Lately I’ve been talking a lot about eliminating overwhelm, not ignoring obvious internet profits, and the importance of building your own unique profit plan

simple internet marketing planThis has led a few people to ask what kinds of internet business plans should they put together?

What is a common plan for online success…and how does it work out?

Below is a QUICK OVERVIEW of a possible plan which may or may not be right for you.  But it hopefully will give you a few ideas to create your own. 

Step One: Answer the Core Question:
Who is your perfect target customer?

It all starts with the customer.  It’s about building an audience.  Then offering them products and services to improve their life.  As you share value with them (products that improve their life), they’ll share value (money) with you.

That’s always my first thought.  Is there an easy to reach target audience?  What do they read?  What websites do they visit?  What keywords are they typing into the search engines?

You can do a lot of research on a market totally free…in just a few minutes.

Here are some websites to help you get started:

Double Click Ad Planner:

You can see related sites to the ones you’re looking at and often even the audience interests show up (for very high traffic sites). 


This will give you some demographic information for high traffic sites in your market.  It is not fully reliable, but it does give you a starting point for information. 

Mailing List Research:

There are many mailing list companies online so the above is simply one of the choices.  A lot of people are so set in “internet marketing” they refuse to look off the internet, BUT there is still a THRIVING direct mail business.  And while a website can continue to function for years with very little sales, that direct mail company is going out of business quickly if they don’t generate sales.

Search here by keywords and look specifically for lists covering your subject.  What demographic information do they give?  Not everyone tells you about their list, but sometimes you hit a big payoff and find everything you could want to know about the audience.  You can dig deeper as well and contact the mailing list brokers for more information about specific lists.

Step Two: Answer the next question:
What do they want to buy?

Part of this information comes from what they are ALREADY buying.  I don’t like going into any market where I don’t know people who are successfully selling there.

But there is another aspect to this as well.  I don’t just want to “copy” my competition.  I want to do it better.  So what is it that BUYERS say they want more of…and what are they currently disappointed with.

You can start getting this information by visiting  Check out the top products in your category.  Read through the reviews.  Check the comments on each review. 

What do people like about the currently available products?  What do they mention they’re missing?  What interests are they sharing?

Remember these reviewers are BUYERS.  And just like when you find a direct mail list of buyers, you put much more weight on it than any other research method.

The other common method is to visit forums and popular blogs to read the comments on the subject.  The weakness here of course is that everyone posting is not a potential buyer.  They didn’t spend any money to participate here (unless you’re checking out a forum inside a paid membership site).

Then of course another excellent method is to survey your audience and list.

One of the goals I have with any client business is to build their email list.  That list not only gives us the opportunity to build relationships and make multiple sales, but it also gives us the ability to run regular surveys.  What are the subscribers buying right now and what do they want more of?

Notice how this list won’t be made up of all buyers, but they have taken at least one step of committment…signing up for the list.  Taking the time to fill out a survey is another step of committment. This is why I consider these more valuable responses than the responses you’d find just by searching online.  In addition these are responses directly from your own audience…your future buyers.

Step Three: Test your sales hypothesis.
Now put what you’ve learned into practice. 

I lean toward free methods of marketing such as search engine optimization.

But it’s tough to start there?  It takes time to rank for competitive terms.  And no matter what sales pitch you may hear, I have yet to find a keyword research tool that is 100% accurate about which terms have traffic…and which terms generate buyers.

So my suggestion for most people if they have even a small advertising budget is to start with low cost PPC campaigns.  We used to always do these on Google, but their quality score rules do make it tough at times.  So you could also do them by advertising with Bing. 

By advertising on potential keyword phrases you can track your responses and see which terms generate real traffic and conversions.  Which terms are generating subscribers and sales for you?

EVEN if you didn’t have the conversion numbers you need to make the campaign profitable, here is what you can walk away with after a couple of weeks of testing.

– You can know which terms are actually high enough traffic to focus on. 

– Which terms send converting traffic to your site (subscribers or buyers).

– If you use the Google display network, you can even find potential sites to run direct ads on (contact them the site owners to ask for direct advertising, become a partner, write a guest post for, etc.).

With the information you gain, now you can be much more effective as you move into a content marketing strategy such as optimizing your blog for specific keywords, writing articles, or posting videos to Youtube.  You know which phrases to go after with your time and energy instead of spending 6 months and guessing at the best plan.

You’ll also discover information to help you go into other types of media buying such as buying Facebook ads or going into the big display advertising companies (many of which can generate 10 times the traffic of Google).

This is simply a starting point to launch the rest of the business.

As note, another research technique for your market is to look at the advertisers who continually show up on the top keyword phrases in your market.  Join their lists, buy their entry products, and watch how they follow up on you.  If they can afford to come up in positions you can’t, why is that?  How is their conversion system have a better return on investment than yours?

In other words, pay attention to what’s working.


Then roll-out with your other methods from there.

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Terry Dean
Terry Dean

Terry Dean has been in full-time internet business since 1996 and has helped thousands of entrepreneurs get started online through his articles and products. He lives in Ocala, Florida with his wife and 2 dogs. Find out more about how his step-by-step courses can help you today.