Digital Marketing Blueprint

Digital Marketing Blueprint

Digital Marketing Blueprint

Are you a business owner needing to get more customers  or a fellow Internet marketing bod looking for information then this internet marketing blueprint is for you . A step by step guide for setting up and executing an online marketing campaign to raise awareness and help you gain more customers.

The Blending of Offline and Online Marketing

In the past online and offline marketing were two distinct disciplines the lines between these approaches is becoming more and more blurry each and every day. Our online and offline lives become like conjoined twins both dependent on each other for our social, business and family lives.

With any sort of marketing and business in general it get’s easier the longer you do it, its called the momentum effect. Like a fly wheel takes a long time to get started once going it takes a lot less energy to keep running or gain more momentum. This is the long term aim to have self sustaining marketing.

Online marketing when executed properly pushes a business forward like nothing else. Without customers your business is just a hobby.  Although internet marketing is not an exact science, when you look closely at the statistical data you can certainly see different approaches produce repeatable results so I would say that it’s a combination of science and an art. Like searching for the philosopher’s stone you are hunting for the magic formula that will produce the desired results. this formula is not transferable from one business type to another what works for one business may have the totally opposite effect on another. Its a process and the process needs to be worked.

 You are dealing with people and people are in general predictable but only once you have a well defined idea of who your market is and why they are buying.

The only truth indicator of success with any sort of marketing is the amount of money generated from a campaign but how do you get to the point of making your first sale.

 

 The Online Marketing Blueprint

This may not look like any plan you have seen in the past as I tend to work on a what works basis removing the timewasting aspects and focusing on what’s important.

 Define your Market

One of the major things that I find frustrating is when companies have no idea who they are selling to, they have absolutely no (insert chosen expletive) idea and when asked who their customers are they simply reply “everybody”.  Everybody is not your customer we all have different wants and needs defining those wants and needs then doing everything you can to meet those.

Buyer Personas

This is one step that many overlook but it is an extremely important aspect of the game. A buyer persona is a representation of your ideal customer like an actor builds a character you will build a persona that embodies who your customer is. You can build more than one to represent different customer types. Its a little bit of imaginary play. You can name them a name that says who they are like “Tom Flashy” or “Sally Likes to look good” have some fun with it these are the people you will build your marketing around.

Starting Points for Personas

  • Age

  • Sex

  • Marital Status

  • Children

  • Grand Children

  • Education Level

  • Income Level

  • Race (if applicable)

  • Personality Type

  • Backstory

  • Why they want your product or service

  • What need does it meet/ what problem does it solve

  • Obvious Reason for purchasing

  • Hidden Reason for Purchasing

Why are they buying

The reason for the purchase of the product or service may be totally obvious like in the case of a repair service or it could be something totally different like if someone’s looking for a new car they may say that the MPG, boot space, safety features or any number of practical reasons why they justify purchasing a particular make or model. Truth be known, it will be the emotional factor that makes the purchase. How the car makes them feel about themselves. Does it enhance the view that they have of themselves.

People purchase for one of two reason emotional or practical and more often than not its the emotion that leads the way. Because people are emotion driven for the most part don’t expect the reason they make a purchase or use a service to be logical

Smart Goals and Conversions

Before you start any sort of online campaign you have to start at the end result and everything that comes before is geared towards getting that result. many people start the wrong way round get a website built and then try to make it fit into their plan. Work out what you want then shape every decision you make on getting to that goal.

 Landing Pages

A landing page is a page either on your own website or on other web properties such as facebook. They are used to get people to enter your sales funnel. Landing pages should never be an afterthought as they are the thing that turn cold browsers into hot prospects. landing page design is a hot topic and a lot of study has gone into how to best implement them, some common factors are.

  • Bold headline

  • Secondary headline reinforcing initial heading

  • Video or images that reinforce the copy

  • Persuasive copy

  • Limited options

  • Strong call to action

  • Use of trust indicators such as reviews

  • Keeping above the fold

  • Design that backs up who you are

 

The Sales funnel

The sales funnel is a term used to describe getting someone to interact with you on some level, turning a cold internet visitor into a warm prospect and then onto a fully paying customer. Sales funnels can be as simple as a landing page direct to purchase or they can be extremely complicated with multiple entry points and multiple routes to becoming a paying client

How to design a sales funnel

The sales funnel is loosely linked to the sales acronym AIDA (attention, interest, desire, action)

Sidenote

Segmentation: if possible segment your prospects by the way they have entered your sales funnel. Every action that is performed can be analysed and information can be gained from that interaction. What you are looking for is a tightly focused demographic that you can market to.

 Attention

They say that the first conversion is awareness of your existence so at that point you have got their attention. Fantastic what do you do once you have their attention? You need to lead them down the funnel by using a call to action an example would be to get them to sign up to a mailing list or request a brochure the goal is to capture contact details or to have some way of contacting them in the future.

 Interest

The sales funnel is not limited to using your own website, getting a person to follow you on social media can also be a way of getting someone into your funnel. Its a way to show them your offers or useful content. Social media is a great way to build your relationship and educate your prospect about yourself and your company. The building interest stage is a conversation with your prospect its all about showing them that you have what they want and on the same note it’s getting rid of the non prospects as well. there’s a saying in marketing that you should be like a magnet to your target customers and repulsive to the rest.

