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Marketing — and more to the point — digital marketing budgets still frighten a lot of people. Especially entrepreneurs who are grappling with how to translate from their personal brand through to a business brand.
Here are six digital marketing hacks that I find exceptionally useful when trying to understand where to focus my attention when planning digital marketing campaigns.
1. Blog – And Then Blog Some More
Content has become the lifeblood of any marketing campaign! Without truly great content you can have the best SEO team in the world tweaking the structure of your site until the cows come home but it won’t help. You can have the most eager and engaged social media person on the planet; but they will be engaging with thin air if there is no great content to share. I like to think of this is a Marketing Trifecta – social; SEO and content are nothing without each other.
By having a blog with great content on it; you are connecting the major cog in this online marketing machine. The most important thing to remember is that like any engine / machine; there is some initial inertia that needs to be overcome; but once the machine is moving it takes a lot to slow it down.
2. Leverage Social Media
As I said above. The Marketing Trifecta needs great content at its core. Once you have great content; that content needs to be shared with the world.
The trick is that embracing social media does not mean shouting your message repeatedly across many different social platforms all day every day. There is a certain amount of nuance that needs to be catered for.
Especially when you start dabbling with social media – you need to bear a few thoughts in mind.
The first is that you are not going to have 1 000 followers in the first 6 months; you are probably not going to have 1 000 followers in the first 12 months. Social media is more a marathon than a sprint.
The second is that you should think of social media as having a conversation with someone. They are going to listen to you a lot more if you are genuinely interested in them and can legitimately solve a problem or a need they have.
3. Make Analytics Your Friend
If you can’t measure it you don’t know whether it is working or not.
One of the great things about online is that it is measurable to the nth degree. Make sure that you understand the various analytics for each platform you are using and that you are using these to make decisions on what to do more of and what to do less of.
4. Don’t Forget The Power Of A Well Written Email
Over the last few years, email marketing has taken a lot of flak. This is mostly due to the fact that so many organisation are doing it wrong. They are in short sending marketing messages devoid of any worthy content that is focussed on the customer or that solves a need.
If you have a database (a real database; not a bought one) that you have built up over time and that you can communicate with; then you are already a huge step ahead of the competition. Email marketing is not dead – it’s just in ICU. The same rule holds true here – give the customer something that is relevant to them and that solves a problem they are faced with and they will not simply delete your mail.
5. Give Pay-Per-Click Advertising A Try
While trying to get your organic search results to move up the rankings; invest in some pay-per-click advertising. PPC is a great way to test landing pages; content and keywords. I am not suggesting that you bury your budget in PPC; but spend enough so that you get a really good idea for what content is working and which is not.
6. It Is About Balance
There is such a thing as too much of a good thing!
Remember that as with anything – balance is incredibly important. If you are placing all your efforts on social and nothing anywhere else; online is not going to work for you. Similarly if you are investing in sublime content; but nothing else, online marketing is not going to work for you.
The seventh hack
Ultimately all of the above are useless unless you have cracked the seventh hack.
Knowing Your Customer.
If you know who you are trying to reach – what they need – what problems they are having – what their pain is you can position all of the above to speak directly to those needs; and that is what creates compelling content that converts!
Image by Daniel Go via Flickr