As a small business, one of the areas you need to be focussing on is your digital marketing strategy. If you don’t have one, now is the time to put an ap plan in place for how you will develop your digital marketing strategy for the future.
Digital marketing has really taken on a new lease of life thanks to the covid pandemic. With more people than ever living their lives online and looking for digital alternatives to traditional purchasing options, media consumption and generally while away the hours between going to bed and actually falling asleep. With over 75% of people engaging with digital services at least once a month, you are doing your company a disservice by not embracing this future proof trend,
The most successful small businesses can gel future trends in digital marketing with traditional methods that appeal to a broader range of consumers and allow them to adapt what they do to offer a more personalised marketing campaign and tailored experience.
What are the best digital marketing tips for 2021?
Decide on Your Goal
Sporting games are won by reaching a goal, hitting a target, scoring more etc. Without a ‘goal’ to aim for, there is no win. The same applies to your digital marketing strategy. If you have no goal for your strategy, you will be shouting aimlessly into the abyss.
Is it to increase your brand’s visibility online, to get more sales, or anything else. Once you know what you want to achieve from your marketing strategy, you can create it. But it doesn’t end there. Once you know your goal, you need to find a way to score, so to speak.
Realise who your target demographic is, discover their online habits and look into what converts interest into sales. If you don’t know the funnel – how the consumer interacts with your company from the first time they become aware of you to the final step of a successful interaction, then you won’t be able to reach your goal no matter how good your marketing idea is.
Social Media is still King.
Love it or hate it; there is no denying the power of social media for marketing purposes. Never has there been an easier way to reach more people more quickly and, for the most part, for free! All you need to do is create content that will resonate with your target demographic, and you’re onto a winner.
As more social media platforms hit the market – Tiktok being the current platform of choice for brands looking for fun and creative ways to reach their audience, so does your ability to reach even more people expand.
Facebook is still a powerhouse when it comes to marketing, and although its popularity remains with the older generations – baby boomers and millennials, there are currently over 2.7 billion users worldwide. Where else do you have the potential to reach so many people.
Stay true to your brand and your core values to appeal to your potential customer base and create a strong social media presence on each platform suitable for your brand.
Video Marketing is a Must!
Video marketing is a highly effective way to get your brand seen online. More people engage with video content than text or images alone, and as such, you need to create a look and style that is synonymous with your brand and can help you boost your visibility online.
Video content aims to capture consumers attention and have the right mix of creativity with information. Think YouTube videos for providing information on what you do, products you offer and topics relating to your industry. Short quick, fun snapshots work well on platforms like Instagram and Tiktok and should be designed to be shared to boost your reach.
Depending on your skill set and budget, you can choose to hire a video production company to assist you with your video marketing needs or create your own personal on-brand videos for a relatively small amount – or free if you use your own smartphone to get you started.
What does your website say about you? If the answer is not a lot, then you need to change that and fast. Optimised content that follows good SEO (search engine optimisation) rules can pay you dividends in years to come.
Optimise product names, images with alt tags and titles containing the keywords you are looking to rank for can help boost your e-commerce sites on-site SEO. Consider adding a blog to your site that contains posts that offer valuable content to the reader. Let’s say a user types into Google “how to make cheese on toast” Google will then display all the search results of the sites with the best how-to guides for making said cheese on toast, how your site ranks depend on several different things that will change in June 2021 to include a wider range of factors. Including how detailed your post is on how to make cheese on toast, how well you have used the keywords and how long users stay on your site.
Do be aware that SEO can be complicated and you’ll also need to make sure that your optimization suits your specific type of business. For instance, if you are running a B2B company then you might need a B2B SEO agency to ensure that you see the best results.
Pay attention to site load speeds – how quickly your site loads will reflect on how high you rank. How informative your content is, how secure your site is – you need to have HTTPS, not HTTP and how mobile responsive your site is. Mobile searches make up a high portion of searches, and if your site isn’t mobile responsive, you will lose brownie points in the SERPS (search engine results pages).
Share Your Content
You may have good content on your website blog or business information pages but how many people are getting to see it? If you can share your content, perhaps via links posted on social media, industry forums, and the relevant business websites, you will drive more traffic back to your website and improve your SEO. Share your content links where you can yourself and then outsource to those who can spread your links even further. Consider content syndication by FATJOE, for an example of one very useful service.
Please Open Your Emails
You can try this approach. But chances are, it won’t work! Analyse how effective your email strategy is and overhaul your whole attitude to sending out emails.
Your email list needs to comply with GDPR rules, meaning you must have the explicit consent of land in someone’s inbox. Once you have that consent, utilise email automation tools to help you build a targeted strategy to entice people to open those emails. Surveys suggest 80% of business leaders believe email campaigns amplify digital marketing strategy. So how can your small business capitalize on this?
Use your email list to send out offers to new and repeat customers, share news on how your products or services are changing and remind them of your company.
Automation tools could be set up to remind customers to repurchase if they bought a limited supply of product from you or time-sensitive service, e.g. 30-day limits. Hit send around a week or so before this runs out to entice them to buy again and keep their service active and refill products to avoid running out. Abandoned carts can remind people of what they were looking at and include enticing offers such as complete checkout using this 10% off voucher valid only for 4 hours.
Get creative in your approach and increase the likelihood that your emails will be opened and not sent to the trash without a second glance.
A grey area for many small businesses as the cost involved in gifting products and services in return for exposure to their audience can often fall wide of the mark and result in a huge paid or gifted campaign with no real results.
And this reticence is valid considering the shift in influencer marketing and whether it is worth it for small businesses. But there is sway with the right influencers and their ability to successfully market your company to their audience in a way that they will be open and receptive to.
Finding the right influencer who has the same values as you and believes in your brand can be an untapped resource for you. You don’t want to choose the first self-proclaimed influencer who slides into your DMs asking for the world on a stick in exchange for exposure from their 35 Instagram followers. Instead, research who the biggest, most influential accounts are in your sector or that of your target demographic and check out their accounts. Look for engagement rates – around 5% is considered good based on algorithms, previous brand collaborations and the type of response it had from their followers.
Once you are sure of a good fit, you can then approach the right influencer to discuss a mutual collaboration to create content that will help you widen your reach in a new market.
Evolving your marketing campaign to accommodate changes in consumer trends can allow you to effectively future proof your business to help you adapt to new challenges in the market and advancements in technology and other areas. Be specific in your approach and put together a complete digital marketing strategy that allows you to test the waters in a way that benefits both you and your business and allow for a more natural progression that stays true to your brand.
Put in the time, research and resources initially and make sure you set yourself up for success and not be lost in the sea of competitors and see how much of a difference digital marketing can make to your company when approached in the right way.