If it wasn’t already obvious prior to the pandemic, it certainly is now: People practically live online.
But they’re not just playing games, checking sports scores, and reading up on local and national elections. They’re also doing business — and that’s where you come in.
As a business owner — whether in Canada, the United States, or elsewhere — you’re bound to yield more success by developing a stronger online presence. Consider a few basic statistics that are hard to ignore:
- More than 4 billion people around the world actively use the Internet.
- More than 50 percent of website traffic comes via mobile phones.
- In Canada, 67 percent of citizens say they’re more likely to conduct business with a company that has a website.
Digital marketing — through websites, social media, email, and mobile apps — can play a huge role in promoting your business to customers and prospects, both locally and globally. So let’s briefly examine a few ways to expand on your relationships with your clients.
Image: Till Westermayer / Flickr
On your own website, you can blog on topics that are relevant to your business and practice search engine optimization (SEO) to earn better rankings in search engines. Focus on content that addresses common issues faced by your target audience. (In other words, make it valuable.)
In doing so, you’re not simply advertising. You’re offering information that your customers, and prospective customers, can use and learn from — and over time, your site can become more of a go-to destination on the Internet for the topics you want your business to be known for.
As you prepare your content, bear in mind that people tend to process visual elements more easily than text. Whether it’s an image, an infographic, or a video, think about how you can show it — not just how to spell it out.
Whatever content you choose, the importance of making your site mobile-friendly can’t be overstated. About half of Internet traffic around the world is viewed on a mobile device — so make sure those visitors see a clear, easy-to-navigate site on their phones and tablets. (If you need help on that front, there are experts who can help build or redesign your site and train you how to update it.)
Image: Esther Vargas / Flickr
If you want to keep visitors on your site, video content is a proven method for building trust with consumers and ensuring that the information stays with them longer.
What does this mean for business? Shoppers who watch a video are 1.81 times more likely to make a purchase than those who don’t view one. It helps consumers improve their own knowledge, learn more about your product or service, and get buying advice.
Email campaigns can be an effective way to engage readers, draw traffic to your site, and generate leads. But it’s important to remember that you’re emailing people, not robots.
- Remember that everyone’s inbox is boiling over with a daily barrage of emails — yours too, no doubt — which means you’ll want to cater to the short attention span.
- Focus on writing a clear, compelling subject line. Always keep your audience in mind and make sure the body of the message is both relevant and concise. Most readers will move on quickly once they open an email that’s lengthy and excessively wordy.
- Knowing this quick-scan approach is almost universal, it’s important to have a very visible call-to-action (CTA) button that prompts readers to click through to the site or the offer you’re aiming to draw them to.
- Whatever platform you use, the same rule for websites from above applies here: Be sure your email templates are mobile-friendly. At least 50 percent of emails are opened on smartphones or tablets (mostly phones).
Image: www.quotecatalog.com / Flickr
With nearly 3.5 billion active social media users around the world, platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter provide a vast arena for digital marketing opportunities.
Determining the best platform will depend on your business, and your audience. Where do your customers and prospects spend most of their time? Facebook may be the most popular social media venue worldwide, but if you find the majority of your customers are more active on Twitter, then of course it makes sense to focus your marketing efforts there.
Online pay-per-click (PPC) ads, which appear when Internet users search for the terms you use in the ad, can be a great option to support your marketing strategy.
With PPC, you select your relevant keywords that prospects are searching for, and you pay only when a user clicks on your ad. One of the most common avenues is Google Ads, but the major social networks also offer PPC advertising.
Blue Cow can help your business
With so many options for capturing your audience in the ever-growing online marketplace, it can be overwhelming to figure out and implement the right strategy for you. We’ve earned the trust of many business owners by helping them with their websites, videos, podcasts, email marketing, direct mail, and more.
We can help you put the most effective digital marketing tools to work for your business — to help it continue to compete and grow in the complex but profitable online arena.