November 11, 2014
When clients approach me to help them design and implement a digital marketing strategy, one of the first things I notice very often is that they find it very challenging to go about creating a digital marketing blueprint in this age where new media are sprouting at an astonishing pace.
Social media has now taken over from traditional search. Why has this happened? Let me explain. In today’s market, people are exposed to more and more scams and are wary of being ripped off. TRUST is the new currency of the market. Product and service reviews on social media are generally unbiased and more people are relying on these, rather than testimonials on a business website, which always present a rosy picture. So that’s where your prospects go first.
A survey done by Hubspot among 3,300 participants from 128 countries including Australia revealed conversion rates for leads through social media are 13 percent higher than the average conversion rate using traditional media and double that of telemarketing, trade shows and direct mail. The survey also found that 85 percent of fans of a particular brand recommended the brand to others. Further, around 46 percent of online users rely on social media when researching products or services they consider buying.
If you target the local area, (i.e. your target market) whether through a store or online, you need to optimize your visibility in the local area. This means you should ensure your website is optimized for local search. One of the first steps you can take is to claim your Google Places page. This is a static page, you should integrate with your website as businesses with a Google Places page rank higher for local search than those which don’t.
The introduction of Smartphones and tablets has completely changed the search habits of people. It has allowed them to go from being stuck behind their desks on a computer to conducting searches on the go, using mobile devices. According to comScore, in June 2013, 55 percent of time spent searching online for retail products was on mobile devices. Of this, Smartphones account for 44 percent of retail search minutes while tablets accounted for 11 percent. What this means for you is that you have to ensure that your blog, website and other landing pages are optimized mobile devices.
Each of these three elements needs to be integrated into your digital marketing strategy if you want to be found easily and quickly when prospects search for your business.
Management – Your Digital Marketing Campaign
Now you know the important elements that need to be integrated into your digital marketing strategy, your next step is to manage the campaign successfully.
I strongly advocate a strategic approach to setting up your digital marketing campaign. Many business owners try one tactic like marketing on Facebook and hop around trying different digital media platforms, without success. What’s required is an integrated structure and it all begins with clearly stated goals. These will be unique for your organization and will dictate your media choices.
For instance as a general rule, LinkedIn is the preferred media for Business to Business (B2B), whereas Facebook is preferable for Business to Consumer (B2C). With a strategy in place, it’s easier to plan and implement a campaign. The campaign can be monitored using automation tools to determine whether objectives are being met and the corrective action to be taken if they aren’t met.
Process — Keys to Getting Your Digital Media Campaign Right
At this stage you’re probably wondering what the keys to a great Digital Marketing campaign are. There are a few key areas you need to focus on.
Customer Touch Points: How are your prospects and clients experiencing your products and services online? Is it through your landing page, digital media channels, emails or any other means? How often are you interacting with them? Are you finding a good middle ground so you don’t overwhelm them with content or do the opposite and rarely interact so they forget who you are?
Keywords: Target keywords your prospects are using in search engines and use these in titles for blog posts, in twitter, Google+ and Facebook posts and in other content you provide so you can be easily found when prospects and clients look for products you sell or services you provide.
Timing: It’s no use posting great content that nobody looks at because they are asleep or are having lunch. Post your content on social media sites at different times of the day to test what works best for you by monitoring the likes and shares for each.
Trends: Everyone wants to keep abreast of the latest products, services and techniques in their area of interest. Focus on trending topics and you will never find yourself stuck with deciding what content to share.
Activity — Soothing Away the Pain
While you may have the greatest products or services on offer, all your prospect or client wants to know is how these will help in solving a problem or meeting a want quickly and effectively. Most people search online to find information to help ease their pain or for a product which will give them immense pleasure.
When offering products or services, tailor them in a way that is designed to solve specific problems your target market may be facing or towards helping them fulfill an immediate need.
Communication — To Attract Attention
So how do you communicate with your prospects or clients to get their undivided attention? This may require a shift in your mindset, but if you want to succeed with your digital marketing strategy you need to focus your communication on the prospect or client. Use more ‘you’ words than ‘we’ words in your social media posts, websites, videos and sales material. A conversational tone-of-voice as I’m using in this article works far better than the formal language you see in a corporate brochure.
Remember, your prospects consume information in different ways depending on their orientation. Some are visually-oriented and prefer watching videos over reading text, while the auditory do exactly the opposite, preferring to read. The kinesthetic among your target audience are feeling oriented, so use words such as ‘feel,’ ‘touched,’ ‘put a finger on’ when you write content.
Targeting — For Profit
Before preparing content for your website, blogs, videos and social media posts clearly identify your target. Think about the person you want to reach and tailor your communication accordingly. The more specific you are with your targeting, the higher will be the likelihood of your communication being consumed.
Who should you target? The obvious answer would be prospects and clients. This is true when preparing content for your website. However, when posting content on social media sites, think of the broader picture and include your suppliers, team members, investors and at times even your competitors. Who knows, your competitors could become your joint venture partner one day and together you could dominate your niche.
In conclusion, I hope you have found my above I.M.P.A.C.T. points trigger you to review and will stop for a moment to contemplate what I’ve just revealed before your next move. Does your business have the power to IMPACT the Digital Landscape, or do you need to make some changes so you can quickly get back on track and watch your results accelerate? If change is what you need, don’t wait. Get onto it straightaway and watch your business profits accelerate.
Logan Nathan is based in Melbourne, Australia is an Internet marketing consultant and trainer. A self-taught expert, Logan Nathan has invested tens of thousands of dollars in online marketing solutions to take his business from the start-up stage to one of Australia's leading online marketing, social media consulting and coaching organizations. To view a free online presentation on how to generate leads using LinkedIn, Logan is offering readers free training titled of his highly acclaimed ‘The 5 Step Formula to Generate LEADS on Demand using LinkedIn’ available for immediate access at http://www.solomoitacademy.com/webinar-12-05-14/generating-leads-using-linkedin