In today’s world, being online is not a choice – it’s a necessity. With businesses globalizing and the internet expanding its reach, being ‘digital’ is now a necessary part of any business’ success.
However, this online-first mindset can cause companies to ignore the importance of being ‘Offline’ – operating through traditional channels like stores and showrooms, websites and social media.
Why is offline strategy still important?
The fact is that people still like to be engaged with a brand, even when they are not physically in a business’ store. They may like to browse a website for news and reviews or check out an Instagram page to see what’s new with the company. All of these actions indicate that offline strategy is still very much alive and well.
But how can an organization’s physical presence remain integral to its strategy when it operates primarily online?
The answer is to integrate the two. Companies can no longer afford to be focused on one channel or the other – marketing through both traditional and digital channels to drive business success.
Being ‘digital first’ or’social media first’ can help – but it can also handicap a company. To flourish, businesses must understand the interplay between the two, and how to benefit from both approaches.
Create A Digital Footprint
The first step towards integration is to create a digital footprint. Simply put, a company’s digital footprint is the collection of digital channels that it operates through. The more channels there are, the greater the chance of reaching more customers and growing the business – provided that these channels are effective and reputable.
This might mean setting up blog articles and social media accounts to attract and engage with customers, or running digital ads on various platforms to grow brand awareness.
However, the company’s digital channels don’t necessarily have to reside within the same platform. For example, YouTube is a fantastic place to host videos, but also possesses a considerable social media aspect that could be used to engage with customers.
Use Digital Tools To Their Advantage
Once you have a solid foundation in place, you can use your digital channels to their advantage. The more effective and efficient your digital presence is, the better – especially if you want to drive sales and attract new customers.
To achieve this, digital tools like Google Analytics can be used to track the success of different channels and determine which ones are performing best.
For example, while your website might be getting lots of traffic, your videos could potentially be more effective at driving conversions – particularly if they are well-designed and interesting enough.
It’s also important to track how each of your social media channels is performing. Do some of them work better than others? Which platforms are generating the most buzz and engagement? By understanding the answers to these questions, you can create more streamlined and effective social media campaigns.
With more and more customers and clients operating online, the importance of having a physical presence – whether through a store or showroom – has never been more vital. And the best way to reach customers and establish yourself as an authoritative source in your industry is through content.
The combination of physical and digital marketing can be extremely powerful – as long as both elements work together to drive sales.