Digital marketing and how to make it work for smaller businesses
There are a number of ways which small and medium sized businesses can benefit from digital marketing, as part of their marketing mix. Although, of course, online marketing is not a magic bullet, it can help to boost website visibility, drive customers to your website, nurture existing client relationships and help to maximise website conversions.
So, how can your small business leverage the benefits of digital marketing?
For many digital marketing newbies, social media is the obvious place to start. The barriers to entry are pretty low and most people are familiar with the platforms from using them so the learning curve is not too steep. You can be up and running with a social media account within a matter of minutes. Posting isn’t very time consuming, and can be done direct from your mobile – something which even the busiest of us should be able to manage.
What to post is a different question and one which we have look at in previous blog posts – What should my business be sharing on social media and Getting started with Instagram for Business. Social media tends to work better for some types of businesses than others as it relies on engagement to be very beneficial. Although, having social media accounts does count when it comes to search engine visibility so even businesses who get less social engagement can still benefit.
Content is King is still the rallying cry and certainly it is a very important part of the picture. But what do we mean by ‘content’? Content is a broad term and really refers to anything on your website or other digital channels which you put together with the aim of informing and entertaining your audience. This could be informative content on your website itself, a blog, online video, a newsletter or events pages as well as the content which is posted to social media. Website content has become one of the most important factors when looking at Search Engine Optimisation and is a great tool for ‘inbound’ marketing. For more on the basics of writing for optimisation - see our blog How do you write SEO friendly web copy.
Bear in mind statistics say that as much as 75% of the traffic to a website is visitors who are in the ‘research phase of their buying journey’ which is another way of saying that they are online looking for information. How content marketing helps here is by drawing potential customers towards your website by providing the information which they are looking for. This might be an information sheet, product data, video, white paper downloads or a blog post. Once there, you have the opportunity to try and capture their information as well as showcase your products and demonstrate your expertise – this works which ever industry type you are involved in.
Email marketing is one of the lowest cost, highest return forms of digital marketing and can be a highly effective way of keeping in touch with both new and prospective customers. Whether you use your email list to let customers know about new products, special offers or just keep them up to date with what is happening with your business – email is a great way or doing this. It can also be used as an effective way of moving people through their ‘buyers journey’ from enquiry to satisfied customer. Email apps like Mailchimp enable you to segment your mailing list and send targeted information to specific people. This makes it possible to send targeted, personalised messages quickly and very cheaply. Email has an even higher market penetration than social media and is often accessed multiple times a day.
Whatever the size and type of business, there is a digital marketing strategy which can help – for more information on the different types of digital marketing available and how to create a strategy – visit our website and download our free guides covering online marketing channels, personas and content planning. For a free, personalised consultation and recommendation – visit www.wearerumble.co.uk/contact to get in touch.