Business owners have to make very important decisions like how much to invest in digital marketing, which social channels to pick, whether to assemble an in-house team or hire an agency. Understanding these issues well is extremely vital to identify your current situation and achieve your goals.
To understand digital marketing importance here are the answers to some of the most common questions about digital marketing.
Why should I care about digital marketing?
Digital marketing is an integral part of how a business operates and caters to its customers. Traditional marketing favored big companies while modern digital marketing allows smaller companies a chance to compete as well. The only catch is having an integrated marketing strategy which will be data-driven and optimised as the campaigns go on.
Some small businesses have used digital and reached globally – making sales in 3 continents within 18 months and increasing revenue by over 200%. This would not be possible with traditional marketing.
The main benefits of digital marketing include:
- Your customers are online. Reach out to them where they hang out at the time they can see you.
- Making it a level playing field for smaller businesses who have the right approach towards digital marketing.
- Advanced analytics ensure that you know what is working and what is not. An ad on TV costs a lot and you don’t really know what was the outcome of running it.
- You can track every action immediately – measure the time, money and efforts you spend, cut the losses and double down on what works.
- The more thorough and thought out your marketing strategy is, the better you can target your audience and personalise the marketing.
- Can be highly automated saving you time so you can focus on your product and services.
- When done right, gives extremely high ROI.
- Flexibility – it can scale as you grow and expand.
- You can talk to your customers and create brand loyalty and retention. Answer them when they have any queries.
- Reviews and testimonials add social proof which helps in persuading skeptical customers.
- Reach a global marketplace and understand them better.
- Your competitors are online. You can position yourself in a way to compete with them.
How much time will it take to see the results? Can I get sales immediately?
The short answer? It depends.
On the nature of product/business, market awareness and demand, competitors, and saturation. Digitally speaking, it depends on your website’s state, how long it has been around, how much content is on it.
Anyone guaranteeing super-quick results needs to take a lie detector test.
There is no magic formula to determine the exact time it will take to see any sales.
We get it, you want to see immediate results. So do we, but that happens very rarely. Some results might come immediately and some a few months later.
The main reason why many companies don’t taste the fruits of digital marketing is that they stop too soon and pull out when they feel things are not working out.
Digital agencies rely on experience and processes – not just mere tactics. This way the returns of SEO, content, PPC or any other service can be measured, monitored, and optimised.
A good website, branding, SEO, content marketing and social media strategy will work with each other and eventually increase traffic and generate sales.
Which digital channel should I use to sell?
This doesn’t have a straight one-size-fits-all answer.
Yes, you want to get the most out of whichever channel you invest time or money into.
Every business should work on content, SEO, email marketing.
This is because the price of Google, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn ads fluctuate and not everyone can afford to market on all platforms simultaneously. In 2019, 97% of marketers were investing in paid social. But you can’t just throw some money on paid channels and expect to acquire leads and customers.
The ultimate aim should be to create a multi-channel funnel which will generate leads and sales. This funnel strategy will develop gradually and depend on your budget, keeping in consideration your short-term and long-term goals.
At Next Wavelength we use a lean methodology that starts with the least amount of risk and is experimental in nature. We monitor the campaign, discarding what doesn’t work and improving what does.
How much money should I invest in digital marketing?
Today, most companies are not relying solely on billboards, television ads, flyers or pamphlets. Their prime focus is on digital marketing.
As per, Gartner’s Annual CMO Spend Survey, 61% of CMOs said that they were expecting budgets to increase for 2020.
There is no absolute number. Of course it is easier to justify the cost when someone already wants to scale a marketing funnel that is already generating sales. It becomes extremely uncomfortable for someone to shell out money when setting up digital assets for the first time.
The branding, logo, website, marketing funnel – all require detailed research before they can be executed. Keeping in mind a user-centric approach will make your life much easier. A user-centric approach is when you understand your customer’s needs and objections they may have and work towards providing a smooth experience.
Do your website and landing pages convert users or will they need to be revamped? Do you have access to necessary tools and are they integrated properly?
How much you should invest in digital marketing ultimately boils down to the state of what you already have such as a website, landing pages, tools etc. and where you need to go.
I have already tried digital marketing before and it didn’t work
For many companies, digital marketing doesn’t work out the first time. Here are some of the reasons that might happen:
- Using a cookie cutter approach and merely copy-pasting templates. Instead of understanding the objectives and developing a custom solution.
- Not having a consistent look and messaging across the various digital channels
- Bad communication and not highlighting the benefits of your product.
- Having little budget and not knowing how to create a process where you start targeting the low hanging fruit, get tangible results and move upwards.
- Not taking the time to research prospects and customers. This results in poor understanding of the target audience due to flawed buyer persona.
- Undefined goals, no tracking and measurement of success, unreasonable expectations.
- Copycat marketers who can’t formulate strategies based on market conditions, but only follow tactics that worked for others (in a certain context).
- Trying to find unethical means to sales like buying lists containing leads data, blackhat SEO and content tactics, buying fake likes and views etc.
- Lack of education
Can I do digital marketing by myself?
Yes, and no.
If you have the resources, you can assemble an in-house team for design, development, SEO, content, performance marketing etc. But if you don’t already have a proper digital marketing specialist or experienced HR, you wouldn’t know the right person to hire.
Furthermore, can you afford to pay the costs of hiring and maintaining an entire team? You need to facilitate their training to make sure they are up to date with the latest developments and best practices.
If things go well, that’s awesome. But allow us to play the devil’s advocate here for a moment.
What if you spent all that money, months have passed and you’re not seeing any results? How will you find out the root cause of the problem or who needs to be held accountable?
Maybe you’re thinking of not hiring a team and just doing everything by yourself?
With competitors focusing on content marketing, visual storytelling, demand generation, data analytics – here’s our advice. No one can do it unaccompanied, that’s why you need to work with specialist agencies.
You see, with an agency you get what you pay for. Everything is taken care of and they can help you within a reasonable budget. They have the tools, experience and resources in-house with skilled specialists to use them to meet your target goals. But best of all, when your agreed-upon goals aren’t met, the agency will be held accountable.
So there you go. As you can see, it’s very important to choose experienced specialists to prepare your strategy and decide the tactics to meet your objectives. Digital marketing is extremely necessary to understand your customers’ pain points and how you can help them in their journey. A data-driven approach removes the guesswork out of your marketing.