Every business, large or small, needs to master the art of marketing. However, maybe not in the way you’d think. Thanks to modern technology, every business can now market themselves online, which means there are more channels for you to utilize and more opportunities to improve your performance.
What’s more is that many of these channels and opportunities exist outside of your typical marketing budget. You may find it hard to justify spending money on billboards or magazine ads when you have an online presence already. For these reasons, mastering the art of marketing online is an important element of your digital strategy.
The Difference Between Offline And Online Marketing
When you think about traditional marketing, you probably imagine billboards, magazine ads, radio ads, and television commercials. While those are all excellent forms of marketing, they might not be as effective online. Why? Simply put, with the click of a button, you can put up a commercial for your product or service and gain a potential customer – maybe even a delighted one.
So instead of reaching out to people through expensive ads in physical publications, you can engage with potential customers through blogs, social media, and other content-generating machines. This content can then be used to attract, retain, and motivate customers. Sounds a little like a game of Telephone to me. And it is.
The Four Ps Of Marketing
To properly market your product or service, you need to know what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. This is usually done through the use of a marketing plan, which is a document that breaks down your objectives and targets, as well as the methods you’ll use to achieve them. (If you need help developing a marketing plan, try out our free tool.)
The most well-known and trusted marketing planner is the 4-P model, which stands for Product, Price, Place, and Promotion.
The first two P’s – Product and Price – determine what you’ll put out there into the world. The last two P’s – Place and Promotion – determine how you’ll get the word out there about your product or service.
Online Marketing Channels And Tools
Now, let’s dive into the good stuff – the channels and tools you need to market your product or service successfully online. Below, we’ll cover the major players and the cool things you can do with them. Keep reading for more information.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Searched based on user queries, SEO (Search Engine Optimization) helps you rank higher on search engines when potential customers type in search queries associated with your business.
You can use keywords in your content, titles, and subheadings to gain a competitive advantage in search. When your web content is associated with keywords, it improves your odds of being found when a customer types in a search query relating to your product or service.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
While SEO focuses on getting your content ranked higher on search engines, you can also benefit from SEM (Search Engine Marketing). As the name suggests, SEM helps you gain a higher rank on search engines through paid ads that target potential customers.
An SEM campaign gives you the flexibility to target the right audience and choose your paid keywords wisely. The advantage of paid ads is that you can measure the results of your campaigns, and optimize your strategy accordingly. You don’t need to worry about losing customers due to overbearing ads as much because they’re more relevant to your target audience.
Social Media Marketing (SMM)
SMM (Social Media Marketing) leverages the power of social media to grow your business. Through this technique, you can gain credibility with customers by sharing and showing them your expertise in your industry.
This strategy can be used to build credibility, generate interest, and promote your product or service. You can use social media to listen and respond to your customers, and increase the chances of them becoming loyal fans of your brand. (If you want to see an amazing tool for doing social media marketing, try out Hootsuite.)
Last but not least, we have video marketing. Thanks to the rise of TikTok and its ilk, more and more people are getting motivated to create short-form videos explaining the whatever it is they’re selling. Those videos make for great marketing material as they’re often entertaining, informative, and offer a quick sales pitch.
TikTok is a place where people come to be entertained, and your video could be the thing that sparks interest, gets them engaged, and eventually turns them into a customer.
The important thing about video marketing is to make sure that you have a strategy in place before you start producing any content. Otherwise, you could end up in a hurry trying to figure out what to put in your next video. Not to mention the fact that a video isn’t as effective as it could be if you don’t know how to use it properly. (Check out our guide to creating an effective sales video.)
When we talk about marketing, we usually think about TV commercials and magazine spreads. However, thanks to the digital age, those same old strategies can be used online as well. The important thing to keep in mind is that with SEO, SEM, and video marketing, you don’t necessarily need to spend a lot of money to get results – you can use free methods and still gain a competitive advantage. (Not to mention the fact that some of these tactics can be used in combination to form a truly effective strategy.)
Whether you have a team of marketers or you’re doing all the dirty work yourself, mastering the art of marketing online requires a bit of a digital strategy.