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The Different Strategies of Digital Marketing

Marianna Muscat - Thursday, March 10, 2022
Powerful digital marketing strategies in 2022

Learn about the different digital marketing strategies used by businesses today along with the pros and cons.

The Different Types  of Digital Marketing

Here are some of the types of digital marketing you may incorporate:

  • Search engine optimization (SEO) is shrouded in mystery – only because Google and other search engines change their algorithms to deter cheap tricks. The goal of SEO is to increase your ranking on search engine results pages (SERPs) to ensure that your business is found by your target audience.
    • On-page SEO optimizes web pages to boost search visibility using elements such as content, keyword usage, structure, metadata, and UX.
    • Off-page SEO deals with increasing your authority using elements like backlinks and social shares and accounts for 75% of SEO.
  • Search engine marketing (SEM) is a type of internet marketing that uses paid advertising above search results to attract visitors to your website. SEM leverages keywords that are searched often on search engines to improve the ranking of your website on SERPs. Consequently, a lot of planning and keyword research is needed to yield long-lasting results. Google AdWords can reach 90% of global internet users.
  • Pay-per-click (PPC) is similar to SEM in that it is a form of paid advertising where you are charged only when a user clicks on your ad. This digital marketing strategy is not limited to search engines, but can also be found on Facebook Ads, Instagram Ads, and even banner ads. Because the cost per click (CPC) is determined by how popular the keyword is, finding keywords that are in-demand yet reasonably priced is key. 
  • Content marketing is the cornerstone of all marketing efforts. Whether used on your website, in blogs and newsletters, or for video marketing or podcasts, high-quality content adds value. Although used in digital advertising, content is more than just hard selling. What you share must inform, amuse, inspire, or convince your prospects and buyers through its relevance. Because content marketing is a specialized and ongoing activity, using the services of a professional content marketing team is worth spending money on.
  • Social media marketing (SMM) targets your audience on social media platforms. There is a network for every kind of business, e.g., Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram. The beauty of SMM is that it makes two-way communication easy through comments, likes, and so on. For actionable insights, each platform has some form of analytics; and for maximum efficiency, marketing automation can schedule posts for when your audience is browsing social media.
  • Email marketing, when used appropriately, helps you build your mailing list, onboard new buyers, and retain existing customers. By including social buttons, referral rewards, and compelling content, email marketing can be a highly integrated marketing tactic that shortens the sales cycle.
  • Mobile marketing reaches your audience via their smartphones or tablets. Considering that we spend “a third of our waking time (4.8 hours/day) on mobiles”, getting your message in front of consumers means sending it to their cellular phones. Geofencing lets you target mobile ads to clearly defined audience segments for relevant engagement.

Why Should I Have a Digital Marketing Strategy?

Online marketing success requires a roadmap that starts with a thorough analysis of your competitors, market segmentation, and persona development. Only then can you create a digital marketing plan that aligns with your marketing goals, resources, and budget. To implement your plan, schedule online activities, launch, and then measure and manage the results.

Pros of Having a Digital Marketing Strategy

  • Reach a wider audience and tap into new markets.
  • Personalize content to grab users’ attention.
  • Build relationships with engaging marketing tactics.
  • Cost effective when ROI is measured.

Cons of Having a Digital Marketing Strategy

  • Trolls can cause unnecessary stress.
  • The changing algorithms and regulations enforced by search engines means you must stay up to date.

To explore the best digital marketing strategies for your business, get in touch with WSI New Media Marketing online or call 336.763.4006.

What is Digital Marketing for Businesses?

Marianna Muscat - Tuesday, March 8, 2022
What is Digital Marketing for Businesses

Is it possible that digital marketing accounted for X’s success?” wondered Y*. They sold similar products at matching prices and offered comparable service. Read on to find out X’s secret!

What is Digital Marketing?

