A company that does not use online marketing is probably best described as doing business the old-school way. Although technology has greatly influenced all areas of business, marketing has largely stayed the same. Offline marketing is still considered the most effective way to reach potential customers. However, to stay relevant and competitive, companies must continue adapting to and incorporating online marketing into their overall marketing strategy.
Why Use Online Marketing?
Websites such as Google, Facebook, and Instagram have forever changed how we search for, consume, and share information. Although these websites were initially designed for consumers, companies can also benefit from using them in their marketing strategies.
These websites provide businesses with the ability to create and engage with audiences, allowing them to grow their audience and ultimately, their sales. According to HubSpot Blogs, businesses that use online marketing generate $17.56 in revenue for every $1 they spend on marketing, compared to the $5.82 they generate from traditional marketing.
If your business does not use online marketing and you’re wondering why not, you might be falling into the same trap that many businesses have found themselves in. The fear of embracing change keeps most businesses from fully using the potential that the internet offers.
To best utilize the power of the internet and gain maximum revenue from online marketing, you have to fully understand why your target audience is connected to your product or service in the first place. Many companies fail to do this, which leads them to develop marketing strategies that do not work. Once you’ve identified the missing link between your product and the problem your product is solving, you can develop an effective marketing strategy and finally begin to see the benefits of online marketing.
What Is Marketing, Really?
Marketing is considered the umbrella term for advertising and sales activity. In simpler terms, marketing is the process of communicating your company’s value proposition to consumers and persuading them to choose your product or service over competing brands or offerings.
Although marketing can be very simple, it can also be extremely complex, depending on how you approach it and who you aim to reach. Essentially, marketing is the process of getting people to think, feel, and act in a certain way about your company or product. To help businesses understand marketing a bit better, the International Association of Business Communicators (4A’s) created the following infographic, demonstrating the differences between traditional and digital marketing:
Traditional Marketing VS Digital Marketing
The main difference between traditional and digital marketing is the medium through which you communicate. Instead of advertising on radio stations or through newspapers, you can advertise on social media websites or through smartphone apps. This makes traditional marketing somewhat old-fashioned because people are always connected to something digital. They can access information at any time and from any place, which makes the process of marketing much less dependent on location and more dependent on the internet.
As you can see in the infographic, traditional marketing takes place through print and broadcast media, while digital marketing occurs online. Another significant difference has to do with the target audience. With traditional marketing, you usually aim your ads at the general public; however, with digital marketing, your ads typically go to a narrower audience, such as specific demographics or individuals with specific interests. For example, if you’re a hotel provider and your target audience is likely to be business travelers, you might want to focus your digital marketing strategy on the travel industry or on specific businesses in the travel industry, such as airlines or hotels.
The role of the marketer is to develop a comprehensive marketing strategy that suits your company’s objectives and objectives. The strategy should include both online and offline components so that you can target consumers when they’re most likely to be receptive to your messaging. The following are some of the key marketing roles that you will need to fill:
What Is The Essential Marketing Kit?
What is your marketing strategy for the year? What are you going to do to grow your business? To help you answer these questions, we recommend that you work on building a complete marketing kit. A marketing kit is a collection of all the marketing tools and materials you need to effectively market your product or service. Having a marketing kit will help you avoid the often-times wasteful and ineffective practice of starting brand-new.
Having a complete marketing kit will also help you determine your budget for marketing and advertising so you can allocate money toward the most effective channels. Additionally, all of your marketing materials, including infographics, social media posts, and advertisements, should be housed in one central location, which is easily accessed by the rest of your team. This will help ensure that everyone is on the same page and that no one is duplicating efforts.
Consider what makes your product or service special and what sets it apart from other companies in your industry. What is your marketing message? Who are you aiming your message at? What platforms do you intend to use to reach your audience?
Once you’ve answered those questions, you can work on developing the following items in your marketing kit:
A marketing plan is a road map for your chosen marketing strategy. It can be very concise or can be a very long document. Ideally, a marketing plan is a living document that you update and refine over time. Your marketing plan should include the following:
- An executive summary
- A mission statement
- A vision statement
- A list of the products you intend to sell
- A list of the services you intend to offer
- The key performance indicators you will use to track your progress
- Competitors analysis
- Analysis of external forces (such as economic, social, and political forces) that could affect your business
- Your SWOT Analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, andThreats)
- An implementation plan
- Your Marketing Budget
- Your Marketing Mix (which will include the Media you intend to use)
For a more in-depth description of what a marketing plan should include, check out this HubSpot Blogs article, Why Every Marketer Should Have a Digital Marketing Plan.
A website is a must for any business, regardless of whether or not you use online marketing. Websites provide consumers with an engaging environment to learn about your product or service. Additionally, websites can be used to measure the success of your marketing efforts. If you already have a business website, you can use the following items to update and improve upon it:
- A professional looking logo
- A simple yet informative website title
- An easy to understand About Us page
- News articles about your industry
- Product information, including detailed specifications, FAQs, and reviews
- Services offered
- Contact information
If you’re looking to create a new website, you should work with a web design company. They will help you choose a professional looking template that fits your industry and objectives. Additionally, they can help you choose the right content for your site. The International Association of Business Communicators (4A’s) explains that having a well-designed website is half the battle of getting customers. The other half is having the right content.
A website is an essential tool in your marketing arsenal. Even if you use other forms of marketing, having a website will greatly expand your reach and provide you with valuable information on how to improve your performance.
If you want to target consumers when they’re most likely to be receptive to your message, you can do so on social media websites. The following are some of the most popular social media websites:
On these sites, you can engage with consumers and gain valuable information on how to best market your product or service. Additionally, these sites allow you to determine the effectiveness of your overall marketing plan, which is invaluable. As an engaged, interested audience is one of the best forms of marketing on social media websites, these platforms have become a necessary tool in every marketer’s arsenal.