How do I make my digital marketing effective?

I talked recently about marketing in the current climate, the recent social media Digital Marketingand online search trends as well as some suggestions for your marketing in a video on our Facebook page.

Adding to the video, here are 3 action points you could and should be looking at to make your marketing more effective:

  1. They will help you understand exactly how this time is impacting on them and may well give you an insight into what you should be talking to similar prospects about. Become a problem solver!
  2. If your customer wants to press pause, make sure they have a reason not too and try and put in a mechanism that plans them taking things further with you. There should be a benefit for them that isn’t just cheaper pricing.
  3. Create a sales message that is actually engaging. So much scrolling and page turning is done these days (or “scan reading”) making your message very easy to skip past. Make people stop and look!

In a digital era, where almost everyone is digitally enabled, you want to ride with the wave and not against it. Most businesses have come to realise the power that digital marketing holds and they have at least put their toes in the water. Digital marketing is all about boosting your footprint and then maintaining that profile and position while you grow your brand.

A digital marketing strategy allows businesses to have direction; it allows organisations to know their market share, and hopefully gain a competitive edge. Getting the plan of attack right is important and that why you should work with an expert who has proven experience in marketing.

Why pay for a marketing agency?

A digital marketing agency really should have a number of potential marketing plans based on the budget and the objectives of its clients. Sit down (or Zoom!) with a marketing expert, discuss objectives which are realistic, play to strengths and invest for the future. It isn’t a coincidence that the biggest spenders are the most successful companies!

For an SME, it is likely that your marketing budget will be small, but make sure you have one. Look at the potential cost per lead and conversion and work out what sort of budget you can afford.

Digital marketing can give countless options and usually is a cost friendly and result-oriented route to market.

 

What is an online marketing strategy for my small business? And why do I need one?

The key to this question really lies in developing a firm understanding of the fundamentals of marketing.  Understanding the cogs that make the business turn, that generate revenue, attract and retain customers really is what marketing is all about.

There are so many platforms available where companies can market themselves and the internet simply adds more options into the mix, but the underlying principles remain the same. If you understand what makes your business tick and what your “offer” is, yo u already have a better  understanding of marketing.Small Business Marketing StrategyWhere many business owners fall down is that they understand their business well enough (their “features”), but fail to get across the benefits of working with them. Similarly, environments change as do the players within them and SMEs need to stay in touch with changes and adapt with them.

In addition, whilst most business owners recognise the internet is a force to be reckoned with, they fail to embrace the true opportunities that could help to secure the future of their business. In my experience, this new era means a constantly changing environment with factors that need first to be understood and then utilised within your marketing mix.

As an example, before the internet, small service businesses would rely heavily on directory listings in printed media such as the Yellow Pages or Thomson Local to be found locally by their potential customers. You need an electrician so you grab the massive yellow book and turn to E for electrician. These days, Google search has virtually replaced these doorstop directories as we all turn to our phones or laptops to “Google it” instead.

This is where adapting to the changing environment really comes in, by optimising your company’s Google My Business listing it can appear when customers in your area search for the services you offer, simple.

As every business is unique there is no ‘one size fits all’; you must understand and utilise the right mix of ingredients for your business, whether it is all or a combination of the marketing tools available on and offline.

Discuss the job in hand and then play which tools to use to get the job done, that’s a marketing strategy, simple!

The methods are changing rapidly, and your time is precious. So if it makes sense to you why not leverage the knowledge and expertise of a trusted consultant? Find someone with their ear to the ground who can advise you of the current landscape.

Long-term authority is the name of the game!

Once launched, a new website is unlikely to see much SEO traffic to start with, so Bath Marketing Consultancy’s suggestion is to focus on making long-term plans to get your website onto the radars that you want to be on. I have identified the need for your website to build “trust” and to ensure that your expectations of organic dominance be realistic, so below is an idea about the long term strategies you could consider.


I know I am in charge

One great strategy is to become an authority in some niche area. If you do this, you will earn links when other webmasters will need to link to credible sources and they will quite possibly link to you. When search engines see many consistent, new (quality) links into a website, the search engines begin to think that this site has authority and having authority is one of the biggest single determining factors in the rankings of pages within search results.


Unfortunately, if you are like a lot of websites, you don’t and won’t have real authority so it is up to you to make this into a non-problem. It is possible to mimic authority by providing a widget or an embed tag that lives on other sites. Since every time someone uses your widget that is hosted on your site, it also creates a link to your site, over time this will create an appearance of authority when many sites link to you just by using your widget.

However, a widget is not an easy thing to do so another way is to position your site as an expert in its field thus encouraging sites to link to you for reference purposes. For example, I have a client who operates in a very niche market and I suggested he get in touch with other (more established) site owners within his sector asking them to link to his site as the content he had written would support their site. In addition, I encouraged him to leave comments wherever possible on relevant Blogs and/or sites demonstrating his credibility within the sector. 


Sure enough, this process resulted in his website becoming more and more credible in its field and hence its position within Google has started to increase.


My next post will be on creating content for your website…..



Twitter Facts for Internet Marketers

I recently came across a very interesting article by By Anna Johnson about Twitter based on Twitter’s recent 2010 developer conference, Chirp, the company’s co-founders Evan Williams and Biz Stone revealed some intriguing statistics about the company.

Here are some facts and figures of interest to Internet marketers:

Twitter has 105,779,710 (just under 106 million) users
Twitter is growing by 300,000 users per day
Twitter gets 180 million unique visitors per day
75 percent of Twitter’s traffic is outside Twitter.com i.e. one out of four Twitter users accesses Twitter via a third party like Tweet Deck
Twitter users post 55 million tweets per day
T
witter’s search engine gets 600 million search queries per day and are expected to rise to 1 billion per day by May 2010

If anyone is ever in doubt about the use of Twitter within online marketing, I think these should dispell any negative myths!

Blogs & how to use one

Do you blog? As you probably know, a blog is an online site in diary form. The most typical blog is one that has articles that are posted periodically with the newest appearing at the top of the page; above the previous one. There are also static pages like the about us or profile pages that provide information about the site owner. A blog can also link to other blogs and/or websites, display a calendar of events & many other features. In fact, blogs are so versatile that they sometime replace actual websites.

There are millions of blogs out there in numerous formats and maintaining a blog requires considerable work and effort. However, if the content is relevant and interesting to read, blogs can rapidly become new business tools as well as a great PR tool for the owner.

I use my blog as a way of demonstrating my market (or marketing!) knowledge; a sort of reputation management tool that I hope helps my readers. I have installed analytics to my blog so I know where readers come from and how long they spend on the blog. I have also linked up both my blogs for link building purposes.

However you use your blog, here are some functions that it can perform:

1.keep customers up to date with your latest offerings
2.help establish a dialogue with customers, especially if you allow customers to leave comments
3.provide a platform for you to inform people of developments within your business – although a “news” section on your website can also perform this function
4.raise your profile as an expert in your field
5.list other sites with which you are associated – Twitter, Linkedin etc
6.it can even bring in revenue by allowing adverts to appear on it or by asking people to subscribe to it

As you have probably gathered, I love blogs, but don’t start one unless you can maintain it. If need be, enlist the help of someone who can help you write content and someone to help you optimise and link it. Every little helps!!