According to a research done on the performance of businesses particularly startups, it was found that 96% of them do not survive past the 10-year mark. While the viability of the business idea or concept is one among the reasons behind the failure, the turbulence these businesses encounter in the marketplace thanks to fierce competition is what drives many of them out of business.
Marketing is nowhere near a magic wand for businesses, but it plays a key role in positioning them in the marketplace. Getting the attention of your target audience and leading them down the sales funnel is the ultimate objective of marketing.
The 21st century has witnessed an increased use of internet marketing solutions to boost visibility and enhance brand exposure for businesses. The discussion below details how internet marketing tools and strategies can help you establish and grow your business irrespective of the niche you are operating in.
Search Engine Optimization
According to statistics, 75% of users never scroll past the first page of search results. This means for your business to stand out and capture your target market’s eyeballs, it must rank at least on the first page if not the top position on the first page. Search engine optimization (SEO) refers to a set of techniques employed to affect the ranking and visibility of your website on search engine result pages.
With 14.6% of traffic clicking on your link from search engine results pages ending up buying from you, investing in SEO can give you a high return on investment. In order to start positioning your business online through search engine optimization, you need a professional to help you in:
- Competitor analysis
- Identification of search terms and phrases your customers use when looking for your business and products.
- Defining and optimizing your meta tags and website titles
- Developing, distributing and marketing your content both on your website and off your site
- Submitting your website to search engines especially if it is new
Pay Per Click (PPC) Advertising
While SEO is an organic or natural form of advertising, PPC is part of what is known as paid or inorganic search. The main difference is that for SEO, you do not pay for the keywords you target in your bid to rank in search engines while in PPC you have to bid for these key phrases and pay for them depending on their competitiveness.
PPC ads, appear in prime positions on search engine results and hence most likely to be clicked on by your target traffic. Depending on the key phrases you target, PPC can drive massive traffic to your website and boost conversion rates.
Social Media Marketing
Social media has in the recent past become the hotbed of online engagements and conversions. As a business owner or marketer, setting up business pages complete with your profile and actively interacting with your followers and fans, you can gain a considerable in your online marketing initiatives.
Facebook has over 1.59 billion active users, Twitter over 320 million, Linkedin slightly over 400 million, and Pinterest over 100 million active users. These are potential customers who need a well-crafted social media strategy and active engagement to drive them to your site for conversion.
Content Development and Marketing
Through content which is an umbrella word for both visual and textual elements, you can gain a considerable edge over your competitors. Customers love original, informative and entertaining content. If you can consistently serve them this, chances of you winning them are very high. To start off, you need a content marketing strategy detailing your audience content preferences, the forms of content (infographics, eBooks, white papers and videos) you intend to serve them, and the frequency. You need consistency and predictability in developing and promoting your content for loyal followership.
Video Publishing and Marketing
Videos can provide you with new and innovative ways to reach out to your target audience. Not every customer is interested in going through pages of content just to know how your product works, hence the potency of videos. Through videos, you can combine both educative (tutorial and tips) and entertainment aspects into marketing campaign thus getting more viewership.
The most critical component in video marketing is having a consistent publishing schedule. Where possible, make the videos as short as you can. Not many customers can go beyond 4 seconds watching a product-based video. You can also integrate video marketing with your social media campaigns for maximum exposure.
Blogging has become one of the most popular ways you marketers use to reach out to targeted markets and influencing them into making purchases decisions. Through blogs, you can promote your brand and products. Much more like content generation and promotion, blogs ought to be majorly educative and entertaining.
You can also put ads on blogs such as animation banners, audio and video clips as well as promotional links. However, all these should be done in moderation because over promotion can be a turn off to your prospects. News travel very fast online and a nicely done blog can go viral overnight giving you more exposure and brand authority.
While there are many other ways you can use to market and grow your business online, these are some of the top and trusted strategies. However, don’t feel locked out; feel free to add to the list!