More marketers than ever before are going digital in 2015.
In the past few years, you could probably find a line similar to that on just about any marketing blog. For some of you, it may be hard to believe that people are still ignoring the digital revolution. But, the fact is, digital still has plenty of room to grow and businesses are getting savvy in ways to shift marketing budgets online.
According to SalesForce, 70 percent of marketers said they would increase spending on social media advertising this year, and 68 percent will integrate mobile into their overall marketing strategy. What's more, 86 percent of senior-level marketers say it is critical to create a cohesive customer journey across all touch-points and channels.
What does this mean for you?
To reach those touch-points of where your customers are, your marketing strategy can no longer rely on phonebooks, tv commercials (albeit, there were some great viral ones last year) or the traditional methods where so much of your budget once lay. But before you jump on the digital advertising bandwagon via banner ads or pay per click, a solid foundation and understanding of your brand on the internet must exist. What better way to get into your customers mind, or hand, than with a complete brand experience via website, social media or search engine strategy?
Your website is your portion of the internet where you can completely market your business and make even the wildest ideas come to life. You have an unlimited amount of space, time and messaging to share your brand with potential and current customers. Does your website showcase your brand in a fresh and modern light, or is it lacking, outdated and forgotten? Freshening up design and content to provide your customers a digital window inside your business allows them to experience why they need your product or service at their pace without the clutter of other ads. Plus, if you do decide to invest in digital advertising, having a great website ensures your customers are being led to a place that truly represents your company.
Through mobile apps or desktop websites, 74% of internet users are actively participating on social media sites. Still think you don't need social media? Chances are, if you're reading this blog, you've recently been on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram yourself. When placing traditional media buys, it always makes sense to buy high frequency and high visibility, and what better way to receive both of those than to put the same effort into creating an effective and engaging social media strategy?
As we continue on into 2015, we'll continue to see organic reach for brand pages decrease. Although organic posts, shares and engaging fans in conversations should be an important part of your social plans, budgeting for a minor boost for regular posts can provide higher reach than other initiatives you may be used to. You can also use native newsfeed paid ads and sidebar ads that allow you to target your ideal audience and truly stretch your marketing budget.
Search Engine Strategies
Once you've got your website up-to-date and have a solid strategy in place for finding your customers socially, there's one last place where you must focus attention: search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo. Getting found online may be the most important tactic to grow your business, and if your site isn't ranking well it can't be found. The statistics speak for themselves:
- The first ranking position in the search results receives 42.25% of all click-through traffic
- The second position receives 11.94%
- Third position on the first page obtains 8.47%
The first step in any search strategy is to identify the keywords that your customers use to search for your type of business. Do you sell a specific product that receives a high search volume, or do you sell specific brands that are highly sought after? Pinpointing where you will have more competition will allow you to see where more resources must be allocated.
Some of the keywords you identify might be fairly easy to rank your site on. Others will take time and even professional intervention to achieve.
Mixing it all together
Although more marketing budgets will be indulging in digital strategies than ever before, that's not to say there isn't a place for traditional advertising. In fact, it's entirely possible to create a seamless transition from traditional to modern advertising. Adding websites, social media handles, Yelp reviews or more to your traditional marketing pieces is a great way to encourage those audiences to your online efforts.
What do you think? Are you overwhelmed by the idea of transitioning money to the intricate interwebs that were once free for businesses to participate in? Does the idea of putting you at the #1 rank for your product or service keep you up at night? Luckily, our team of web designers and digital marketers live and breathe this stuff daily, and we're here to help.
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2015 is going digital... Are you?