As a growing business, it’s likely that you’ve already devoted a lot of time to thinking about digital marketing and the amazing effects it can have on your customer acquisition and retention rates. The right sort of marketing channel can deliver plenty of new business, and it can also raise awareness of your brand in an overarching and powerful way – no matter what sector you’re in.
What is also likely is that in the past you’ve focused on non-digital marketing techniques, such as physical advertising billboards, direct marketing like leaflets, and more. In the modern age, that’s rarely enough: it’s now important to also think about the impact of digital marketing, especially since 77% of Americans are believed to own a smartphone. Whether you opt for social media, search engines, email marketing or a mixture, there’s a whole world of marketing collateral and opportunities out there to make the most of. This article will explore the main modes of digital marketing and point out why businesses need to be embracing them in the digital age.
Perhaps the obvious digital marketing route for a business looking to grow its presence online to take is the search engine route. Paying for Google advertising, for example, is one way to get your brand name out into search engine results, and services like these can associate keywords with your website in a targeted and efficient way. The Google AdWords interface is set up in such a way that you can find out everything you need to know in a short space of time: from the click-through rate to the number of impressions, it’s easy to work out how well your ad is performing. And by working to increase your website’s standing in search results naturally, meanwhile, you won’t necessarily have to make any upfront cash investments at all – unless you choose to use the services of a search engine optimization (SEO), specialist.
Social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter offer all kinds of diverse opportunities for brands. It’s possible to interact with customers on them, for example – but this is both a blessing and a curse. By using services such as Twitter as a help desk, brands can assist quickly in resolving customer problems while they can also extend special offers at the click of a button. This is a great resource-saving device, as multiple complaints can be handled simultaneously by the same person – unlike traditional forms of customer complaint resolution, which may require time intensive phone-based operations. But there are also risks which brands using digital marketing should hedge against. Many brands find, for example, that the risk of a complaint going viral is high. As a result, it’s worth putting policies in place to move contentious conversations into a private forum as soon as possible in order to protect the overall brand reputation.
Email marketing has long since been a popular mode of digital marketing, and it’s still a great way to reach people with news, updates and special offers. Business leaders who are worried about digital marketing will be pleased to discover that there are now tools available, such as Mailchimp, which slash the amount of time needed to be spent on email marketing – so there’s no reason not to get involved. Providers like these make the content design process simple, and they automate the sending in one big batch – saving you staff time and resources.
Sometimes, it’s wise to approach the question of digital marketing from the point of view of a specific problem or pain point. Say you’re running a campaign to direct more users over to your Amazon store: it may make more sense to get an expert in who knows which channels work best for an e-commerce campaign and can hence filter out the modes that don’t suit. Hiring an Amazon consulting expert is advisable, and it’s a good idea to meet the consulting team before pressing ahead with a professional relationship.
Digital marketing, then, is something that all businesses are starting to have to think about in what is an obviously highly switched-on, screen-savvy age. Search engine marketing can have your business at the top of Google search results, for example, while social media marketing offers a wide variety of opportunities for deep and rich image and video creation. And with good old-fashioned email marketing also still working like a charm for many firms, there’s no reason not to consider it when devising your digital marketing strategy.