Over the past decade, business marketing strategies have faced a significant overhaul. With traditional marketing channels becoming oversaturated, expensive, and less effective, many business owners are turning to a more modern approach: digital marketing. By definition, digital marketing encompasses any marketing efforts that utilize the internet or electronic devices; popular channels include: social media, search engines, email, and websites. In order to capitalize on the full potential of digital marketing, it is imperative to employ an omni-channel approach. By omni-channel, we are referring to a comprehensive blend of all digital marketing channels. Each channel
It’s a digital world, and traditional marketing is a lot more niche now. With so many people on their phones and browsers, millions of companies are actively competing for a slice of attention in order to attract potential customers, but less than 10% actually succeed. Digital marketing requires a lot of tools and constant attention to stay on the minds of your current and potential clients. There is a lot of data out there and in order to survive, you need to find ways to use it to your advantage and stand out from the pack.
What a Good Digital Marketing Strategy Looks Like
A good digital marketing strategy is defined by clear, concise goals along with tools to measure and achieve success. When it comes to digital marketing, your goals can be to increase branding, generate leads, or reach out to new clients.
Branding and exposure can involve a strategy targeting social media, with metrics such as click-through rate, interactions on targeted social media platforms, as well as traffic readings and behavior monitoring on Google Analytics used to fine tune the smaller details of your strategy. Keep in mind that the overall idea behind a successful digital marketing strategy is to focus on the human element – the buyer’s journey, your brand story and engagement.
- 1.) Increase online market share
- 2.) Keep up with the competition who are capturing the market
- 3.) Online revenue has dipped from previous years
- 4.) You are wasting time and money with ineffective digital marketing techniques
- 5.) Your company’s digital team is not working together seamlessly
- 6.) You are not maximizing opportunities and revenue
Your company’s digital marketing plan will vary based on the overall business goals, but there are a few key elements that will keep you on the path to success:
- Map out a realistic plan. Establish several ideal outcomes while leaving some room for uncertainty. And you want to do this based on a set of chosen key performance indicators (KPIs) that are related to your strategy and goals.
- Choose the right KPIs that most closely represent your key target areas. What exactly are you measuring? Is what you are measuring related to actual user experience and if so, how? How much do you need to monitor/report on certain metrics and have you included this in your plan?
- Be familiar with the concept of a sales funnel, which is a step-by-step outline of each phase of the buyers’ journey – outreach, conversion, closing, retention.
- Make your content effective and engaging. Are you telling a compelling story to get your customers’ attention? Have a clear understanding of how your content is working with regards to SEO and analytics patterns
- Flexibility is key. Leave room for unexpected events that can affect your core workload, as well as the business as a whole.
Successful digital marketing strategies are never a one-size-plan-fits-all, but you can make them work to your advantage by understanding what goes into a good plan and how to make it work for YOUR business.
Digital Marketing Alphabet Soup … Sorting Through the Acronyms
There are lots of abbreviations and acronyms floating around in relation to digital marketing. You’ve probably seen many of them as you navigate this realm, but in reality, may have no idea what they mean. Here are some of the most common ones and what they are/how they are applied:
Cost-Per-Click (CPC) - CPC is typically associated with search engine marketing (SEM), also known as paid search advertising. It refers to the actual price you pay for each click you receive on an online ad. You only pay when the ad is clicked, not when it is viewed.
Click-Through-Rate (CTR) - This is the percentage of your audience that advances by clicking through from one part of your website to the next part of your marketing campaign. It’s commonly used to measure the success of an online advertising campaign and email campaigns. As a mathematic equation, it’s the total number of clicks that your page or call to action receives, divided by the number of opportunities that people had to click (page views, emails sent, impressions, etc.).
Cost-Per-Lead (CPL) - Online advertising payment model in which payment is based on the number of qualifying leads generated.
Cost-Per-Acquisition (CPA) - measures the aggregate cost to acquire one paying customer on a campaign or channel level.
Pay Per Click (PPC) - The amount of money spent to get a digital advertisement clicked. Also, an internet advertising model where advertisers pay a publisher (usually a search engine, social media site, or website advertiser) a certain amount of money every time someone clicks on their ad. In terms of search engine or PPC marketing, an ad can be displayed on a search engine result page (SERP) when a user searches with a keyword that is relevant to the ad and matches the advertiser’s keyword list. This list is submitted to the search engine ahead of time. The advertiser will only pay when a user clicks on the ad.
