Business Insights

Business Insights

Five Key Ways To Strengthen Your Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is a core part of how brands present themselves in the world today. What’s more, it offers access to some of the most affordable and the most scalable channels available. Indeed, digital campaigns offer a degree of transparency and measurability that was never previously possible. Businesses can launch initiatives, measure performance and rapidly iterate and optimise as results come in, thereby minimising waste and maximising ROI. Armed with concrete objectives and a qualified process for testing hypotheses, digital marketing offers a huge opportunity for businesses of all sizes.

Furthermore, there’s an unparalleled degree of potential to target campaigns to different users and audience segments – putting the right messaging to the right users at the right time. Here are five crucial elements of any strong digital marketing campaign.

Website

Your website is the spine of your online presence. It provides your customers with direct access to your brand, as well as a platform to make sales and to qualify leads. It also gives you an almost unlimited degree of control to measure performance and to optimise, to get the best results possible.

There are plenty of questions to ask yourself about your approach, though. If you’re directing traffic to landing pages via ads, does the on-page copy connect with the ad design? Are your landing pages targeted to match customer expectations? And do they have strong calls to action, which get the results you need? If the answer to any of these questions is “No,” or “I don’t know,” then there’s room for improvement.

Providing meaningful, relevant and sharable content for your audience, meanwhile, can be a highly effective approach – building brand awareness and deep, long-term customer relationships. Keyword-rich content can also be a powerful part of a broader SEO strategy – while effective promotion of articles can readily be used to earn backlinks.

Database

Your customer database is among your most valuable assets. The individuals on your database have either bought your products or services in the past or have shown a proven interest in doing so. That means that they’re precisely the people who you want to be talking to and pitching to. Their demographic details, moreover, will give you a good idea of the larger market that you should be targeting, while their behaviour will demonstrate how real people interact with your offering. Furthermore, you can reach them by email at virtually no cost – and you can test and optimise your campaigns to get the best performance possible.

You can also achieve significant additional value by segmenting your database. This might mean splitting it between individuals who have and haven’t made purchases or it might mean breaking audiences down by customer archetype – for example, small businesses clients versus enterprise partners. Doing so will allow you to target your messaging far more effectively.

It also pays to keep your database tidy. Having a chaotic database, or duplicating customer details, will significantly reduce its value. Meanwhile, emailing users who aren’t interested in your messaging or sending out significant numbers of emails to incorrect addresses will soon get your mailers labelled as spam and your email messages blocked and worse still attract large fines if you fall foul of the new GDPR rules.

 

CRM

Your Customer Relationship Management tools can powerfully enhance your database – not just giving you immediate access to your customer details, but also enriching that information. Who are your contacts within a given client organisation? What are there service expectations? And when did someone from your organisation last talk to them, and when should you next reach out to them?

Furthermore, your CRM will allow you to build a revenue forecast – how much is a given client worth? How much business is your team developing? And does the value of that business support the costs of your organisation? By matching revenue to spend, your CRM can give you precise insights into the ROI of your customers and of specific audience segments. And this isn’t just for B2B businesses, but for B2C companies connecting with suppliers and retailers as well as a wider consumer market.

In the early days, the structure of your CRM can be relatively simple – just as long as it is populated consistently. You can then build and develop it, as your requirements grow.

 

Search marketing

Reaching people who are searching for your brand (or related keywords, or the names of your competitors) can be a highly effective way of finding new business. After all, someone searching for terms related to your business may very well be interested in your offering.

The key thing is to gauge performance against revenue and ROI. If ads aren’t profitable, then pull them. Within that, you may want to consider using customer lifetime value (CLTV) rather than purchase price to measure profitability. After all, if a customer will spend £1,000 with the company over the course of the relationship then it doesn’t make sense to gauge profit against a single £100 purchase. It will, of course, be essential to ensure that the CLTV for acquired users matches other audience segments, to ensure that the sums ultimately add up.

Applying negative keywords can also be extremely valuable. If you sell double-glazing, but don’t provide maintenance services, for example, then you may well want to include the expression ‘double-glazing’ but exclude the terms ‘fixing’ or ‘broken’. Equally, if you want to weed out difficult customers you might want to avoid advertising to people searching for ‘bargains’.

 

Social media

Despite what you might think, having a strong social media presence isn’t just about staying in contact with your fans and preaching to the converted. Indeed, people researching your business before a purchase might well check you out on Facebook or LinkedIn – while many customers will contact you on your social channels with queries or complaints (and they’ll often expect a quick answer in return). In many respects, your social media channels are the public face of your company – directing users back to your website, and acting as distribution channels for your content and your messaging.

Of course, social media platforms also offer powerful tools to target advertising and to reach new customers. And, much like search advertising, measurement of results and performance should be a fundamentally part of the process, quickly iterating and optimising campaigns in order to drive the most value possible.

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Peter Craven

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