DO YOU THINK YOUR ONLINE PRESENCE IS GOOD ENOUGH FOR 2019?
The world has gone digital. Nearly two-thirds of consumers are using the internet to find the information they need to make purchase decisions.
Social media is playing an even more important role in engaging audiences than you’d have imagined a decade ago.
A growing number of consumers are making purchases directly off the internet. And consumers, in general, are showing a preference for digital media compared to traditional channels such as TV and newspapers.
Put all these together and there’s only one conclusion – operating without an online presence would be catastrophic.
You wouldn’t even be able to compete. To generate the leads you yearn for, achieve the conversion rates required to attain meaningful growth, and effectively engage your audiences in a manner that promises future sales, you need to have a clear online presence strategy.
We’ve been providing full-package digital marketing services for a while now. Below, we share with you four steps to prepare a fail-proof online presence strategy for the upcoming business year.
STEP #1: ESTABLISH YOUR GOALS AND KPIS
This is where every marketing plan begins. Before you head out and fill the internet with your messages, you must first understand the purpose of the campaign, outline your objectives, and establish how you’re going to measure your progress.
Let’s begin with goal setting. There are many reasons you could be thinking of maintaining a strong online presence in 2019. These include;
- To sell a product or service online
- To advertise a product or service
- To provide product support and customer service
- To provide corporate information
- To establish brand awareness and identity
It is important to understand your key objective from the beginning so you don’t get lost in the process. Also, ensure that the goals are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-bound).
After setting your goals, the next step is to establish a measurement mechanism. You are only going to remain on track and grow your business and the campaign if you can track your progress. Some of the most important Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for an online presence include;
- Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)
- Traffic Numbers (Overall and Per Channel)
- Number of Unique Customers (Daily and Monthly)
- Retention Rate
- Conversion Rate
- Bounce Rate
- Return on Investment (ROI)
These KPIs apply to most online marketing strategies. However, it’s your duty to determine the most important metrics for each campaign.
STEP #2: BUILD YOUR ORGANIC CHANNELS
This is assuming that you already have a dedicated business website. If you don’t, the first step is to build a responsive, business-focused site. All your marketing campaigns will converge on this website.
Once you have a professional website in place, you need to build your organic channels. The top four organic channels to focus on in 2019 are;
Content marketing essentially refers to the use of content (text, images, audio, and video) to convey messages over the internet. The following are a few points to keep in mind as you create a content marketing plan for 2019;
Value is the word: There are tons of content pieces on the internet already. The only way to stand out is by providing value to your audience.
Keywords still count: Optimise your content around your most important keywords. It will be crucial even in 2019.
Mix up content types: Blog posts aren’t the only way to deliver content. In some cases, other options such as industry studies, infographics, and videos, may perform better.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
You will be undoing all the good work you’ve done if you neglect SEO. To this end, keep SEO best practices foremost in mind as you enter 2019. These include;
- Optimising for mobile: Google and other search engines now generate different search results for Mobile and PC. You must optimise your campaign for mobile to rank favourably for mobile searches.
- Optimise for local searches: Google, in particular, is rewarding business owners who optimise for local searches with a better ranking and appearance in Google Maps and the enviable “Local 3 Pack.” You don’t want to miss out on this.
- Optimise for voice searches: Already 50% of Google searches are voice-based. This number could soar even further in 2019. Don’t be left behind. Optimise your content for voice search to take advantage of the new trend.
Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing is now standing on its own two feet. Platforms such as Facebook and Instagram even allow consumers to make purchases from within the apps. Your business needs to take advantage of these enhanced capabilities. The following are a few top tips for social media marketing in 2019;
- Choose your platforms wisely: It’s very difficult to maintain an active presence on all social media networks. So, choose two or three platforms that your audiences prefer and be active there.
- Create business accounts: Most social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, now allow you to create a business account, separate from your private/personal accounts. These business accounts come with specialised business tools that your online campaigns need.
- Make social sharing easy: Integrate social media into your other marketing campaigns using social share buttons and links. Most importantly, take time to converse with your fans.
Finally, you also need a carefully-thought email marketing strategy. Email has arguably the highest return on investment (ROI). For 2019, the following tips should come in handy;
- Stick to industry best practices: Read industry studies to find out what works and make efforts to get on board and implement those best practices (including send times, subject lines, etc)
- Build your list: Focus on adding more contacts to your list. More importantly, regularly clean up the list to increase efficiency.
STEP #3: OPTIMISE YOUR PAID CAMPAIGNS
Although organic channels should form the foundation for your online presence, paid avenues, if used correctly, promise enormous rewards. AdWords, for instance, has an ROI of 200%! You need to take advantage of this.
For the upcoming year, we recommend the following;
- Review new features on AdWords: A number of new features were introduced in AdWords last year in 2018. These include promotion extensions, bid adjustment for phone calls, and outstream video campaigns. Be sure to learn more about these features.
- Test new platforms: The majority of PPC marketers focus only on Google and Bing. Now in 2019 is the right time to explore paid advertisements on other platforms, especially social media networks.
- Go mobile: Mobile is now the preferred device for accessing the internet. Are you optimising your ads for mobile viewing? Are you even showing your ads on mobile? You need to take this very seriously.
STEP #4: MEASURE AND ANALYSE
We already covered KPIs earlier. After measuring these KPIs, take time to analyse the data and use the findings to improve your campaigns. Fortunately for you, there are endless analytics tools out there that you can use (even for free) starting with Google Analytics.
Let BRAINS.IE Help You!
A digital marketing company, Brains.ie, can help you meet your online presence goals this year, make 2019 your year of success.
We have the knowledge, the skills, and the experience. Plus, we are a local company based in Douglas, Cork with a proven track record. Contact us today to get started.