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Other Ways of Online Advertising

You can advertise "online" in other ways as well. For example, you might want to try advertising in "newsletters." Many big Web sites send these bulletins to their members on a regular basis to tell them about updates to their sites. If you have a product that fits into the same category as the site, you will reach people who are probably part of your target audience; (usually) only people who are truly interested in the topic of the site join the mailing lists and member areas. The bad news here is that you will perhaps be limited to text-only advertisements because some people cannot receive HTML code in their e-mail. This means that you will have a limited amount of space to advertise your product, and you can't use visuals or interactivity.

Another way of getting the word out on your products or services is to link up with sites that fit your category, as described above, and "sponsor" them by either helping them financially or giving away prizes in exchange for publicity and a "good word" about your merchandise. You will be amazed at how influential popular Web sites can be.

Sponsoring certain areas of Web sites related to your business or even elements such as video-on-demand are other good ways to gain popularity with visitors.

I can't stress enough, however, how important it is to do extensive research (either by yourself or through a third party) into the management, popularity, and user statistics of the Web site you plan to advertise with. The site owners should be able to present statistics and other vital information to you so that you can decide whether the visitors to the site are part of your target audience and whether the site is well managed and kept up-to-date. If possible, draw up concise and clear contracts with the site in question to make sure your money is spent wisely and that it gives you and your product maximum exposure on the site.

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