It's been said, that it takes money to make money.
But it's also been said that if you can not make money WITHOUT money – then you can not make money WITH money.
I believe the 2nd of these statements to be true. But what does that have to with niche traffic generation? PLENTY! Let me explain.
The core reason for a web site is to make money. Now we're not talking GROSS sales – it's more important to consider your bottom line. And if all your efforts to bring new visitors to your site are spent on PAID traffic, your profitability will suffer miserably. Free traffic is ESSENTIAL. A MUST-HAVE.
And there's no arguing that at all.
Free traffic is the best way to bite into the other core elements of your online business. These include testing your product, building your opt-in list (your loyal followers), splitting-testing your copy, perfecting your page layout, and determining the winning combination that gives the highest conversions possible.
For a budding online entrepreneur to answer these questions with PAID traffic is a straight and slippery slope to losing money. So unless you have money to burn – focus first on free traffic generation methods before racking up thousands of dollars in debt on pay-per-click charges to your credit card account.
While some free traffic generation methods have been around for many years (such as forums, seo, article generation to name a few), others have surfaced only in recent times and in some cases are even MORE effective.
These include … youtube.com and other video sharing sites, podcasting, online community sites such as twitter.com and squidoo.com, and even viral marketing such as free software distribution, or entertaining videos. Truly the list can be hundreds of effective methods, but it is always important to focus on only a few, to gain the best result for YOUR online business.
Joint Ventures are often talked about as an effective way to grow an online business. And not only are there many ways to develop an online revenue stream, there are many ways to partner-up with another online entrepreneur.
Successful Joint Ventures are a win-win. This means YOU have something to gain and so does your joint venture partner.
But one aspect of Joint Venturing that is NOT often discussed let alone USED, is to share OTO's with your JV partner.
OTO? That's the online version of the fast food restaurant asking "would you like fries with that". And the term OTO … simply means "one time offer".
While we know and recognize that upselling is very important to increasing the profitability of your business, you can take this strategy and with a few twists gain some new traffic to YOUR site.
Here's the concept of cross promotion.
Locate an online business that sells a product that is complimentary to yours. (It MIGHT even be a direct competitor.)
Here's a simple example to illustrate: Let's say you're a programmer that has written a program to fight spam. Your JV partner in this example might be a programmer who has a new email program, or even an anti-virus application.
So on your site once they have bought your new anti-spam software, then you present them with a one-time-offer for your FRIEND'S software. He then does the same for you in return.
You might set up a scenario where each of you are affiliates of each other's product. But it would also work where the OTO revenue might go 100% to the JV partner – and what you get is a new person added to your opt-in list. One new subscriber to your opt-in list might have far more life time value to you over the long haul, than a commission you earned from a sale of his product – or vice versa.
And seriously – what info-product developer would turn down an offer to present their product and still keep all the commission right? Another thought along these lines is that the one-time-offer might even be a giveaway. But the goal of this type of cross promotion is to bring THEIR customers to your site, and either purchase or "opt-in" and for you to present your JV partner's complimenting product to YOUR customers.
Networking and connecting with other online entrepreneurs will grow your business for the long term. You'll share with each other your successes and failures, help each other to build your online businesses, and introduce each others' customers and subscribers to new and complimentary products and services that they will enjoy.
In conclusion, today we talked about the importance of free traffic generation through modifying our OTO's to cross promoter someone else's complimentary product. In addition – consider the revolutionary concept of NOT using an affiliate link to earn a commission – but rather work together to build up each other's opt-in lists.