Simply put, online marketing is the promotion of your brand using digital media. It connects with your target audience via the internet and smart devices. It uses digital means to disseminate your brand message, advertise, and track the impact of your brand. It usually refers to marketing efforts that appear on mobile phones, laptops, tablets, or any type of digital devices.

Here are The Different Types of Digital Marketing

For a company taking its first foray into the world of digital marketing, it can be intimidating. All the jargon, abbreviations, and ever-changing algorithms seem daunting – never mind the myriad different types of digital marketing. Let’s explore the digital marketing channels you might use as part of your digital marketing strategy:

  • Content marketing is the base of all your marketing campaigns. Whenever you distribute messages that educate, entertain, encourage, or persuade your audience, you are creating content.
  • Search engine optimization, a.k.a. SEO is the heartbeat of all digital marketing tactics. By analyzing the keywords and rankings of your website, you can work to optimize your digital presence to be higher up on the search engine results page (SERP).
  •  PPC stands for pay-per-click – a way to advertise on search engines like Google by bidding on keywords that bring in the most online traffic. Your account is billed every time someone clicks on one of your ads.
  • Search engine marketing (SEM) combines PPC and SEO efforts to attract visitors to your website through search engines using paid and unpaid methods.
  • Social media marketing (SMM) helps you reach your audience via social media platforms from LinkedIn to TikTok.
  •  Email marketing is a fantastic tool for promoting offers and discounts, sharing content, and distributing relevant information directly to subscribers’ inboxes.
  • Mobile marketing sends messages through SMS and push notifications that reach your audience on-the-go.
  • Influencer marketing and affiliate marketing involve collaborating with people in a position of eminence – be they industry experts or social media celebs.

Why Do You Need Digital Marketing for Your Business?

Digital marketing is to organizations. In comparison to print, radio, and television ads, it is deemed less expensive. In a manner that traditional advertising and marketing cannot, digital marketing campaigns are simple to set up, execute, and track, with outcomes that are quantifiable. 

As X discovered, digital marketing is essential for business success because it is:

  • Affordable and offers great ROI
  • Flexible – test, measure, and tweak
  • Interactive – engage and manage your reputation to be regarded as an authority
  • Accessible where your audience is
  • Exciting – include multiple types of media, interact with influencers, track your customers’ buying journeys

If, like Y, you would like more information on how to leverage digital marketing to outperform your competitors, contact WSI New Media Marketing at 336.763.4006 or online. (*Names changed to protect the innocent!)

How to market on social media for your business

Marianna Muscat - Tuesday, November 9, 2021
How to market on social media for your business

In order to get the most out of your digital marketing, it is essential to know how to use social media for your business. There are currently almost 5 billion people using social media platforms. Each of these spends an average of 2.5 hours per day on their platforms of choice. These hours offer perfect opportunities to target new customers and build brand awareness. Do you know how to take advantage of these opportunities? Follow these tips for social media mastery. 

Brainstorm your ideas

It is vital to emphasize the ‘social’ in social media, even in the beginning as you develop your strategies, tactics and content. Bring your team together and get everyone’s input. Some team members may be excellent copywriters but may not be comfortable with social media. Others may be social media natives with strong ideas on how and where to post for best results. Talk it out, get creative and throw all possible ideas on the table before you start to hash out a strategy.

Decide which platform best suits your company and content

Your success depends on using the right platform. Some businesses will be better off reaching their customers on Facebook, while others should stick to a mix of Twitter and LinkedIn, for example. Think carefully about the kind of work you do, the sector you are in, and the preferences of your target market.

Build relationships to grow and expand

Many people make the mistake of focusing only on numbers in their social media: more followers, more fans, etc. Don’t get us wrong, the numbers are important, but it is more important that you are targeting the right people – those who will become committed customers and longstanding members of your community. When you build a community, its members will engage with you, and spread the word about your brand, helping the community to grow organically. You may even want to bring social media influencers into the mix.

