The digital landscape is changing, and so is traditional marketing. With the development and popularity of social media, and the emergence of online marketplaces like Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube, it’s no surprise that marketing budgets have shifted attention to online channels.
If you’re responsible for driving traffic to your website or Instagram account, you’ll want to know what to expect. Here are some of the most important things you need to know.
Trending Is Everything
Just because something is popular doesn’t mean it’s good for your business or brand. You have to approach trends with caution – they can blind you to key business indicators and tell you that what you’re doing is okay when it’s not. For example, the popularity of podcasting stemmed from the sharing economy and the growth of podcast sponsorships, not from traditional radio audiences. If your business depends on selling a particular product or service, you can bet that certain trends will emerge that will affect your bottom line. It’s important to stay alert and make sure that you don’t get distracted by the latest trend and lose sight of why you’re really there in the first place. Trends will come and go, but for you to flourish you need to stay focused on what’s important to you.
Consumers Have The Power
With the right information and the right tools, businesses can grow and thrive in the online world. With a little bit of research, a whole lot of hustle, and the ability to reach a large audience, you can put in place the perfect online strategy for your business.
The traditional roles of consumers – buyer and audience – are changing. Now, consumers have the power to spread the word about your business through social media, to research your products and services before buying, and to share their opinions and findings with other consumers. If you want to succeed in today’s digital world, you need to have a seat at the table when it comes to shaping online content. This means that you need to be creating content for digital audiences, considering what they want and need, and working to establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry. When consumers trust your suggestions, they’ll be more likely to take you seriously when you make recommendations about products and services. Furthermore, if you can gain the trust of the people you’re trying to reach, you can be sure that they’ll be receptive to your advice and recommendations. Finally, you’ll want to make sure that you take the time to listen to and consider what your target audience is saying. It might not be what you initially think, and it can often give you new insights and ideas for your business.
Content Is King
Although social media can be a goldmine for marketing purposes, your content really does need to be good to draw in the audiences you want. If you want to succeed as a business, you have to have a steady stream of content that’s either new and interesting, or at least unique from other businesses in your industry. Creating high-quality content that you know will be valuable to your target audience takes time and practice, but the effort is definitely worth it – assuming, of course, that you can get the right results from your efforts (hint: you can!).
Getting traction as a content creator takes time, too. If you want to have a successful YouTube channel, you need to put in the work to grow your audience and gain credibility. Make sure that you’re posting regularly and adding value to the conversations that are happening around you. The more you post, the more people will find you, and the more people you have watching and sharing your content, the more opportunities you have for success.
If you’re reading this, I assume that you’re already well aware of the growing popularity of smartphones and tablets. What type of device are you using to read this article? I’m guessing desktops, laptops, and smartphones are the popular choices. If you’re reading this on a mobile device, don’t forget about the smaller screens and how easy it is to lose the focus of a site when you’re on the move. When you return to a website on your mobile, have you ever noticed that some websites are better than others when it comes to navigating and using the features on your phone? To gain maximum engagement from your visitors, create a UX that’s optimized for mobile devices with touch-friendly interfaces, minimal text, and streamlined navigation.
Being optimized for mobile means ensuring that your site looks good on any device – including desktops, laptops, and smartphones. The less bloated your site is, the more mobile users will be able to interact with it. Fewer resources are needed to deliver content to mobile users, which translates to faster page load times – an important factor in gaining and maintaining traffic and converting that traffic into paying customers.
Location, Location, Location
If you want to be able to attract and retain customers in your area, you need to make sure that your business is present where your audience is. With the rise of online marketplaces, like Google Maps and Yelp, people are being able to find businesses and attractions near them whether they’re in the next town or the other side of the world. To succeed in today’s digital world, your business needs a digital footprint in the places that your audience is hanging out – both online and off.
If you want to be found near to where your customers are, make sure that you’re represented on online marketplaces. Having an online presence is important for any business, but it’s especially crucial for those that want to be accessible to customers in their local area. If someone is searching for a good restaurant in your area, and your business isn’t listed on one of the major search engines, you’re going to miss out on a large chunk of potential customers.
Local Versus National (Tricky)
As we’ve established, location is important, but so is targeting the right audience. You can’t expect your business to succeed if you’re only appealing to people in your hometown, and you certainly don’t want to be restricted to your local area when you’re trying to expand your reach. To maximize my marketing impact, I try to target national and international audiences whenever possible – both share the same goals and challenges as my business, and I know that they’re looking for good, local businesses that they can support.
When trying to drive traffic to your website or social media accounts, you need to be mindful of your audience and seek to engage with them where they are. If your product or service is aimed at a more national audience, consider whether or not local advertising is effective, and whether or not you should even be doing it. The answers to these questions will determine your next move. To find out where your target audience is, you can use tools like Google Analytics to track the geographic location of website visitors – regardless of whether they are visiting from a mobile device or desktop computer. If you’re trying to grow your business, it’s important to focus on international and national audiences as early as possible to ensure that you maximize the benefits of all available platforms and channels.
The Importance Of Measurement
When it comes to online marketing, there’s always scope for improvement. No matter how good your plan is, you’re bound to find a way to do more effective work in the future – with the help of analytics, of course. This is as true for digital marketing specialists as it is for anyone else. To ensure that you’re always improving your performance and finding new ways to make your work more effective, it’s important to track the results of your efforts. This involves looking at the numbers (specifically, metrics) and analyzing whether or not you’re making the right inroads into driving business.
As with any new marketing initiative, you’ll need to start by assessing the effectiveness of past campaigns. To do this, you can examine the metrics that are most closely associated with results. For example, engagement and conversions are two critical metrics that you might pull together to assess the performance of a particular marketing campaign. With a little bit of research, you can find out whether or not the campaign was successful in driving visitors to your site, social media accounts, or email sign-ups – among other things.
If you want to see how your marketing efforts are going, you can use tools like Google Analytics to track the results of your strategies and campaigns. Specific to this article, once you’ve gotten the hang of it, you can use Google Analytics to export your website’s traffic to a CSV file, which you can then import into a spreadsheet or database for analysis. This is typically done with the help of a digital marketing specialist, who can look at your numbers and tell you exactly what you’re doing well and what you need to change.