Featured | September 8, 2021
Unsexy Digital Marketing is Key for Digital Growth
Running a business in 2021 can feel very conflicted as more businesses invest in a digital presence.
From automated customer service chatbots to A/B testing and influencer marketing, it’s a very busy industry for small business owners and it’s hard to know which strategy to try or invest in.
The worst kept secret from a digital marketing perspective is that a digital marketing strategy doesn’t have to be ‘sexy’ to be successful. So, here we share the key basic components for any successful digital strategy, whether sexy or not.
Social Media Marketing on One or Two Channels
Social media marketing is great when a brand has recognised where its key audiences are and engages them. However, most businesses simply apply a blanket approach and post needlessly across multiple channels without gaining much traction at all.
Whilst there are now more than seven key social media platforms, your brand doesn’t need to appear on half of them- and especially not all of them! A good social media marketing strategy is one that’s been tried and tested, over and over again.
Brands that are in tune with their industry will have a stronger presence on the relevant platform. For example, interior designers typically do best on visual platforms such as Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube because these platforms allow for video and photo content to be easily published and shared with engaged audiences.
Likewise, many B2B marketing strategies include Twitter and LinkedIn as these platforms encourage a more professional approach when it comes to creating content.
If you’re not sure which platform would work better for your brand, experiment! Use one or two platforms and focus on creating engaging, original content that fits into the channel you’re publishing on.
Make sure your content caters directly to the platform you’re using – video works best on YouTube, whereas if you’re sharing links to podcasts etc. then Facebook or Twitter are better than using platforms like Instagram.
Trial and error is also a big part of any good digital marketing strategy so when something doesn’t quite land or engage, try another platform until your brand gains some traction.
Never Underestimate Email Marketing
As it’s been around for such a long time, email marketing often gets overlooked or snubbed by newer businesses as being a bit ‘old hat’. However, email marketing is another key technique that any brand can enjoy success from.
Whether it’s a regular newsletter, a monthly round-up, or simply an email when you have an offer, email marketing is another key marketing technique that all business owners should be using.
If you have an email capture on your website, you should have a good database of people who want to hear from your brand. Email marketing is a great way to remind both existing customers and potential ones about the great product or services you have on offer.
Each time you have an offer, free content to share, or simply have a new blog to publish, send out an email. Shout about anything your business is up to and remind people why they should be interacting with you.
If you’re confident your database is updated and you’re generating regular newsletters, try experimenting with personalised email marketing campaigns. Address your contacts by their first name, play around with the headline and try creating different content for each campaign.
Investing a bit of time in email marketing can have a significant return for all kinds of businesses, and whilst it’s been one of the older marketing tactics, it’s still one of the more successful for growth.
Blogging to Improve Your SEO Traffic
Another necessary marketing technique to invest time into is blogging. Creating content regularly on your website, whether it’s articles, blogs or webpages, will do wonders for your SEO.
Savvy businesses who publish content on their websites, benefit from reaching wider target audiences with relevant and interesting content. Using keyword research tools, brands can identify topics that are relevant to the industry, and then create content that helps answer or feature the longtail phrases people are searching for. The content actively delivers a response via an article or blog and helps with indexing websites in Google.
Incorporating regular blogging into a digital marketing strategy is a proven technique for growth and improves the organic reach for brands that may previously have gone unseen in search.
SEO is often misunderstood by small business owners or feared as a complex marketing technique, but creating regular content is such an integral part of any good SEO strategy, any brand can incorporate it in its own digital marketing strategy.
Try Paid Advertising Campaigns
Again, running paid advertising campaigns can feel very ‘unsexy’ but it’s often another essential part for smaller businesses gaining visibility in a busy online marketplace.
It can feel overwhelming investing in paid adverts online for budget-savvy business owners, but paid ads can really deliver.
Whilst setting up an Ads account takes just minutes, running successful paid campaigns takes much longer – particularly if your brand is new to paid digital advertising. According to SEO tool AHREFs, brands looking to try paid ads for the first time should consider the following:
- Audiences– who are you speaking to? Where are they?
- Budgets– how much are you willing to spend and which terms should you bid more on than others?
- Content- you’ve decided who you’re speaking to and where they are, now to create something they will engage with
Paid campaigns are far more than simply paying for the top positions in Google. After all you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make them drink (or, click, in this case). So, planning which platform to invest budget in and carefully crafting ad copy is an integral part of a good digital strategy.
Think outside the standard PPC campaigns too, it might be that your business is more visual and, therefore, will perform better on Google Shopping.
Focus Locally Online
Often overlooked by smaller businesses, using localised community boards and forums can be really beneficial for attracting new business.
Sites like Nextdoor and Facebook community pages are often highly valuable sources for small businesses to interact and engage with potential customers in a far more authentic way than other digital marketing approaches.
The key to successfully using community boards and forums is to avoid the ‘hard sell’ at all costs. Using genuine engagement and creating a trusted profile for small businesses will encourage more people to respond or interact with a post.
Most communities have guidelines that outline the restrictions for selling. So, ensuring your posts aren’t promotional, just being informational will help your brand appear authentic.
In a fast-paced digital world of paid ads and pop-ups all bidding for our attention, the best thing for small business owners to do is focus on the less sexy basics of a digital marketing strategy to really benefit from growth.
Less is more when it comes to experiencing steady growth from a well-planned digital marketing strategy that doesn’t attempt to dominate everything but tries a few things well.