Many marketers, bloggers, and social media users believe in the ‘old school’ way of doing things. They think that just by posting on social media, they’ll attract potential customers to their products or services. But, is that really the case? Is it as easy as just posting on social media and getting customers?
Traditional forms of marketing, like radio and TV adverts, print media, and billboards, still have their place. But, as online media continues to evolve and change the face of modern marketing, what is the importance of traditional offline marketing?
With the explosion in online marketing, marketing managers need to understand the importance of measuring and analysing marketing performance. In this article, we’ll discuss what are the most effective online marketing strategies, the data needed to measure their success, and how to use this data to optimise future campaign performance.
Effective Online Marketing Strategies
To be effective, online marketing campaigns must be measured and evaluated against specific goals and KPIs. Without these, marketing would be nothing more than a guessing game – throwing money at content creators (often cheaply) to see what sticks. Or, alternatively, trying to boost organic traffic to a site through paid ads. Neither of these tactics make for effective or efficient marketing.
Thankfully, with the right data and analysis tools, we can create highly effective marketing strategies that are measurable and, above all, useful. Let’s take a look at some of the most prominent ones.
Search engine optimisation (SEO) is, without a doubt, one of the most prominent and effective forms of online marketing. Simply put, SEO is the art and science of getting traffic from organic (non-paid) searches on search engines like Google.
The success of an SEO campaign really depends on a number of factors, such as the popularity of your product or service in the given niche, the strength of your internet marketing team, and the consistency with which you implement your SEO strategies. Let’s look at each one of these in turn.
Product Or Service Popularity
If you happen to be promoting a brick-and-mortar business, the first thing you might want to work on is increasing the popularity of your product or service in the minds of your target audience. To achieve this, you can start by conducting market research to identify the type of people most likely to be interested in your product or service, then create content that resonates with them. Finally, create social media campaigns around this content to spread the word about your product or service.
If, on the other hand, you are promoting a digital product or a marketplace, the first thing you might want to do is analyse the most effective ways of promoting similar products or services in the past. From here, you can build up a data-driven approach to promoting your product or service, including SEO, paid advertising, and content creation. When it comes to digital products, the lines between paid advertising, organic search, and social media marketing become increasingly blurred.
An experienced marketer or digital marketer will know the importance of having a strong marketing team. Having said that, even the most successful brands and companies struggle to attain success without a solid marketing team. In the same way that your advertising agency might create ads for different clients, your marketing agency should be able to create a consistent strategy that consistently boosts your sales.
When hiring the agency, you must make sure that you hire people who understand your business model, the types of consumers you aim to attract, and the marketing terminology that gets used within your company. You can also ask potential agency partners for references and read online reviews to see how other customers feel about their services.
Strategy And Consistency
Last but not least, we have strategy and consistency. As discussed in the prior section, having a marketing strategy is critical – having an approach that changes with the wind and, as a result, makes little to no difference in terms of generating leads and driving sales will only frustrate you and your digital marketer.
Consistency is also critical for any marketing campaign. Make sure that all campaign activities – from strategy to execution – are carried out consistently and with the same focus and intensity. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself wasting time and effort with half-hearted activities that don’t yield the desired results.
When developing an SEO strategy for your brick-and-mortar business, bear in mind that you can’t just focus on getting ranked on search engines for generic queries like’restaurant york city’. Instead, you’ll want to target specific searches that are relevant to your business – for example, ‘bakery york city’ or ‘coffee shop york city’ – to ensure that you’re not overlooked by your target audience.
Measuring The Success Of An SEO Campaign
When it comes to SEO, you’ll want to track the performance of your campaign in two primary ways – first, through search volume, and, second, through organic traffic (i.e., traffic from Google searches).
To measure the performance of your SEO campaign through search volume, you might want to look into using a keyword research tool like Google Keyword Planner – it’s absolutely essential to have a clear idea of the volume of traffic you’re getting on average for each keyword (and which keywords you should be prioritising over others).
To measure the performance of your SEO campaign through organic traffic, you can track the number of leads and conversions from organic (non-paid) searches. For example, if you’re selling a bakery product, you might want to look into using a tool like Google AdWords to track the performance of your ads, or HubSpot’s Organic Lead Generation report to analyse the performance of your SEO campaigns. You can also set up automated email campaigns to follow up with new leads and, eventually, turn them into paying customers.
How To Evaluate And Improve Your Online Marketing Campaigns
Now, let’s assume that you’ve implemented an effective SEO campaign for your bakery. What do you do next? How do you determine whether or not that SEO effort was worth it? How do you improve your SEO strategy for the next campaign?
To determine the success of your SEO campaign, you’ll first want to look into reviewing your keyword rankings and search volumes against benchmarks that are representative of a successful campaign. Once you’ve established a baseline, you can then look at the specific changes that you made to the website to determine the impact on the success of your SEO campaign.
To improve the success of your SEO effort for the next campaign, you’ll want to look at a few things including –
- Your keyword rankings and search volumes
- The competition for each keyword
- The quality and amount of content on your site
- How you’re doing on social media
- Your website’s performance in terms of conversion and engagement
You might also want to consider looking at other metrics like –
- Website speed
- The amount of social media traffic to your site
- Your web analytics data (e.g., number of sessions, average time on page, bounce rate)
- The amount of referral traffic to your site
- The demographic make-up of your audience
- The type of content your audience is responding to
To determine the effectiveness of your SEO strategy and campaign, you’ll want to look at a few key metrics –
- Keyword rankings
- Search volumes
- Traffic coming from organic (non-paid) searches
- Conversions – the number of leads that convert to paying customers
- The amount of money that you’re spending on each lead
If you’re looking to boost the success of your SEO strategy and campaign, you might want to consider looking into PPC (or pay-per-click advertising) or SEO partner programs. With PPC, you’ll want to focus on performing well in relevant keyword searches (as determined by your keyword research project) while avoiding performing poorly in irrelevant keyword searches (which will hurt your overall performance).
Partner programs, on the other hand, let you get the benefits of a strong marketing team by giving you access to expert resources and cutting down the workload that comes with marketing an entire product line by yourself. For example, HubSpot’s affiliate program lets you earn commissions for selling a product that’s associated with a partner network like Accenture, Bain & Company, or Capgemini.