The goal of advertising was, is and always will be to persuade potential customers into purchasing your products or using your services. While traditional marketing relies heavily on bombarding as many people as humanly possible with your brand message, digital advertising is not only much subtler, but also affordable, especially from the perspective of a startup or a small business. However, without a structured and organized approach to digital marketing, your strategy is bound to produce hit-and-miss results and fail to live up to its true potential. Here are some of the most persistent warning signs that your business is in dire need of a well-thought-out digital marketing strategy.
1. A general lack of direction
Before we dive head-first into why your business needs a decent advertising strategy, let’s start off with a couple of questions. Do you know exactly what it is you want to achieve? Is it driving traffic to your website or generating leads? Or is it converting those leads into paying customers? Or is it none of the above? If you’re left feeling unsure after reading these questions, then you need to establish clear goals and objectives and focus your priorities on fulfilling them one after another. A strategy without direction is nothing more than shooting blanks in hopes of getting a hit. In other words, it’s pointless and from a business perspective, a waste of time and resources.
2. Not knowing who your target audience is
As we already mentioned, traditional marketing relies on getting your message across to as many people in hopes that a small percentage of them will turn into paying customers. Digital advertising, on the other hand, allows for hyper-precise targeting based not only on age, sex, ger, and location but also on their personal preferences, beliefs, previous shopping experiences, the devices they use to browse, etc. Figuring out who your target audience is allows you to determine what types of content and communication channels you’re going to use while allowing you to measure your results in real time and use that information to further improve and tweak your strategy in order to produce even better results.
3. Low brand visibility
The digital marketplace is notoriously busy and you can easily slip through the cracks and get run over by the competition. If your audience is having difficulties finding your business online, they will most certainly turn to your competitors and get all the services and products they require from them. It may be important for a modern-day business to have an official website, as well as various social media profiles, but you also need a proper marketing strategy that will determine exactly how and when you need to use them in order to fulfill your advertising goals.
4. Poor search engine rankings
Search engine optimization or SEO is vital for the development and growth of a successful business. While these services might be expensive for an average startup, the benefits they offer greatly overshadows the upfront costs as Google relies on more than 200 individual factors to rank your website. Keyword stuffing and duplicate content should be avoided at all costs, but for everything else, you might want to consider hiring a professional. You can even hire developers locally, so a business located in China can easily find a professional web developer in Hong Kong without having to worry about any additional costs, fees and conversion rates associated with hiring freelancers.
5. Lack of communication with customers
There are many mistakes a small business can make, but not having a clear line of communication with their customers by far the most serious one. We live in the digital era, where billions and billions of people own accounts on various social media platforms. This presents an excellent opportunity for businesses to get in touch with their customers on a more personal level, hear out their complaints and concerns and use their feedback to improve your products and services. Turning a deaf ear can only hurt your brand and destroy your bottom line.
While we’re on the subject of communication, do not shy away from acknowledging negative comments and reviews. Ignoring and hiding them can only make matters worse for your company and lead to a tarnished reputation. Every decent marketing strategy involves addressing the complaints you receive, providing your customers with an outstanding shopping experience and ensuring that your brand remains on everyone’s radar as one of integrity and willingness to go out of your way in order to make your clients and customers happy.
Guest article written by: Dan Radak is a marketing professional with eleven years of experience. He is currently working with a number of companies in the field of digital marketing, closely collaborating with a couple of e-commerce companies. He is also a coauthor on several technology websites and regular contributor to Technivorz.