Diversification is Key to Success with your Digital Marketing Strategy

As a business owner, where you put money to grow your business is constant focus. The goal, of course, is to invest where you can see the most consistent return, whether it be in technology like a new computer network, staff like new partners or managers or in marketing, to draw in and convert new business. This investment is also the bane of most business owners, and when it comes down to it, the adage rings true: “You have to spend money to make money.” The question is, where do you invest and how to you ensure that investment offers the best return for your company?

No matter where you invest money into your business, be sure that you have a plan of action, a short-term and long-term strategy with specific goals and check points to gauge success. Impulse investments, rather like gambling, often don’t pay off. You have taken the time to develop a skill that you have found marketable to others in such a way that you built a business around it. You took the time to create your company, and built a brand based on quality work. Don’t gamble it all away on the a hot tip or “sure thing.” The risk simply is not worth it. However, once you have your business positioned, it’s time for the next stage – growth.

Think of your Business Investment the Way You Would Your Financial Investment Portfolio

Any financial advisor worth their salt recommends diversification of your investment portfolio, right? The whole “don’t put all your eggs into one basket” rule holds true for investments into your company as well. The same goes for your marketing program.

When you look to grow your business, the first thing to consider is how to expand your reach to your target market, how to get more of the pie, and that means proactive and intentional marketing not only to your existing clients, to allow for cross-sell or upsell opportunities, but to that part of your audience that may not be aware of your business yet.  That includes friends and neighbors of your existing client base, those that have gotten word-of-mouth referrals and anyone completely unaware that you exist.

The answer to most efficiently developing this awareness? Marketing, with the lions’ share of your funds going to web marketing.

It’s no secret that online marketing is at the forefront of success of the leaders in most markets, not that there aren’t still good ol’ referrals, but even word-of-mouth references are being vetted online. This is not a trend that is going to change, and as mobile continues to drive the world to an increasingly-online reality, any company not investing in their digital brand is losing out on a significant potential for new business.

Diversify, Diversify

When it comes to marketing, as long as businesses have needed to promote themselves, they have sought the “one thing”, the one investment they can make that will work to build their brand, engage new clients and keep existing ones. Well, as these same business owners have come to find, there is no one tactic that will do all this for any company. I mean, even the kids with a lemonade stand use signage and verbal sales to get customers, right? That said, no matter where you invest your marketing dollars, it’s critical to remember the basket of eggs rule. Diversification, like that of a financial investment portfolio, is needed to garner the best return on investment and grow your business effectively.

Marketing is like any other business investment. You need to gauge the risk against the cost and potential gain to make an educated decision where you invest funds to grow your business. The key is to balance risk and potential return.

Keep these 4 points in mind when diversifying your marketing investment:

  1. Keep in mind online marketing is necessary for any business. Even word-of-mouth referrals vet potential vendors online before deciding.
  2. There is no single marketing tactic that will work alone to drive business or build your brand. Dovetail your investment to ensure you vary your tactics as much as necessary to ensure you get the response you need.
  3. Digital marketing does not remove the need for any traditional media, but it can enhance and supplement it. All strategies, online and offline, need to dovetail as far as buyer persona, geography, message, timeline and goals.
  4. Invest in your marketing to meet competition, market trends, requirements and best-practices of the media you are targeting as well as your business goals.

So, balance your marketing strategy. Track for response and real-time business effects and augment as needed to build your business at the pace you are most comfortable with.

What do Google Algorithms, Mobile & Local Optimization and Your Business Have in Common?

algorithm building blocks for web search results

If you have a website for your business, chances are you’ve heard of Google algorithms or their nicknames like Panda, Hummingbird  or Penguin. If not, you probably have noticed that sometimes your website is visible in search, and sometimes it isn’t.

The hard and fast of it is, Google algorithms are the math-based elements that drive search potential and they change hundreds of times a year, with a few “big” changes happening throughout. There is no  absolute rhyme or reason to the scheduled changes except that Google is always innovating and looking to improve the UX, user experience, via their browser. At this stage in the game, user engagement and response drive your search potential, which means how your site visitors interact with your website and pages is crucial to your ability to improve your market share online.

Google makes these changes so the right people can find the right businesses online when and how they want to. The algorithms define the building blocks your web platform needs to use to support your digital brand’s search potential.

So, I ask again.

What do Google Algorithms, Mobile & Local Optimization and Your Business (and it’s ability to make money) Have in Common?

Everything.

With more than 80% of people using the internet to find products, services and partners for their needs, a business that is not paying attention to their digital brand is losing business. Further, any business not paying attention to their web platform’s compliance with Google’s many and ever-changing algorithm focuses – like mobile-first indexing and local optimization is losing ground to the companies that are, which means less market-share (a/k/a/ money) for you.

Did you know that a website should load in under 3 seconds on a mobile device to be compliant to Google guidelines? How about the fact that, according to Google, 53% of site visitors abandon a mobile site that takes more than 3 seconds to load? And one more to drive it home – 62% of people who have a poor interaction with a brand on a mobile phone or tablet will not return to the website.

What’s so important about local optimization, then, you ask? Mobile lead the local optimization need. When your client is on the street or in your vicinity, they should be able to find your office via search when they’re nearby. Have you checked on your local listings – like Google Maps, lately?

What’s the Bottom Line?

If your website is not compliant with the latest and upcoming Google algorithm updates, you’re losing out on business and losing position in SERPs. These algorithm updates are not a shock to digital marketers who have been watching the search results adapt to the latest technology uses and user behaviors. Mobile devices are not going away, so local and mobile will continue to be a focus for search performance potential, using user engagement (do they click on your sites and pages) and lead generation (do they call, chat, email or stop in) as performance criteria.

Ensure that your digital brand and properties, website, social platforms, local listings, etc. are hitting the markers Google has set to be able to drive business for your company.

Need help? We’ll do a free audit of your digital program and let you know if there are any gaps in the bridge leading your leads to your business.