Pay attention to trends and be interactive

Social media trends move and shift with alarming rapidity. It is no good posting the same kind of content, in the same way, all the time. It is essential that you pay attention to what your community and other people on social media are doing and saying, and keep up with the trends – even better, learn to anticipate them. You may want to bring an influencer on board to help. 

WSI New Media Marketing is a full-service digital marketing company in Greensboro, North Carolina. Contact us for expert help with social media for your business, and all aspects of digital marketing, including your content marketing strategy and more.

Different social media marketing courses to learn

Marianna Muscat - Tuesday, November 2, 2021
Different social media marketing courses to learn

Social media marketing is the best way to build brand awareness and develop a loyal fan base. However, you can’t simply “wing it” through your social media marketing. It consists of several core skills and tactics that you need to master. Social media marketing courses are the best and quickest way either to learn the fundamentals or to upgrade your marketing efforts.

Where should I begin?

There are many social media courses available, covering every skill level from beginner to advanced. It makes sense to start with a beginner’s course if you are a newcomer to social media marketing. If you have already been working in the field for a while, and are looking to get better results, you can either take a refresher course, or go back to basics – you may find that there are a lot of basic concepts that you don/t know about yet.

How do I know which course is right for me?

To help you choose the right social media marketing course, consider your current skill level, desired skill level, and budget. These three elements should help you zero in on the course that you and your team need at any given moment. Whatever your current skill level is, you want a course that will take you up to the next level. With your end result in mind, you can then look at the cost-vs-benefit balance among all the options, and make an informed choice. 

The different options available

There are way too many social media marketing courses available for us to list here, but here are four of the best:

  • Social media marketing certification from HubSpot: The HubSpot Academy offers a wide range of courses covering all aspects of the field. This particular one is a well-rounded social media marketing course that teaches you everything from strategy to social media listening, social media advertising, and more.
  • Hootsuite’s social media training: Many social media marketers probably already use Hootsuite to schedule their posts. This course will turn beginners into competent marketers, and help established ones take a more strategic, and technically competent approach to their posting.
  • Social media marketing mastery by Udemy: Udemy has a course for pretty much everything, and this one is a really comprehensive one that will turn you into a social media expert. 
  • Social media marketing foundations (LinkedIn): LinkedIn offers this for free on its Learning Platform, and also provides access to several paid social media courses from intermediate to advanced skill levels. This course offers a quick, free overview of everything you need to know about social media.

WSI New Media Marketing is a full-service digital marketing company in Greensboro, North Carolina. Contact us for expert help with your social media marketing, and all aspects of digital marketing, including your content marketing strategy and more.

Developing a content marketing strategy for your business

Marianna Muscat - Tuesday, October 12, 2021
Developing a content marketing strategy for your business

Content marketing is not just about trying out various tactics and hoping they will benefit your business. Content must be used carefully and strategically to meet your business goals. A content marketing strategy is therefore vital to your success. How do you develop a content marketing strategy? Here is a step-by-step guide.

Who is your target audience?

The first thing you need to do is get very clear about exactly who you are trying to reach with your content. Do you have only one audience, or several audience segments? Whoever your ideal customers are, you must understand how to reach them and design your content accordingly. Once you completely understand your audience, you can choose the appropriate channels to reach them, as well as planning the content itself.

Define your main goal

What do you want your content marketing to do? Is your main objective simply to raise awareness of your business, do you want to build your list of potential leads, or are you more interested in converting the leads you already have? Although you will be tempted to try and develop content that serves multiple purposes, it is important that you narrow your focus.

Brainstorm ideas

Once you fully understand your audience and know exactly what you want to achieve with your content, you can start getting creative. Bring your team together and start throwing around ideas about topics, channels and tactics. At this stage, there should be no limit to the possibilities. All ideas should be considered. Once everyone has raised their suggestions, look at everything with your audience and objectives in mind.

Choose your content management system

It is very important that you choose an effective and easy-to-use content management system (CMS) to execute your strategy. CMSs enable you to handle creation, publication, analytics and more. There are many CMS options available, so choose the one that best suits your purposes and budget.

