6 Pieces of Advice From Digital Marketing Experts
During the last 15 years, marketing has evolved from consumers primarily relying on their desktops for information on the web to utilizing their smartphones, laptops, tablets, and other devices to stay connected to the outside world. The evolution of hand-held devices means Digital Marketing has become a sizeable player.
Today, even a local mom-and-pop cupcake shop needs digital marketing to flourish and expand their customer base. Therefore, no matter the size of your operation — whether it has one employee or is a national corporate entity with thousands of employees — digital marketing needs to be a part of your marketing strategy.
The difficult part is creating and executing a digital marketing strategy that is influential enough to pay off. One of the best tasks you can do to start the process is to follow the advice of successful digital marketing experts and implement their tried-and-true strategies.
In today’s post, we have gathered a few helpful points from various social media and digital marketing experts and compiled them to help you get started on your journey. By reviewing these points and implementing them into your marketing strategy, you can continue to grow your business, increase visibility, and reap the benefits of a higher sales volume over time.
Know Your Customer
On the surface, this seems like such a simple — even cliché — piece of advice. And although knowing your customer is marketing 101, it’s a complex process that yields great results only when identified correctly. It’s not enough to have a demographic profile of your customers. For example, you could say your product or service is designed primarily for women between the ages of 30-45 who come from middle-class homes in suburban, middle-America regions. This is somewhat specific, but it still doesn’t paint the full picture of who your customer is at a more personal level.
An effective exercise is to create a detailed profile that describes your ideal customer. Make it personal by giving her a name like Janet. Create a profile about Janet’s lifestyle, e.g., what she does for a living, the TV shows she likes to watch, what she likes to eat, what her hobbies are … spare no detail.
This exercise will help you better assess precisely the type of customer you will primarily target. The more specific you get, the better aim you will have when targeting your customer, and thus you will have a stronger idea of how to reach them. Use a rifle, not a shotgun.
Keep Your Branding and Design Consistent, Yet Flexible Enough to Evolve
To build a strong, ubiquitous brand that becomes a fixture in your market, you must maintain a certain degree of consistency. This point is especially important for new startups and small companies that are in their early stages of existence. Across all platforms — including social media, your website, and email newsletters — the branding, design, and logo should all be the same.
The profile picture you use on Facebook should be the same as the profile picture you use on Twitter, Instagram, and other social media platforms. The font and design of your graphics should look the same on your website and email newsletters.
However, as you continue to grow and time passes, your brand will require updates. Just look at the Coca-Cola logo from twenty years ago. Is it the same as it is today? No. Why? Because all brands of all sizes are required to modify some things to stay relevant with the times.
If branding is a totally foreign concept to you, seriously consider investing in a branding expert and a talented graphic designer who can create a powerful, memorable image for your digital marketing campaign.
Don’t Just Write About Your Products and Services
Content for your website is important. But don’t just use writing as a way to describe your products or services. Content marketing is an integral part of digital marketing. From website copy to blog posts to product descriptions to SEO, you should undoubtedly be using the written word as part of your marketing strategy.
However, writing about your products or services on its own is not enough. For example, let’s say you own an e-commerce site that sells kitchen appliances. It’s not enough to merely write about their features and benefits and why your target audience should buy them. Instead, consider coming up with a blog series that covers delicious recipes and the kitchen appliances needed to create them. In this series, you are offering your target audience value other than just the kitchen appliances, yet still showing the utility of them. This further reinforces the usefulness of your products and will more strongly encourage your potential customers to buy them.
The same could be said for a travel agency. It’s just as important to have strong written content for service-based businesses as it is for product-based services. Instead of posting about why people should use your travel services, create a travel guide series with various posts about beautiful destinations, what to do in each destination, travel hacks, and so on. Again, you are offering value to readers/potential customers and further proving why they should choose your services.
Thoughtfully Lay Out All of Your Long-Term Goals
If you want a strong, effective digital marketing campaign, you must first devise a strong digital marketing strategy. With every strategy, you must identify and define all of your long-term goals. Ask yourself:
- What are you expecting to get out of your efforts? Be specific.
- What numbers do you expect to hit?
- How many people do you want to reach on each platform?
- What sort of conversion rate should you expect?
- How many sales do you project in the next 3-5 years?
Take the time to determine every goal that is important to you. After that, you can start to figure out what digital marketing efforts you will use to reach those goals. Again, it is not uncommon for all of this to feel like uncharted territory for many business owners.
Hiring a digital marketing strategist can be the most beneficial thing you do. Together, you can design a unique plan for your digital marketing campaign. Without careful discussion, research, planning and the right decisions regarding your goals, you can’t execute an effective and successful campaign.
Routinely Audit Your Content
Your content is a critical component of your digital marketing strategy — specifically, written content. Because it’s a critical component of your digital marketing, you need to routinely assess the strength of your content. Determine if the existing content is meeting your standards and providing the results you need. First, ask yourself, “Is our content offering real value to our readers?” This is one of the most important questions to address. The content you post should be the “free sample” of what they will receive when they buy from you.
If you are thinking “man, this is a lot to keep track of,” you’re right! That’s why it’s often a good idea to work with a professional content writer to tackle all of these responsibilities. It’s also important to note, as stated by Neil Patel, that “ The most important thing about keywords is not how many times they occur. The more pages you have, the more pages on your site will be indexed.” The content writer frees up your time to focus on other aspects of your digital marketing campaign.
Get Personal and Stay Personal
Social media has provided a platform for people to communicate with large brands and vice versa. This is an effective tool to use in digital marketing. The ability to communicate personally with your customers in seconds — even if they live on the other side of the world — changes marketing dramatically.
No matter how unique you make your digital marketing campaign, you should never underestimate or underutilize the importance of personalization. It’s best to respond to customer inquiries such as a message they send you on Facebook or a comment they leave on a post. Furthermore, it’s better to actively engage and encourage them to participate in the dialogue. Get creative with this.
- Engage them with live streams on Facebook and Instagram to capture behind-the-scenes footage.
- Run a contest that could get one of your followers featured on your Instagram page
- Use social media platforms to do giveaways. According to Lori Ruff, “Social media is here. It’s not going away; not a passing fad. Be where your customers are: in social media.” So use it to your advantage.