If you’re an entrepreneur or business owner just starting out, chances are your time, money, and staffing resources are limited.
That means you have to be proficient in every aspect of your business, from sales strategies to accounting software to manufacturing technologies. You need to know what trends, tools, or strategies are likely to have the greatest impact on your bottom line.
Digital marketing is among the first areas new business owners focus their attention on. There are countless resources touting the most effective digital marketing strategies.
We’ve taken the best of the best and winnowed them down to five tips for achieving the greatest impact.
What’s interesting about these tips are the themes that bind them together. Modern digital marketing is as much about data and metrics as it is about creativity and flashy ad campaigns.
Modern digital marketing is as much about data and metrics as it is about creativity and flashy ad campaigns.
But most of all it's about simplicity. Complex tools and processes typically take you out of focus. To get the best impact usually means that they are easy to understand and adopt, in other words simple.
Understanding the factors that drive potential customers to you, analyzing what it is that makes them want to stay, and discovering how best to convert them to lifelong customers is at the heart of these strategies.
1. Get to Know These Google Tools
You’re probably familiar with some of Google’s most popular applications like Google Search, Gmail, Google Earth and Google Play, but did you know Google has a robust suite of free digital marketing tools for business owners?
Here are three that are essential for marketers:
a) Google Business Profile (formerly Google My Business)
If your business has a local service area, one of the very first things you should do is create a business profile on Google.
According to HubSpot, 46% of all users doing Google searches are looking for local information, and you want to ensure your business (literally) shows up on the map.
Keep in mind, profiles are limited to businesses with brick and mortar locations that customers can visit or that provide services to customers where they are located.
b) Google Search Console
Google Search Console provides important information about the performance of your organic search traffic on Google.
What keywords did visitors type to find specific pages on your site? What’s the average click-through rate (i.e., each time one of your web pages shows up in search engine results, what percentage of users click through to it)? Which pages generated the most searches?
c) Google Analytics
The third G in the Google trifecta is Google Analytics. This tool lets you dig deep into data about who and how visitors interact with your website. What pages do they visit? How long do they stay on each page? What is their typical journey through your site? Where are they visiting from?
2. Your Website Is Top Priority
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Websites are powerful marketing engines that serve as the primary point of entry for people who want something from your business.
Consumers come to your site to get questions answered, be entertained, find solutions, or learn more about your brand. In fact, 81% of retail shoppers conduct online research before buying.
Companies use websites to capture prospect data, nurture leads, send personalized messages and generate sales
Companies use websites to capture prospect data, nurture leads, send personalized messages and generate sales. With so much riding on the status of your website, it’s imperative that you give it the year-round attention it warrants.
The following elements are particularly crucial:
A Mobile-Friendly Design
As of Q2 of 2021, 61% of organic search engine visits in the US were done by mobile devices. That means visitors are looking at your website through the small screen of their smartphone.
Do you feel confident they’re having a good experience engaging with your brand this way? If not, it may be because you don’t have a responsive web design, meaning one that automatically adjusts in size based on the user’s device.
Page Load Speed
Page load speed is another performance indicator to keep your eye on since forty percent of users will abandon a webpage if it takes more than three seconds to load.
Google Search Console can help you identify page load speed and other site performance issues. You can also do a test on PageSpeed Insights.
Calls to Action and Lead Capture Forms
The point of attracting traffic to your website is to capture visitor data so you can create personalized nurturing campaigns that guide them through the buyer’s journey.
The way to do that is with strong calls to action and lead capture forms that feed into a customer relationship management (CRM) platform.
3. Focus on Great Content That Is Search Engine Optimized (SEO)
Photo by Oleksandr Pidvalnyi
To attract traffic to your website, you need to have content that is both compelling and optimized for search. You might have the most amazing product videos, but if your pages don’t show up high in the search engine results pages (SERPs), it’s all for nothing – literally.
The Search Engine Journal reports that 55% of users click on the first 3 organic search results and 88% click only the first 10.
The key is to find out what will help you stand out from the crowd
There is a wide range of marketing content you can create, ranging from white papers to recipes to entertaining videos to blog posts.
The key is to find out what will help you stand out from the crowd, so strive to create highly shareable content such as original research, infographics, or great storytelling. Pair it with a Call to Action and require visitors to submit their email or contact info on a lead capture form.
Of course, the way they find that content is through the strategic use of keywords on your website, your blog posts, your social media channels, and more.
High Impact SEO Strategies
Use a keyword research tool to identify keywords in your industry that have good search volume but are not difficult to rank for
Understand H1, Title, Header, and Alt Tags and optimize them
Use Google Search Console to identify underperforming keywords, achieve higher click-through rates, and improve SERPs
Have a blog strategy and update existing blogs with new keywords, data, links, and tags
Claim your social properties, review sites and directory listings (e.g., business, associations, industry)
Utilize social media in your SEO strategy
Continuously increase backlinks to your site over time
Maximize tangential content
4. Marketing Is Now Omnichannel
Photo by Dominika Roseclay
In our connected world, marketing is everywhere. Consumers are bombarded with branded content throughout their day, from in-app ads to digital billboards to photos on their Instagram feeds.
To compete, entrepreneurs and business owners feel pressured to maintain a presence on all the major social channels, in addition to their other online campaigns.
Fortunately, tools like Hookle help level the playing field by automating posts in all your social media channels with one app.
It makes social media scheduling something that can be planned and executed for multiple channels at one time, and a dashboard tracks insights for those posts in one place. They can organize their social media content for the month, schedule it in Hookle, and get back to other priorities.
5. Know Your Numbers
Photo by Timur Saglambilek
As we mentioned earlier, digital marketing is as much about data analytics as it is logos, tag lines, and graphic design.
To ensure your marketing is having an impact, we strongly encourage busy entrepreneurs to develop a set of key performance indicators around their marketing efforts and check in on them regularly.
Website traffic, conversion rates, social performance, number of leads generated, keyword ranking. These are all important metrics that can be continuously monitored - and usually even automatically with right apps.
These monitoring tools are a great place to start:
a) Google Search Console and Google Analytics
There’s a reason we included them earlier. Console’s tools not only measure your website’s search traffic, they also detect site performance issues, identify backlinks to your site, and provide an abundance of meaningful data for SEO.
Google Analytics tells you how long visitors stayed on pages, which channel they came from, and much, much more.
b) Hookle Social Score
Photo by Hookle
A single score (Social Score) gives you a snapshot of all your social media performance over the last 30 days, including all your social accounts and Google Business Profile. There’s no need to track the performance of all your social channels separately in different social apps.
A single score gives you a snapshot of all your social media performance
In fact, you don't need to monitor all different metrics yourself. Instead, the platform notifies you if your performance drops and suggests you to publish content to keep engaging with your audience again.
c) Marketing Automation Software
Depending on the size of your business, a CRM like HubSpot, Marketo, or Zoho, will let you drill down into the numbers that drive leads and conversions. Analyze email open rates, click-through rates, the average cost per lead, and more.
Digital marketing is an entire science unto itself and the factors that impact it are constantly changing.
We’ve tried to boil down the most complicated strategies into digestible tips that you can walk away with and start using today.