In this day and age, there are more digital marketing channels available to you than ever before. That gives you more scope for marketing, allowing you to find your audience and hone in on them. However, not all digital marketing channels are going to be right for you. You’ll need to find the channels that let you reach your audience, and let them know who you are.
Before you start creating your digital strategy, you need to identify which channels you should be using. Here’s how you can do so, so you’ll get the most out of your marketing.
Understand Different Marketing Strategies
Before doing anything else, it’s important to understand general marketing strategies. This is especially true if you’re a new business and haven’t had to look into marketing before. There are lots of companies out there that promise to get you dramatic results when you pay them, but don’t take them at their word. While some are genuine, others will prey on those just starting out to take their money.
You don’t want to be left without the results you want, so start researching basic marketing strategies, so you can see what’s involved and what you can expect from them.
Work Out Your Objectives
Now, you need to think about the objectives you have when it comes to your marketing. It’s vital that you set goals, as without them you won’t be able to create an effective marketing strategy. You also won’t be able to measure your success with a vague goal, so you won’t be able to understand whether your strategy is working.
When creating goals, try to be as specific as possible. For example, do you want to build brand recognition? Drive traffic to your website? Boost your ROI?
A good way of setting goals is to use the SMART model. This helps you think about the quality of your goals. They need to be:
When you use that model, you’ll be able to form goals that work for you and your business.
Research The Costs Involved
All marketing will cost your business something, so you’ll need to be able to set a budget and work out how much you’ll need to spend. This is going to require some more research on your part.
You’ll see that some people recommend trying to put together a marketing strategy for free. It’s certainly possible, but as the saying goes, you get what you pay for. Also, remember that your time equals money. If you’re working on a marketing strategy, then it needs to be paying off in the long run.
‘Many companies choose to work with a marketing agency to put together a strategy’ says April Dawes. ‘You will need to put aside more cash in order to do so, but you’re going to get more consistent results.’
Decide On A Budget
Now you have an idea of the costs involved in marketing, you’ll be able to set a budget for your endeavours. The amount you have to play with has an effect on which digital channels you use, so keep this in mind. Some are going to be almost free, like posting on social media. Others, like paying for Google Ads, can get pricey.
When deciding on a budget, don’t forget about the ROI. While you may have to initially invest some capital into a channel, the ROI on it may be better than another channel that’s cheaper.
For example, if you post on social media, you may get a handful of likes, and a couple of people sharing your post. If you create an evergreen blog post though, that’s going to show up in search results months from now, and average hundreds of views a month. As you can see, the blog post takes more time and effort, as well as money, but it gets better results overall.
When deciding on your budget, there will be a few things to consider. Firstly, will you be doing marketing in-house, or will you outsource to an agency? What marketing tools and software will you use? Also, try comparing costs per marketing channel, as this will help you decide on the right one for you.
Identify Your Target Audience
If you haven’t worked out your target audience yet, now is the time to do so. The better you know your audience, the better you can cater to their needs. Not sure which channels they tend to be on? Then you’ll need to do some market research to find out.
You need to know everything about how they spend time online. Where do they spend time online? What kind of content are they looking for? How do they consume content? If you know these things, then you can start creating content that they’ll start flocking to.
If you’re still not sure, a good tactic is to take a look at what your direct competitors are doing. What kind of content are they creating, and where do they publish it? That shows you what’s working for them, and you can do the same. Using an analytics tool like BuzzSumo or Alexa can help you here, too.
Picking The Right Digital Marketing Channel
With all this behind you, you’re now ready to start considering different marketing channels. There are a lot of different options, so let’s see what’s available to you.
1. Content Marketing
When it comes to digital marketing, this is a channel that every marketer should be using. With content marketing, you’ll be creating an online presence that allows potential customers to find you when they’re looking for products like yours.
What does a content marketing strategy look like? It’s all about creating that presence and answering the questions that your audience has. When you create good content, you’re doing that as well as gaining authority in your area of expertise, as well as increasing traffic to your website.
There are a huge amount of content types that you can use in this strategy. You can create all kinds of content just on your website, such as blogs, listicles, guides, interviews, and so on. You can also create social media posts, and add content such as infographics. There’s also the option to create press releases, white papers, eBooks, and even more.
‘Overall, content marketing is perfect lead generation, building authority, and brand awareness’ says technical writer Shane Andrews. ‘You’re creating awareness of who you are and what you do, and bringing in those customers to your site.’
2. Email Marketing
In the age of content marketing, email marketing feels somewhat outdated. However, nothing could be further from the truth. On average, email marketing has an ROI of 4,200%, or $42 back for every dollar spent. As such, it’s something that can generate a lot of business for you.
It’s effective because it’s inexpensive, yet a great way of building trust with your audience. You can also easily track the effectiveness of your emails, so you can see what’s working for you, and what isn’t. Plus, users are in their emails every single day. Why not meet them where they are?
As such, email marketing is best for lead generation, generating ROI, relationship building, and brand awareness.
3. Social Media Marketing
We touched on social media in content marketing, but social media marketing is a channel all on its own. It’s the most personal option, as you’ll be creating a dialogue with your audience. When you create posts, you’ll be talking directly to them.
When you speak with them, you’re creating that relationship and building trust. Plus, as you’ll have a following, you can research your audience to see what else they’re following. That helps you create subsequent marketing plans.
You will need to find what platforms your audience are using. Some are going to be more drawn to visual platforms like Instagram, while others will be on sites like Twitter and Facebook where they can share ideas. You should find this out when you’re investigating your audience.
4. Video Marketing
As of 2020, around 85% of marketers have used YouTube as a marketing tool. It’s become a huge media tool that you need to be taking advantage of, as so many people use it regularly. If you’re there, you can spread brand awareness, and drive traffic to your website.
When creating videos, you’ve got lots of different options. For example, presentations and demos may be useful to your strategy. You can film interviews with relevant experts, create tutorials on how to use your product, and so on.
If you optimize your videos to get them in front of the right audience, then you can really make an impact.
These are just a few channels that you can use in your digital marketing strategy. Put them to good use, and find the channels that your audiences are already using.
How To Spot The Best Digital Marketing Channels For Your Business