 Developing interest

Interest is developed by showing your services in the best light. Ways to do this are.

  • Case Studies

  • Testimonials

  • Demonstrations (video)

  • Stories- How your product has helped people in the past

  • Product specifications

  • Head to Head comparisons with competitors products or services

Desire

Desire is a sense of longing, a need that can only be met by you or your product. This need should already be there as they have come to you and entered your “funnel” going back to segmentation of your prospects if this has been done correctly you will have an idea of the “Why” they have signed up, or contacted you. Information is the key the more knowledge you have about the prospects the better chance you have of converting them to a customer. your marketing personas will help you here. if you have done your interest building exercise correctly you should have grown your prospects interest to desire.

There are a number of ways to increase the desire of a prospective client such as scarcity or social proof (everybody else has got one) but personally I believe that any form of marketing is simply matching a prospects needs with a solution

Action

If all three of the previous steps have gone to plan you should be left with a well qualified prospect who is chomping at the bit to buy your product or services. You will still need to tell them what to do and make it easy for them to do it.

Call to Action

The call to action is simply guiding your prospect down the road to make a purchase or otherwise employ your services. this can be a simple button saying Contact us or a buy now button for example. If your product offerings are a little more complicated you could lead them to a configuration page. To put it in sales terms, it’s akin to a salesperson asking for the sale. Like new sales people one of the things they find the most

 Getting Traffic to Your Website

Traffic is the term used to describe visitors to your website coming from any source. For many the only form of traffic came from the search engines the upside of this is that it’s free traffic. the problem is, it’s free traffic and as such its not guaranteed.

Don’t Depend on a single traffic source

Search is a fickle master when its working for you its fantastic and profitable but it can dry up literally overnight. With the search engines such as Google , Bing Yahoo in a constant battle against people trying to game the system. In their quest to clean up the search results they have taken action against website they deem to be acting against their guidelines (Google is leading the way on penalizing sites)  although most of the sites that have had their rankings taken away have acted in a way that violates the terms of service  a few have been caught out for no fault of their own.

Search engine optimisation is about making your site friendly for the search engines to index and rank properly, but also people friendly.

SEO Process

  • Keyword Research
  • Onpage Optimisation

  • Off Page Optimisation (Link Building)

  • Social Media (For Social Signals)

  • Content Marketing

  • User Optimisation (increase engagement time on site/number of pages viewed)

SEO is not the only game in town for traffic

 Social Media

The jury’s  still out on whether social media is a direct factor in driving direct sales but social media in my opinion is more about the awareness factor and getting people to know who you are. Use social media to promote content and open conversations.

 Videos

Have you got a product or service that lends itself to video. Video is a great way to engage people and also has the added benefit that videos rank very well in the search engines.

 Directories

Directories have gone out of favor with the SEO community due to Google coming down on low quality links but there are a few high quality directories that can still produce traffic. You are looking for edited directories that have people checking the content before its posted. unfortunately most of theses are paid directories. Ideally you are looking for a directory that focuses on your business sector.

 Forums

Forums are places people discuss all sorts of topics  find a forum that discusses your products or services. Pitch in and help find people with questions and if applicable drop a link in your reply to a relevant pieces of content on your website. (adding a link may also help your seo but make sure it is relevant and helpful)

 PPC

Pay per click is synonymous with Googles adwords and works on the basis of adverts that are shown on the search results page. when someone clicks your “ad” you are charged an amount of money.

Google is not the only place you can buy advertising in the search engines there are other places like Bing or Yahoo.

 Media buying

Media buying is a very exciting prospect and has the ability to drive lots of targeted traffic. There are hundreds of thousands of websites that will host your ad on a cost per click or a set price per 1000 displays.

 Although not as thoroughly comprehensive as a book this is good starting point for getting your internet marketing set up correctly. If you have any questions please leave a comment all comments will be answered.

Retargeting

I’m only going to touch on this briefly retargeting is where a visitor that has already been on your site has a cookie placed on their computer when they visit other websites that are part of the advertising network they are shown your advert to encourage them to revit your site. this has been shown to increase conversions.

Although not as thoroughly comprehensive as a book this is good starting point for getting your internet marketing set up correctly. If you have any questions please leave a comment all comments will be answered.

Track and Measure Everything

Last but not least track everything you can. if it can be tracked and measured then it can be optimised and made to work better.

Personally I use piwik for my web stats along with a heatmap plugin. The things that you should be looking at are

  • Where your traffic is coming from
  • From which Search engines are bringing you traffic
  • Referral traffic what sites are sending you traffic
  • Number of people coming from social media
  • If you have PPC or any other paid traffic separate it from the rest
  • Get as granular as you need to to know where your traffic is coming from

How engaged is the traffic

  • More time on site the better
  • More pages visited the better
  • Return Visitors

Goals

Goals and conversion are the most important aspect of any internet marketing project. Knowing the fact that you have a conversion is one thing but if you can tie it with where the traffic came from whether it was a repeat visitor or what keyword or what website it came from. Over time you will see that some traffic sources perform better than others you can give more effort to the successful channels and stop wasting time and money on the channels that don’t produce and results .

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