Once you launch a new website, if you aren’t actively engaged in marketing, growing and refining that website, you will hear crickets. You need a digital marketing plan that takes a holistic look at your business, services and market to engage with your prospects and bring in new leads.
Marketing plans are not one dimensional… they have many facets to them. They are dynamic and – when implemented correctly – fast-moving.
And every good marketing plan starts with a solid brand strategy. Without a clear definition of who you are, what you stand for and what you offer the market, even the best marketing plan will fail. Your brand strategy drives every corner of your website and digital marketing.
Once you have defined your brand strategy and have clear and consistent messaging, there are three key elements that should be part of your marketing plan.
1. Content. These are the keyword-rich blogs, case studies, articles and other pages on your website that will ensure you are found on Google by the right people.
2. General marketing. Newsletters and social media form part of your general marketing mix up. Whatever marketing you are doing, you want to drive potential customers straight back to your website.
3. Paid advertising. Think of advertising as a support structure for your overall marketing strategy. It amplifies your message to put you directly in front of potential customers.
The advertising element of your digital marketing plan is about amplifying your reach to make you more visible to the audiences who are already aware of your brand or service and to audiences who don’t yet know you exist.
And we do that through a multi-channel approach. It’s not enough to pop up some Google or Facebook ads and hope for the best.
Different tiers or layers of your multi-channel advertising will target different audiences… and across every touchpoint, you need to ensure a consistent message and cohesive experience.
Multi-channel advertising campaigns have three layers:
1. Search advertising to make you more visible to customers who are looking for your brand or service
2. Display advertising to retarget potential customers who have visited your website but not yet purchased from you or become a customer
3. Native advertising to reach new audiences who fit within your ideal target market
Each layer has a different role in your overall strategy… and they all combine to enhance your marketing efforts and brand strategy.
When you look at the Google search results – depending on what you are searching for – the first three or four results will be ads. They look like regular search results but they have the word Ad bolded at the beginning of the heading. This is Google search advertising.
If a customer is searching for your brand or a service that you offer, search advertising gives you the ability to appear in that prime real estate at the top of the search results.
It can take time for SEO to start really pumping on a new website, so this search advertising is critical for building your brand awareness as you move up the Google search rankings.
Search advertising is about visibility… and it is a crucial foundation of your multi-channel advertising strategy.
Have you ever felt like a business is following you? You visit their website to check out their services and then for the next few days or weeks, every time you visit a news site or open your social media you see banners advertising that business. That is display advertising or retargeting.
Retargeting uses a pixel that you install on your website to track people who visit. You can then target advertising specifically to those people. Display advertising – i.e. a banner – is the most effective way to do this as it is a visual brand reminder to your potential customer.
A potential customer will need to have at least 11 touchpoints with your business before they make a decision to purchase from you. Those touchpoints can be visits to your website, reading your newsletters or social media posts or seeing your banners and advertising on their daily travels around the web.
Display and search advertising target customers who either know about your brand or service or have recently visited your website… but there is a whole pool of customers out there who don’t even know you exist!
Through your brand strategy, you know who your ideal clients are. You have identified your target market and you know what their problems are… and how your products and services solve those problems. With this next level of advertising, we reach out to those people to introduce you to them.
The reason why native or content advertising works so well for this audience is that straightaway you are showing your knowledge and experience. They don’t know your brand – and they may not even know they need your services yet – but through native content advertising, you are using your blogs or videos to demonstrate how you solve their problems.
At Brilliant Digital, we implement multi-channel advertising campaigns for our clients every day. We build a brand strategy with a killer website to support the brand and then create a digital marketing plan that drives results.