One of the main reasons why the results of digital marketing start to dry up after a while is, in most cases, the lack of perseverance and planning.
Online marketing campaigns often achieve their aim in just a few months: good positioning in the major search engines, increases in sales, band penetration and so on. This is seen by the company that commissioned the job as a point of arrival, yet it is actually a point of departure!
In actual fact, unless the job is outsourced, it is the responsibility of the company to perform the difficult but important task of maintaining the good level of visibility achieved, not to mention the level of sales, and to increase them, step by step.
You need to sit down and carefully plan your strategy, set some short term goals (achievable in about 3 months) which using a trial and error approach, and observing the response of users/clients, will help you to determine the best strategy to use. Obviously we are talking about flexible strategies, suitable for a market that is constantly evolving, so what may well work for the first six months might just not work from the seventh month.
The following is an outline of some of the main aspects to be taken into consideration when planning a successful digital marketing strategy.
Knowing your business is essential, as is recognising new trends and the competition, both old and new. This can also mean taking the time to visit the various forums that discuss the product that you sell (or your competitors), or participating in real time or recorded webinars, so that you can anticipate your clients’ demands.
- Non-conventional marketing tools
Although it is difficult to define them as such nowadays, given their widespread use (which is often misuse) by many companies, tools such as Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Pinterest, YouTube etc, are extremely powerful vehicles for your messages and brand. Always try to only use those tools that you intend to maintain! It is not very encouraging to see a company profile on Twitter with a new post every 6 months, it gives the impression that little thought is given to communication.
You should be precise and concise in your messages, the attention span of readers is quite low so try to make the most of it.
- Recognise your limits
It may seem strange, but recognising that your product, even if excellent, may not be the answer to all a client’s problems or desires, generates more trust in the brand. But if we really think about it, when we visit a site where 100% of the opinions about a product say “exceptional” and where all the descriptions use hyperbolic phrases to describe how miraculous this product is, should we not be thinking that perhaps the reviews aren’t true and that something doesn’t quite add up?
- Accessibility, interaction, usability, etc.
Avoid hiding information about your company. Don’t use PO boxes instead of a real address for correspondence. Don’t hide your VAT number (if you have one), company registration number or the like. Although you may be doing it for reasons of privacy, it doesn’t give the impression of a reliable company. If possible create a blog where you can give advice on how to best use your products. Provide answers to users, even those who criticise or ask awkward questions: it is better to admit to a failure in the product and try to solve the problem than ignore criticism and allow it to become widespread! Never sacrifice the usability of a site, and by usability we don’t just mean the ease of browsing it on a PC, but also the fact that it can be viewed just as easily on a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet.
These are just a few simple guidelines but they are essential if you are to take control of your company’s marketing and get the very best from the net.