Digital Marketing Planning – What to know before you start…
Your Digital Marketing Plan Should Consider the Following:
Let’s get an overall impression of how information should flow online for maximum return on investment…
Looks a bit mad, right? Let’s take this in stages… It’s really not as scary as it looks.
Keywords and Phrases
The very first thing you need is to decide what your current relevant key words and phrases are. Market research and brainstorming are both vital parts of this. Once you’ve decided what your keywords and phrases are, make sure that ALL your marketing materials mention these – both offline and online.
People like to research a product or service prior to taking the plunge and contacting you so make sure you make it as easy as possible to find you and read about your products and services.
Make sure you are optimized for what you want to sell – visitors don’t convert into customers if what they wanted isn’t there when they click through to your website. Optimize for what the customer is searching for, that matches with what you offer – what language are they using and are they searching for the problem or the solution?
Make it clear within 2 seconds of opening the page that they have found what they were looking for. Use suitable headings and graphics to do this. A picture and a heading will communicate much faster than a long paragraph of text.
If your target audience see or hear a particular phrase in offline advertising (newspaper ads, texts, signage, radio, flyers) they will most likely use it to find your website online (take it for granted that they won’t remember the exact web address).
Make sure that your website is optimized for search traffic coming in from your offline advertising channels as well as Google Search in general. You might decide to make a special page that is optimized for your current offline campaign.
Your target market on LinkedIn is more than likely B2B, professionals or employees. You will want to keep things friendly but more formal and business orientated. What benefit can you offer? What challenge do you have a solution for? Make that clear in all that you do on LinkedIn. Show off your expertise by helping people…
One of the best ways of showing your expertise on LinkedIn is by sharing a blog post you’ve written. Make sure the blog post links back to your website in some way, even if it’s just to link to the author’s profile. Interlink as much as possible to keep people on the site and thinking about you for as long as possible – make those links calls to action if possible. You might refer them to a related blog post (e.g. Read more about x here…) or a service on the site (we offer a solution to this challenge, read more here…).
You might want to share useful or interesting 3rd party articles on LinkedIn and it may be appropriate to share them to Twitter from LinkedIn also. Make sure if you do this that the comment you make on the article makes it clear what someone on Twitter will be clicking on. A common mistake is simply sharing without commenting and all they see on Twitter then is a weird LinkedIn link…
- Don’t automate updates from your Twitter account to LinkedIn (or to Facebook for that matter). You will forget that the automation exists eventually and you’ll tweet something that isn’t suitable for LinkedIn.
- Combine online LinkedIn networking with in-person meet ups for a coffee and a chat and significantly boost your chances of getting a referral or direct business from LinkedIn – don’t be shy, ask people to “meet for a 1 to 1 networking session to better understand each other’s businesses in order to refer business”. If people have availability they will usually say yes. Make it clear that you won’t be hard selling anything to them and that it’s a mutually beneficial chat over coffee.
Your target markets on Facebook can be made very specific when boosting or creating ad campaigns.
Everyone and their mother is on Facebook it seems so attract your target market by appealing to their probable interests. People are on Facebook to communicate with friends, have fun, shop, window shop, learn something or get support from groups they belong to. Keeping your communications professional but a little less formal works better here. Interact and provide benefit – don’t just sell.
The types of businesses that work best on Facebook tend to be businesses that can provide “eye candy” to keep people interested – by this I mean photographs of, for example, cars, fashion, arts and crafts, memes, good photography in general, customers having fun, food, architecture, hair styles, etc.
If you are a B2B business without photographs, you have to get creative. How are you going to appeal to people who are browsing Facebook, usually late in the evening, looking for entertainment and relaxation? Do you have a compelling solution to their current challenge? How will you communicate that quickly while providing something of value?
You can set up automated shares from your Facebook business page to Twitter but be aware that without a comment or description attached to that share, it will just look like an anonymous Facebook link on Twitter and no one will click on it – be sure to find sharing tools that allow you to add that comment.
Twitter works best if it is obvious that there is a human being behind the tweets. Don’t just do automated sharing and/or scheduled salesy tweets. Do go online regularly and communicate with other people on Twitter. Offer help, be friendly and start relationships of trust. If you can show that you care and know about a certain topic(s) you will eventually get business out of Twitter through referrals and DMs (Direct Messages).
The more you are on Twitter, the more people remember you and refer you to others via Twitter, so keep it up once you start.
- Attend Twitter events such as #IrishBizParty (Wednesday nights from 9pm to 11pm), #CorkHour, #BritishBizParty (both on Monday nights from 9pm to 10pm), etc. regularly and boost your quality followers quickly. Use Tweetdeck.com and a laptop or pc to make it as easy as possible to tweet, keep track, and respond to people.
- Set a follow goal every week and make sure you keep it up.
- Use # hash tags where appropriate especially when using your keywords or phrases – for example: “get #help with #webdesign and #ecommerce @spiralli”. This makes your tweet much more visible, reaching a wider, and yet more targeted audience.
- Include links to your website with calls to action where appropriate and use images, pictures or videos when possible to help stand out from the crowd.
Top Tips for setting up a channel or uploading a video:
- Give your YouTube channel a good name and description using those important keywords and phrases.
- Take advantage of the opportunity to brand your channel with your logo and a good cover picture that illustrates what you do if possible.
- When uploading a video, give it a good name that makes sense – it will show up on your website when you put the link up there, so take care in naming it.
- Take the time to give your video a good description and include link(s) to your website and calls to action at the end.
- Take the time to tag your video with the keywords and phrases that people will most likely use to search YouTube to find your video.
- Share your video everywhere with good, exciting/intriguing prompts to view it using keywords in your comment/tweet.
Email / Newsletters
When sending an email or newsletter that you want to get business from, the following tips will help you get more business from your efforts:
- If you are a retailer or wholesaler a newsletter email full of special offers will be of value to the people who opt-in to receiving it, and if your offers are very good (like Lidl for example) then a weekly submission will be of interest and not too annoying.
- If you are anyone else – it may be advisable to stick to fortnightly (at the most) or monthly (recommended) newsletters.
- Include snippets of blog posts with links back to the post in question.
- Include a small advert/special offer/competition if appropriate.
- Include a tip or two.
- Make sure you include a link to your website in the header or footer and include your phone number.
- Where appropriate include a call to action phrase such as “Call today to arrange a meeting”.
- Break up the information you provide into easy and quick to read blocks of information. Bullet points work well when listing the benefits to something or a list of top tips.
- ALWAYS include a way for them to unsubscribe if they choose to.
- Finally, make sure you have a newsletter sign-up on your website in the footer with a call to action such as: “Sign up for monthly updates/specials/useful information”.
Social Media Management
Hootsuite.com (and similar 3rd party management software) is very useful for cutting back on time and hassle when scheduling updates. You can add LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter and schedule updates to each one at the same time.
Tweetdeck.com is very useful for managing your twitter account, especially during a Twitter event. It is also useful for managing more than one Twitter account.
You can also outsource some of your social media management to people like us, but take note: social media management is a team effort and you are the expert of your business, so input will be needed regularly. A good SM team should result in business via regular quality updates, rapid communication/response times and consistent branding.
Best of luck!
Here if you need me,
Niamh Ni Chearbhaill
Director of Spiralli Web Solutions