When To Use Internal Linking And Cross-Promotion And When NOT To
Do you want to know when you should cross-promote things and when you should go hard towards a single sale objective?
A lot of businesses do and there’s a lot of conflicting information.
Hot off possibly the worst-titled blog post in history, I’m going to spend this article shining a light into the darkness and letting you know when and what to do.
So when should you cross-promote and when should you not?
Let’s find out.
When Should You Cross-Promote?
Everyone from the businesses I work with through to the guys trying to build their first ever niche site have variations on the above questions.
Whether it’s the guy writing blog posts who says, “Should I link to other articles on my site?”
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Or the company who wants to know whether they should put the sale first or the “brand” first, then they have the same question.
It’s a good question – muddled by branding-first agencies on the one hand and pure direct response guys on the other. One says, “the brand comes first, lose the sale” and the direct-response guys say, “Get the sale, then retain them.”
Here’s the real deal, honest answer.
Everything comes down to the lifetime value of the customer and where they are in the process of becoming a lifetime customer.
That’s Not A Real Answer…
I have written repeatedly about the simple matrix of Uninterested/Unknowledgeable > Interest/Knowledgeable>Buyer>Repeat buyer.
Everyone walks along that path with whatever service they buy.
So your customers and soon-to-be customers are on that path right now. Most of them at the beginning, but some of them in various stages.
Generally, the closer they are to the first sale, the more you want to concentrate their attention.
I could just go on Twitter and incessantly spam over and over, “Buy a consultation with me for megabucks!”
But the people who follow me on Twitter are generally not browsing their feed looking to take their credit card out. So instead, I talk generally about business and life.
This gets them that little bit further down the path.
By the time someone is knowledgeable and interested and feeling like they’re about to buy your product, you should have put all your pieces in place so that all you have to do is say, “BUY NOW” and they’re ready.
In general… Social media = completely uninvested. Sales letter with a big buy now button = totally invested, ready to buy.
Wherever your target is on that timeline determines how concentrated the push towards selling is.
If someone has read 100 of your posts and is calling your business number to ask how to buy stuff, then you don’t need to give them another list of blog posts to read, or a “follow us on Instagram” email or anything. You need to say BUY NOW.
The Second Matrix
People and businesses I’ve consulted with know that I work to a second matrix.
That’s the income-types matrix. (I haven’t thought of a catchy name yet – catchy names aren’t really my thing.)
It basically comes down to knowing what your options for selling are and hitting every possible angle you can in regards to getting money from your customers (obviously in a totally friendly and beneficial way. No silver-tongues here.)
These income types and values determine where you should sit your customer on the matrix.
They also determine whether you prioritise brand over sale.
So if you have a little niche website and you recommend an Amazon book for sale, then brand is important.
If you push hard for the sale and send them to Amazon, you make 30p and potentially lose them forever.
So why not interlink and get them onto a page where they give you their details or maybe consider purchasing something which will bring you recurring income instead?
Compare this to, say, someone hiring you on a retainer for $5,000 a month. At this point, you shouldn’t interlink to anything that gives their brain a choice between hitting that “Get In Touch” button. It doesn’t matter if you have a brilliant “About Us” page that tells people your company history and all the magic that goes into whatever it is you do.
You want them to get your services on retainer.
If you get them on retainer, there’ll be plenty of time to get to know you and your brand afterwards.
You have two different avenues for working out whether to prioritise brand or sale.
The first is the customer awareness of your offer.
The second is the product type and value.
Put those two together, and you’ll get a clear picture of what you should be doing.
This might seem complicated because I’m a nerd and am over-explaining, but it’s simple when you put it together, and most things make sense.
i.e. there’s no point in endlessly pimping your consultancy to your friends’ list on Facebook.
And there’s no point in telling people who are ready to hire you that they should follow you on Instagram instead.