Digital marketing is an umbrella term for anything which promotes your company online – and there are lots of tools that you can use to achieve your objectives. The question most businesses have is, where do they start? Is it with social media, pay per click, e-shots or banner adverts? Here are the first three things that we’d suggest.
Digital marketing has to start with your website, which tells the world who you are and what you do. With more than 80% of the UK using the internet on a regular basis to search for goods and services, your website is a window for visitors to look through and decide if they want to become a customer.
Making your website memorable good design and creative copy is one aspect of your website, ensuring the site flows and that the calls to action throughout are productive, is another, but getting people onto your website is the real challenge.
Driving traffic to your website should be supported by SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), although it’s often misunderstood. If your website uses SEO friendly techniques, it will bring more visitors to your site by placing it nearer the top of the list of search results – and ideally this means Google search as more than 90% of the UK’s internet enquiries are via the search engine Google.
Improving SEO is a specific skill, and as developer of more than 500 websites, our SEO expert Debbie and website designer Andy, know this arena better than any. There’s lots of technical changes you can make to improve your site in Google’s eyes (meta tags, tagging images and much more) however, perhaps one of the simplest ways of improving your business’ SEO is by writing relevant and regular content for your website.
Your next digital marketing step will depend on your customers and your digital marketing objectives, however, a popular second stop on the digital journey is to begin a social media programme.
Third party social media sites will digitally market your company to a wide range of potential customers – driven by the content that you create. Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are amongst the most popular and can all present a persona of your business to the marketplace.
However, there’s lots more to social media and if you’re not sure what it’s all about, then take a look at one of my previous Business Matters’ columns ‘Using social media for your business?’ and find out a little more about the topic and how social media channels might work for your business.
Now before you switch straight off – stop! Let us explain a few misconceptions to you. Firstly, email marketing communications, fall into two categories – emails which are unsolicited (data that us either purchased or phished) and those which are sent out to a list of recipients who have signed up for a newsletter on your website. Unsolicited emails are the type of communications that gives all e-shots a bad reputation.
If you have people that have signed up to receive information about your company, then that is what they want – and it’s your opportunity to showcase your company, the work you do and your products and/or services. It’s also your chance to provide a warm and loyal base of customers and interested parties with special offers, previews, extra information on relevant topics, for example like legislation, market developments or your expert advice. In short, it’s your chance to develop a positive and productive relationship with your subscribers that will lead to their first, or additional commissions, from your firm.
Secondly there are different types of e-communications – one size does not fit all. These are our definitions of e-communications at Gravity Digital:
- E-briefings: New and important information that’s useful to the person reading it. A more detailed and serious communication than an e-shot or e-bulletin.
- E-bulletins: This is news and stories of interest to its readers, using eye-catching images as well as copy. This differs from an e-shot and e-briefing.
- E-shots: A marketing promotion sent by email, usually including both words and images. E-shots can contain a variety of information, however, it is an email promotion that contains stories/copy/words of a self-promotional nature.
These are just three of the tools that could set you on the road to successful digital marketing and although they are all useful tools, we’d still recommend calling to an expert to talk through your options.