So often, businesses launch into a shotgun approach to their online marketing or digital media strategy. Many are hoping that a stray post will capture a customer. Sometimes this works, but it is very inefficient, confuses the brand message, and costs time and money.
Businesses must create and execute an effective digital marketing strategy to find success in this digital age. Meaning, we must understand our real value proposition and tell people about it ONLINE!
The info below is a mental checklist intended to provoke thoughts about the keys to creating an effective digital marketing strategy for your business.
The Big Ideas:
Make use of responsive web design. We never get a second chance at a first impression.
US mobile devices now account for over 50% of online surfing Mobile-Only-Internet-Users-Now-Exceeds-Desktop. If a site not optimized for mobile will lose high amounts of targeted users, and it makes the business look unprofessional. Sending someone to an old website is like asking someone to follow your MySpace page. FAIL!!!
- Key takeaway: Invest in a mobile responsive web design now. Depending on the size of your current site it shouldn’t cost more than $5000. If you take advantage of responsive web design, your site will be available both for mobile and PC users.
Search engine promotion. It will be a challenge to sell products and services online if a site is not found in search engines like Google.com, Yahoo.com, and Bing.com.
Amazon.com is increasingly becoming another favorite search engine for products. Search engine promotion is considered to be one of the most effective online advertising techniques. Your primary objective is to get your site on top of search engines for the most profitable keyword phrases. There are two main ways to attract targeted users to a website from search engines. These are search engine optimization and Pay per Click (PPC) advertising.
Organic search engine optimization provides effective and permanent results. Moz.com delivers a 101 education here: SEO 101 from MOZ.com Very often once you achieve top search engine rankings, your site will receive high amounts of traffic for FREE.
- Key takeaway: Make sure your site is optimized. Then spend time and energy promoting your business online and online activity on our website. It is that important. (Don’t do any of this until the site is mobile ready)
Social media promotion. Social media advertising will continue to be popular this new year.
From Facebook, Google +, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest, the small business owner can reach specific and targeted prospects from anywhere. More importantly, it gives the consumer the ability to connect and advocate for your business. The company that delivers on its brand promise can brag about it and create social media advocates.
Social media can become the most powerful source of traffic to your electronic storefront if used correctly. It is a powerful brand builder and allows businesses to communicate with clients in real time.
- Key take away: Make sure your social media is planned and is visually connected. Deliver your promise and be proud.
Blogging. Blogging can help you create quality backlinks for your site and will help you espouse your expertise in your industry.
Blogging will also help you establish good relationships with your customers and build a personal brand. The idea behind blogging is to give away your knowledge about your industry for free. Be an expert, and your brand credibility will grow. It is easier than you think to get started, and it helps to have a blog page on a (mobile responsive) website.
- Key takeaway: Give, Give, Give, Give then Ask.
Email marketing. Email is not dead.
Have you ever been thinking about a vacation and while going through your email you notice a great holiday deal? Those emails have been there all along, but you weren’t looking. Email marketing is a technique that can help you increase reach for your business quickly. It is effective. Start creating a database of emails. Then find an excellent email marketing tool like Mailchimp.com or ConstantContact.com and Fire away!
- Key takeaway: Your email list is GOLD protect it and don’t spam your friends.
Discount coupons and promotional codes. You will manage to increase sales of your business in several times if you provide your clients with discounts.
The information about promotional codes and discounts will quickly spread on the internet. So, you will manage to attract a lot of potential clients to your business.
- Key takeaway: Be careful with this method. Discounting to often or too much can destroy brand equity through price.
Deliver the Brand Promise. Do what you say you will do every time.
Today it takes much more than pure advertising to be wildly successful. We must connect with our customers, listen to them and do what we say we are going to do. We must be committed to the delivery of the brand promise. If we do, customers will start to recommend your product or services to others.
Finally, know your ideal customer.
- Who are potential customers of our online business?
- Are our client’s men or women?
- What products do our customers prefer to purchase?
- What are the interests of our clients?
- What is the age group of our targeted audience?
- In what area do our customers live?
Creating the perfect digital marketing strategy takes time, but we owe it to our customers to deliver our brand promise every day.
Take action now. The world is coming after your market share, and our competition is doing it online.
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