5 Ways to Maximize Your Digital Marketing ROI
With your brand plans and brand execution strategies ready to go, you’re probably thinking about how to get the most from your online presence – which impacts everything from your credibility to your profitability. It’s not only where people find your business, it’s how they reach out to connect, explore your reputation, and even challenge and validate their own impressions of your brand. In short: the way you come across online can be the difference between maintaining status quo and generating significant results for your business. The question is, how do you make the most of it?
We’ve identified five things that successful online marketers do – which you can and should be doing right now — to generate a powerful return on your online investment:
- SET GOALS. It sounds obvious, but too many companies launch websites, write blogs and post online without asking the right strategic questions about what they need to accomplish and choosing the right tactics for success. For instance, if you want to increase sales, look not only at your eCommerce capabilities but also at how you can better capture customers’ attention at each stage of their buying process. Do you need to improve brand recognition? Make sure your brand identity is consistent and consider an online ad campaign.
- DEFINE YOUR AUDIENCE(S). Most businesses do this at a basic level, but it’s important to remember that every audience is comprised of real people not just their companies and titles/responsibilities — and that you may have audiences beyond your customers (How about potential employees? Current employees? Investors?). Don’t be afraid to dig deeper. Do the people you need to reach tend to be male or female? How young/old are they likely to be? What keeps them engaged in their jobs and what do they worry about? The answers to questions like these will get you beyond a simple, functional connection (“We use widgets; you sell widgets.”) to create messages that resonate and inspire (“We need your widgets”).
- IDENTIFY YOUR CHANNELS. When we talk about online presence, we mean more than just your website and LinkedIn page. Consider multiple social media platforms and how your audience uses each of them. Explore how your audience engages with you – and how they may want to engage with you. Are they checking email all day long? If so, an email marketing campaign may be the best way to reach them. Is your audience often on the go? Offering an online portal might seem adequate enough – but optimizing access for mobile devices and platforms would make your portal more useful – and a thoughtfully designed mobile app would make connecting with you even easier.
- BUILD A CALENDAR. We’ve written about the benefits of creating and maintaining a social media calendar — strategic alignment (connecting marketing and communications with corporate strategy and KPIs), relevance to predictable circumstances (holidays, industry conferences and events, predictable seasonal variations), messaging and cadence consistency (what to say and when to say it). But, these benefits should go beyond social media. If you downloaded our social media calendar template last year, now is the time to not only update it but also expand it to include website updates, online advertising, blog topics and direct messaging campaigns.
- DEFINE METRICS FOR SUCCESS. The great thing about online media is that you can make adjustments as you go to improve results over time. Which means you need metrics. If your goal is brand awareness, measure impressions (the number of times your brand is seen) and reach (the number of unique people who see your brand). Consideration campaigns typically focus on click-through rates (CTR – the number of times someone clicks on an ad or message to get to your website). And campaigns designed to improve engagement and sales require measurement of conversions (newsletter subscriptions, likes/follows, purchases, inbound emails, phone calls, etc.).
Together, these five steps can help you achieve the results your business needs — as well as a significant return on your investment in your online presence.
Keep your eyes open for our final post in our end-of-year series: Rules of thumb for establishing the right timing, budget and resources for next year’s marketing.
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