You’ve spent the last few years growing your business online. You’ve tested and tweaked your product, acquired customers, and expanded into multiple markets. You’ve grown confident in the power of digital marketing to connect with customers, gain credibility, and make more sales.
And then, seemingly out of nowhere, the industry goes through a major paradigm shift. Traditional marketing methods are considered old-school, and digital marketers are often viewed as the experts in creating content that attracts and retains customers.
So, if you’re a business owner or marketer looking to continue growing your business, you might be wondering how to adapt your strategy to stay relevant in today’s ever-changing digital world.
Here, we’ll explore five reasons why you need to focus on long-term growth and online marketing strategy, and how to position your business for future success in a post-pandemic world.
The first and most obvious reason why you need to focus on long-term growth is because the trends that helped your business succeed in the past aren’t as relevant today.
Yes, social media and digital marketing have changed the game, but the platforms themselves haven’t aged well. Creating content for platforms like Instagram, which has a highly engaged audience, isn’t the same as attracting a Facebook audience. And the economics of online marketing have also shifted. It used to be that digital marketing was considered cheap and accessible, which helped you grow your business for less money than you would normally spend on a TV ad. But with the constant rise of artificial intelligence and machine learning, the cost of digital marketing steadily increases.
The good news is that you’re not doomed to fail based on the trends that came before you. The key is understanding how to work with the “new normal” and how the ever-changing digital world affects your current strategy. As a business owner or marketer, you need to keep up with the latest trends while also positioning your business for long-term success in accordance with your unique set of circumstances. In other words, you need to ask yourself, “How do I fit into this new paradigm shift?”
Another important factor behind your long-term growth is your increased focus on your customers.
When COVID-19 hit, it not only changed our lives, it also forced businesses to reevaluate their priorities. Suddenly, the most important thing wasn’t about making sales, but about keeping customers satisfied. And what does customer satisfaction (CS) mean to you as a business owner or marketer? It’s simple; it means understanding and acting on your customers’ needs.
After taking a hard look at the situation, many businesses shifted their focus from generating revenue to providing customer value. So while you were spending your time growing your business, customers were learning to value your product or service. This shift also means you need to rethink your role as a business owner or marketer. Instead of focusing on sales, you need to put your efforts into providing valuable content that attracts and retains customers.
To effectively serve your customers, you need to understand their desires, needs, and expectations. This type of information isn’t easy to come by, especially since you’re only interacting with customers online, but it’s crucial. From there, you can develop content that addresses their concerns and builds credibility with prospective buyers.
New Platforms, New Audiences
The era of “digital natives” became a reality, and it changed the way we all behave online. With more millennials searching for relevance and engagement online, the platforms that specialize in serving content to digital consumers became much more important.
This is where you come in. As a business owner or marketer, you need to follow the lead of experienced marketers and adapt your strategy to take advantage of the new platforms, such as TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram, that serve this growing audience.
What is the audience on TikTok? Well, according to Google Trends, it’s currently the third most popular social media platform globally. It’s also one of the most popular social media platforms among 18-24 year olds. On TikTok, your videos can be played next to each other, which allows for more engaging conversations between consumers and content creators.
Since its debut in early 2018, TikTok has exploded in popularity and changed the way we consume content. And while the platform is free, attracting and retaining customers is much more expensive. What this means for you as a business owner or marketer is that you need to put a concentrated effort into creating engaging content for the platform.
You also need to set the right pricing for your content since fewer consumers are opting to pay for content now. According to HubSpot Blogs Research, 55% of consumers have paid for content in some form in the past year, and 48% of those consumers plan to pay for content in the future. But while consumers are willing to pay for content, they’re not happy about paying more than they have to. This creates a problem for the 37% of consumers who are planning to download free content in the future.
One of the best things about digital marketers is that many of us are very open to new technologies and platforms. The problem is that as our skillset evolves, so does our strategy and responsibilities. For example, SEOs used to focus on getting “high quality” page views, but now they need to optimize content for specific devices, like mobile phones or tablets. As a business owner or marketer, you have to keep up with these shifting responsibilities while also keeping up with the latest trends.
The second important reason why you need to focus on long-term growth is because the data that comes with it.
As a business owner or marketer, you always want to approach your work with as much data as possible. The problem is that many of the tools you need to make informed decisions are only available to experienced data professionals. Not only that, but the data that is available to you may not be completely up to date.
For example, if you’ve been getting a lot of value out of blog posts and want to continue with this strategy, you need to determine whether or not you should continue with the blog format. Do you see a spike in visits when you post regularly? How about when you post on a certain subject or in a certain industry?
With access to so much data, you can make more informed decisions and adapt your strategy accordingly. And what’s one of the best things about this option? It allows you to continually improve your business, whether you’re getting the best results or not. When you are, you can simply adjust your strategy and move forward. When you aren’t, you can reassess your strategy and make necessary changes.
Productivity is extremely important to keep in mind when thinking about your future strategy. For those of you who are running a small or medium business, you know that keeping your employees satisfied and productive is crucial to your success. Employees who are happy and productive promote a positive work environment, which leads to increased productivity and, ultimately, profits. This, in turn, allows you to continue growing your business.
When it comes to marketing and sales, many of us were in a rush to “publish” and “share” content as soon as possible. This created an environment where more content meant more views and more clicks. And while this may have been important in the past, the reality is that in today’s world, quality wins the day. In the same way that consumers are more important to businesses than ever before, so are their expectations when it comes to content. Consumers expect businesses to have a significant investment in quality content that is both relevant and useful. In other words, businesses that provide top-notch content keep their customers and attract new customers.
The good news is that you’ve spent the last few years honing your craft and building a reputable brand. If you want to continue to grow your business, you need to make sure you keep up with all of this. It’s not easy, but with a little planning and strategy, you can ensure that your business continues to thrive.