Promoting your company online
An effective online marketing strategy should guide all of your digital marketing efforts, and can mean the difference between success and failure for your business.
Covering all aspects of your online presence, from branding to visibility, SEO strategy to customer acquisition, your strategy for growing your business via the internet should be comprehensive and well thought-out.
A Robust Online Marketing Plan
Before you even lift a finger or invest a penny in online marketing you should take some time to create a clear plan. It doesn’t have to be complicated, but having a written plan will help you to stay focused over time. It can also serve as a roadmap for making decisions about priorities and budget.
Work with your digital marketing company – start with your destination in mind and write down your goals. You will need to answer a range of questions which your digital marketers will facilitate.
Your plan should be based on good research- about your customers, your competitors, your industry and your own business. It should include clear answers on important questions such as the ones below:
- Do you need to make a certain amount of sales per week or month to break even?
- What rate of sales growth do you want to see in the next year? In the next five years?
- Is there a specific type of ideal customer you want to attract?
- What is your current market share, and how much do you want to increase it?
- Do you want to dominate within a specific region, or are you looking to expand nationally? Or even globally?
- Who are your target audience, and how will you reach them?
- Who are your main competitors and what can you offer customers that they can’t?
- What marketing channels are your competitors using, and what is the size of their investment into each of these?
Once you have these goals defined you can work backwards to map out the steps that need to be taken to achieve them.
For example, what collateral and channels do you need to develop to attract and convert those customers? How big will your marketing investment need to be in order to compete effectively and reach these goals within your desired timeline? How many people need to enter the top of your marketing funnel (e.g. newsletter subscribers, social media followers or website visitors) to then convert into the necessary amount of sales to meet your growth targets?
It’s important to consider all elements of your online presence in any marketing plan, such as your website development, blog, SEO content, social media presence, email marketing, and online advertising.
All of these channels will contribute to your overall marketing program, some more directly than others. For example some forms of advertising might be great to raise your brand’s visibility, but might not result in sales, while SEO efforts for specific product terms can deliver a clearer return on investment.
A great marketing plan lets you see how each area interacts and supports others, letting you see the big picture.