We've teamed up with our trusted marketing partners, Audience, to help you learn the ropes of digital marketing. Don’t worry if you’re a complete novice, with our help, you can be marketing your business online in no time.
There’s plenty to know about online marketing but if this is your first foray into this area, whether you’re an experienced business owner or a budding entrepreneur, this is a great place to start.
So, let’s look at some techniques you can use to market your business and create a large, engaged audience.
1) Know Your Customers
This is the first on our list to get you started with your online marketing campaign. Your audience is the very essence of your business. So, once you have identified who they are, you can build any marketing strategies around them.
The first rule of marketing is understanding your customer and knowing what they want. We understand this is most certainly easier said than done, especially if you have a diverse audience.
But it's worth investing time and resources to understand your audience so that moving forward you can consider them in all business strategy.
2) Marketing Framework
To be a great marketer you don’t just want to think in terms of individual campaigns, but wider growth frameworks.
This means learning how to position your marketing strategy into a long-term plan with strong output creating consistently positive ROI.
3) What is Your Brand’s Story?
When consumers are spending their hard-earned money, they think with both their rational and emotional brains.
So, to convince the prospect to make the purchase, you need your marketing campaigns to appeal to both. One of the most effective techniques to tackle this is storytelling, it is a powerful tool in building a connection with the customer.
In whatever aspect of your campaign you’re working on, always consider the wider story you are telling.
4) Acquiring Traffic
Having a website is crucial today for any business, but there’s one thing to have a website and another in actually acquiring traffic to your site.
There is no point in having an amazing brand and product/service if no one is seeing it.
5) Driving Sales
So, you’ve acquired the traffic, but now you need to know how to convert this traffic into sales.
What is conversion optimisation?
There are two aspects to this... The first is to convert first-time visitors into customers and secondly, to convert first-time customers into recurring buyers.
6) Building Connections Through Content
You may hear the term ‘content marketing' and immediately think of blogging, but there’s much more to it than that. When executed correctly, publishing content on your site can be a powerful growth driver for your business.
Content may include:
- Blog posts
Focus on the quality of your content. The more genuinely helpful your content is, the more power it holds not only in terms of search engines, but also building trust with your prospects.
Once you begin posting content, keep an eye on your campaigns and see which content your audience is engaging most with. This will ultimately help generate a strong ROI.
7) Online Paid Advertising
There are a few ways to undertake paid advertising online, you might have heard it referred to as ‘Search Engine Marketing (SEM)’ or ‘pay-per-click (PPC)’ marketing.
In reality, they are the same concept, to purchase traffic through online ads.
Today, it is common for marketers to cringe at the term PPC, but it is not always a bad thing. Many companies run PPC campaigns with uncapped budgets.
Why would they do this? Because if it’s generating a positive ROI, it’s a worthwhile exercise.
Remember to take a look at our guide on PPC if you want to know more.
8) Get Found with SEO
Another acronym… Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).
This is another way to be found online. SEO isn’t directly paid for, but it takes a bit more leg work as it is a more long-term strategy.
SEO is all about optimising your website to be as helpful as possible to rank highly on a search engine results page. The higher you appear on a search engine results page, the more traffic you will acquire organically.
Generally, the more helpful your website, the higher you will rank. That’s why it’s important to produce high-quality content (go back and read step 6…)
There’s much more to say on SEO than what’s here, so if you want to know more check out our Beginner’s Guide to SEO.
9) What About Email Marketing?
This is another marketing technique that has a poor reputation with many marketers today.
Why has this happened?
It has gained a bad reputation due to being historically spammy. However, this is an unfair generalisation of all email marketing.
When it’s executed correctly, email marketing can be a great tool to build and maintain a relationship with your audience.
The key to building trust with your audience is to balance automation with a human connection – again linking back to what we said about appealing to the customers rational and emotional brain.
Check out our guide on Direct Mail vs Email Marketing for more info on this.
10) Spread the Word With PR
If you’ve got a great product or service, you need to shout about it, PR can be an effective way to do this. It can also work out as a lot cheaper than traditional advertising methods.
It can be a difficult realm to venture into as connections and relationships are the lifeblood of PR.
To execute it well it might be best to get support with this. There are a range of PR services you could use, from big fancy agencies to individual PR consultants.
11) Get Social
When it comes to social media marketing, it’s more than having a Facebook page or an Instagram account.
Again, have your audience at the forefront of your mind when thinking about social strategy.
There is no point in having an account on every social media for the sake of it, think about the platforms your audience use.
For example, if you provide a professional service, or want to interact with businesses and corporations you may be best to focus on LinkedIn.
Focusing on key channels will give you the best chance of generating an ROI.
12) Mobile Site
After spending a lengthy amount of time designing and producing your website on a desktop, it is easy to forget that almost half of internet users are browsing on mobile sites.
So our final top tip is to ensure you’re not losing out on an opportunity, by having a site that is optimised for mobile.
And that’s it, your intro to online marketing.
The key takeaways are: to always consider your audience and don’t get bogged down in small campaigns – always consider the larger framework of your strategy. Feeling a little overwhelmed? Why not get in touch with Audience at firstname.lastname@example.org for some free marketing advice?
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