If you want to grow your business but aren’t sure where to begin or what strategies to try, choosing the right digital marketing channels for your business is a great place to start. Determining what channels you are going to use will help you identify what strategies and techniques your team should employ.
What are digital marketing channels?
Digital marketing channels are the common platforms and tools that businesses use to promote their brands, products, and services. These channels help businesses reach their target audiences where they are and connect with their current and future customers.
There are several different digital marketing channels and a range of strategies and tactics to use them successfully. Depending on your unique industry and the scale of your business, some channels and strategies may be more effective than others. Here are five digital marketing channels that are essential for every business, including yours.
1. Your business needs an optimized website.
The first digital marketing channel you want to invest in is your own website. The vast majority of your digital marketing efforts and initiatives will ultimately lead your prospects to your site so they can make a conversion or purchase, so you want to ensure that you have a stellar website that impresses and exceeds their expectations.
Have you ever used a brand or business’ website with the intention of making a purchase, but the site was difficult to use or didn’t load properly, so you ultimately gave up and gave your business to a competitor? If so, you’re not alone. Almost 30% of mobile shoppers will abandon their purchase if they have a poor mobile experience, and 89% of customers switch to a competitor after a poor experience with a business. If your site users don’t have a positive experience on your site, they aren’t likely to make the conversion or purchase you desire.
A professionally designed website will give your users a seamless experience on every device, allowing them to browse and shop with ease and comfort. And, when your site is professionally optimized for search engines, you can increase your organic traffic by appearing in relevant SERPs (search engine results pages), bringing valuable prospects who are looking for your product or service right to your site.
2. Use content to grow your site index and market your business by blogging.
Your website doesn’t just serve as a hub or landing point for your digital marketing initiatives–you can actually use your website as its own digital marketing channel. By writing and publishing blog posts to your website, you can provide your visitors with valuable and educational content.
When a prospect visits your website, they may have questions about your product or may just be unsure if they are ready to purchase. These blog posts are your opportunity to address their pain points and concerns, present the value and versatility of your products, and educate them to boost their confidence in their purchase decision.
When your blog posts are informative and accurate, this helps to establish you as an expert in your industry and build trust and credibility with your consumers. You can also optimize this content with keywords, meta descriptions, and more to have your blog posts appear in relevant SERPs, increasing your visibility and reach.
If you’re interested in starting a blog on your site, check out our Blog Posting Basics series for some helpful tips!
3. Build a following and engagement on relevant social media platforms.
There are currently over 2.7 billion social media users globally. By creating branded profiles and sharing valuable content, businesses like yours have been able to use these social media platforms to their advantage and meet their target audiences right where they are.
Social media is a great digital marketing channel, but to use it most efficiently and effectively, make sure you’re choosing the right platforms. The best way to choose these platforms is to find out what platforms your target audiences are using.
For example: If you are a clothing brand that is geared towards teens and young adults, Instagram is a great place to post photos of styled outfits or new pieces. You can even work with popular influencers to have them model or promote your brand. If you offer a B2B service, LinkedIn would be the most efficient way to find and connect with business owners or executives who would be interested in your service. If you offer a product or service that benefits a wide age range of individuals, posting a video or photos on Facebook will help you reach various demographics at once.
If you are interested in a more indepth look at each popular platform and learn more about how to grow your brand with social media check out this blog post, but here are some quick tips:
- Properly brand your profiles with your business name and logo, so visitors and prospects know who you are.
- Make sure your profiles are consistent–any contact information, site links, and brand messaging should be the same on all profiles. This builds trust and credibility, and ensures you give your visitors the best possible experience no matter how they find you.
- Create content that is valuable to your prospects and relevant to your business. This content should build your credibility, position you as an expert in your industry, and motivate your prospects to follow your profile and possibly even visit your site.
Social media is a fantastic way to grow your brand awareness, reach your target audience, and build a following that you can repeatedly market to and connect with.
4. Use email marketing to reach satisfied customers and interested prospects.
Some people still believe that email is dying or is no longer relevant, but research has shown that email usage has grown every single year since 2012, and more than 90% of internet users in the United States use email. Email isn’t going anywhere, and if you’re not utilizing email marketing, you could be missing out on valuable opportunities to convert your prospects and turn one-time customers into loyal repeat buyers.
Before you can initiate a successful email marketing campaign, you have to start by collecting valid email addresses. There are a few great ways you can do this, including:
- Giving shoppers an option at check out to opt-in to your newsletter or email updates
- Creating a conversion opportunity for prospects by offering a free sample or an exclusive download that they can redeem by providing their email address
Once you have built a list (or several lists) of customer and prospect email addresses, you can begin to create and initiate email campaigns with interesting, exciting, and educational content that convinces prospects to make their first purchase and motivates satisfied customers to purchase again.
Building an engaged and loyal subscriber list can take time, but it is well worth the time and effort, because when you use an email marketing campaign, you are delivering your brand and your content right into their inbox and getting their attention.
5. Make sure your business is easy to find in local directories.
One of the most effective digital marketing channels that businesses forget about are local directories. Most directories have a simple and easy profile setup process, and many of them provide free versions (if they aren’t already entirely free), but many businesses don’t realize how vital they actually are to your digital marketing. If you haven’t optimized your business for local search, you could be missing out on 80% of your potential customers.
Creating and optimizing profiles on the directories that are relevant to your business is a great way to reach your customers where they are searching and improve your organic reach. Some popular platforms and directories include:
Like your social media profiles, it is important to make sure you are branding your directory listings with your business name and logo, and to ensure that any business information is consistent across all directories. This helps improve your ranking and visibility on SERPs and helps cultivate credibility, trust, and a stellar experience with your prospects.
We can help you brand and optimize your digital marketing channels.
If you are ready to update and optimize your website, create valuable blog content, grow your social media presence, utilize email marketing, or improve your local SEO, contact us today. Our digital marketing experts can help you with these and any other digital marketing channels that your business can benefit from.