You can choose many approaches to market your online business: PPC, online display ads, print ads, workshops, webinars... to name only a few.
If you're like the vast majority of online businesses that don't have hundreds of millions of dollars to spend on brand- and image-based advertising, you should be using, if you're not already, a direct-response marketing approach.
Here's what advertising legend David Ogilvy had to say about direct response marketing vs. general marketing and advertising:
Much of what Ogilvy shared in this video is just as relevant today as it was then.
Direct response is "a type of marketing designed to generate an immediate response from consumers, where each consumer response (and purchase) can be measured, and attributed to individual advertisements."
Now, there are two common ways to go about this approach: You can use an extremely targeted, one-shot approach and go for the sale right away, or you can roll out a campaign with a distinct and planned follow-up component.
The question is, Which of these will drive more revenue and deliver greater profit?