14 Digital Marketing Steps That Work
Using digital marketing is one of the best things you can do for your business. However, you must understand that digital marketing is also very fluid, dynamic and ever-changing. One day a tactic works perfectly, and the next, it doesn’t.
It is important to know that in digital marketing, the basic foundations have already been established. But it is also important to know that in this set of strategies, tactics and tools, not everything goes for everything, and, as they say in the sector, everything depends.
What you need to do is focus on those firm and stable foundations that have been used from the beginning and have proven to be successful.
- Define your digital marketing goals.
Before you begin, you must be aware of what you want to achieve and how your strategies will help you achieve your business goals.
Important: describe what your differential value is with respect to your competitors; this is very important since, from here, the base of your communication strategy will be created in the different communication channels that you are going to use: social networks, corporate websites, newsletters, videos etc.
When you have a picture of the reason why users will choose your company, that is when you can begin to define your objectives: generate leads; increase the traffic of visits to your website and know your brand; convert visits into online sales; become a reference/expert in your sector
All these objectives are coherent and achievable, and you can think of them as the goal, but there are different paths to reach your goals.
For example, to get traffic to your website, you can use SEO techniques and not spend money or advertise and invest part of your budget so that visits increase faster. Although the result is the same, the consequences vary in the long term.
- Know the main online channels.
There are different ways to reach your goal. It is important that you know them so that you decide which course to follow.
In digital marketing, there are three types of media: paid, earned and owned.
They are those advertising channels within social platforms or search engines that have large numbers of subscribers, where you can invest in obtaining results. They allow you to achieve greater visibility and reach.
- campaigns with influencers
- sponsored content
- Social Media Advertising
- Search campaigns
- Display network campaigns
They are all those actions or interactions in reference channels that are generated spontaneously by recommendation of users, generating additional traffic and favoring its vitalization.
- Comments, likes or likes , retweets, favorites, pins, shares or shared content, +1 etc. on social channels as a result of your marketing, social or communication actions.
- Publications of influential people in your community or influencers.
- Links to brand content. Reviews or reviews of your products made by users.
- Photos, videos and other multimedia material that gives visibility to your brand.
- Comments and references in forums or user communities.
- The external virtualization of your own content, in short, the traditional word of mouth.
As you can see, the arrival of the internet and digital channels have democratized the means of communication and promotion so that each business can manage one or more of these means.
To find out which are the optimal channels for your business, use the following formula: the higher your budget, the more channels and dissemination activities you can manage.
They are the own channels for the communication or service purposes of the company. They help your brand have exposure .
- Social networks
- Understand your target audience.
Before you do anything else, you need to stop and be very sure who your customers are. As a small business, you probably have some satisfied customers. Ask them how they found out about you, what made them convert, what they value about your service or products, and what they value about brands in general.
If you’re good at what you do, you’ll get lots of stories about how your company solved its problems and how you came to improve your life. Gather demographic data from your customers: age, gender, profession, roles in the home, profession, interests, the most used social media channels, etc. All this will help you describe your buyer persona : knowing who your customers are and how they behave online is essential.
In order to send perfectly targeted messages, you must create your buyer persona based on the segments you want to target.
- Put your marketing plan in a document
Do not make the mistake of believing that just by sending your messages, everything is done. To achieve the objectives that you have set out to achieve, you need to design a digital marketing plan.
It is essential that all brands have a marketing plan. This document that includes all the steps to follow to obtain the objectives set, among which are the actions, tactics and means to achieve it, is called a digital marketing plan.
It is not necessary to create a marketing plan to start at the beginning of a calendar year; it can be created at any time or situation, such as:
- When creating a new line of business
- When launching a new product or service
- When we realize that a plan is needed
The marketing plan includes the calendar of actions, the messages to spread, the means to be used, the type of actions to be carried out, the channels to be used and the duration of each one of the actions to be carried out.
Other important elements that are included in the plan are:
- Ideal customer profiles (buyer persona).
- Market studies.
- Company objectives in digital marketing (clear, relevant, achievable). Analysis of the competition.
- Budgets, important sales dates, etc.
It is important that the data we use is reliable. Otherwise, we expose ourselves to deviations in the achievement of our objectives. In addition, the frequent control of the data that is generated will help us to correct errors in the approach.
Data helps us make decisions; this cannot be done by intuition; we have to be precise if we want to get results. Research and analysis are fundamental pieces for the design and implementation of our marketing plan.
However, this will begin to produce its effect when the strategies you have designed are applied intelligently, measured and adapted to your target audience.
- Have a website that is mobile friendly.
Having a website nowadays is not something that can be avoided. The web is the place where your customers will land to make a purchase, it is where they will find you when they search for a product or service like yours.
A professional website also demonstrates credibility. Creating a website can be as cheap or as expensive as you want. The key is that it has a good structure and usability, that it has quality content and is compatible with mobile devices.
Because, let’s face it, most people Google on their phones. Especially if they realize they need something and just want to see what’s there quickly. This means that the first interaction of customers with your brand will be with the mobile version.
Your website should load quickly on both mobile and PC.
- Publish your own blog
Having a blog is as important as having a website. The blog, with its articles, is the tool that will allow you to share valuable content for your audience (such as tutorials, technical data and stories of satisfied customers). In addition, it is a fundamental element for search engine positioning, SEO will make your entries position themselves in prominent places in the search results of users who are looking for products or services like yours.
In addition, the blog can make you become a benchmark in your sector by providing confidence and knowledge in the matter, which can increase traffic to your website and boost your online sales.
