While we are always excited about new and better ways to connect with our audiences, the world of online marketing has changed a lot in the last few years.
Back when social media was just blooming, marketers could rely on email marketing and webinars to engage with customers. Now that social media has taken off, and the most popular platforms have matured, many marketers are struggling to determine which ones they should continue using and which ones they should avoid.
Online Marketing Tools: A Quick Review
The following is a review of the top online marketing tools, as we see it.
Google Analytics is a must-have for any business or brand. It provides in-depth stats on website traffic and performance, allowing you to pin down key performance indicators (KPIs) and analyze results over time.
With Google Analytics, you can:
- Track website traffic and performance, both within and outside of the platform
- See which content is resonating with your audience and what to re-launch or re-vamp in the future
- Keep track of your brand’s overall performance, including digital marketing, social media and other offline marketing tactics (think billboards, flyers, etc.)
- Make informed decisions about your marketing dollars and where to best expend them (in-house team vs. agency vs. self-help platforms)
- Determine the source of website traffic and gain a better understanding of your audience’s behavior (e.g., which pages visitors like/love/use the most vs. which ones they glance at once and then quickly leave)
- Improve user experience by removing barriers to entry and minimize the number of times users leave your site to find what they need (e.g., having a clear call to action on every page, easy to find what they’re looking for)
- Get a complete picture of your website’s performance, rather than just traffic metrics (e.g., number of monthly pageviews, average time on site, bounce rate, etc.)
- See the growth of your website over time and make informed decisions about its future (e.g., whether to extend the website’s platform or shut it down)
- Optimise your content based on performance (e.g., what works and what needs to be changed)
- Gain a better understanding of the strength of your brand’s brand voice and how to effectively communicate your brand’s values
- Leverage your brand’s social media channels to have a voice in the digital space
If you’re a business or brand looking to establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry, you need to be on YouTube. It’s the most popular social media platform, with over a billion active monthly users.
You can use YouTube to:
- Secure brand-building through trusted introductions to key decision makers
- Create marketing videos to cross-promote Your channel’s content
- Get in front of the right audience (i.e., engaged and active consumers)
- Entertainment for viewers (live performances, how-to videos, etc.)
- Educational content for viewers (case studies, debunking myths, etc.)
- Enable community engagement (via commentating or Q&A sessions)
- Collect viewer metrics (e.g., demographics, time spent on site, etc.) to determine audience preferences and segmentation
With over a billion users, YouTube is a fantastic place to build your audience and engage with them on a deeper level. It can be very helpful to set up YouTube channels for businesses and brands, especially if you are looking to expand your online presence.
Instagram is slightly different from YouTube in that it’s more of a photo-based social media platform. It also allows for more sophisticated content than just videos, providing you with a more traditional online marketing tool.
A business or brand on Instagram can:
- Create compelling content (e.g., photos, videos, stories, etc.)
- Use hashtags and keywords to find content relevant to your niche
- Access a potentially larger audience (i.e., people interested in your niche)
- Establish yourself as an expert in your field (by creating compelling content)
- Use the platform’s metrics (e.g., likes, comments, etc.) to determine your audience’s interest in your content
In summary, in today’s digitally-driven world, having an online presence is almost essential. Whether you have a website or blog, or you’re just using social media to keep in touch with your customers, it’s important to have a toolset to help you do so effectively.