Get Started with a Successful Digital Marketing Campaign
Your website is the most important part
Almost every aspect of digital marketing is about driving Internet traffic to your website. This is the homebase and mothership and you have to treat it as such. We still see too many websites that still don’t have mobile responsive design, which means that they look strange and difficult to navigate on mobile devices. We are seeing approximately 52% of total traffic from mobile devices and that number is likely to increase.
Your website should look good with easy browsing on mobile devices. Visitors should be able to click on a phone number or email address to contact you. If you have to zoom in or write the number, then you are likely to lose them to a competitor whose site is optimized for mobiles. The idea is to turn the visitors into a phone call, an email or a call without a previous appointment.
In addition, the major search engines have reinforced their algorithms to award higher ratings to sites optimized for mobile visitors, and rightly so. You don’t want to be passed on to page two or three of Google’s search results. Make your site compatible for mobile devices immediately.
Implement rich snippets on your website
Chances are you probably wrote a question on Google to find out how something works. People are changing the way they use Google. People no longer want to search for information, they prefer that Google answers their questions. Google has recognized this and has introduced rich snippets to its search algorithm so that they can provide more accurate results.
Almost any local business – lawyer, dentist, plastic surgeon – has common questions that they often receive from their clients, for example, what is a dental implant? How do I get a green card? What is Rhinoplasty? It would be smart to implement rich snippets on your website so that when people are asking these Google questions, your site may appear first.
Use social networks efficiently
We get a lot of questions about social media. Many local companies are confused about the social channels they should be using and how they should be placing them. One of the most important rules of marketing and business management is knowing your customer base. Social media is not space science. Disconnect social media experts and tune in to your customers. Social media can be a great expense in your time if not used properly. No one is looking for a plumber on Twitter or an Instagram lawyer. They just aren’t. Instagram, Snapchat and LinkedIn combine to have less than 5% market share in social media, while Facebook has more than 40%.
When it comes to posting on social networks, understand that you are creating a voice for your business and often communicating with your most loyal customers, who chose to follow you. Therefore, you should be careful when overloading them with specials and promotions. We always tell our clients that social media is not an advertising wall and that they are not a supermarket; They interact with their followers and share information that is pertinent to them.
Don’t forget Email Marketing
Email marketing was overcome by social media years ago, but now it’s back. For many local businesses, this is an excellent and inexpensive way to communicate with your best customers. Facebook and Instagram now show your messages to just a fraction of your followers. They want you to pay to reach more of your followers. If you have customer email addresses, you can send special offers, event information and new menu items to all your customers for a cost from zero to little. Mailchimp allows you to use your email marketing platform for free up to 2,000 contacts.
According to MailMunch, a digital prospect generation company, click rates can be between 50 and 100 times better in email than in social media. This is an extremely effective and low-cost digital marketing strategy that could be the right one for your business.
In short, companies should constantly check their own website to make sure it is easy to navigate, has cool content and contact information works on the mobile. You can start implementing some of the other digital marketing strategies that direct traffic to your site, such as social media, email marketing and rich answers.
Why use a digital marketing plan
Where do you start if you want to develop a digital marketing strategy? Well, I don’t think it has to be a huge report, a strategy can be summed up better on two or three A4 faces in a table that links digital marketing strategies to SMART targets. However, despite this, it seems that many organizations still do not have a plan.
Do you have a digital marketing strategy?
2017 Update: Since 2012 we have conducted an informal survey to see how widely used are digital marketing strategies. The results have shown some great improvements over the years. A few years ago we found that between two thirds and three quarters did not have a digital marketing plan. Now that number has been reduced to 49% in the most recent survey, although it is still quite high, and means that almost half continues to do digital without an established strategy.
But what if you’re one of the companies that doesn’t have a digital strategy yet? Well, I think the two simple alternatives to creating a plan may suggest a way forward:
- Start with a separate digital marketing plan that defines the necessary transformation and exposes the pro-investment arguments and changes in your digital marketing.
- Then, after the approval, create an integrated digital plan that is part of the global marketing plan – the digital is fully aligned and becomes part of the business as usual.
So what are the plans to act here? That seems to me:
The use of digital marketing without a strategic approach remains common. I am sure that many of the companies in this category are using digital media effectively and certainly could be getting great results from their search, email or social media marketing. But I am equally sure that many are losing opportunities for better orientation or optimization or are suffering from the other challenges that I have listed below. Perhaps the problems mentioned below are greater for the larger organizations that are more urgently in need of governance. Arguably, there is less need for a strategy in a smaller company.
Many, most of the companies involved in this research adopt a strategic approach to digital technology. When talking to companies, I think the creation of digital plans often takes place in two stages. First of all, a separate digital marketing plan is created. Second, the digital is integrated into the marketing strategy, is a core activity, “business as usual”, but does not require separate planning, except tactics.
If you don’t have a strategy, or maybe you want to review what business topics are important to include within a strategic review, we have established the 10 most common problems, which in our experience arise if you don’t have a strategy.
10 reasons why you may need a digital strategy?
1. You have No address.
I find that companies without a digital strategy (and many that do) do not have clear strategic objectives for what they want to achieve online in terms of winning new customers or building deeper relationships with existing ones. And if you don’t have goals, you probably won’t put enough resources to reach them and don’t evaluate through analysis if you’re achieving those goals.
2. You will not know your market share online
The demand for online customer services can be underestimated if you have not investigated this. Perhaps most importantly, do not understand your market online: The dynamics will be different from traditional channels with different types of customer profile and behavior, competitors, proposals and options for marketing communications. See the online market methodology post methodology.
3. Existing competitors and new competitors will gain market share
If you are not dedicating enough resources to digital marketing or using an ad-hoc approach without clearly defined strategies, then your competitors will eat your digital lunch!
4. You don’t have a powerful online value proposition
A clearly defined online customer value proposition will help you differentiate your online service by encouraging existing and new customers to initially engage and remain loyal.
5. You don’t know your customers well enough online
It is often said that digital is the “most measurable medium of all time.” But Google analytics and the like will only tell you volumes of visits, not the feeling of visitors, what they think. You need to use other forms of Web site user feedback tools to identify your weak points and then address them.
6. You are not integrated (“disintegrated”)
It is too common for digital marketing activities to be completed in silos, whether it is a digital marketing specialist, sitting in it or an independent digital agency. It’s easier than the way to package digital marketing into a convenient piece. But of course, it’s less effective. Everyone agrees that digital media works best when they integrate with traditional media and response channels.
7. The digital does not have enough people/budget given its importance
Not enough resources will be devoted to both the planning and implementation of e-marketing and there is likely to be a lack of specific knowledge specializing in e-marketing, which will hinder the effective response to competitive threats.
8. You are losing money and time through duplication.
Even if you have enough resources it can be wasted. This is particularly the case in larger companies where you see different parts of the marketing organization that buy different tools or use different agencies to perform similar online marketing tasks.
9. You are not agile enough to catch up or overtake.
If you look at major online brands like Amazon, Dell, Google, Tesco, Zappos, they are all dynamic – testing new approaches to win or keep your audience online.
10 You’re not optimizing
Each company with a website will have analysis, but many senior managers do not make sure that their teams do or have the time to review them and act on them. Once a strategy allows you to get the right basics, then you can progress to continuous improvement of key aspects such as search marketing, Web site user experience, email and social media marketing. So those are our top 10 problems that can be avoided with a well thought out strategy. What have you found that can go right or wrong?