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Proactive vs. reactive Internet marketing

The term Internet marketing itself is not an easily contained concept. It keeps expanding and spreading and in effect annexing a lot territory. No longer is Internet marketing confined to search engine marketing (which, let’s face it, was what most meant by the term for the better part of the last 10 years). Now it includes organic search, paid search, all social media outlets, local search, publishing and online reputation monitoring. If there are others I missed, please feel free to let me know with a comment. Whatever the element, they all play together and all carry different parts of the answer as to how to effectively do Internet marketing for bottom line results for your business.

Cover of "React"

Cover of React


Now, I am not going to talk about the specific areas because those subjects are beat to death elsewhere (two other places being my own blogs 😉 ). In fact, you can “how to” yourself to death and see the endless opinions, thoughts, techniques and practices that the self-proclaimed “experts” rant on about or try to sell. The subject matter for today is about attitude, not technique. While I do not claim expert status, I will say whichever of these 2 angles you approach Internet marketing from will say a lot about your business and be a strong indicator of your success in any Internet marketing campaign.
Proactive Internet marketers plan. They are not afraid of audits and other methods to properly plot a strategy for success with Internet marketing.
Reactive Internet marketers just do it. Now many would see that as admirable but I have enough experience to know that in most cases it ends up being more wasteful than anything else. Fools rush in is how I learned it.
Proactive Internet marketers do what is most effective. By understanding what works in their specific industry a proactive marketer spends valuable marketing dollars in areas that are most likely to create positive results. There’s not a lot of waste.
Reactive Internet marketers do whatever is told to them or whatever the latest fad is. As a result, they spin a lot of cycles learning that something doesn’t work which, if a strategy was deliberately developed, might have been skipped completely.
Proactive Internet marketers take control of their message in all areas including social media. By doing so, they limit the potential of damaging social media assaults, poor reviews and as much negativity as possible. While it is virtually impossible to prevent all bad PR online, you can limit the scope and impact if you monitor and pay attention to what is happening.
Reactive Internet marketers wait until the fire is started then go into spin control or damage control mode. Most times this does not turn out well. Rather than a conversation to resolve conflict, these usually end up in a “he said, she said” scenario that is a loser from a PR standpoint.
Proactive Internet marketers know the value of their efforts. They monitor and measure what they are doing and they make adjustments along the way. Most proactive Internet marketers spend more on these efforts because they know that a return is going to come back to them.
Reactive Internet marketers wait until it’s time to do the annual budget then wonder what happened with their money and effort. As a result, they assume that the program didn’t work then they cut the budget and effectively remove themselves from the competitive landscape. They then pat themselves on the back because in their mind they reduced the budget for the year but in reality they just hampered their chances for success.
There’s more but we’re out of time. So what kind of Internet marketer are you or your company? Have you proactively taken control, mapped out success and executed a well thought out plan? If not, have you then hastily put together an Internet marketing ‘solution’ that is chasing the wind and most likely to tank? Be honest here because it could mean the difference between survival and distinction in this economy.
Of course, it’s your choice whether to act or not.

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