Internet marketing tools are essential if you are going to compete in the ultra-competitive online business world. This is a message that you will hear often. Much of online marketing, if we are honest, is tedious, repetitive and mind-numbing. If you have spent several hours submitting to directories, entering the same information, and filling in CAPTCHA after CAPTCHA, you will know what I mean. It isn’t just directories. There are articles to write and submit, blog posts, commenting in forums, creating and uploading videos. You then need to capitalize on this through social bookmarking.

The purpose of much of this internet marketing activity – backlinks. Backlinks are a major factor in determining search engine ranking. More on this in a moment.

First though, let’s not forget the social media and a whole load of extra work involving Facebook marketing, Twittering and LinkingIN.

For each and every one of these aspects of online marketing there is a guru telling you that if you concentrate on this area you can really be successful. You will read about others who have ten times as many blogs as you or write 50 articles a day. It is easy to become overwhelmed and even to despair that, faced with this type of competition, you can ever be successful.

(Don’t worry, there is hope! Let me complete my gloomy description first.)

If you are involved in promoting your business on the internet you can be easy prey for anyone offering a break from the endless monotony and work overload. As you begin to learn more about internet marketing you hear about these wonderful internet marketing tools that will transform your life. Tools that will make your internet marketing the acme of efficiency. Software that will lift you above the toiling masses and give you one-click, automated revenue streams.

These internet marketing tools will provide your content for you, submit it and deposit large sums into your PayPal account whilst you sip your martini and watch the sun rise. At least that is the theory.

Internet Marketing Tools – behind the hype
The truth is that there is a big confusion between being efficient and being effective. Efficiency is doing something well with the minimum of effort. This is certainly important. But not as important as doing the right things. To paraphrase Peter Drucker, there is nothing so stupid as doing well that which should not be done at all.

Back to backlinks. The efficient approach, using internet marketing tools, emphasises the speed and automation of backlink-building. Quantity is the goal. The effective approach on the other hand emphasises quality. The only backlink worth having is one that counts. And the fact is that the vast majority of backlinks created through internet marketing tools just don’t count as far as Google is concerned.

Internet Marketing Tools – quality counts
A link will only score with Google if it is from a site that is itself regarded as quality. A great example of this is EzineArticles. Articles from EzineArticles will frequently appear on the first page of Google. The reason is that Google knows that EzineArticles have human moderators and that actual people browse the site and use it as a resource.

Google does not accord the same status to the thousands of other sites where there is no review and which accept any article. It is clear that most of the articles are simply there to provide a backlink – why else would you submit an article to a directory that no human is ever likely to view. So a link from such a site is worthless. The fact that your software can submit to this site in twenty seconds is irrelevant.

It may be argued that if it is automated does it really matter. Perhaps one or two of these sites are looked on kindly by Google so you lose nothing. It is very easy to fall into this trap. The reality is that these internet marketing tools still require your time for set up. They will then eat your time as you respond to the captcha requests and the huge number of sites that simply fail (either because they no longer exist or because the site changes its login approach to avoid spamming from internet marketing tools!).

In fact, the quest for efficiency and the one-click solution can waste valuable time that you could have utilised in being effective. Doing the right things is more important than doing things quickly.