Digital marketing is a powerful tool for your business. But to harness its full potential, you need to know what you are doing. It’s not as simple as taking a stab in the dark and hoping it will impact on your digital brand awareness.
A haphazard, scattergun approach will do more harm than good, causing digital brand confusion and pushing your customers away.
The good news is that there are proven solutions that will get you the results you are looking for, no matter your industry or size.
First up, you need to understand the different digital marketing elements… and why they are important.
Your website is without a doubt the key to your online success. By driving traffic to your website you will grow your digital brand awareness… and as your website visitors convert to customers, you will see the dollars drop out the bottom of your website.
Your website sits at the centre of your digital marketing strategy. And everything else you do is about generating traffic and bringing new customers to your door.
Search Engine Optimisation or SEO is about structuring your content so Google can easily read it… and show it to the right people on free Google organic search. Don’t underestimate the power of SEO. Once you have laid the groundwork and then consistently add quality content, you will reap the rewards for the weeks, months and years to come.
Advertising and social media also have their place in your digital marketing mix. Advertising helps to supplement your traffic – particularly while you are growing your brand – but it is far too costly for you to rely on it as the biggest driver of your traffic. Likewise with social media. There aren’t enough hours in the day to spend on social media in order to drive the kind of website traffic you need.
One thing customers often ask us about is email marketing. And while this is a great tool for re-engaging with your existing customers and bringing them back to your site, it isn’t going to deliver brand new customers to your door. Think of it as retargeting.
If you are running a small B2C business such as a hairdresser or a local sports club, you will actually find that social media is a good place to start, particularly if you have a small budget. You can create a social media account and by posting interesting and informative content along with relevant hashtags you will be able to grow a small following to kickstart your digital marketing.
But there are risks with this as a long-term strategy. If everything about you in the digital space only exists on social media – a platform you don’t own and have no control over – you are at the whim of the social media algorithms and can lose your engagement and followers overnight if there is a big change.
Once your business is more established, it is certainly worth investing in a decent website with solid SEO to ensure you are showing up in Google search. For local businesses, Google Places is also really important to increase your visibility on Google organic.
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In the B2B space, relying on a social media presence will not get you the digital brand awareness you need.
The best way to grow your brand is through a website driven by powerful SEO. You need to show up in Google search when people are searching for the products and services your business offers.
Another strategy to use for your business is advertising. You should set some of your marketing budget aside to run both search and brand ads on Google Advertising. While advertising isn’t a long-term strategy you should rely on to bring the majority of your traffic, it does help to increase your visitor numbers and complements your SEO efforts.
While social media won’t be the main driving force of your brand awareness, as a B2B business you do need a social media presence on LinkedIn. You should post regularly – once or twice a week – and provide educational, inspirational and informative content. If your market is also on another social media platform, such as Facebook or Instagram, it may be worth having a presence there.
If your business has upwards of 50-100 employees and an annual turnover in the several millions, SEO is absolutely critical to get the consistent level of traffic you need coming to your website.
For a business this size, you need a really good website, custom designed for your business, that is optimised for SEO. And you need to add regular content to keep the website fresh and interesting. When potential customers land on your website, they come to learn about you and what you do. When they can also learn from you through informative blogs, they will very quickly trust your brand.
If you rely on advertising and social media to drive your digital brand awareness, you will quickly discover money is leaking from your business… with very little return. Both advertising and social media are important parts of your strategy, but their success hinges on having a quality website to which they can drive traffic.
For your advertising, you should certainly look at running brand ads and then specific ads around products, promotions or key product lines. And for social media, home in on LinkedIn or others depending on where your market is and then eventually build to engaging and targeting strategies.
At Brilliant Digital, we have been working with our clients – many hundreds of them – for more than a decade, to drive sustained brand growth for their business. We take a strategic approach to everything we do, drawing on our proven process to guide us every step of the way. And it works.
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