As a successful small business owner, you’ve likely been applying digital media techniques to your marketing strategy for many years. It is important to understand that because digital marketing is still in its infancy, it is evolving all the time. While technology advancements have slowed a little and become more predictable, digital marketing techniques have been updated and adapted constantly.
This article is an update on the leading digital marketing strategies, such as search engine optimization (SEO) and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. We aim to help you understand how core strategies have changed and how you can adapt your marketing to optimize online marketing tools.
Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing needs to be a focus for all online businesses. Without a social media presence, you will unlikely attract a new audience. Consumers do not trust a company that does not have a SM presence or one that does not post regular updates.
However, your SM presence can be selective. Your brand is likely to connect with only selective demographics. If your brand is aimed at a younger audience, Instagram tends to be a good platform. To connect with professionals, LinkedIn remains a good platform for connections. Using your customer persona, you can determine which platform will be the best option for your business.
- YouTube: Teens (18+)
- TikToc: Teens (18+)
- Instagram: Young adults (18-29)
- Facebook / Meta: Adults (30-60)
- LinkedIn: Professionals (30+)
The quality of your posts is also important. You can post 3 times a day or three times a week, but if your content is not adding value to the experience of your audience, it is only hurting your brand.
Engaging content includes:
- Industry news
- Tutorials on how to use products
- Videos with key staff or leaders
Posts need to be visually engaging as well as well written. Using infographics, videos, reels, and photos can help get the attention of a saturated audience online.
There are many SM tools unique to each platform, and some paid channels you can access to target the audience you desire.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is key to getting new traffic and attention for your business. Reaching the top of search engine results pages (SERPs) is challenging, but there are many things you can do to improve your ranking.
First, you need to understand how your customer persona is searching for your services. For example, if you are selling business consulting services, you need to determine the keywords customers are using to find these services. For example, a customer might type ‘B2B team management’. If this is a service you offer, there are ways to optimize your site and become a first-page search result.
To enhance your site’s SEO, you can do the following:
- Keyword Research: Learn what terms people use when searching for businesses like yours. Tools like Google Keyword Planner or SEMrush can inform you of popular and relevant keywords.
- On-Page SEO: Using keyword research, you need to add the relevant words and terms to your site.
- Quality Content: Publish engaging content that adds value to your audience’s experience while seamlessly incorporating researched keywords.
- Backlinks: Backlinks from other trusted sites signal to search engines that your site is trusted and an authority.
In 2020, there were an average of over 6 billion searches per day. Your site needs to focus on SEO to reach the maximum audience possible.
When you provide resources such as guides, blogs, and tutorials, your brand becomes a valuable resource.
SEO takes time. Agencies that specialize in SEO will often impress upon clients that results cannot be measured for at least six months. It is a long-term strategy that needs regular assessment and consistent attention to garner results.
Google My Business (GMB)
Google My Business (GMB) is a free Google tool that lets companies manage their online presence on the search engine. Using GMB, your business information can be consistent across Search and Maps.
When a potential customer searches for your product or service on Google they’ll see an information panel about your company in the search results if you’ve used GMB. It’s a snapshot of the essential information about your business, such as your:
- Contact Information: Email, phone numbers, and addresses.
- Business Hours.
- Services: A brief of your business activities.
- Reviews: Feedback from customers with star ratings and dates as well as impressions of your customers.
One of the most important sections is the customer reviews. When a potential customer is searching online, they will read these reviews to better understand your business. If you get negative reviews, it is important to respond as you would respond to positive reviews. This customer engagement lets people know you care about your customers and improving your business. All reviews should be replied to in a tone that is accepting and never condescending. Remember, for each review you read there are at least 50 people talking about your business who don’t take the time to write, but will talk to friends, family, and coworkers.
A content marketing strategy is essential for digital businesses. When you offer relevant, valuable content, you’re connecting with your audience rather than selling to your audience. This helps you to establish trust and elevates you to a leadership position in your field.
Content is your brand’s way of giving something to customers. The more valuable your content is to your audience, the more motivated they are to make purchases and stay loyal to your brand.
Research shows that:
- 70% of consumers prefer content over ads when learning about a brand
- 60% of businesses that post blogs acquire more customers
Your content strategy needs to include:
- Your Audience: An understanding of who you are writing for and what information will be valuable to them.
- Consistency: Post updates and blogs to your social media and site on a regular schedule to keep people engaged. For example, always post your blog on the third Wednesday of the month.
- SEO: Add keywords and longtail keywords to your content in a natural tone. If it sounds forced, leave it out or write about a different topic.
Content marketing is more than just blogs. Creating video content and other interactive content is a great way to boost engagement. If you are unsure, you should look at what competitors are posting and what is popular. Think about how you can create similar content that adds value to the customer experience.
Email marketing remains one of the most powerful ways to connect with audiences. It’s personal and delivers a message that is for that customer. Carefully segmented email lists allow you to create multiple messages and landing pages
When you send an email, it should include something that further personalizes and engages customers:
- Free eBooks
- Exclusive discounts
- Tutorial videos
Know the privacy requirements of the region in which your site is accessible before gathering customer data, and be sure you include easy unsubscribe options for people who choose to delete their data from your contact list.
Relevant Business Directories
You need to ensure your business is listed on online registries. This gives your business automatic approval from trusted online sources and this can lead to conversions from customers who are unsure.
Some of the most popular directories for small businesses include:
- Google My Business
Be sure to be selective about the directories you choose. A B2B advertising agency will not need to be on Yelp but will do well on LinkedIn. Think about your strategy and goals when choosing which platforms will best serve your marketing needs.
Digital marketing has evolved over the past few years. Reaching audiences on mobile, apps, and computers is easier than ever in terms of opportunity, and harder than ever in terms of attention. Develop a strategy that is focused on your customer persona and leverages the platforms that host your target audience.
Know Your Market
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