Online Marketing: Channel or Channels?

Many successful businesses can be credited to effective online marketing strategies, which helped them build brand recognition, gain new customers and establish themselves as market leaders.

In today’s digital world, where consumers have the ability to research businesses, products and services before purchasing, marketers have to find new ways to engage with potential customers across platforms.

Inbound Marketing, as it is commonly known, refers to this approach of drawing potential buyers into the top of the funnel through quality content, delivered by people who are inherently interested in the subject matter.

The question is: What is the right mix of content for my niche, audience and channel?

Niche, Audience and Channel Analysis

First of all, it’s important to define your niche, audience and channel. These are the three pillars of your digital marketing strategy and you need to understand how they intersect. For example, if you’re a car manufacturer seeking to engage with potential buyers in the travel niche, your target audience might be leisure travelers and you could potentially utilize online forums, Facebook groups and YouTube to reach this audience.

A niche is a ‘small market or segment’ within the big market for your product or service. When you identify a niche, you’re narrowing your target audience and tailoring your messaging to address their concerns and needs. For example, if you’re a car manufacturer seeking to engage with potential buyers in the travel sector, your niche might be ‘luxury car rental,’ as there is a significant market for ultra high-end cars and you can bet your budget that most of those customers are probably looking for ways to unwind after a hard day of driving. Your target audience is defined as ‘people who rent luxury cars,’ and your channel will be the on-screen medium through which you communicate with this audience.

Choosing the Right Content

Once you have your target audience, you can begin to think about content and the different types of media you will use to reach them. While you don’t want to overdo it and bombard your audience with content, knowing when to provide extra content is invaluable. If you notice, most successful business blogs publish multiple articles each week, keeping the audience engaged and coming back for more.

Where Should I Post?

The next step is to figure out where your ideal audience is congregating online (if you don’t already know). You can do this by simply entering your product/service in the search bar of your preferred search engine and observing the top organic results. This is usually presented in the form of ‘articles’ or ‘guides’ and you’ll typically find two or more sources of inspiration along with a ‘B’ or ‘G’ rating from the Better Business Bureau.

From this point, you can begin to structure your content strategy. Bear in mind that your goal is to engage with your target audience, so you want to develop content that is relevant to them and that will inspire them to action. Ultimately, you want to build a trusted relationship with both your audience and potential customers, so you can continue to gain their trust and keep them coming back for more. This is exactly what the pros at HubSpot call ‘relationship marketing.’ To get started, simply enter your product/service in the search bar of your preferred search engine and take a look at the top organic results.