Out with the old and in with the new. This is the mantra of digital marketing, the new medium of advertisement that works everyday towards running traditional marketing obsolete. It’s generally a rule of thumb now that if your business isn’t online, you’re out of the competition. What’s incredible about this new form of marketing, however, is that it levels the playing field. The competition is no longer only exclusive to those with the deepest pockets.
Today, no matter what size of business, no matter what they’re worth or funds they have allocated to their marketing campaigns, everyone has a shot. With the right techniques, clever and authentic content, and dynamic strategy, a ‘nobody’ company can become popular overnight. Digital marketing has seen this phenomenon occur time and time again, from small businesses to sole proprietors. For the first time in history, with enough diligence companies can take marketing into their own hands with the opportunity to be wildly successful.
If you’ve landed here it’s safe to assume that you’re looking for some pro tips on how to improve your online marketing strategy. If that’s the case, you’re probably spearheading your own campaign, as this would be an agency’s problem if you’ve hired them. If you’re struggling to make an impact, worry not! There are plenty of ways to spruce up that strategy, gain more traffic, and eventually improve your brand.
Hire A Digital Marketing Agency
We’re quite aware that this might be counterintuitive if you’re trying to save your pennies. However, in this day and age there are plenty of great digital marketing agencies out there that’ll work with your budget and increase your ROI. Don’t rule them out until you request a few quotes. From SEO (search engine optimization), content marketing services, online advertising like Google’s pay-per-click platform, email marketing, to infiltrating social media networks, these companies do it all.
Everything you try and do they can probably do better, save perhaps for creating your own content (particularly if you’re a creative and have a distinct vision for your company). They’re professionals with heavy hitting infrastructure that will give your brand far more reach than you have access to. We’re aware that when it comes to doing it on your own the advice ‘hire professionals’ is a bit of a paradox, but with the competitive nature of the marketplace it’s sound advice. Especially if it’s in your budget.
Don’t Write Lousy Copy
The marketplace is oversaturated with bad copy. Before the competition scaled, poorly written content filled with keywords was both economic and rewarding. That’s no longer the case. Now, to set yourself apart from your competitors your content needs to be unique, dynamic, well-written, and still fluid with the big search engine’s algorithms. Do some research on what sets aside ‘good’ copy from ‘bad’ copy and implement that knowledge into your content.
There was a time when readable was the standard. Now it needs to be informative, compelling, and engaging. If writing isn’t your forte then we suggest finding someone you can pay that has the chops for it. Content is the heart of the industry. Outside of quality-driven content, be sure to keep your stream consistent. You should be posting material weekly and monitoring—by use of marketing metrics—their overall success. Be sure to link all of your content together and thread them throughout your social media presence.
Headlines, Headlines, Headlines
If you’ve done any research on marketing then you should have an idea of how important headlines are in this world. They’re the heart, hook, and promise of whatever you’re promoting at once. Be it email, article H1s (your first headline), blog spots, videos, pictures, and any other content you’re releasing, they’re the first impression that can make or break this potential customer.
You have but a second or two to gain someone’s interest and often it’s directly influenced by your headline. Generalizing here: it’s often best to use a headline that illustrates a problem and promises a solution in the same instance. You want them to be engaging but not misleading, alluring but not spam-like, showcasing a ‘product’ but not obvious sales click-bait. These are your pickup lines, elevator pitches, and your first impression in a room. Make sure you dedicate ample time to them.
Content Marketing Metrics Are Life
We touched on this when we spoke of copy, but now it’s paramount that we expand upon it. One of the reasons that digital marketing is leaps and bounds above traditional marketing—outside of its vastness—is the ability to quantify success. Content marketing metrics allow you to do what we never could before: understand exactly how you’re content is landing and how potential customers interact with it.
You now have the ability to track how many times people land on your website, conversion rates, specific page views, exit pages, the territories of your users, social media shares and engagement (down to what pieces of content are most liked, shared, and commented upon), new versus returning customers, average time spent on the website, bounce rate, and more. Don’t be lazy here. The data is accessible and it will help you discern between your good and bad content, where your audience is heaviest, and most importantly it’ll outline the changes you need to make in your strategy.
Interact With Your Audience
It’s tragic how many companies keep their veil on while marketing their brand. Today, it’s imperative that—especially in the initial phase of your campaign—you interact with your audience. From contests, comments, personalized outreach, commenting on social media, customer service, and just about any facet of digital marketing that creates an outlet for you to communicate directly with your audience, you need to engage.
If a user is contemplating committing or investing in your brand, that means they’re attempting to familiarize with you. Create dialogues. Be vocal. Personalized emails and product recommendations are a fantastic way to remove the ‘mass marketing perception.’ Make sure your welcome page can easily guide a customer to come in contact with you and be sure that you’re keeping a hawk eye on your email.
Isn’t it an incredibly rewarding feeling when you reach out to a company and they respond instantly? Doesn’t that always create more credibility in your eyes?
If You Can, Make Videos
Across the board people love videos. Now that we do most of our streaming on mobile devices, scrolling through social media and watching videos are commonplace for everyone. Some of the most successful online marketing strategies boiled down to one factor; video content. Various companies have launched campaigns that feature creative, humorous, and dynamic video content that spread like wildfire.
Show off your product, showcase your brand, and be engaging. Or don’t. Plenty of companies have also led with content that made a promise about who they are as a team rather than a sales pitch. Their video content was the authenticity that brought users to commit to their brand, which eventually led to their own scaling. Remember that YouTube is also the second largest search engine behind Google.
Make Sure Your Website And Content Is Fluid On Mobile Devices
As stated previously, mobile devices are the most common hardware used for internet scrolling. Problem is: not all websites translate well. Have you ever landed on a website on your mobile device that was just, well, wacky? Buttons seem out of order, it’s disproportionate, and the functionality is dismal.
Being that we’re used to navigating the internet on our smartphones, when we come across a website not optimized for that feat we immediately discredit the company in question. If the norm now is for websites to work on both mobile devices and desktops, then what does it say about your company when the coding seems entirely absent? How fast does your website load on a phone? Can you navigate it properly? How does the text scale? These are all incredibly important questions that you need to assess when it comes to your online marketing strategy. They say ‘mobile-first’ should be the mantra of every new company stepping into digital marketing.
Tie It All Together, The Beauty Of A Consistent Narrative
It’s said that 70% of content posted on the internet has no clear-cut purpose to it. In other words, companies spam content in hopes of turning an audience’s eye without actually evaluating their target goals for each piece of content. While this may create short-term success, as time rolls on the credibility and identity of your brand will wane.
Tying together all of your content into one thematic narrative is a sure way to establish your brand as its own unique endeavour. What sort of company are you? What do you believe in? What are you selling exactly? How is your audience going to relate or believe in you? Most importantly: what message can you string through your entire marketing campaign that aligns with your brand and promotes your product simultaneously?
The age of digital marketing is now and it’s an exciting one. Advertisement has always been a creative field with luck and timing being vital facets of its entirety. Today, the time to be creative, unique in approach, and to think outside the box is evermore pressing. Fortunately, a traditional discipline that transcended across the plane is that there’s no definitive path to marketing success.
As the marketplace continues to evolve, we’re seeing in influx in new methodologies that have proven to be successful. This means the blank canvas is before you, a paintbrush is in your hand, and you can paint your own picture. As corny as this sounds, most of all, it’s an imperative that you’re honest. Don’t fall for the gimmicks set before you by other companies and be unapologetically yourself (your brand).