Digital marketing fundamentals. A lone rider’s experience with online marketing.

Alex Valassidis
6 min readMay 31, 2021

The thing with your presence online is how to become visible. Regardless of how interesting, important, innovative your message is, if there is no one there to read it, this message will stay in obscurity forever. This article aims to shed light on digital marketing fundamentals as I have experienced them and perceived them.

On my journey the last year on creating a presence online, I must admit that the steps I did brought me somehow forward; however, if I compare the energy, money, and commitment I put, the outcome was not proportionate.

Let me first tell you my struggles, and you can let me know if you identify.

1. Paid ads do not attract fully committed prospects.

Things would be easy if you could say I will spend X amount of money on Google ads and get those results.

The results regarding the quality you are going to get are not going to be as good as the results you will get if someone comes through more natural “streams” of communication to you.

In other words, if you interact with potential prospects on Linkedin, on Quora, or you do some SEO, the ones that are going to approach you are going to be of better quality as they are going to be prospects that come to you through a “normal” way, and not through the “forced” way of advertising.

2. Inconsistency of results for Google ads.

What I experienced with Google ads was that the results were completely inconsistent, which did not make any sense. So… let us say you start advertising and you put a Budget of 500 € / month. The first week you get 7 Discovery Calls generated, the 2nd week you get 5 generated, and then for 3 weeks you get nothing, then again you have a miracle week of 5 generated leads and so on. That does not make any sense.

3. My Facebook ads experience

Some years ago, I spent a decent amount of money on Facebook ads. I had a Facebook page of local character as it provided information on the city I was then leaving, Pamplona, Spain.

My ads brought me a certain number of new subscribers every day, let’s say 10.

On this page, I was posting 5 times a day.

The morning post was about the weather to come, the midday post had some local news, etc.

When I had 100 subscribers on my page, the clicks on the morning post were 7, and the clicks on the midday post were, let us say, 5.

When I had 1000 subscribers, you would expect to have ~ 70 clicks on the morning post and ~50 clicks on the midday post. But that was not the case! When I had 1000 subscribers, the clicks on the morning post were 15, and the clicks on the midday post were 8, a complete unproportionate engagement! Does that make sense? Initially, it does not. However, it did make sense when I realized that Facebook was not targeting any more people living in Pamplona. Instead, they were targeting anyone that in somepoint of his/her life either was in Pamplona or just mentioned Pamplona. For example, if you have said on your wall in the past, “Hey, you know Hemingway was in Pamplona.” Then automatically, you would have been shown an ad of me, and if you clicked, you were part of my pages (list). Sorry guys, if that is not fraud, then what is it?

4. Article distribution

Article distribution is an SEO technique, that if done correctly, can help your page grow.

The questions that I have here and could never get decent answers are these.

a. Which are the article directories that work and which ones do not.

b. The article on the article directory needs to be unique. Does this mean that it should not appear on your page? Or does that not count?

c. Are there article directories that, instead of helping your page, will cause more harm than good? And if yes, which ones are those.

5. The importance on sharing the content in a variety of forms, as PDF, as JPEGs on a variety of different directories.

How important is that? And which ones are the directories that really count? Is that going to bring any significant change in your results?

6. The keyword is related to a country.

That is also a blurry topic. I used to hire an Indian company to do my SEO. They proved to be crooked as I was receiving reports from them that were not reflecting reality. They claimed that the SEO they were doing for me (as per our agreement) was only for the UK, and if I wanted to have similar results for the US market, then I should pay them another X amount to do that for me. On my research, I realized that the results were identical in both the UK and the US markets.

The lesson of this story is. SEO is undoubtedly an overly complex topic. The unclarity and complexity of SEO give a lot of space for crooks to move. They take advantage of the unawareness of their prospects to fool them. Nevertheless, having such behavior in life drives you to a certain point where your lies will be discovered, and collaborations will pause to exist. A crook, however, does not care about the long-term effect of cooperation. Instead, he cares for the little money he is going to get today.

What Digital Marketing fundamentals work?

1. SEO, article writing, and on-page SEO work.

I advise all of you to buy the book: 3 Months to №1: The 2021 “No-Nonsense” SEO Playbook for Getting Your Website Found on Google from Will Coombe. It is an excellent book.

This book is excellent because it explains all the basic things you need to know and apply to get a presence online. I managed by following his advice to get my Vparagon website on Page Nr. 1 on various low-hanging keywords. I understood that by using tools such as Rankmath, I could create SEO-friendly posts, pages, and articles that can be visible in the chaos of the internet.

Buy the book, use the tool rank math, and do write content on your website.

Use the tool seranking to search for keywords, find low-hanging keywords and use them when creating articles online. (I found the keyword Digital marketing fundamentals for this article and integrate it 5 times in this article, among them 1 time on the title and 1 time in the first paragraph. Often that is very stupid if not done correctly. However, I guess that is the price you pay if you want to survive in this digital age).

2. Post on Linkedin Groups

That certainly works.

LinkedIn Groups provide a place for professionals in the same industry or with similar interests to share their insights and experiences, ask for guidance, and build valuable connections.

The thing with LinkedIn Groups is that you must post manually on them; no automation tool can do that for you. So, if you have an assistant, that is excellent news; if you do not, you have to invest that time and post on Linkedin groups at least once per week. It works, and it’s worth it.

3. Answer questions on Quora.

It works; you get feedback, you get answers and questions to the topics you engage in, and people do interact with you. It certainly works.

4. Interact with less-known communities, web pages, and groups related to your industry and topics. Yes, the audience might not be as big as on Linkedin. However, it is specific and related to your business.

I would be happy to hear your opinions on the topic. Let me know what works for you and what does not and which questions you might have. I promise you I will give you a no-nonsense answer on the digital marketing fundamentals that work in the real world.

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Alex Valassidis

I am an expert sales consultant. I give no-nonsense life and business advice FOR THE REAL WORLD. https://alexvalassidis.com/