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How Can I Find a Local Internet Marketing Class
A couple years ago, I started asking my friends and network associates “how can I find a local internet marketing class in Warren, Michigan” because I didn’t have a clue where to begin finding a good one. I had finally given up the idea that I was going to be a real estate investor because I just could never come up with the down payment. Then they started changing the rules as the market began crashing and I knew that I was wasting my time in that game.
Well, what my friends recommended to me was to start talking to more people about the internet. Whenever the subject of making more money comes up, invariably the conversation will turn to making money online. This allows for the opening question of how to find a good source of information on this subject and people love to share what clubs, seminars, or workshops they have attended and what their experience was like at each of them.
Internet marketing and advertising are hot topics in today’s tough economic times because a lot of people are unemployed and working from their homes. The problem with this is you cannot learn much by yourself so local internet marketing clubs are springing up all over the place. But how do you find them? You can search online, but if the club does not know how to market themselves, you will not be able to locate them easily without a great deal of searching.
Getting internet marketing help requires networking and socializing with the right people. There are a lot of internet marketing seminars offered – at a price. However, the question is always “is it worth it?”. You don’t want to pay out your hard earned money and all you get is a three hour sales pitch. Believe me, I’ve been there, and I’ve done that. I’ve spent several hundred dollars over the past two years and a great deal of it was a complete waste.
I decided to change my strategy and go to only the free seminars. I was very fortunate that the community college in my area has a very smart person in charge of the entrepreneurial department. He believes the best way to improve his struggling community is to offer quality education and free help so that people can start taking charge of their lives. The college has several campuses around the metro area where they offer every Thursday evening a free class on real estate, internet marketing, or a small business roundtable.
At the beginning of each event, vendors (small businesses usually) are allowed 10 minutes each to speak in front of the attendees to give a speech on their product or service, then they can socialize and network after the event and pass out their business cards or flyers. The college brings in a variety of high caliber speakers and every other week has a panel of experts on the subject matter for that week.
I started attending these seminars and learned a great deal. I also found out about an internet marketing course that was being held near my house so I began speaking with people who had attended the course. I found out that it was being lead by an internet marketing specialist who was very good at promoting and advertising on the internet for his clients so I began attending his workshops whenever the price was good.
By networking every week at the college events, and then seeing the same people at the workshops, I began to develop a sense of who “really” knew what they were doing, and who was just spouting nonsense. I also developed several friendships through these associations, which was a plus I did not expect.
I finally feel that I have a good grasp of what I need to do to market my products online. The websites that I have created are a direct result of taking a class on marketing a product using a colorful blog. Through these classes I saw that other people, just like me, were creating new services and products like eBooks. What I have also learned is how to differentiate between the “experts” and the “wannabees”. I learned this through going to many network events and listening to what people were saying. When someone starts talking about search engine optimization marketing I watch for the “sales pitch” or the “know how” to pop out of their mouth.
By regularly attending seminars that offer good information, and not just trying to sell something, you can begin to get a feel for who you want to learn from. If you are new to the internet marketing game, here are some things you may want to look for when searching for a local internet marketing class.
1) Does the instructor have a proven track record of getting results – and can they prove it? By attending a couple of free seminars offered by this person, you can see if they know what they are talking about. Even a $20 investment in a workshop taught by this person will be a good indicator of their expertise.
2) What method do they use to drive traffic to their own website or blog? Are they always hiring someone to do the work, or are they doing it themselves? If they outsource, they may not be able to handle the newbie questions that pop up at every internet class.
3) Do they know the power of social media? Do they know how to advertise on Facebook and Twitter? These are powerful marketing tools that every good internet instructor should know.
4) Can they teach you how to write an effective press release, article or classified ad? These are critical items to have in your knowledge base in order to market your product or service.
5) Do they know how to use social bookmarking to create back links to a website? Is StumbleUpon, Digg, and Delicious a part of their regular vocabulary? They should definitely be a part of your’s.
6) Are they throwing the words “search engine optimization” (SEO) around to impress you, or have they communicated to their listeners what this really entails?
7) Does the instructor understand how to use the free tools on Google to create a list of keywords, or keyword phrases?
8) Can they teach you how to view the source code on a website to gain a competitor’s keywords, and use the Google Keyword Tool to find their most valuable high volume keyword phrases?
Networking is the best advice I can give you for finding out the secrets to being successful on the internet. The questions listed above give you some idea of what you should ask people when you are trying to find a local internet marketing class that will be the most valuable to you. Not all seminars or classes cover all of these subjects, but if the instructor or his colleagues know the answers, then continuing association with them can only be a benefit to you. If you want to use the internet effectively, then you have to learn from the experts. I hope I have given you plenty of food for thought.
I wish you luck on your journey to becoming more internet savy.