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Small businesses never seem to have enough customers. That’s why it’s important to have a strong digital marketing element to your business.
Making sure your company is well-represented online will increase your reach exponentially, introducing you to new markets all over the world. When you take the time to create great content and promote it online, you drive new leads and new customers passively.
That’s what we’re focusing on today.
Digital Marketing Can Take Your Business To The Next Level
By now, you probably understand that the internet gives your business a huge advantage, allowing you access to new audiences with an ease that you can’t get offline. Through great content, social media, and an excellent story, you can reach more people at any given time and expose them to your company.
An online presence also gives your business legitimacy. By presenting your company through a website and social media, you demonstrate that you are real. That’s a huge component to building the kind of trust you need.
What’s even more incredible about digital marketing, though, is how long your efforts continue to benefit your company. Because your content – especially through your blog – doesn’t simply disappear, it can benefit your company well-longer than you expect. And, because one in ten blog posts are compounding, those results can get better with time as well.
Your Company Doesn’t Exist Without A Digital Presence
Let’s deal with one important fact right now; your business may as well not even exist if you’re not going to create a strong digital presence. The truth is that people check to see if your company has a Facebook page and a website before they’ll ever consider working with you.
Moreover, having a strong digital presence offsets the common problems small businesses face with digital marketing. For example, 97% of small businesses claim their websites are ineffective. It’s no surprise, considering the number of small businesses that have no idea how to write a blog or what to do with it if they do write one.
But strong digital marketing can solve these problems. By creating amazing digital content and letting that online presence shine, you attract more people to your company and build great relationships with them. It’s those relationships that will fuel your brand’s success.
Strong Digital Marketing Will Drive More Customers
Digital marketing is the single best way to drive more customers to your business, no matter whether you’re an online-only business or a brick-and-mortar location. By using strategies that build your brand, you become an authority in your industry. People love to work with the authority.
We’re going to talk about some of those digital marketing strategies today.
Start With The Digital Marketing Basics
The first step to a strong digital marketing strategy that brings in customers is to establish your online presence. You need to figure out the most appropriate places for your business to tell its story. Those include a website, social media outlets, and other places online where you’ll be making content. The key is to research the ways each option may work for your business.
Facebook pages, like a website, are mandatory. Because Facebook has the most users of any social network and people spend a ton of time on it, you’d be a fool to ignore the platform as a viable option. Build your Facebook page, even if you only use it to post microcontent from your other platforms.
Once you have your website and Facebook page, figure out what the best social media outlet for your content will be. Try more than one if you want. It’s ok to try and be wrong. That’s how we learn what works. Figure out where you can work best – something that plays to your strengths.
Determine The Story Your Digital Marketing Will Tell
For digital marketing to be effective, you’ve got to produce strong content. It needs to be compelling content, too, instead of just a sales pitch. If all you do is ask for the buy, you’re dooming yourself to fail miserably.
Storytelling through your digital marketing is the best way to make a connection with your audience. That connection is what’s going to drive your audience to become your client. Try to focus on the relationship between your customers and your company. Some great points your content can touch on might include:
- What does it feel like to own your product or be your client?
- How will your company be there for them in regards to the problems you solve?
- Share your team culture, allowing them to know who they’re working with.
- Convey the values your company holds, showing them what kind of a company you are.
Offering a compelling, interestingly told story keeps your audience engaged. The more they stay engaged, the more likely they will be to come to you when they need your help.
Decide What Your Main Digital Marketing Channel Will Be
If you want your digital marketing game to be strong, you’ve got to take advantage of the right channels for you. The word channels refers to the different platforms you’ll use to distribute your content. They might include your company blog, Facebook, YouTube, Soundcloud, Twitter, or any other social network or content host that you might feel comfortable with.
Every channel has its own specialty. For example, Twitter is the wrong place for long-form content, while YouTube isn’t a great place for unpolished video. To really grasp the platform’s and use them correctly, you have to take the time to understand what they’re really best at.
Once you understand the platform’s specialty, you need to look at your story. What channel is best suited to your company’s strongest content? You need to really dig down and find where your story best represents itself so you can create your primary content in that format.
- Is photography the best outlet for my story?
- Does video make the most sense?
- Would long-form content, like blogs, best serve my company?
- Could a podcast allow me to deliver the most value effectively?
By paying attention to the best platform to start your content with, you can begin to craft your story components.
How Will You Support Your Primary Digital Marketing Efforts?
Your main content channel is the most important start to your digital marketing content distribution. However, you’re going to need to support it through the use of microcontent. Microcontent is the “bits and pieces” of content that make their way through social media. They’re easy to take in, and they really give you a glimpse of the whole message, but they’re delivered in short-form.
One of the simplest ways to create microcontent is to pull gems from your main content, then redevelop them into something that stands great on their own. Clip a bit of your 30 minute YouTube video to share on Instagram. Pull a headline from your blog article to write a tweet. It’s a valid, valuable, and necessary part of telling the complete story.
Remember, when you’re choosing the right outlets for your microcontent, it’s ok to not choose every platform. After all, not every platform is going to work for you or your company. Consider the following when selecting a platform:
- What platforms do you feel comfortable using?
- Which platforms best suit your individual strengths?
Trying to force yourself to effectively use a platform will only cause you to create bad content. When you create bad content, you’re going to train your audience to not pay attention to you. That’s going to hurt you way more than it helps, and it will take forever to correct. So it’s best to avoid the platforms you don’t feel great about.
Once you’ve selected the right channels for your marketing content, create the microcontent around those channel’s strengths, just like you are with your main content.
Carefully Plan Your Digital Marketing Path
Now that you’ve decided your platforms, it’s time to make your plan. Take a step back and look at the whole story you’re trying to tell. You’ve just become the director, and this is your masterpiece. How do you want your digital marketing story to play out?
- Which parts of your story will appear on which platforms?
- What formats will you use to convey the right emotions effectively?
The most important decision you need to make is where your audience ends up. Your story is designed to guide them through the buying process, so each step should end somewhere. Hopefully, that somewhere is the next logical phase in the buying process. How will you move them from viewer to customer?
Start Investing In Strong Digital Marketing Content
It’s important to understand that great digital marketing content requires an investment. You’ll need to put time, money, and skill into creating the best content you are capable of.
Try to assess what you really need to create the content. Is there special equipment you’ll need to purchase? Do you have someone – yourself included – that can be in front of the camera? What about operating it? Try to think outside the box when you list your needs. Remember, a phone can usually do whatever your content requires, and for less money than specialized equipment. In most cases, your device can handle photos, video, audio, and editing.
Whatever you decide, make sure you avoid taking the “easy” way out. There are lots of ways to get content that might save you time and money, making them really tempting. However, there are a few definite things you want to avoid.
- Stock photos
- Stock video
- Content curation
Unless you are creating content about one of those listed items, try to avoid them. If you have no other choice, then make due with what’s available.
Don’t Get In Over Your Head
When building a strong digital marketing strategy, it’s easy to get in over your head. Never be willing to sacrifice consistency or quality in favor of quantity. Those have to take precedence. Also, do your best not to outpace your budget. You’ve got to bring in more than you’re spending. And never, ever promise more than you can deliver. Your reputation has to hold up.
Make a solid plan using these guidelines, execute effectively, collect data, then modify and adapt. As you do, you will see your new customer base grow bigger than you ever imagined.