Starting a business is always a risky endeavour. There’s no guarantee that you’ll success and the odds are usually against you at the beginning. However, you can greatly increase your
chances of success by implementing a marketing strategy to spread the word about your business.
The reality is that traditional forms of advertising aren’t as effective anymore. As more people shift their attention online,a solid web presence is a must to compete. Today consumers increasingly rely on digital channels like search engines and social media for product research. If your target audience can’t find your business online then that fact will reflect in poor sales.
So what can you do to drive business growth? the answer lies in online marketing – Leveraging online based platforms to reach your target market.
There are multiple categories of online marketing. Leveraging multiple platforms allows you to reach a much wider audience but each has their own degree of risk involved. Here we’ll provide an overview of the most effective types of digital marketing, and the risk and effort you can expect for each.
Search Engine Optimisation
Search engine optimisation or SEO is the practice of optimising a site to rank higher in the search results for target keywords. There are two aspects of SEO:
- On-page SEO: Involves optimising content on individual pages and HTML source code like title and header tags.
- Off-page SEO: Involves building relevant backlinks and improving technical aspects like site speed and mobile optimisation
Both work in tandem to rank a site and its corresponding pages higher in Google.
SEO involves little risk as long as you adhere to all the
quality guidelines. But any attempt to manipulate the search engine rankings (e.g. spamming your site with links or using scraped content) could lead to ranking penalties or worse, complete removal from Google’s search index. To minimise your risk, focus on publishing quality content and avoid questionable tactics to build links.
SEO is an incredibly effective online marketing channel. But in many cases, it can take weeks or even months of effort to rank for target keywords depending on how competitive they are. The good news is that a single page can deliver quality traffic for years to come once it starts ranking.
Social media marketing involves using social platforms like Facebook and Twitter to spread the word about your products or services. These networks can be an effective way to
engage with your customers anbd reach more of your target audience.
What makes social media appealing is that the content you publish can go viral and drive more traffic to your website. But this can also lead to severe backlash if any news reflects poorly about your company. Monitor your social media profiles to manage online conversations about your business so you can respond accordingly.
Social media is an effective channel to build your brand. But you can’t make one post and expect traffic to suddenly flood to your site. You’ll have to take the time to post regularly to your business profiles and share content that’s useful to your target audience. If you plan to invest in Facebook ads, you can expect to spend even more time and effort managing your campaigns.
Pay Per Click Advertising
The way pay-per-click (PPC) advertising works is straightforward: You place ads in the search results that only show up for keywords that you bid on. You can pay whenever someone clicks on your ads from a search query, hence the name. The most popular platform is Google Ads where you can place ads in the search results or on sites that participate in the display network.
Google makes it fairly easy to sign up for its ad network. In fact, you can easily get started with a targeted campaign in a single afternoon. But one of the main drawbacks of PPC advertising is the costs involved. Certain keywords can cost a dollar or more just to bid on. That means you’ll need to allocate a significant budget to run your campaigns. Set a daily limit to avoid going over your budget.
The performance of a PPC campaign is directly linked to the relevancy and quality of your ads. Managing a campaign requires a great deal of effort as you’ll need to make constant tweaks to your ads and landing pages to maximise their performance. But unlike other online marketing channels, you can start driving quality traffic immediately to your pages.
Kym Wallis, the founding director of Higher Ranking has over 15 years of advertising sales, digital strategy, and business development experience. He is currently working as Digital Adviser for