Any online marketing agency in Essex will tell you that traditional methods of attracting new customers are as valid as ever. There is a lot to be said for the power of word of mouth, referrals, advertising and mailshots. That being said, online marketing has become the fastest path to growth. But while your online presence may begin with your website, it certainly doesn’t end there and what you do beyond its boundaries is every bit as important.
We’re all familiar with the idea of using frequent and regular social media posts to generate interest and custom. But eventually, you’ll find it hard to reach new groups. That’s when you need a comprehensive strategy, deploying all the tools the internet offers in a systematised marketing structure.
It can be difficult to know where to focus your efforts so it’s worth taking the time to identify your goals, strategy and tactics. A goal need not be as formal as a target but it needs to be quantifiable – a daily revenue level or customer increase rate, for example. The strategy is the broad vision as to how you expect to achieve this, perhaps by devising a conversion sequence to take potential customers from interest to lead to a sale. The tactics are the specific actions you plan to take to get there.
Much of the guidance about online marketing tends to focus on tactics without telling you how to organise them within a strategy. Simply ticking off all the items won’t necessarily yield results – for example, if your YouTube ads aren’t working, try Facebook or Google instead. And make sure you set yourself a realistic budget and keep your spending under control.
Know Your Customer
It is vital to understand the preferences of your audience. Online tools to analyse the demographics of the customers of your competitors include alexa.com and the Google Adwords display planner combined with Google Analytics. Any online marketing agency in Essex with a significant client base can testify to the speed with which you can gather the information that will increase your understanding of the kind of people – by age, gender, education, location and more – that you need to attract. It will also give you insights as to how best to communicate with them.
Choose Your Channel
Although the quickest approach is to tackle all the main social media channels at once, it makes sense to start by first focusing on the one that most closely matches your customer demographic. Older consumers are more likely to be frequent Facebook users while younger ones will spend a lot more time on Instagram or TikTok and professionals will lean towards LinkedIn. Don’t ignore the power of email marketing, which is a discipline all of its own but can be used most effectively with your newly acquired market awareness.
Study how your competitors use social media because this will give you clues as to what is already working and may also prompt you to come up with innovative ideas of your own. Once you’re seeing results from one channel, consider branching out into others. If you do, there are some important things to remember. Firstly, the profile of users may be markedly different so you will need to tailor your content accordingly. Secondly, don’t let this additional focus dilute the resources you have already committed. Thirdly, if it isn’t bringing in enough business, consider abandoning it.
This remains one of the most important considerations of online marketing and it is in a constant state of evolution. Starting with a website that is designed to be search engine friendly in terms of structure, you also need to post original content and generate backlinks from other, compatible sites, either organically or by reciprocal arrangement. It is much easier to secure these valuable backlinks if your content is authoritative, entertaining and unique. Ranking on the first page of results is the goal of every business and if you can’t achieve this by content and structure alone, then GoogleAds and Google My Business could be the answer.
Working with an online marketing agency in Essex
Ultimately, deciding on the right marketing mix depends on the nature of your product and the identity of your customers. Once you know who you’re selling to, you have cleared the first hurdle. The right agency will be willing to try everything relevant but will always be prepared to change tactics if the results you need aren’t flowing.