If you’re looking for a way to attract potential customers to your business, you’ve probably considered trying online marketing. Overnight, you become familiar with Facebook ads, Instagram stories, and YouTube videos.
While it’s essential to ensure your online marketing efforts are reaching your target audience, it’s crucial to not get too distracted by the newest shiny objects.
To assist you in avoiding marketing hype, we’ve compiled a list of the most basic – yet essential – guidelines for launching and growing a successful local online marketing campaign.
Set A Budget
Just like any other big purchase – like a home renovation or a new car – setting a budget is essential for the long-term success of your online marketing campaign. Not only will you be able to control your spending, but you’ll also know exactly what you’re spending your hard-earned money on.
Your budget should reflect what you’re capable of spending, considering the size of your community, target audience, and the amount of content you plan to create. Remember, you’re investing in your business, so be sure to budget for salaries, office space, and other costs associated with running a small business.
Choose The Right Platform
It’s important to consider which platform your ideal audience is spending their time on, which platforms they’re already connected to, and which platforms you can effectively access.
In your business plan, you need to establish the demographics, psychographics, and digital behaviors of your ideal buyer, so it’s essential to consider which platforms they use to access content and products related to your niche, and which platforms you should be using to reach them.
If your ideal audience is already on social media, you should consider looking into Facebook ads, Instagram stories, and YouTube videos. For many businesses, these are some of the most effective platforms for marketing.
On the other hand, if you’re looking to reach a more traditional audience, like adults over the age of 50, you might consider a print ad in a magazine or newspaper – or even an OOH billboard if you have the budget for it.
Create A Credible Website
A website is the first thing visitors will see when they visit your business’s website, so make sure it’s a good impression. In addition to looking professional, your website should also be easy to navigate and have the information your target audience is looking for.
Even better, you can use the same tool millions of others are using to create their websites – WordPress. With WordPress, you can literally build a website in minutes. Plus, with the hundreds of free themes and premium plugins available out there, you’re guaranteed to find something that’ll fit your needs.
If you have limited funds, consider using a free website builder, like Shopify, that offer limited functionality. This way, you’ll be able to save money for other marketing expenses.
Determine Goals, Objectives, And Metrics
Setting clear objectives and identifying measurable metrics is essential for any marketing campaign. Without them, it’s difficult to determine whether your campaign was a success or a failure. To that end, consider creating a business plan that contains specific goals and measurable objectives for your online marketing efforts.
For example, if your goal is to generate $20,000 in monthly revenue, you may consider using a conversion rate of 0.5% – which means you’ll need to convert 500 potential customers into paying subscribers – to achieve this goal.
Keep in mind that like any other element of your business plan, your marketing plan should be continually reassessed and updated as your business and marketing objectives change.
Build A Community
The last thing you want to do is overwhelm your audience with too much content too quickly. Instead, you should consider building a small community of engaged individuals who are interested in your product or service.
You can do this by sharing valuable content regularly, while establishing yourself as a thought leader in your industry. If you have access to influential bloggers, journalists, or other content creators, consider asking them to contribute content to your cause.
The goal is to create online communities where individuals feel compelled to share your content, or at the very least, visit regularly to read what you have to say.
Measure The Results Of Your Campaign
The only way you’ll know if your online marketing efforts were successful or not is if you measure them. In addition to setting a budget, you may consider using a free tool like Google Analytics to track the results of your campaign.
You can use Google Analytics to track the visitors to your website, how long they spend on the site, and what actions (i.e., page views, site visits, contact form submissions, etc.) lead them to take.
With this information, you can make adjustments to improve the effectiveness of your campaign. And if you aren’t seeing the results you’re looking for, it’s easy enough to repeat the process.
The more you put in it, the more you get out of it. Developing an effective local online marketing strategy requires a lot of effort, but the payoffs can be invaluable.