No two businesses are alike, so don’t feel obligated to squeeze into a one-size-fits-all, digital marketing strategy. However, there are pillars on the path to digital marketing success, so know them and talk about them with your digital marketing specialist.
Mobile Marketing: Does your website render on both your desktop and your phone? Have you explored customer capture possibilities through geo fencing, apps, event notifications, loyalty programs, customer referrals, and redeemable deals? Think about how you use your phone. Your customers are doing the same. The technology in this area is growing and it’s a broad space to capture customers at their final purchase points.
Email Marketing: Chances are you’re engaged in some form of email marketing. Are there better tools out there for you to consider today? Do you have the staff you need to continuously write the content and headlines that fuel email? If you haven’t tapped into this channel, now might be a good time. Maybe you’ve burned out your lists. It could be time to focus your email resources into other areas.
Content Marketing: What are the questions that your customers keep asking you? Give them the answers through custom content marketing. Your writing team could be providing focused white papers, promotional e-books, precise website content, enticing product descriptions, or targeted blog posts. Don’t forget about press releases and strategic amplification of content!
Social Media Marketing: Some of your customers like Twitter. Others prefer Facebook. Meet your prospects and return buyers where they like to connect. Don’t make the mistake of putting an untrained newbie on this job. Interacting with customers and developing your brand’s voice should be in the hands of a social media team that understands your brand and each channel- YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram, G+, Twitter, Facebook, Periscope, Pinterest, Tumblr, Udemy, and others. There are free and promoted forms of amplification through social media, as well as methods for developing followers that can’t be explained in a day. An excellent social media presence takes time.
Marketing Automation: There are many tools that can help to nurture leads that create sales. These tools keep evolving, too. From Sharp Spring, Hub Spot, Pardot, Marketo, or Oracle Eloqua either you or your agency will want to use tools that track hard data to guide your daily digital marketing strategy.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO): From meta titles, h-tags, keyword research, site speed, https, navigational structure, content, and many other factors, SEO capitalizes on best web practices. Refresh your content on a regular basis and check your webmaster tools accounts to keep a close eye on how your brand progresses. If you get in the habit of engaging with several of these pillars to digital marketing success, your SEO will naturally improve. The key to SEO is providing content your customers value.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM)/ Pay Per Click (PPC): Many businesses start their online marketing efforts with simple Adwords campaigns. Explore display advertising, re-targeting, and social media’s promoted and paid efforts. You’ll have to set aside budgets for your campaigns, but you’ll soon learn your customers’s digital triggers over time. Do co-optimize your paid and SEO efforts.
Analytics: Both Google and Bing provide free tools that can help you track your marketing efforts. Get into your numbers through Analytics to learn more about your customers and efficient uses of your dollars.
A complete digital marketing strategy can be overwhelming, but with the help of agency partners, it doesn’t have to be. Reach out to those of us in the digital marketing space. Read our blogs, watch our videos, or just hire us to do it all for you. You don’t necessarily need each pillar to be successful, but you ought to know them.
Additionally, your overall marketing strategy might need to include newspaper, catalog, merchandising, radio, television, billboard, and other non-digital avenues to reach prospects and customers.
How much does digital marketing cost? Your investment to acquire a digital plan, talent, and tools will vary. If you’re a small business owner, you’ll most likely start in the range of hundreds to thousands of dollars per month. If you’re an executive for a mid-size to large business with gazillions of web pages and marketing levers, you know that the labor and expertise needed to pull off your needs will annually cost hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars or more.
Choosing a Company to Execute Your Digital Marketing Strategy
When making your choice about which agency to use, ask your project coordinator how much experience the actual people doing the work possess. There is a difference between the project coordinator who’s trained to make you feel like a million bucks and the person in the background actually doing the work. Don’t overlook smaller agencies because bigger ones impresses you with long proposals and large teams. While these are feel good indicators, your company’s digital success comes down to healthy communication between you and your agency and the knowledge and diligence of the staff working your account on a daily basis.
Results for Your Marketing Spend
Don’t forget to have realistic expectations, too. If you paid $3 per product description, don’t expect 1000-word, researched essays of perfection. You get what you pay for with digital marketing and, as with most aspects of business, acquiring success isn’t cheap. If you do a good job covering the above pillars, you will see results.
There are many ways to piece together a digital strategy. Reach out to professional marketers to craft plans of action for your company or just do it yourself and hire the help you need to execute your digital strategy. Keep re-evaluating. What you did two years ago might not be the best plan looking forward into next year and five years down the road.