Marketing via traditional channel such as printed media or TVC is expensive and small business owners probably have more priorities for their money. Marketing is still important, however, so what is the solution?
Online marketing is easily customizable and arguably cheap, with promising result – that is, as long as you are committed to make it work. The good news is, it’s not hard to make it work.
More and more people are connected online. Among millions of these people, your future customers are waiting. Follow these seven steps to set up a successful online marketing.
1. Set up your website
First, set up your website, but, not just any website. Make sure it serves your purpose: generating leads. Lead is the first point in which your customers express any interest on your business – either by subscribing newsletter, entering personal information, asking question, or other. If you can hold your customers’ interest from lead, you may generate sales later. That’s why it’s important.
Thus, your website should focus on generating leads. Every visitor has different point in which they get interested with your business. Some may get interested immediately after seeing your website, while some after reading an article, and some after reading several articles. Make sure they can subscribe anytime, easily, whenever they are interested.
Create a pop-up for first time visiting user offering free newsletter subscription, keep a subscription button eye catching, offer subscription in every end of your page, be creative with it.
2. Drive traffic to your website
After you have the place to run the business (in this case, your website), it’s time to let people know about it.
Don’t think about printing the website address in your business card and distribute them as much as possible. Very few people actually visit a website directly by typing its address in their browser. Of course, you can do it, but don’t expect much.
People usually visit a website from Google search or from advertisement. To earn your website a high place in search engine results, invest your time to learn about SEO. Here’s a quick tip: contents that make it to the first page of search engine results are high quality contents – with enough text and relevant keyword. In online marketing, content is king.
Advertisement – if you have allocated expense for it – helps. Online advertisement can target demographics that are most likely to like and need your website, maximizing the effectiveness of every penny you spend on it.
3. Keep them there
It’s not over even after a flock of visitors arrive on your website. You must be able to hold their interest and keep them there.
How many of your customers arrive at your website, spend three to five seconds screening the page, and leave? Traffic has little meaning unless it gains you leads. Therefore, make sure your website is good enough for them to stay.
There are many ideas to get your visitors stay. Make a competition for them to win reward, create a fun quiz to see what products of yours fit them best, and so on. Be creative in optimizing your landing page.
What if you still lose a lot of leads from all those traffic? You can retarget.
Some of your visitor may leave the website after spending some time in it, but still not purchasing. With retargeting, your advertising will be displayed again to these visitors, reminding them that your website exists and they’ve visited it before. If they remember the products or the values your website offers, they’re bound to visit again.
5. Nurture the connection
Visitors in your website are ultimately, people. Connection with people fades overtime. Don’t let that happen to your business.
Keep in touch with them. Most website utilizes newspaper, delivered either weekly or monthly. Always address them by name in the newsletter and preview the most valuable contents in it. Put a link on the newsletter, so they can read the full contents in the website.
RSS is another great way to stay in touch. If your customers subscribe to it, they will receive update from your website the moment you update it, as opposed to newsletter’s weekly or monthly notice.
6. Make sales
Once your relationship with your customers established, they’re ready to consider your offer. If it’s aligned with their needs and constraint, they will make the purchase.
Sometimes, even when they have all the necessary factors to purchase, they still don’t. You need to nudge them softly with call-to-action in the end of every page. Give special offer once in a while, when there’s a fitting moment. Offer membership discount. Again, be creative in enticing visitors to make a purchase.
The key to make sales is to go through it as fast and as simple as possible. Avoid any unnecessary steps. Customer’s mind can change in a split second, with the tiniest prompt.
Some websites put mini survey for their customers when they’re checking out their purchase. Don’t do this. If you must, put mini survey after the payment process.
7. Measure your result, gain insight
After some time period, say, a month, or six months, or a year, take a look at your website metric and see what the data has to say. Does the traffic fulfill your target? Does your website have satisfactory conversion rate? You can easily see whether you’ve reached what you want or not.
Other details from the metrics will help you to determine the next strategy. Does the paid-advertisement generate enough organic reach? Should you change the media? Which articles people were seeking in your website, and which articles they didn’t read? What kind of promo leads to profitable sales, and what kind makes you lose money?
Measure your result periodically, learn something new every time, and solve the problem. The longer you stay in the game, the more insights you gain, the more successful your online marketing will be.
See, online marketing is easy. All you need is creativity and toughness to walk all the steps above.