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Effective Digital Marketing 101: Essentials You Need to Know

January 18, 2023
By Frank Rodriguez
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Are you trying to get your brand noticed in the digital marketplace so that you can acquire new leads, boost sales, build your customer base, and grow your business?

If so, you need a winning digital marketing strategy to increase your online visibility. 

But what is digital marketing exactly, and how can you create a strategy that will produce real results for your business? Whether your company is among the 71% of businesses that already has a website or if you are one of the roughly 29% that don’t, this guide will bring you up to speed.

Join us as we take a deep dive into the question “what is digital marketing?” and reveal how you can create a highly effective strategy for your business. 

So What Is Digital Marketing Exactly?

According to the American Marketing Association, marketing is the practice of identifying and satisfying customer needs — so naturally, digital marketing involves identifying and satisfying these needs via digital channels such as your website, social media pages, and across search engines. 

However, many believe digital marketing is synonymous with online advertising. While advertising certainly plays a role, digital marketing involves much more than simply selling your products with ads. You also must provide consumers with valuable information about your products, services, and area of expertise.

For instance, let’s say that you operate a roofing company. As part of your brand-building efforts, you should publish blog content that provides insights into your industry and establishes your company as an authority on the subject of roofing. Consider publishing content like “7 Signs Your Roof Is Due for Replacement.” This type of content simultaneously provides value and proves your authority.

Digital marketing by publishing content is a great way to provide value and create authority for your brand.
Publishing content is a great way to provide value for your visitors and create authority for your brand by establishing you as a thought leader.

For the most part, digital channels have replaced traditional ones — or at the very least, overshadowed them. Therefore, digital marketing should make up most of your company’s outreach and advertising efforts. 

What Is Digital Marketing Strategy?

A digital marketing strategy is your roadmap for connecting with potential customers, increasing brand awareness, making your site more visible on top search engines like Google, and earning more business. Your strategy must be comprehensive, detailed, and easy to adhere to. 

The strategy should clearly define:

  • What types of content will you produce (i.e., service pages, blogs, social media posts)
  • Where will you publish this content
  • Do you have content to publish (i.e., ad copy, blogs, photography, video)
  • Who your target audience is
  • What audience segments you need to connect with
  • The goals of your marketing campaign (i.e., acquiring 100 new leads per month)
  • What channels you will use
  • Which marketing tactics you will incorporate (paid search, search engine optimization, etc.)

Without a comprehensive strategy, you are essentially “winging it” and potentially wasting your marketing money.

A great strategy will prevent you from draining your hard-earned resources and enable you to make the most out of every marketing dollar. It will also enable you to forge meaningful connections with leads and customers to grow your business. 

What Is the Purpose of Digital Marketing?

Digital marketing serves several key purposes. First and foremost, it enables you to get your content in front of the right audiences at the ideal time. This is accomplished by ranking for relevant keywords and targeting competitive phrases with paid search campaigns. 

Additionally, digital marketing enables you to expand your reach. After all, you can connect with far more customers over digital channels when compared to traditional marketing approaches like radio or TV advertising. Digital marketing is also far more cost-effective, as you can track key performance indicators (KPIs), measure the success of your efforts, and make adjustments on the fly to improve the efficacy of your campaign.

Digital marketing is the catalyst for getting noticed in the online marketplace. A winning digital marketing strategy will promote business growth and increased profitability. It will also enhance the customer experience and help you retain valued customers. 

Key Components of Digital Marketing 

There are numerous components of digital marketing that you must be mindful of when crafting your strategy, including:

Google My Business

This may seem a no-brainer, but every business should set up a Google My Business account. This is essential to any SEM campaign. This is a primary step to show legitimacy. We’ve seen too many companies neglect this simple action. Google may or may not have a GMB listing for your business, but you should always check. If there’s an existing listing, make sure you claim the business so you can brand it as your own. If not, it might have outdated information regarding your organization. You want to tell your own story and ensure that the listing is supporting your brand with relevant content — who you are today.

Landing Pages

Web design is the cornerstone of any effective digital marketing strategy. Remember, the goal of all other digital marketing efforts is to route potential customers to your dedicated landing page so that you can wow them and encourage them to do business with your brand. These efforts will not produce desired results unless you direct customers to a world-class website.

So what makes a great website? While your website should be as unique as your brand, sites that delight shares a few characteristics, including:

  • An intuitive interface
  • A design that invokes trust
  • Consistent, captivating branding
  • An on-brand tone of voice
  • Visually appealing images and color schemes
  • Continuity thoughout
  • Easy-to-navigate menus

Take a look at your website. Does it exhibit all of these characteristics? If not, it might be time for an overhaul.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engine optimization makes your website and its pages more visible on search engines. Sites that are SEO-optimized will rank higher on Google and other search engines. Conversely, pages that are not optimized will likely get lost amongst the thousands of results that are generated every time a consumer conducts a web query.

SEO is a complex undertaking that involves incorporating relevant keywords into your content, using the appropriate image tags, building links to your site, and much more. That is why most businesses partner with professional marketing firms that specialize in getting brands noticed on search engine results pages (SERPs).

Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing involves using a combination of keyword targeting and paid advertising to make your brand more visible on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and other platforms. The key to social media marketing is posting consistently and publishing quality content. It also takes frequent monitoring to see what’s working and what isn’t getting noticed. You need to have a person dedicated to being involved with social listening and responding to any comments or inquiries. Just like everything else, this should be done by someone who has the experience and a knack for getting things noticed.

It’s important to note that social media marketing should supplement your other marketing efforts, not serve as your primary means of connecting with consumers. 

Pay-Per-Click (PPC)

Pay-per-click (PPC) marketing involves publishing paid ads on SERPs. For example, Google Adwords is the most well-known form of PPC. When using Google Ads, you choose which keywords you want to rank for and only pay for your ad space when a user clicks on your content. Google Ads automatically displays the ads that bid the most at the top of SERPs pages, above the organic results. Paid advertising connects with people who are actively searching for what your business offers. PPC will broaden brand exposure, as your business name will have thousands of impressions.

It’s good to note that a PPC campaign boosts SEO. One metric of many that Google uses to determine to rank is site visits. More people who visit your site translate a trust signal to Google. Think about driving past a popular restaurant with a line out the door and a neighboring restaurant with no line. You will probably place more trust in the establishment with the line.

You can guarantee that your brand will always be at the top of search engine results if you work with a reputable Google Advertising agency.

Native Advertising

It’s nothing you haven’t seen before…

Native advertising’s formal definition is “the use of paid ads that match the look and feel of the media format in which they appear.”

Think of them as if they were advertorials in magazines, online and offline. You can purchase a section that doesn’t look like an ad and appears that it’s part of whatever narrative you are reading about. The ad will blend seamlessly into the content, establishing trust.

Native advertising, a valuable form of digital marketing, blends seamlessly into a normal news feed.

As simple as this idea is, it’s proven highly effective. This is because advertorials will be placed in the spots where readers were already focusing their attention. Back in the 1940s through the 1960s, this form of media buying boomed onto the scene with companies trying to take advantage of this format across all media types, such as magazines, TV, and newspapers. It’s nothing new, but you must adapt it to the digital age.

You’ll notice some native content because the publisher might place a tiny notice above the content: This is Paid Avertising

Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Search engine marketing (SEM) is a marketing approach that is focused on making your content more visible on search engines like Google. Every day, over 8.5 billion Google searches are conducted, making Google the prime place to showcase your business. SEM strategies use a combination of PPC, Native Advertising, Programmatic, and SEO tactics to expand your reach and maximize your lead-generation capabilities.  

Is Digital Marketing for Everyone?

If your goal is to get noticed, acquire more leads, and build your business, then yes, digital marketing is for you. Every business needs a strong online presence if they want to compete in the crowded modern marketplace. 

That said, you don’t need a Nike marketing budget to start making your presence known online. Instead, you need a well-conceived strategy and an experienced partner to ensure that your marketing efforts produce real results. 

Creating a Winning Digital Marketing Strategy

Now that we have answered the question of “what is digital marketing?” let’s shift our attention to how you can create a winning strategy for your business. In order to craft a comprehensive digital marketing strategy, you will need to:

  • Have your branding guidelines in place – you cannot create marketing strategies without a strong foundation
  • Define your brand voice – is your company serious, playful, or a little of both?
  • Identify your goals and objectives
  • Determine which channels you plan to leverage
  • Set a budget for these channels
  • Balance your use of free and paid marketing options
  • Create and publish quality content
  • Ensure that your site is optimized for mobile
  • Conduct extensive keyword and audience research
  • Monitor your campaigns to identify what works and what doesn’t
  • Adjust and optimize your strategy

When it comes to digital marketing, adaptability is key. Like Bruce Lee said, “be like water” — the second your digital marketing strategy becomes stale, you’ll fall behind the curve if you aren’t quick to adapt.

If so, you need a winning digital marketing strategy to increase your online visibility. 

Even if you have a knack for connecting with customers, not every campaign or piece of content will go viral. Therefore, you must consistently monitor the efficacy of your campaigns, identify what didn’t work and why, and make adjustments. 

Winning in Digital Marketing Starts with the Right Partner

So what is digital marketing? Well, we believe that it should be a painless route to growing your influence. Stepping into the world of digital marketing doesn’t have to be overwhelming, or at least it isn’t when you have the right team in your corner. At Mighty Fine, we specialize in helping clients expand their reach in the digital marketplace by providing a robust array of marketing and brand-building services.

Our seasoned team of creatives can help create your foundation to stand out among the competition. From developing a brand to executing a comprehensive marketing strategy.

However, we also provide numerous other services, including website development, motion graphic creation, design services, copywriting, and many other marketing services that can support any advertising or marketing campaign. Are you ready to differentiate your business by leveraging the power of digital marketing? If so, let’s connect and discuss how Mighty Fine can help your business get noticed.

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