Publish, manage and maintain your content

Finally, it is time to take your content, put it out there and monitor the response. Draw up an editorial calendar to help you publish carefully planned, well-managed, balanced and diverse content. You should also create a social media content calendar to complement your main content.  

 

WSI New Media Marketing is a full-service digital marketing company in Greensboro, North Carolina. Contact us for expert help with your digital marketing campaigns, including developing an effective content marketing strategy and more.

4 blog content marketing ideas for every business

Marianna Muscat - Wednesday, September 9, 2020
Content marketing

Keeping your blog posts fresh and informative can be easier than you think. As with most areas of content marketing, blogging doesn’t necessarily require you to draw new ideas out of the ether. Blogging is a means of telling your customers the ongoing story of your company. This story develops naturally as you go about your business every day. 

Armed with this ever-developing story, creating engaging blogs is then a matter of fitting the content into pre-existing paradigms and formats. These have already proven themselves reliable vehicles for marketing content, and offer you inspiration and a structure to help you organise and present your information. They are frameworks and general outlines, into which the story of your business can be molded. There is a saying among musicians that there are only 12 notes but thousands of ways of playing them. The same goes for blogs: there are only so many kinds of blogs, and the key to their substance, variety and level of engagement is your content. Here are four of the most popular blog post concepts or formats into which any business can fit their stories.

1. A success story

There’s nothing wrong with taking a moment to brag a little – provided you do it with style, of course! A well-chosen success story allows you to demonstrate how your products or services work in a real-world scenario. Pick an example, describe the salient details and use the moment to show, rather than tell your readers why they should buy your products.

2. An ongoing series on a single topic

Sometimes a single blog, consisting of a few hundred words, is not enough to communicate the information you want to get across. You may want to explore the background of your industry, analyse complex market trends, or expound on the many uses and benefits of a particular product line. The best thing to do – both for your sake and your customers’ – is to break it up into shorter pieces that you can publish over several weeks or months. It would help if you didn’t let this run on for too long, however. Strike a balance between detail and sustained engagement. 

3. A guide to common mistakes in your field

This is a very popular choice for almost all industries. Listicles that expound on the various ‘what not to dos’ of your industry enable direct and honest engagement with your readership, as well as the chance to present your business as a solution provider. You draw readers in with questions of how they could be doing things better – and then you provide the answers.

4. A spotlight on the latest trends

This is one of the simplest options. All industries are constantly shifting and evolving. If you take the initiative and use a blog to highlight your industry’s condition at any given moment, you present yourself as a business that has its fingers on the pulse. You can use the opportunity to tell readers how your products and services exemplify, take advantage of, or provide solutions for the current trends. 

If you are unsure how to tackle your blogging strategy, why not entrust it to the experts? WSI New Media Marketing in Greensboro is a proud member of the global WSI digital marketing family. In addition to building brands through content marketing, website design, mobile marketing and SEO optimization, we are also one of North Carolina’s top social media marketing strategists. Contact us and see what we can do for your brand and blog content.

Adjusting Your Content Marketing Strategy for 2016

Ken Bowden - Friday, January 15, 2016

 

Content marketing is a key component to your overall digital marketing strategy. According to one study, 67% of B2B companies say that content marketing is a top priority. Two-thirds report that content is fuel across all channels, including events, social, demand generation and more. Additionally, 44% of B2B marketers have a documented content strategy. It’s safe to say that content marketing is here to stay, at least in the short term.

 

As we move into 2016, it’s important that your content marketing strategy is built for the challenge. It needs to be well-thought-out, detailed and informative. It should be flexible so that it can make room for trending topics, but the main goals should be outlined in advance. For instance, what do you hope to get from your content? Increased brand awareness? Higher conversion rates? More sales?

 

Let’s discuss some of the ways that you can adjust your content marketing in the coming year for the better.

