Growing your business means increasing your customer base. How do you go about this? In a world of Facebook, Google, and smartphones, your marketing strategy needs to have a significant online presence. You need to be visible, confident in your marketing strategy and able to send the right message to your target audience. A well honed and nuanced marketing strategy is not plucked out of thin air; it takes effort, hours of research and hundreds of cups of strong coffee before it even reaches the implementation stage. With your industry rivals taking the plunge and refining their online marketing plans, it’s vital that you don’t get left behind. A comprehensive digital marketing campaign can result in increased revenue for your business. So how do you go about achieving this and what are the mistakes to avoid?
AudienceYou need to know your customer base inside out and back to front. With ever increasing personalized content on the Internet through social media channels like Facebook and Twitter, it’s vital that you understand the needs and wants of your customer. The ‘hard sell’ is very much a concept of the past. Consumers are more savvy than ever before and need to feel inspired. It’s up to you to put forward your product or service in an aspirational way through the creation of high-quality content marketing. Get the customer to buy into your product so that they can visualize what it can do for them and how it can make their life easier.
Produce blog posts for your website that are informative yet chatty. Speak to your customer at their level and make sure you are posting at least once a week. They don’t want to be reading a sales pitch. Talk about how your product or service can solve a problem or save time, not how your customer can buy one and get one free. Develop a personality in your company’s blog and in your emails to customers so that when they see another one of your newsletter’s at the top of their inbox, they open it and read it with anticipation rather than move it straight to the bin.
Be VisibleYou could have the most incredible product or deliver the most exceptional service but if you have no online presence, how are you going to demonstrate this to people? Even if you have an aesthetically pleasing website, you still need it to be seen rather than lost in the ether of the Internet. Visibility is vital. By securing the help of a search engine optimization expert, you can begin to see your website rise through the ranks of the Google search pages. Having a strong presence online means that you can expand your customer base and see an increase in sales. By outsourcing this service, you are not getting bogged down in an aspect of marketing that you don’t fully understand and freeing up your time to work on the day to day running of your business.
Social MediaThe emergence of social media over the past few years, particularly amongst the younger demographic is leading to a shift in online marketing. With Twitter and Facebook becoming our regular online haunts, it’s vital that you secure an online presence on the same platforms. You can create a Facebook page for your business as well as an official Twitter feed. This will allow you to communicate with your loyal customer base in a more personal way. You can inform them of promotional offers and new product ranges without having to launch into a hard sell. Social media will continue to expand its marketing potential, and it’s vital that you tag along for the ride.
Flooding The Internet With ContentDon’t be under the false impression that you need to be on Facebook and Twitter posting something every five minutes. The quality of the content will slip, and customers do not appreciate their feeds becoming flooded with one contributor’s posts. Make sure the content that you put onto the Internet, whether this is on a social media channel or your company’s website, is relevant, high quality and doesn’t utilize any hard sell techniques. You need content that is compelling for the customer to read so ensure that the images you use are engaging, meaningful and help tell the story of your content. It goes without saying that your posts need to use correct grammar and spelling. It is always good practice to get someone in the office to proofread everything before it goes out to protect against sloppy mistakes that could make your company look like it lacks professionalism.
Have A PlanBefore launching any sort of marketing campaign, digital or otherwise, it’s important that you have a plan that is shared with your staff team. The shared business vision should encompass your business plan, financial forecasting, and your marketing strategy. For a marketing strategy to have its desired impact, it is important that your employees understand and share your vision. You will need to consider what your long term goals are. Do you want to see sales increase by 25%? How are you going to measure whether this came as a result of your online marketing strategy or elsewhere? Create a simple timetable to go alongside your in depth marketing strategy to give you an idea of when you want to see marketing targets met. This way, you can constantly adapt. If targets are met or exceeded, consider what went well. If your marketing strategy didn't have the desired results, don’t continue in a similar vein but change and implement something new.
Marketing has become a more complex web of understanding customer needs and having the capability to provide the content to meet this demand. If you formulate your online marketing strategy correctly utilizing SEO, social media, and high-quality content alongside an effective business plan, you could see your company become a market leader in your industry.