… for less than $9 per month (normally $27 per month).

Once you click the link (above), be sure to click on the special promotion image to receive the special discount.

If you want to learn how to alienate your customers using email, just sign up at Fast Pitch – it won't take long for the onslaught of promo emails to arrive. I deleted my Fast Pitch business networking profile "fast." Maybe they should consider changing their name to, "Fast, Switch" to another online business network!

UPDATE: April 3, 2008 – More questionable tactics from Fast Pitch: 

It appears they hired people to combat negative press about them or they may be posting this b.s. themselves using one-up gmail accounts. I rec'd the following comment after publishing this post from a person claiming to be a paying customer (they didn't provide their website address or an email that shows up anywhere on the Internet BTW):

I've gotten those too.  A little annoying – sure.  But, I've got to say… of all the online business networks out there, Fast Pitch! has provided me with more valuable advice than I can remember.  After I signed up, I received 6 weeks worth of 'How To Market My Business' Advice emails from the company.  They taught me how to enhance my profile for search engine optimization, the importance of creating content, how to generate an audience for my press, blog, profile, etc…), how to make introductions to people online, and more.   In fact, I also received a Welcome Call from the company 3 days after I created my profile . . . I've always been able to reach a customer support rep through email, live chat and phone.  In fact, the CEO chatted with me the other day during what they call a virtual tradeshow – whereby hundreds of members actively networked online using webcams.  Cool stuff. I think your being a little too sensitive…

The person that submitted the comment above didn't leave a website address, I did a quick search for the "text content" of the message without the name of the company.  No surprise, the search results came up with a Blogger blog edited by the Fast Pitch owner! And, posts with the similar text and "cool stuff" claims – a mere coincidence, I doubt it. The IP address range is also from the same area, SE Florida and the owner is, where else, Florida. It appears they are paying people (or doing it themselves with fake gmail accounts) to leave positive comments about them. 

I agree with David, Fast Ditch! may be a better choice for their name. 

2008 Marketing Trends Survey

After listening to a teleseminar this afternoon – "Search Marketing Trends and Tactics" – it appears the obvious has been confirmed by marketing research; budgets for online SEO and related online marketing tactics will continue to increase. The data for the teleseminar was gathered from:

  • Surveys of 2,475 Search Engine Marketers and 711 SEM Agency Pros
  • Partnered Research
  • Lab Tests
  • In-depth Interviews with Survey Respondents
  • “Best of” Data from 500+ Research Orgs.

2008 Marketing Trends SurveyThe most interesting slide in the presentation shows the marketing pros perceived ROI for different marketing tactics. As the graphic on the right shows, house email marketing campaigns scored highest (click on the image to the right for full-size view).

Email is considered the strongest marketing tactic when compared to marketing tools such as SEO (search engine optimization), PPC (paid search marketing), public relations, direct mail, etc. 

Even though the proliferation of SPAM is reaching an all time high, email remains one of your best, and most cost-effective, tools when marketing directly to your existing customers and your extended target market.

There are several ways to effectively reach your target market online: email newsletters, PR campaigns using social networks, a blog with email capabilities, etc. As a former owner of multiple publishing companies, I have worked on marketing campaigns within a variety of industries. Each industry has unique characteristics and often it is best to collaborate with specialists to plan and implement effective strategies.

If you need help managing a proactive online marketing strategy, feel free to contact us for a free telephone consultation. Enhancing your ability to communicate with your target market can start today with a phone call (804-915-7379). Whatever questions you have – no strings attached.

Additional Resources

2008 Search Marketing Trends and Tactics
(MarketingSherpa teleseminar slides)

Mercedes-Benz Club Newsletter
(sample email newsletter designed & managed by

AMG Market | Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts
(sample blog designed and managed by

Exhibitor's Journal

The Benefits of Direct Response Marketing

Direct response marketing is a key component of any marketing plan in today's business world. When looking for immediate feedback, which should always be measured, direct response marketing strategies are preferred especially when it comes to trade show marketing.

Our friends over at posted a nice piece on the benefits of direct response marketing for those interested. Here's an excerpt:

For any business, it is crucial to market yourself and your “brand” to a target audience. One way this can be achieved is through direct response marketing, which is a form of marketing that is designed to achieve a direct and immediate response. Obtaining an immediate reaction can be especially important when it comes to trade show displays. Your first impression is often what detours or attracts future clients. But how does one attract the right potential clients for their business; their “brand.”

This is where direct response marketing comes in…

Targeting the right audience is one of the most important aspects of direct response marketing. In fact, experts calculate that 40% of the battle in obtaining the desired response is based on. . . . << MORE >>

Do you have a direct response marketing strategy that works? If so, please leave a comment for our readers. Thanks!

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