There are many reasons why you may decide to promote your products and services online including being able to communicate with prospective customers, attracting new customers, and enhancing your SEO strategy.
But, if you’re promoting your product or service online, you’ll inevitably have to deal with the cost of doing business – specifically, the cost of marketing.
This includes paying for web hosting, buying and creating quality content for your website, and finding and engaging with potential customers through various online channels.
Let’s take a look at the price of marketing a product or service online.
If you’ve ever shopped for web hosting, you’ll know that there are various price options to choose from. But did you know that the cheapest hosting plans often come with a catch?
In addition to being affordable, hosting plans from reputable companies will also give you a good experience. A good web host will make your life as a business owner/marketer much simpler and take some of the pain out of your daily tasks. With most web hosts, you’ll get a free domain and can install WordPress to launch your product or service.
In short, you’ll get what you pay for. However, if you’re looking for a cheap and nasty experience, you may want to look elsewhere. On the plus side, you’ll find many reputable web hosts offering great value for your money.
Creating content, particularly for the internet, is not a cheap process. If you’re looking to create and curate content to promote a brand, product, or service, you’ll need to consider the cost of buying the material, hiring someone to write the content, and then promoting it across various channels.
If you want to hire someone to create content for you, you can do so using a content mill or agency. But even if you want to create the content yourself, you’ll need the proper equipment including a laptop, a desk chair, and a reliable internet connection. In most cases, you’ll also need a microphone.
Creating content is a significant investment in time and money. The good news is that you can save money by creating your own content and learning from others. If you’ve got a knack for writing, you can create content that’s profitable, provides value, and builds trust. What’s not to like?
Depending on your marketing budget, you may decide to use a combination of the following marketing channels to reach your target audience:
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- PPC (Pay-Per-Click)
- Social Media Marketing (SMM)
- Email Marketing
- TV/Radio Advertising
- Press Release Distribution
While you may not need to spend a large sum on any of these channels individually, the combined cost can add up quickly. For example, a TV commercial costs around $40,000 to $60,000 in the United States. But that’s barely half of what it costs to successfully launch a TV ad campaign on YouTube with targeted content for the right demographic. Video content and platforms like YouTube allow you to easily distribute your commercial on many different platforms for free.
The bottom line is that you can expect to invest in marketing in one way or the other. However, if you want to ensure that your investment is worth it, you should consider how much you’re spending, where you’re spending it, and whether or not you’re getting the results you’re looking for.
Cost Per Acquisition (CPA)
If you’re looking to invest in marketing in an effort to grow your business, you’ll need to consider how much you’re willing to spend on each new customer. This is known as cost per acquisition (CPA) and it’s a fairly common marketing measurement.
Simply put, CPA represents the total amount of money that you’ve spent in pursuit of a new customer. So if you’ve spent $1,000 on social media ads, web hosting, and content creation in order to acquire a new customer, your CPA for that effort will be $1,000. Keep in mind though, that not all of that money will be spent directly on the customer; some of it will be spent on the operation of your business.
CPA is just one of many measurements that you could use to determine the true cost of marketing a product or service online. You should also consider how much you’re spending on customer retention and how much you’re making from each new customer. If you want to get the most out of your marketing efforts, you need to look at the big picture, not just at the cost.
The return on investment (ROI) is another frequently used metric in marketing. If you’re comparing the cost of one marketing channel to another, or if you’re comparing the cost of marketing to a non-marketing channel like web hosting, this is the measurement that you’ll need to consider. The ROI for a marketing channel or package is calculated by taking the total cost of the channel or package and multiplying it by the return on that investment (ROI).
For example, let’s say that you spent $200 on a Lead Scoring program. You can expect to see a 40% lift in conversion for your next marketing campaign (based on the quality of the lead scoring service). Therefore, your ROI for that $200 would be $200 x.40 = $80.
If you want to compare that ROI to the cost of a free blogging platform like WordPress.com, you’ll need to consider how much you’re paying for web hosting, how much you’re paying for a domain name, and how much you’re spending on content creation. If you’re making back all of that money and more, you may want to consider whether or not you’re getting your money’s worth in terms of returns on investment. The answer may very well be yes – especially if you consider the fact that you don’t have to worry about upgrades, maintenance, or downtime.
The cost of marketing can vary from product to product. But if you want to get a general idea of what you’re spending, you can use SEMrush to pinpoint specific cost metrics for each type of marketing activity. For example, take a look at the following graph which breaks down the average cost of creating a single blog post for a range of prices:
If you’re curious about the cost of a blog post, you can use the following formula:
- Product cost x.30 (for blog posts)
- Product cost x.50 (for YouTube videos)
- Product cost x.20 (for LinkedIn articles)
- Product cost x.35 (for Instagram videos)
- Product cost x.10 (for Facebook posts)
- Product cost x.10 (for Twitter posts)
- Product cost x.05 (for Google+ posts)
As you can see above, the cost of a blog post varies based on the price of the product you’re promoting. But how does the cost of a YouTube video change if you’re not selling anything?
The difference in cost between a YouTube video and a blog post is that, for the former, you’ll need to buy a product that converts well into videos. Similarly, the cost of a LinkedIn article or a Facebook post is largely determined by the price of the product you’re promoting (the higher the price, the more you’ll need to spend).
In the case of a Twitter post or a Google Plus post, you’ll need to consider how much an organic (i.e. unpaid) reach cost in order to determine the true cost. As of March 2019, the cost per organic tweet is $3.72, per instagram story is $5.76, and per Google Plus post is $2.22.
If you want an overall price for all of these offline marketing costs, you can use the following equation: