Businesses everywhere shifted their focus and put on their resilience caps during the 2020 premiere of COVID -19. Adapting to the sudden change of how small businesses reached their customer base and maintained community engagement is one uncertainty that 30.2 million entrepreneurial spirits felt across America. This unforeseen restructure required business owners everywhere to take a step back in order to find clarity in how to move forward with their doors open and profits flowing.
In walks digital marketing.
While digital marketing now seems to be a second language for most business owners and employees worldwide- just a short year ago it wasn’t necessarily something everyone practiced. Fast forward nearly 12 months into the global pandemic and you’d be shocked to see a local clothing boutique, mom & pop restaurant, or a local barber shop NOT trying one or more digital marketing tactics in order to keep their businesses a front runner in the communities with which they reside. In fact, seventy percent of small businesses say digital marketing tools assisted their efforts in keeping their doors open amidst the pandemic. For many, digital marketing has become a brand new skill that they’ve added to their resume and likely one they’ll hang onto for the foreseeable future.
These 2020 reports provide an incredible amount of data that show how businesses are using online marketing channels like Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Email Marketing, and social media platforms to extend their reach and broaden their scope.
New to digital marketing? Test the waters with these three channels and get your business noticed!
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. SEO is the practice of increasing both the quality and quantity of website traffic, as well as exposure to your brand, through non-paid (also known as "organic") search engine results. While social media and paid ads can assist with bringing new users and potential customers to your website, search engines remain the most common way to get most of your new traffic.
SEO is a unique marketing channel in that it is an evergreen option for businesses. When set up correctly, SEO will continue to work for you and your business time and time again. As long as you provide strong content and proper keywords to your SEO, you’ll feed prosperous traffic to your site without having to consistently pay for advertising and smaller “bursts” of visitors. Learn the basics of setting up your Search Engine Optimization and watch your website flourish.
Email Marketing is the perfect way to use creativity to reach a broad audience. While we know that social media platforms are an extremely popular way to get your information and ads in front of millions of potential customers, there are actually 3 X more email users than Facebook + Twitter combined. This means that you are much more likely to get a click through from an email user than only from someone who sees your ad on Twitter.
Now, let's talk Return on Investment (ROI). ROI is a performance measure used to evaluate the efficiency of an investment or compare the efficiency of a number of different investments. ROI tries to directly measure the amount of return on a particular investment, relative to the investment’s cost. To calculate ROI, the benefit (or return) of an investment is divided by the cost of the investment. The result is expressed as a percentage or a ratio.
In order to maximize your marketing efforts, you want to make sure you understand your goals. Some of your marketing goals may be to raise brand awareness, generate new traffic, increase your businesses revenue, etc. Once you’ve planned out your goals, you can use this guide to let the creativity flow and begin to craft your very own unique email campaigns.
Social Media Platforms
Social Media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.) has become a lifestyle for businesses and consumers. It has become less of an optional marketing platform and more of a necessary one. With more than 3.6 billion people on social media in 2020, it seems silly not to take advantage of the vast audience that you can reach. The beauty of social media is that it puts small businesses and big businesses on the very same playing field.
Not only are your potential customers already present on social media, they are daily active participants. While scrolling through content and earmarking their favorite new accounts and products, they are also making purchases along the way. Social media users are prepared to interact with creative content and you have the opportunity to inspire and influence your followers to learn more about your very own business. Hootsuite offers a simple step-by-step guide to create social media marketing strategies to take your business to new heights.
So approach the year ahead with a clear and concise digital marketing plan for your business and you’ll quickly realize that your growth opportunities are wildly endless.