Friday, August 3, 2007

Online Marketing

By Cindy Kapp, Brooke Training Marketing Consultant

I attended an all day Online Marketing Summit this past week. My brain was in information overload by the second hour. So how do you keep up with the hyper speed changing technology, on and off line? I’ve decided, I can’t keep up but I’m not throwing in the towel. I search for educational opportunities to at least help me understand terminology and what’s coming. Projections show that by 2010 all graduates will spend 100% of the day on the Internet. They have an “I want it now” expectation. Internet users are smart and incredibly impatient. So in business we have to figure out how to do things more instantaneously, simpler, no waiting. We must put customers’ needs and desires first over our own business goals. Websites must be easy to use. Know your customer and thus know what is most important to them. Make the most important thing the easiest to find on your site.

The fundamental way people do business has changed. They spend ¾ of the time online and ¼ offline. Hours online has surpassed hours watching TV (which used to be premier outline for advertising dollars). Websites need to be driven by the marketing eye rather than the IT eye. Browsers scan a website with their eyes not their mouse (so don’t hide things in drop down menus).

A hot term right now is Viral Marketing or word of mouth, online. Word of mouth has morphed into word of keyboard/monitor through chat rooms, blogs, email distributions and online discussion groups. Yet currently 99% of consumers read only, 1% comment or contribute. We get few comments on our Transportation Training blog but we know we have readers because of the analytics (technology that shows us how many readers we’ve had and where those readers are located). If you want to find a blog on something of interest to you or on your industry go to

America is lagging behind in mobile computing. Other countries mobile devises are more advanced and more used for computing, social networking and advertising.

These are a few of the interesting things I learned. So how does this relate to freight brokering? More and more of business in general will be done online so that is why our freight broker-training course teaches using the computer. We arm you with online resources. We have an online course. We recognize and try to adapt to the various ways of relating to our customer. But remember no matter what forecasts say, you have to get to know your customer to know the best way to meet their needs and communicate with them effectively (they may prefer the phone over an email).

Moving forward,

Cindy Kapp for Jeff Roach

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