Is online marketing bad for the Waldsee? Find out the answer to this question and more in this article.
The Rise of Online Marketing
The rise of online marketing can be traced back to the later part of the 1990s, when the use of web-based platforms for marketing became more popular. In 1994, 41% of American adults used the web compared to 13% a decade earlier. By 2014, that ratio had more than doubled, with 77% using websites and social media to engage with customers.
Online marketing isn’t going anywhere, and marketers must continue adapting to this new medium.
The Effect of Online Marketing on Small Businesses
The impact of online marketing on small businesses can be difficult to gauge. On the one hand, it’s a known fact that smaller companies are more likely to be able to utilize online marketing effectively. According to HubSpot Blogs research, 83% of respondents from smaller companies said so.
On the other hand, being online means marketers can reach more consumers than ever before. With the ability to target the right audience and engage them to engage in conversation, brands have the opportunity to learn more about their customers and make better decisions about where and how to advertise.
So, while it’s tempting to assume that bigger companies can outspend smaller ones on digital marketing, this isn’t necessarily true. To know if an online marketing strategy is right for your business, it’s important to examine your company’s unique situation.
Three Factors to Consider When Evaluating Online Marketing
There are three key factors to consider when evaluating an online marketing strategy:
- Digital Marketing Tactics: What are we going to do online?
- Online Marketing Measurements: How are we going to track its success?
- ROI on Investment: How much is this going to cost?
These three questions need to be answered before any company invests in a digital marketing plan. Once that’s been done, the next step is to review the different digital marketing tactics available and choose the ones which seem right for your business. After that, it’s time to set up a series of goals and KPIs to track the success of the plan. And finally, come up with a budget to represent how much you’re willing to invest to achieve those goals.
Where Should We Be Located?
One of the biggest challenges for small businesses is figuring out where to locate their offices. In the past, physical locations dictated where businesses could be and the industries they could operate in. Today, with more businesses operating across more platforms, that line has blurred.
As a business owner, you might decide it’s best to hold meetings and brainstorm sessions digitally, as there’s no need to commit to a physical space when working remotely is so convenient.
However, even though your day-to-day duties may be conducted online, there is some element of offline interaction which is still necessary. To name but a few, you’ll need to deal with customers, vendors, and employees who aren’t available to collaborate remotely. So, even though it might be convenient to operate your business fully online, there are still certain practical matters which still require you to be physically present.
How Should We Position Ourself?
When positioning your business for the digital age, you’ll want to consider the various platforms consumers use to research and buy products. In the past, people went to retailers’ websites to research and make purchases. However, with so much information available online, people primarily use search engines to find whatever they’re looking for.
So, whether you have a brick-and-mortar store or an online marketplace, you’ll want to ensure that when potential customers search for your products, they find you. To test the strength of your brand in an online setting, you can use free tools like Google’s brand monitoring tool to see how your domain ranks in comparison to your competitors. To get started, simply visit Google’s website and enter your domain in the Search bar. Once you’ve done that, you’ll see a dashboard which will show you the popularity of your website. From there, you can determine the strength of your brand in comparison to your competitors.
In addition to monitoring your domain’s SEO rankings, you can also use Google Analytics to track the paths customers take once they click on your brand’s website. From there, you can determine how well your site is performing and make any necessary adjustments to get the most out of your online marketing strategy.
Is Email Marketing Dead?
Email isn’t going anywhere, but it is undergoing a significant shift in how and where people are accessing their inboxes. According to HubSpot Blogs research, 70% of respondents said they primarily use email for interpersonal communication and only 29% said they mainly used it for marketing purposes.
However, as email usage continues to shift towards marketing emails, brands need to adapt their strategies to make the most of this new medium. Although the format has remained mostly the same, email marketing needs to evolve to keep up with the times.
Being in the digital marketing space can be very rewarding, as you have the opportunity to test and prove the effectiveness of your campaigns quickly and easily. Even though many marketers are tempted to go all-digital, there are still practical considerations which make it difficult to solely rely on online marketing strategies.
As a business owner, entrepreneur, or marketer, it’s ultimately up to you to determine if and when an online marketing strategy is right for your company. By answering these three questions, you’ll be able to choose the right strategy for your unique situation.