What is information marketing? Have you ever bought a how-to book or a self-help book? Then you've bought information. Ever paid for the right to access a website? Again, you've paid for information. Information marketing is the business of marketing, promoting, and selling information.
What is the information economy? Look around you. On the train the other day, I saw people sending and receiving email, and surfing websites, from their phones. I saw a man writing a report on a laptop. Two people talking about a commercial they saw online. That's the information economy. More and more people are buying, selling, and consuming information than ever before. To a large degree, this has been made possible by the internet.
So what is information marketing for the information economy? Quite simply, it's about taking full advantage of the infrastructure of the information economy (electronic communication, the web, portable devices, and so forth) in conducting the business of information marketing. Another, simpler, way of putting this is, it's using the web to sell information.
Here are just a few examples of how people and companies are already doing this: Look at Amazon. This company sells mostly books and music (information), and it sells these things entirely online. Have you heard of Clickbank? Clickbank is a web based business that is the world's largest marketplace for downloadable digital products. Someone, somewhere in the world, buys a digital product at Clickbank every 3 seconds. Clickbank has paid out more than a billion dollars to its vendors.
One big difference between Amazon and Clickbank is that most of Amazon's sales are of physical products (in Amazon's case, physical information products), like books and cds, while Clickbank sells only downloadable digital products like e-books and software. Because there is no cost to make a copy of a digital product, the profit margin on digital products is much higher than that for physical products. Digital information product marketing is one of the most profitable business models of the new economy.
How can you get a piece of the online information marketing business? What kind of skills, programs, and strategies does it take to succeed at information marketing in this new economy? Is this something that only big businesses like Amazon and Clickbank can do, or is it a business that can be done on a smaller scale for the individual entrepreneur?
The great news is that the information infrastructure has made it possible for small businesses and individuals to create their own online information marketing businesses with very low startup costs and, potentially, very high returns. All you need a computer, a connection to the internet, and an idea. It helps if you also know a few things about promotion strategies, and it really help if you know something about search engine optimization, but these are things you can learn from online tutorials.
If you want to start your own online information marketing business and get yourself a piece of this multibillion dollar pie, where should you start. One way is to browse the Clickbank Marketplace and look for information products that teach how to start an online information marketing business. Easy IM Profits, a new product scheduled for release in early 2010, is one of the most complete and up to date products teaching online information products, but there are many other such products available on Clickbank. You could be running your own online information marketing business by this time next year!