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What are the Ten Golden Rules of online marketing?


So you’re here to learn how to be a better online marketer for your company. Our best advice? Follow the ten golden rules. Back in 2003 (when Google was still in beta and Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg was still in high school), our CEO, Jay Berkowitz, created the rules for a presentation at the Direct Marketing Association. Since then, the rules have become the “bible” for marketing success—he even created this company around them!
What are these ten golden rules? Lucky for you, every employee at Ten Golden Rules is taught the rules during their employee training. And since our analytics rock stars have noticed that the rules are one of the top searches on our website, I decided to sum them up for you here.
Let’s begin.

  1. There are no rules

With traditional marketing, there are rules for the best ways to market things like billboards and television, but with online marketing, it’s all about testing and precise measurement. So, the CEO of a company may have his own best practices, but if the tests don’t prove them to be working, those rules get thrown out the window. In short: test, test, test and don’t worry about the “best” way to do something, because that could be different every time.

  1. The internet is not television

TV is a one-way street, but the internet is a joint effort between us and our consumers. Compare the way you market on the internet to the idea of direct mail.
This is where you get to test your math skills! Below is a test for “direct marketing math” and shows the simplest way to measure the success rate for different media sources. Can you fill in the blanks? The first TEN people to send the correct answers to me ( will get one of our books for free!
Ten Golden Rules The Internet is not TV. It's a different model

  1. Create a UVP

This stands for Unique Value Proposition. The majority of people (we’re talking 97-98 percent) will never interact with your website—they may visit, but will leave before filling out a form, buying something, or making any effort to interact. For the majority of websites, 2-3 percent is a really good conversion rate—However, you can get 7-15 percent conversion rates if create a UVP. This is something compelling that gets users to interact: think a mortgage rate calculator, a free diet profile for The Biggest Loser Online Diet Club, or a download link for a PDF e-book.

  1. If you build it, they won’t just come

Let’s take as our example here. Back in 2000, they built a fancy website that looked great, but had no traffic. Why? They weren’t implementing any strategies for driving traffic. Creating something pretty isn’t enough: you have to push, pull and drive people to your website.

  1. Subscription models survive

Subscription services are hot right now, just like in 2003 when Jay wrote the ten golden rules. I, myself, recently used one when I bought my mom a Birchbox for Mother’s Day. The large audience for these types of services proves how powerful subscription services are, and you should use that same method for your own business marketing. Setting up an e-newsletter is your first step. In our case, we’ve seen newsletters lead to sales, speaking opportunities and important connections. The second step is developing a paid subscription service.
Ten Golden Rules - Subscription models is not dead

  1. Remember the 4 P’s

Product, Place, Price and Promotion. Now repeat that with me: Product, Place, Price and Promotion. Got that? These four tools will keep your business model strong. I’ll sum them up quickly here.
Product: Think of your website like a product manager thinks of his product line and assign different areas of your website to different specialty areas. You always need to update the content, so the blog should always be updated. Your customer service should be responsible for replying to social media and inquiries on your website, and you should be constantly marketing and testing new offers and functions.
Place: You’ve heard the retial mantra location, location, location. Even for the internet, this rings true, but in this case, it’s less about a physical place and more about your ranking on google search and maps. Focus on map listings and review sites to increase your place ranking.
Price: Online pricing is usually lower than offline pricing, so use that extra cash to get aggressive: your consumers will shop around for the best deal.
Promotion: You’ll hear me say this a lot (you’ve already heard it in rule #1), but you need to always be testing. Constantly change and tweak things to stay interesting and relevant and improve your traffic.

  1. Trust is Golden

Have you ever gone to a website and thought to yourself “I would never give them my information?” If so, you understand how important it is for your consumers to trust you. Online, trust is first formed by appearance: create a clean, professional website, have your logos verified, post testimonials, and a link to your privacy policy. Keep this in mind when sending emails too: you don’t want your emails marked as spam so implement opt-ins and double opt-ins when sending e-newsletters and email updates.
Ten Golden Rules - Trust is Golden

  1. Use the right tactic

Again, you’ll need to test the right tactic for you (do you get how important testing is yet?). But to start, try using paid search in Google and Facebook, implement e-newsletters, create banners, and build relationships through social media marketing.

  1. The best never rest

Again: test, test, test! Just because something works one time, doesn’t mean it always will. Always be trying new things, improving on things that work, and fixing things that don’t. As long as you continue to grow, your company will too.
If you need a little reminder, post this on your fridge or computer screen: “The best never rest. Test. Test. Test”
Ten Golden Rules - The Best never Rest

  1. Lead the trends

Online marketing moves fast—you typically have about 6-12 months before the strategy turns from new and exciting, to something everyone is using. Gain a competitive advantage by staying on top of the trends. Today, we’re using Chatbots and new Linkedin advertising platforms to keep our clients on top of the game. Don’t know what these things are yet? Check out our other articles on Chatbots and Linkedin advertising to learn more. **insert links**
So, there you have it. The ten golden rules of online marketing are called “golden” for a reason. Implement these in your day-to-day marketing practices and you’ll find success—just take it from us. To see the full Ten Golden Rules, visit our website to download the e-book.
And don’t forget to send me your answers for Rule #2! There’s a book coming your way…
To learn more about online marketing or the ten golden rules, or to book our CEO Jay Berkowitz for a speaking arrangement, contact Ten Golden Rules at (561) 620-9121 or email us at