Return on Investment (ROI) - ROI is usually expressed as a percentage and is used to evaluate the efficiency and profitability of an investment. The formula for ROI is as follows: (Gain from Investment minus the Cost of Investment) all divided by (Cost of Investment). If ROI is negative, then that initiative is losing the company money. As a marketer, you’ll want to measure the ROI on every tactic and channel you use.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) - SEO consists of techniques that help your website rank higher in the organic search results via search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. This can make your website more visible to people who are looking for your brand, or a specific product or service you offer. There are multiple components to improving the SEO of your website pages.
Tools of Digital Marketing
As discussed, to get the most out of digital marketing you need a strategy which outlines how to use specific components like social media, SEO, content, email, PPC and web analytics. Having the right set of digital marketing tools to manage all of these components is essential. Without the proper ones, you cannot effectively create comprehensive strategy that reaches your desired customers and gives you accurate digital metrics on their journey which is essential to staying ahead of the competition.
Some common digital marketing tools that you might want to look into include:
Google Analytics: Google Analytics gives users a deeper understanding of their customers with free tools to analyze data in one place. Get fast answers to questions about your data, uncover insights about how your business is performing, and tap into sophisticated modeling capabilities. Detailed reports allow users to understand how customers are interacting with your site and apps, and easily share insights across your organization. The data recorded allows users to make smarter marketing decisions. There is even a diagnostics tool to alert users to unexpected events or metrics.
Google Analytics makes it easy to understand how your site and app users are engaging with your content, so you know what’s working and what’s not. See how people are interacting with your sites and apps and the role that different channels play via robust reports and dashboards.
Google Ads: Google Ads take the guesswork out of advertising. Users can see how many people are shown your ads, visit your website, or call your business. You can even reach specific types of people if your business is specialized. You can tweak your ads based on what’s working (or not working) and test your changes to see if they work better. Google Ads pricing is meant to work within your budget – and you can change that at any time you wish.
SEMrush: When it comes to Search Engine marketing (SEM), SEMrush is a great tool that allows you to set up both long- and short-term goals with campaigns that monitor the performance of your ads. This is often a staple of many SEO and marketing teams.
SEMrush has a massive database of over 46 million domains and 120 million keywords. It tracks so many things, such as the organic position of a domain or landing URL on Google’s SERPs (search engine results pages), copies of AdWords ads and their positions, CPC ads, competitor analysis and more. SEMrush features a curated menu of reports and tools that make it easier for users to find resources specific to their jobs. There are specific toolkits for SEO, advertising, social media, content marketing and competitive research. By choosing the toolkit that best suits your needs, you can simplify your menu and get right into the research that is most applicable to your task.
Social Media and Sponsored Content: It goes without saying - if you want to be seen out there, then social media is a must for your digital marketing strategy. According to We Are Social, over 3 billion people use social media each month. That’s 42 percent of the total global population. In the United States, there are 230 million monthly active social media users, 71 percent of the total population. People’s attention spans aren’t getting longer, so interactive and attention-grabbing content breaks through best.
Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram allow your content can shine, if you know how to use them. It’s one of many facets of digital marketing that can help strengthen your brand, but you need a good consistent brand first before tackling these tools.
The Digital Marketing Team: Due to the rise in digital marketing activity, the marketing department plays a huge role in a company’s success. From lead generation to community management and customer value, the marketing department is charged with engaging, influencing and retaining customers. No pressure there!
A comprehensive digital marketing strategy isn’t executed by a leader, but by a work force. All members of the team working together, and at their best. This means the content team works with the SEO team, and the design team works with PPC managers and marketers to help strengthen branding.
Some companies do not have the resources to have a full-scale in-house digital marketing team to create and implement the appropriate strategies for a successful digital marketing plan. That’s where Code Authority comes in. Our digital marketing team has extensive experience coordinating all facets of digital marketing that produce real results. Using the tools at our disposal, ranging from SEO to Pay-Per-Click management services, we can give you the edge you need over your competition. Visit Code Authority to learn more or request a free consultation to discuss your digital marketing needs.