If you’re reading this, I assume you’re either passionate about digital marketing or already do some kind of digital marketing (or both!).
If you’re keen to get started, you’ve come to the right place. In this blog post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about marketing online including:
The Basics of Online Marketing
In case you’re wondering, ‘online marketing’ refers to marketing products or services using digital strategies and platforms (e.g., social media, email, etc.).
Depending on your background and the industry you’re in, you may be familiar with certain terms such as:
- Search engine optimization (SEO)
- Search engine marketing (SEM)
- Google AdWords
- Facebook Ads
- Pay-per-click (PPC)
- Manual blog posting
If you’re not familiar with these terms, don’t worry – we’ll cover everything you need to know about SEO, SEM, Google AdWords, Facebook Ads, and pay-per-click (PPC) in this article. But first, let’s discuss the basics of online marketing.
Marketing On Different Platforms
Depending on your target audience and the type of content you create, you may decide to focus on one particular platform or multiple platforms.
For example, if you’re targeting small businesses and you know that they’re more likely to be found on Facebook than on a blog, you may decide to focus on Facebook Ads to gain more visibility.
But if you’re targeting consumers and you know that they’re more likely to engage with content that appears to be written by someone they know, you may decide to opt for a blog platform in order to gain credibility.
In any case, make sure that you keep your target audience in mind when choosing which platforms to focus on. This way, you’ll be able to choose the right mix of content to reach the people most likely to be interested in your product or service.
The Importance of Keywords
Keywords are phrases or words used to find specific content online.
For example, if you’re trying to promote a luxury hotel, you may decide to target the word ‘vacation’ as a keyword because you know that people using that term are likely to be interested in your hotel.
You can find free keyword tools online that you can use to find the most popular keywords and phrases related to your product or service.
When using these tools, make sure to add an ‘s’ at the end of the term (i.e., ‘vacation package’) to ensure that you choose the right synonyms. For example, ‘vacation’ may return multiple results when used as a keyword including:
In addition to choosing the right keywords, make sure to use these tools regularly to find new phrases and words that you can use to optimize your content.
How to Measure the Success of Your Online Marketing Efforts
As you’ve probably guessed, once you’ve started establishing the basics of online marketing, the next step is to start measuring its effectiveness.
To do this, you’ll want to use tools that can track a variety of metrics including (but not limited to):
- Website traffic (including SEO, social media, and direct traffic)
- Email opening rates
- Click-through rates
- Conversion rates (e.g., purchases, sign ups, etc.)
- Landing page metrics (e.g., bounce rates, time on page, etc.)
- Social media metrics (e.g., following, fans, etc.)
If you’re just getting started, try a free trial of Google Analytics for your web browser. Once you’ve set this up, you’ll be able to track all of the traffic coming to your website, as well as how you’re performing on various platforms (e.g., social media, email, etc.).
You can also use Google Search Console (formerly known as Google Webmaster Tools) to track and analyze your website’s organic search performance in real-time.
Online Marketing Specialties Are Endless
Even though we’ve discussed the basics of online marketing, the field is very broad and it’s almost certain that you’ll be able to choose your specialty and develop your career path.
Depending on your interests, you may end up choosing a career that involves marketing technology, social media marketing, or marketing analytics. If you’re interested in SEO or search engine marketing, for example, you may decide to enter the field and specialize in this area.
However, as you’re still in school or have just graduated, consider pursuing an internship or a job in a related field (e.g., marketing analytics) to gain experience and establish a network of professionals you can tap into for future endeavors.
Now that you’re equipped with the basics of online marketing, you may want to consider how you can further develop your knowledge.
To start, you may want to consider taking a certification course in SEO, social media marketing, or marketing analytics. Doing this will not only establish your expertise, but also give you the opportunity to showcase your knowledge and connect with professional counterparts.
On that note, make sure to connect with other marketers and content creators online – whether you’re a seasoned marketer or just starting out – to get advice, collaborate, and gain credibility.
Last but not least, make sure to develop a professional network of colleagues and advisors. These people can help you navigate the complex world of business, advance your career, and give you advice on creating a marketing plan.