Don’t you think people are crazy for starting a business especially in the middle of a pandemic? Well, if you answered ‘yes’ and believe they have no chance of succeeding, you are half right. But if you answered ‘no’ and are considering that they will use a digital marketing strategy to set them to success, you are totally right.
Even with the risk of starting a business, the desire to be in control of what happens in their lives, professionally and financially makes a lot of people have enterprising ideas.
The New Entrepreneurs
The American newspaper Forbes said the pandemic fuels a global growth of entrepreneurship, as the number of new companies around the world has significantly surpassed the indicators of last year.
Such a surge in entrepreneurship is being attributed to workers who were laid off and started their own businesses.
Once having more free time than before, they found a way to take advantage of it upskilling themselves and diving into a sea of challenges and opportunities.
But According to a ‘Managing Digital Marketing’ study by Smart Insights, 46% of brands don’t have a defined digital marketing strategy, while 16% do have a strategy but haven’t yet integrated it into their marketing activity.
So, here’s the thing: if you don’t have a plan in place how can you expect to grow and innovate?
Digital Marketing Strategy is the Key!
You might find it difficult to take the first steps in the online industry since an avalanche of information can make you feel overwhelmed when you’re trying to decide what to prioritize.
For that, we created a step-by-step process to guide you through your digital strategy journey.
Creating a Winning Digital Marketing Strategy
1- Get to know your audience
Knowing your customer is extremely important because is not only an essential part of your business but a highly valuable one that fuels your business and its success on many levels.
The audience is the people who purchase and repurchase your product or service and are also the people who are recommending it to other potential future customers.
Knowing who they are and what they want will help you leverage your customer services, improve your products, get insights for your content marketing, and also create a closer relationship with them.
There are many free online ways that you can use to find out information about them.
Go to social media and allow yourself to get lost seeing what kind of posts they like, their comments, hashtags, and so on.
Google trends, market research, and audience insights on Facebook are other options that certainly will help you.
2-Understand your Business
To run a successful business, you should regularly analyze your processes to ensure you are operating as efficiently as possible.
So, you have to make sure that you are using all of the available channels to amplify a marketing campaign and brand messaging to reach your target audience.
While there are numerous ways to assess your company, one of the most effective methods is to conduct a SWOT analysis.
What is that?
SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis is a framework used to evaluate a company’s competitive position and to develop strategic planning.
It assesses internal and external factors, as well as current and future potential.
Swot Analysis is very recommended to get a deep understanding of what is your business and what you can improve to achieve your objectives.
3- Identify your goals and go for them.
Speaking of goals and objectives, the second step is all about them.
Well-chosen goals point a new business in the right direction and keep an established company on the right track. They help improve your overall effectiveness as a company.
Setting objectives show all actions you need to take to achieve your goals.
When defining them, be specific and realistic. They also need to be measurable, relevant, and achievable in determined timebound.
To help you develop your goals use the methodology SMART, it will set you on the right way.
4- Create a digital presence.
I can list numerous reasons to explain the importance of having an online presence nowadays, especially with the new economic landscape redesigned by the COVID-19, but if you are not so sure yet, here is some good advice.
Why be online?
The internet is a big place. And it continues to grow and diversify with each year, so having a digital fingerprint is essential to lead and sales generation.
Being online also opens your business to a world of opportunities to further build on this trust, such as through online reviews and testimonials.
Have a look at the following tips to build your presence online:
- I- Build a website: to give your business instant credibility, customers are more likely to trust your business when they land on your professional website
- II- Register at Google my business: Google My Business is a free and easy-to-use tool for businesses and organizations to manage their online presence across Google, including Search and Maps. To help customers find your business.
- III- Create profiles on social media: its benefits extend far beyond increasing sales. It’s also the best way to engage with your customers. Plus, 97% of marketers are using social media and 78% of salespeople outsell their peers by using social media for their business.
Internet users and marketers both agree on the importance of content and relevant information in the process of lead and sales generation, so don’t forget to bring value to your audience in everything you do online.
5– Focus on what makes your business special
You can follow all the previous steps, but if you don’t have something that makes you stand out from your competitors, none of it will work.
Finding your unique selling point is what makes you the top of mind in your consumer’s head. Very few businesses are one of a kind.
Just look around you: How many clothing retailers, hardware stores, air conditioning installers, and electricians are truly unique? What you can offer that your competitor can’t? What you can do that nobody else does?
Always have in mind that you are whatever you are selling, you are selling for people, and people don’t buy only products or services, they buy solutions, they buy value. Be the solution to your audience.
Put yourself in your customer’s shoes, understand their needs and motivations and you will find your unique selling point.
6- Competitors keep than close.
Your competitors are an important part of your strategy. You might want to know what they are doing, what kind of content they are creating, and how their audience is engaging with them.
A competitive analysis is a strategy where you identify major competitors and research their products, sales, and marketing strategies.
By doing this, you can create solid business strategies that improve upon your competitors.
By performing a competitor analysis, you’ll be able to identify possible gaps in your business and opportunities that you are may be missing.
There are many other advantages like:
– Discover potential threats;
– Narrow your value proposition;
– Improve your products and services;
– Better understanding of customers’ preferences.
Emulate and improve their results for your brand, giving those extra unique details, that will help you beat them, or at least position yourself better as a new strong brand.
6- Work on your Content Marketing and SEO
There is no surprise that Content Marketing is a golden element for all action taken on digital marketing.
Content marketing is important, not just because it works for building trust, generating leads, and cultivating customer loyalty, but because it has become the new normal from the consumer side.
It is, in itself, helping to evolve what customers expect from the brands they interact with.
So, if you search for valuable and relevant connections with your customers, you must invest in content marketing.
Another key concept that definitely will help you up, is SEO.
Search Engine Optimization is part of what helps make your business appear higher on a list of search engine results.
With a strong SEO strategy, your company website will become associated with the keywords used to find your services.
This increases your chances of being the company an individual chooses to work with after searching online.
7- Review, refine, repeat
You came this whole way, now it’s time to do some revision, look carefully at all decisions you had made, and examine closely.
When you first develop your marketing plan, you must include key performance indicators (KPIs) that fit with crucial business goals. You need to have a plan in place in order to understand your goals and objectives.
Then, once you understand these, you can monitor the metrics giving you information about the KPIs that matter.
The analysis stage of your digital marketing strategy helps you improve your strategy to engage more of your audience, generate more leads and drive sales.
The bottom line with any digital marketing strategy, campaign, or tactic is to stay aligned with your core purpose, not just your product. Focus on benefits, address customer’s real needs, and understand what makes them tick.
Go ahead and level up your business!
About the author,
Ariane Marques – Brand Marketing Analyst at International Institute Of Digital Marketing™.
You can connect with me via LinkedIn: Ariane Marques