Digital Marketing an Explanation!

So, what is digital marketing? Digital marketing is a way to connect with and win your potential customers. So not much different than old-school marketing. The difference is, you connect with and influence those customers online, so it is cheaper and easier for the amateur to do.  Like any business skill, there are levels of ability from the amateur to the professional.  The more skillful the better the results. I am an OK amateur golfer and I invest some time and money in getting better. BUT I will never be a male version of Lydia Ko. 

Digital Marketing Assets

A digital asset is like any business asset. It can be everything that you use online. Here are some examples 

  • Your Website
  • Social Media Pages 
  • Video Content you can use in posts, blogs etc. 
  • Blogs, articles, posts, testimonials
  • Images and graphics 
  • Logos, icons and acronyms.

Digital Marketing Plan 

digital marketing plan vital to being successful it contains the details for all the planning for your digital marketing campaigns or actions. It should answer the question to “What is the journey I will take my vistors on to become clients?” It may contain: 

  • Short, medium, and long-term business goals.
  • The strategies to achieve the goals at the digital level.
  • The channels to use
  • Action and development plans.
  • Investment and budget.

Digital Marketing Options

The list of digital marketing strategies is also constantly evolving, but here are some of the options most businesses are using, there are more: 

Email Marketing
An oldy but a goody. Email marketing is the oldest form of online marketing and it’s still going strong. Most digital marketers use email marketing to advertise special deals, highlight content (often as part of content marketing), or promote an event. You may be reading this as a  result of an email you received. 

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

 I must admit this is one of my favourites. You use search engine optimization (SEO) to rank pages or blog posts on your site organically. You don’t have to pay directly for every click, but getting a page to rank usually takes quite a bit of time and effort. As you are not paying per click you are not competing with the big boys budget. Rather it is the value and relevance to search terms that you bring. Long term this can save money. Over 80% of searches click on the organic results. 

Social Media Marketing

Like SEO, social media marketing is the free, organic way to use social media platforms like Facebook or Twitter to market your business. And, just like SEO, organically marketing your business on social media takes a lot more time and effort, but in the long run, it can deliver much cheaper results.

Paid Search Advertising

This is where you run ads on their Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). Paid search advertising is one of the best ways to target potential customers who are actively searching for a product or service like yours. They are at least searching for your offering online. Ever wondered why those ads pop up when you are searching? My children are mad about horses so they are always looking at horses on lines. So they see a lot of ads for equestrian products. 

Pay-Per-Click Advertising
Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is any type digital marketing where you pay for every user who clicks on an ad. Google AdWords is probably the most common one. Social Media Companies have jumped on this eg  Facebook Ads, Linked In, YouTube. 

Paid Social Media Advertising

Most social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Snapchat will allow you to run ads on their site. We all have our “Tribe” they know us, love us and follow us.  They are great for business as they can introduce you to their tribes. Using paid social media advertising helps you reach people that just have not heard of you. 

Why Should I Use Digital Marketing?

It is often said that if a business is not growing it is dying

With the Covid Driven explosion in online businesses, digital marketing is a necessity for any business that wants to survive. Here at Web8, we work with SMEs to help them grow. From builders to bakers to candlestick makers we work with a wide variety of businesses.  If you know who you want to target, digital marketing is accessible to all types and sizes of businesses. 

You must know your target. At the most basic level this can be broken down to business-to-consumer (B2C) companies and business-to-business (B2B) companies:

B2C Companies

The majority of B2C companies have much lower price points than their B2B counterparts. The sales cycle for a 100,000 IT system is a lot longer and more complex than a laptop sale for my daughter to lose at school.  B2C companies aren’t trying to sell incredibly expensive products or services, you don’t need big sales teams.  Get your products or services in front of the right people with the right messaging and the rest should take care of itself.

As a result, the primary goal of most B2C companies is to get people into and through their marketing funnel. For example, if you can get me on to your online store (website), give me an exciting deal, make it easy to buy and ship I will buy it today! You don’t need to build a ton of brand awareness or trust before you can close a sale.

B2C companies often see great results from social media marketing or paid social advertising. These channels do a great job of getting your business in front of potential customers who might not otherwise know that you exist. You must be on the right social platform. If you are not where your customers are then they will not see you. 

Like any strategy, this needs a good foundation. So a great website and social media content are vital. SEO can also get you in front of people who are not on social media enough to see your posts. 

B2B Companies

Most B2B companies have very specific niche audiences that can be hard to target using social media. This is where an aggressive approach to SEO backed up with PPC works well. 

You still need a website that engages. Have you ever googled your competitors and seen how much alike the websites look. A great web design must stop your potential client in their search.  You can not do this if your site follows the same pattern as everyone else.  

In addition, most B2B companies have a much longer and more involved sales cycle than B2C companies. If you’re selling a $100,000 IT System, most people probably don’t come to your site, give you a call and say “I want one.” As a result, longer-term strategies like content marketing or email marketing are often necessary to develop interest and give you the opportunity to close the deal. 

Of course, the right digital marketing plan is will vary from industry to industry and business to business, but simply comparing B2C to B2B should help give you a sense of how different strategies can be better for certain businesses. Not every strategy is right for every business, but with a little trial and error, you should be able to identify the most profitable approach for your company.

How Do  I Get Started 

The good news is, getting started with digital marketing is fairly easy. From Google Adwords to Facebook Marketing it is easy to sign up and create your first campaign. Before you jump in and start spending money on digital marketing you need a plan and some skills. Here are a few questions to get you started: 

How Much Do You Need to Make?

Clicks and even conversions are great, but your company doesn’t make money from clicks. These are important as they help improve the results. When you get right down to it, the ultimate goal of any business is to make a profit (measured as ROI) Digital marketing spend must grow profitable revenue. 

Who is your target? 

If you do not know your target will never hit it. Target customers are often referred to as buyer personas. Different persona requires different marketing plans. If you don’t understand your buyer personas (your target), you can’t create an effective digital marketing plan! The best way to do this is to get on the phone and talk to your customers. Understanding why they brought from you can help you improve how you market and sell to others.

How much is each customer worth to you? 

By understanding a customer’s lifetime value then you can work out your ROI and therefore understand what it will take to hit your revenue goals. There are many calculators available to help you with this. Any calculator is only as accurate as of the information you can give it. But, it’s a lot better than picking your monthly at random and hoping that digital marketing will produce the results you need. You can use these calculators in two ways to make things even better, you can use this calculator to calculate your overall digital marketing budget or you can pick a specific strategy and use it to figure out whether or not a given strategy makes sense for your business

To Finish

Digital marketing is not the marketing of the future. It is here now! It is more accurate than letterbox flyers or print media because you can track the results of your digital marketing efforts with incredible accuracy. So you can see what is working and what is not. You can only track what you have planned. So a plan is vital.

If this looks time-consuming it is! To learn the skills, develop, implement and measure a plan then the great news is that we can help with that. Drop me an email and get the growth started.

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