If you run a business in Brisbane I’m sure you hear or read the words digital marketing on the daily. Even so, its fairly common for owner-operators to feel slightly lost when it comes to understanding what this really means and what’s involved. So today I am going to give you a quick overview of the main aspects of digital marketing so you have a clear understanding and can confidently organise this for your business, direct your team or hire someone to take care of it.
There are five basic areas that are important.
- Knowing what you want to achieve
- Knowing who you are talking to, with what message
- Having a website that is well-built to leverage results
- Activating your website with effective marketing to drive traffic and enquiry
- Reviewing and managing all of the above regularly
1. Knowing what you want to achieve
I’m sure I don’t really need to tell you this but a reminder is always good. If you don’t know where you are going you can’t make a plan to get there. This applies to management of your team also. If they don’t have clear goals and expectations set then you’re not likely to get the result you hoped for. Key to any digital marketing you do for your business is a clear understanding and communication of your goals to those involved. For my clients this is usually an annual goal broken down into quarterly goals. We can then plan accordingly and figure out how best to measure results. With a defined goal we can ask ‘What is needed to achieve this?’ and then set the tasks.
2. Knowing who you’re talking to and having a relevant and effective message
As an established business owner you should be able to describe who your best clients are and why they are your best clients quite easily. Maybe you’ve never really stopped to think about this and if that’s the case grab a pen now and jot down who your top three clients are. Start thinking about these people and you’ll begin to understand why they come to you over your competitors. This information and your goals will inform your messaging i.e. the words and visuals you use in all of your marketing communications. You need to know your overall message and then customise it for each product or service segment in your business. Why? Because whatever marketing you put out there needs to connect with these people and show them you understand what they need. This is what your messaging is all about. It positions your business in the mind of your people and ensures you connect and resonate. It makes you the clear choice over competitors and it turns your website visitors into potential customers. If you get a lot of website traffic but don’t get many conversions (phone calls, sales and enquiries) then it’s possible your messaging is off or your offer needs revisiting.
3. Having a well-built website you can leverage for results
With clear goals and an understanding of the people you’re trying to reach it’s possible to build a website that is useful for your business. Best practice with a website build, a thoughtful site structure and good content that’s relevant means you’ll have more chance of visibility in Google to attract new clients. Your spot-on messaging and design to suits the market will convert them. The features within your website will be included and designed with your business goals and the goals of your key client types in mind. User experience drives decision making for a well-built website. You can be sure that every website you’ve ever used that feels ‘easy’ has been through a thorough process to consider the user experience in terms of goals.
4. Advertising and promotion to drive traffic and enquiry
If you’ve covered off on all of the above (which is very general for the purpose of this ‘overview) then you can be sure anything you now spend on advertising will not be money down the drain. At this point your digital strategy will determine where you need to direct your digital marketing efforts and resources. There are myriad tactics that will leverage your website but because you know your goals and target market then it should be easy to narrow down the choices to what will be most effective for your business and market. Some examples could be creating useful content to keep your website fresh and to build relevance to a topic online; creating an offer and a sales funnel to get an email address and nurture potential customers until they might be ready to buy; or even straight up advertising in Google or on socials to get instant response (and feedback if you want to quickly test an idea).
5. Review and manage your marketing
Essential to progress is review and reflection. What is working and what can be improved? The point of having annual and quarterly goals is that not only can you set out the required tasks to get there, you can review documented expected outcomes to see if you’re on track. Over time this gives you a really good picture of what is required and you will end up with a well-oiled lead generation system that is effectively like a tap you can turn on or off as needed.
In the next part of this article I will go into more detail around the advertising and promotion options and how these work to support marketing goals as this is probably where many questions arise around digital marketing.
If planning isn’t a regular thing in your business then I urge you to do one thing this week: revisit your business goals and think about how they translate into marketing objectives. Then look at what marketing you’re actually doing. Does it support the achievement of your objectives or is it a little all over the place? Those of you who do plan will already be aware of this years results and thinking about goals for the next financial year.
Enjoy your week!