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This question has been answered, and points have been awarded.
How To Effectively Market My Zazzle Store?
7/31/2011 at 9:51 AM ET
I have a store on Zazzle, where I list for sale my art/copy on tee-shirts, caps, mugs, etc.
I am looking for ideas on how to market my site across the internet. Zazzle is great, but they have so many "stores" with billions of products, that I am Not Found. I do get a few sales.
Thanks for your ideas.
7/31/2011 at 12:21 PM
For research related to your question, I've attended a few internet store seminars and how easy it is to make money. They're right - they make it very easy for you to present and manage you business. The one tidbit they seem to do "government speak" about is promotion of your product.
They thrive on a million people advertising their company and selling a few items, not a million people selling lots of things. They're somewhat like a multi-level-marketing system in disguise. They have social marketing (the public) do the more costly "heavy lifting" of product and Zazzle promotion. Only a few ever make a solid business out of it because effective advertising takes time, positioning, money, unique products, and a touch of luck.
Selling low volume lower priced one-off items places tremendous pressure on you to sell with a very low promotion cost per item. When selling a $10 t-shirt, after cost of goods costs, Zazzle's percentage, and opportunity costs, you can't afford to have a $4.00 sales cost. You need to advertises for "pennies". Most / all EFFECTIVE advertising is more costly, but not necessarily prohibitive.
You can only reach so many people through family and friends on social media, emails, etc. until you need to start using some mass media.
"10,000,000 banner ad impression ads for $99" might work because of the general appeal and novelty of your products. Inexpensive classified might also work. The problem with these methods is they are untargeted.
Google AdWords (we specialize in accounts like yours), a very target market oriented adverting tool, might be effective when the cost per click and conversions to sales are working in your favor. THis is also an excellent controlled-cost "first step" way to understand what words resonate with your target market so you can later try other methods and start with a good baseline of what works / what doesn't so you don't waste a bunch of money.
A Facebook fan page and paid advertising can be less expensive, yet you still need to keep advertising costs in line with your overall business model. It won't be cheap, but this also might work with a tuned controlled-cost account.
There are many low-cost ways to advertise, but often you get what you pay for. If you want a serious business, you need to develop a serious marketing SYSTEM that essentially prints money. If you spend $100 in advertising, you can expect, on average, to generate $275 in bottom line profit.
Your question creates many tentacles for more in-depth explanations and related topics to discuss. If you'd like further discussion or assistance, please contact us through our profile.
7/31/2011 at 12:42 PM
Your reply helped me better focus on the overall issue. And Thank you for taking time to post it.
7/31/2011 at 4:36 PM
AdsValueBob has provided some valuable food for thought. Many of us have learned that there are very few ways to create a viable, profitable business without making a commensurate investment -- particularly in marketing.
Simply having a good product at a competitive price isn't nearly enough. Nobody will ever discover it without effective marketing. And nobody can market a product as effectively as the entrepreneur who will live or die based on the product's success. And that takes money as well as marketing know-how.
Every once in a while we hear stories about businesses that succeed with little or no serious marketing support. What we don't hear are stories about the thousands (or even millions) of businesses with little or no marketing support that fail. They just go away without fanfare.
There's a seminar in the MarketingProfs archives that should be must-viewing for entrepreneurs who have a great idea, great product, and lots of passion, but not enough money to do a proper marketing launch:
Why Most Small Businesses Fail (and How to Avoid Being One of Them)
That seminar could save you from a lot of aggravation (and the pain of a depleted checking account).
7/31/2011 at 9:25 PM
Many thanks for the insights, and lead for the online seminar(s). It all is helping me grow my knowledge base, options, and hopefully positive results.
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