Marketing is a unique endeavor because to be successful requires a combination of technical understanding, creative thinking, and an attitude of service. Few companies succeed at all three of these all the time. Even still, when designing your company’s marketing strategy, it pays to consider these three important components that will drive your brand forward and, ultimately, get you more leads.
The Technical Component
Marketing, by its very definition, is helping people discover and engage with your company, your mission, and your services. In order to do that, you must position yourself in front of your target audience. And where is that audience, in today’s day and age? They are online.
Your prospects are no different than the rest of us: We are digital consumers of information who rely heavily on search engines and social media to inform purchase decisions. Unlike the advertising strategies of years past, such as print media, television, and radio advertising, digital marketing is driven by search engine optimization. SEO is a technical skill that, when utilized effectively, can set the wheels in motion for your brand and keep them moving forward, even when your hands-on marketing efforts have taken a back seat.
In many ways, SEO is the backbone of digital marketing strategy: If your customer cannot find you online, your message will fall on deaf ears. Thus, ensuring your company’s online presence (website, press mentions, social platforms, etc.) is effectively capturing the attention of your prospective clients should be one of the first investments in your marketing budget.
Aside from SEO, the other technical skill needed to execute an effective marketing strategy is data analysis. Marketing implementation is a process of:
- Tweak or repeat
In order to determine the effectiveness of your campaign or prove the return on your marketing investment, analytical skills are crucial to success. Tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console track and store user data, making it possible to understand your audience demographics, user behavior, and site performance.
The Creative Component
Once you have positioned yourself in front of your target audience, you need to stand out. Your message and visual assets must be relevant, engaging, and evoke emotion or inquiry in your audience. Every day, your customer is bombarded with advertisements, promotions, email solicitations, content, and product recommendations. Companies big and small are hoping to win their attention and their business. Without a carefully thought-out, creative plan that takes into account the habits, aesthetics, and preferences of your target customer, you are shooting in the dark, and your message is likely to be buried or thrown out with the spam.
These days it’s not enough to offer a great deal alongside a stock photo – you need to think outside the box, and meet your audience on their level. What do they like to do in their free time? Whom do they admire? What do they aspire to? Find videos and images that speak to that.
If you find yourself stuck for ideas, spend some time exploring Instagram. The photo-heavy social media platform is a great way to explore what your target audience may find alluring. Search by relevant hashtags, and start following the followers. If a particular Instagram account is relevant to your business niche, market, demographics, or objectives, and if they have a large following of engaged users, you can assume that similar images would resonate with your audience.
The Service Component
The best marketing strategy you can employ is offering a positive and memorable customer experience. If your business consistently delivers above and beyond expectations, word will get around. Offering top-notch service pays back in spades – whether through referrals, reviews, or recommendations.
Furthermore, now that Facebook has announced a change from its 5-star review system to a simple yes-or-no recommendation on business pages, your company’s service and online reputation matter more than ever. While we are still watching to see how this new ranking system will impact the digital marketing landscape, one thing is for sure: Facebook’s changes are a response to the increasing weight of online recommendations.
Your customers are likely engaging in multiple Facebook groups – some with a decidedly local or regional audience – where they are both asking for and giving recommendations. Likewise, the platform NextDoor offers communities the chance to talk at length about their experiences, good or bad, with local businesses. Social media has connected neighborhoods in a way that we haven’t seen before, and word spreads fast. Stay involved in your local community, make sure your staff is trained appropriately, and, above all else, serve your customers professionally, with a smile.
Digital marketing is inherently dynamic, and best practices evolve frequently with changes in technology, trends, and consumer behavior. But even so, integrating the three foundational components of marketing – technical understanding, creative thinking, and an attitude of service – will continue to make the best brands shine in any circumstance.
To figure out how you can get the most out of your marketing strategy, contact Page 1 Solutions at 800-368-9910 today.