- Apply SEO
SEO is a set of actions you can take to increase the chances of your web pages appearing high in search engine results to people searching for keywords related to your business.
There are several rules when it comes to SEO:
- Do your keyword research, choose good keywords and use them appropriately in your content
- Your chosen keyword should be placed within the first 100 words of your blog post or content.
- It must also be in the header and subheadings (at least one)
- It should be placed appropriately throughout the content.
- Create backlinks to high-authority sites
- Create interesting content that will keep your visitors on the page for longer.
- Make sure your page loads quickly
- Make sure your website is mobile friendly
- Ask you’re satisfied customers to write good reviews of your product or service on third-party websites.
- Incorporate social networks
Social networks are the place where all your customers and potential customers are. Therefore, it is necessary to have social media pages. Use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, Snapchat, and other social media channels to communicate with your customers and engage with them on a more personal level.
There are countless ways to use social media for your business. You can create specialized hashtag campaigns, try influencer marketing, create posts about deals; you can create sweepstakes or contests, share your content, manage your online reputation, etc.
“The ultimate goal is to get your customers to follow your business and improve their reach by sharing their content, building loyalty, creating brand awareness, etc.”
- Use content marketing
Content marketing means creating and sharing material online, such as articles and videos, in order to achieve certain objectives. This strategy does not explicitly advertise your brand but instead informs your audience, stimulates interest, and builds a community around your brand.
Content marketing is a fundamental tool for any brand that wants to succeed. Content can be created to build awareness, relationships, and engagement with customers. Sometimes content can also increase traffic and sales.
- Put your business on the map
There are many platforms for local businesses where you can sign up to publicize your business. Options like Google My Business, Small Business, Yahoo, and Yelp, among others.
Keep in mind that by providing the data, location, hours, website, telephone numbers, email, etc., you are increasing the visibility of your business and making it easier for your customers to locate you, especially when they use search terms such as “nearby”. from me” or “to take away”.
- Apply CRO
Conversion Rate Optimization ( CRO) is a process of increasing the proportion of your website visitors who complete a desired action, such as purchasing or signing up.
You can do this as follows:
- Emphasize relevant links on your homepage, so they entice readers to click on them (such as experimenting with copy, colour, placement, and fonts)
- Optimizing your pricing pages (for example, showing the smallest and most expensive package and then highlighting the medium package as the best value)
- Offering lead magnets
- Creation of optimized landing pages
- Add calls to action to your blog.
There are many more strategies, but these are some examples of what you can do to optimize your conversion rate. Why not try it?
- Get the most out of Google’s free tools
If you’re worried about your initial budget, here’s some good news: Google has several free platforms that you can use to learn about trending topics, find out how many visits your website receives, and even edit documents.
In particular, we recommend these tools:
- Google Analytics to analyze the data from your website and get to know the people who visit you better.
- Google Ads to manage advertising and ads in the search engine and in the Google partner network.
- Google Search Console to find out how your web page appears in search results.
- Google Trends to compare the popularity of one or more phrases or keywords.
- Google My Business for customers to find your company depending on your geographic location.
- Google Alerts to find out about news, web pages, blogs, videos and groups that talk about a topic that is of interest to you.
- Google Calendar to share events and organize your schedule.
- Google Drive to store, create, modify and share documents.
- YouTube to watch and share videos.
The importance of these tools lies not only in how much they make your job easier but also in how they help you measure your results. For example: if you created a web page and optimized it for SEO with Analytics you should see a gradual increase in web traffic from when you implemented this tactic until a few months later.
Launch an Email Marketing campaign; even with the rise of social networks, emails have remained fundamental pieces of digital marketing strategies.
To get the most out of this channel, ask yourself:
- How often do I want to send emails? Weekly, biweekly, monthly?
- What kind of content do I want to send? Newsletters, announcements, campaigns, product updates, invitations to events?
- What capacity to send emails do I need?
- What providers offer me what I need?
When you write your emails, make sure that the “Subject” texts are attractive enough so that readers want to open them. Keep messages concise, relevant, and easy to understand. And do not miss the opportunity to include calls to action so that they visit your website or online store.
- Be aware of paid advertising
Without a doubt, with the tactics that we mentioned previously -such as SEO and social networks-, digital marketing for SMEs can be successful. But if you want to up the ante and reach more people or increase your visits a little faster, you can consider the option of paying for advertising space on the internet.
There are many ways to advertise for pay: post ads on social media like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn; sponsor a web series or podcast; partner with an influencer or use pay-per-click (PPC) advertising on search engines and other websites.
To implement this tactic, you only need to choose the objective you want to achieve with your ad, decide what type of campaign you are going to launch (either image, text or video) and establish a monthly budget.
Tip: in the PPC scheme, you have the advantage that you only pay when users interact with your ad.
- Analyze the data of your digital marketing strategies.
This is a crucial part of your plan. After applying any or all of these strategies, you should analyze your success to understand what you did well and where you made mistakes. This is an ongoing process that will allow you to always get better and better at delivering messages and getting conversions.
It’s time to start using digital marketing for your small business.
All of these strategies, by themselves, may not show much success. However, combining them together can strike a perfect balance. You just have to plan your strategy correctly and adjust the proportions of each component to find the sweet spot for your business.
Remember that there is no final destination in digital marketing. In the end, it’s a process where you have to make informed decisions and use extensive analytics to improve and adapt.
Small businesses thrive on digital marketing because it opens many doors for them and makes it easier for them to access highly specific niche markets and people who might never have heard of you otherwise.
Your best bet will be to use all of these strategies, work on your brand, and ultimately show the world what you’re all about.
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