Building Your Brand in a Digital World
It’s no surprise that more and more consumers are connecting on digital channels, so the question is: Are you ready?
So what’s the deal with digital marketing?
Well first off, the online world is quickly becoming one of the largest opportunities to connect with your audience. However, it’s important to remember that your brand value relies on far more than a slick digital campaign (think customer experience, market positioning, customer reviews, product design & packaging, etc).
In fact, ‘digital’ should only be one part of your overall marketing strategy.
So while we’re not suggesting dropping traditional marketing tactics from your mix, we are suggesting that the digital world is here to stay and learning how to embrace it is key to reaching the next generation.
“80% of consumers use the internet to find a local business”1
Here’s a brief overview to get us warmed up:
mar•ket•ing |märkitiNG|: noun
Providing work that matters to people who care.
To convince customers you’re the best option!
The tangible and intangible experience of a product or service.
Tell Your Story
Stories reveal brand personality. You’re either one in a million or one of the millions. STAND OUT! Be different than others in your industry.
You need to be visible online
- In Canada, 90% of ALL online searches are done on Google2, so that’s where you should focus your energy.
- Being at the top of the page is important. The top five positions on Google account for over 80% of the search volume. Don’t even think about being found if you’re not on the first page.
- Even if you’re a local coffee shop or accountant, consumers are not rifling through the yellow pages to find you – they’re searching online.
Claim Your Free Google Listing
A free and easy way to get found on Google is to create (or claim) your Google MyBusiness listing. From here you can take control of your listing and upload photos, store hours, contact information, and even get notified when people leave a review.
It’s inevitable–people will talk about your business whether you like it or not, so why not be in the drivers seat and have the ability to: Learn from what people are saying, respond and rectify situations with unhappy customers, and build a positive following.
Reviews are often deemed as more authentic and trustworthy than the organizations corporate
website so encouraging positive reviews is a great way to rise above.
How do you get in front of your target market if they don’t even know about you yet? This is where Google Ads come in (and how Google makes their money). Setting up a Google Ads campaign can be broken down into 4 steps:
- Targeting: reach the user at the right place and right time.
- Bidding: set a bid to control how much you pay for users to interact with your ads.
- Creative: deliver the right message to the right user. Since everyone is different, we always encourage running multiple different ads (A/B testing to see which performs best).
- Measurement & Reporting: review the results and adjust as needed. In the next issue we’ll take a deeper look, show some examples, and highlight the differences between a ‘search’ and ‘display’ campaign.
Capturing customer email addresses and sending out special offers and news can be a great way to stay in touch with your customers. Plus it is measurable so you can see how much engagement your emails receive and track if they translate into sales.
Think about the last time you went shopping and the cashier asked for your email address to send you promotions. While it’s employed by all the big brands, from cosmetics to airlines, that doesn’t mean you can’t do it too.
MailChimp and Constant Contact both provide affordable list management & deployment solutions that meet Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation.
Can we manage it for you? Yes absolutely! We design & deploy eBlasts and track the results to drive your sales and marketing goals.
Visual & Inspiration
Groups, Dialogue, Friends
Probably the most common issues we see with local organizations using social media is not understanding that different channels require different messages.
Remember that it’s not free (what is the value of your time?), not all channels are a good fit for all organizations, and is it actually building your brand (Return on Investment)?
Also remember to have a good mix of content, don’t just shout the same ‘hard sell’ message over and over. Rather focus on providing value to your followers and sharing helpful information. Engage your audience.
Digital Marketing Terminology
Analytics is the analysis and communication of data. Usually a report or dashboard can help organize the data into meaningful insights to drive decisions and measure the effectiveness of a campaign. Data can include page visits, impressions, clicks, time on page, etc.
Did people leave your website without ‘converting’? Bounce rate measures the percent of website visitors that leave without browsing further and can be an indication that your landing page may not have a clear call-to-action, or is different from what people expect when they arrive.
Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation – requires organizations to obtain permission from recipients before sending communications out to them via email. They must also include an opt-out method without delay. CASL requires that senders maintain proof of opt-in, including the source and time.
Clicks measures how many people are actually clicking on a link or ad, and going to a specific page on your website to learn more. Industries have different benchmark ‘click through rates’ meaning out of 100 people, how many people we should expect to click on the ad.
If we understand what we want people to do when they get to your website (eg. download a PDF, phone you, etc), we can measure these behaviors as conversions.
The strategy of delivering different content or ads to users based on their geographic location. This allows you to be hyper targeted with your budget and message.
Similar to driving by a billboard on the highway, impressions measure the number of times people see your ad.
Refers to a website that is easy to use on a mobile device and dynamically adjusts the layout to best fit the screen size. Today, over 50% of all web traffic is from mobile phones, and if your website doesn’t meet Google’s latest mobile compatibility standards, they can penalize you in Google search rankings.
Search Engine Marketing – these are the ads that you see popping up around the web, or the first couple text results at the top of a Google search. SEM is a way to drive traffic to your website and get in front of an audience where you otherwise are not ranking well (can target by geography, demographics, keywords, etc).
Search Engine Optimization – basically this is how a website ranks on Google search results. There’s a number of items that contribute to a strong search ranking including the technical way the site is built (coding, mobile responsive, load time, links, etc.), and the amount of actual relevant content and keywords on the pages.
The more optimized your website is for SEO, the better chance you have of being found online.
Secure Socket Layer is a web security technology on your website that protects and encrypts information entered by users over the site. It’s important because browsers are now warning users when a website is unsafe to enter.
Without SSL, your website will get flagged and visitors may be deterred from visiting the site. If your site is SSL Secure, visitors will see a green lock icon in the address bar, indicating it is safe.
“98% of searchers choose a business that is on page 1 of the results they get.”1
1Frost, Phil. “15 Stats That Prove Google Adwords Is A Great Investment For Your Business”. May 21, 2017, https://www.mainstreetroi.com/15-stats-that-prove-google-adwords-is-a-great-investment-for-your-business
2“Search Engine Market Share Canada, August 2017 – August 2018”. Statcounter GlobalStats, 2018, http://gs.statcounter.com/search-engine-market-share/all/canada/#monthly-201708-201808-bar