 

Think Beyond Blogging

 

Your company blog is probably your main source of content, and rightfully so. You can contribute relevant material several times a week or month, which is good for visibility, authority and SEO. But it’s important to think beyond traditional blog posts because they shouldn’t make up all of your content marketing efforts. Infographics, ebooks, videos, vlogs, webinars and podcasts are other forms of content that are equally engaging. In fact, experts say that we will be seeing more interactive content in 2016.

 

Quality Trumps Quantity

 

Quality content should be your focus. There’s no reason to publish content with low value. To stand out from the competition, produce longer, more well-researched articles and blog posts. They should be optimized for SEO and include original, engaging copy. It also helps to have credible resources and updated facts and figures to support your content.

 

Repurpose Your Content

 

Don’t think that you need to start every piece of content from scratch. Make use of your content by repurposing it, something that will come in handy as you may need to stretch your budget in 2016. For example, use existing content to create a SlideShare presentation that includes pertinent facts. Or, hire a designer to create a colorful infographic with bullet points. You can also generate a report or whitepaper that can be downloaded in exchange for an email address.

 

Stay on Top of SEO

 

SEO techniques are always changing, but that’s not an excuse to fall behind in the latest trends. Your website should be mobile friendly and include links and anchor text, fast load times and good keyword usage. Always write content naturally. It should speak to your audience rather than the search engines and include keywords that people commonly search for. Social signals are also important.

 

It’s almost impossible to know what trends will dominate content marketing in 2016. But, it never hurts to try. Consider what worked well for you last year and what didn’t, and make the proper adjustments. Armed with new changes and an awareness of the latest trends, your content marketing strategy is bound for success.   If you would like help developing your content marketing strategy or your content, give WSI New Media Marketing a call today!

 

Preparing for the Winter Marketing Slump

Ken Bowden - Wednesday, December 30, 2015

 

Preparing for the Winter Marketing Slump

The holiday season is over. It was over before it got here for many, since; we noticed Christmas displays coming down and Valentine’s displays going up before 12/25 even rolled around. Even worse? Once people have finished running around and making exchanges and using their holiday gift cards, things seem to slow down even more. January, for many, can be pretty sluggish. So what can you and your business do to survive and push through?

Maintain Your Momentum

Don’t let slow sales be an excuse for a lack of marketing. If anything, you need to step things up a notch so that you can stay visible and memorable. This is the time for a clever new ad, but not necessarily for a huge-ticket deal. People have just spent a ton of money on the holidays, so they’re not necessarily looking for new deals but might be enticed by something great or creative. Just don’t take the month off and go to sleep because you think people are “over” the holidays.

January is Boring

It’s sort of true. Think about it. You start with Halloween costumes, plan a gigantic Thanksgiving feast, and spend weeks choosing the perfect gifts and decorating your home. Once it’s all over and the lights come down, you’ve got… well… nothing but grey skies, cold, ice, and snow. There’s nothing to look forward to in January – unless, of course, you make something up. And that’s just what you need to do. Embrace the season, push the New Year, and keep your customers excited. It’s a tough job, but we know you can do it.

Your 2016 Marketing Plan

When designing your 2016 marketing plan, be sure to keep your holiday sale plans realistic. The more you undervalue yourself to give a great deal, the less people will want to buy from you in between great deals. Your brand has value and you need to treat it that way all year long. If you didn’t go over-board in December, you should be able to maintain decent momentum into January and beyond.

Debunk the Myths

Truth? Your business doesn’t have to suffer through a January or winter slump. It’s our motivation levels and efforts that usually take a toll after the holiday season and that can have a negative impact on the way our business runs. Analyze your statistics from years past, know how your customers see your business, and tailor what you have to offer to make it appealing for the winter.

Not sure how to do that? Give WSI New Media a call. We’ll help you analyze your marketing campaigns, create new strategies, and keep your customers interested throughout the entire year!

Reviewing Your 2015 Marketing Plan: Planning for 2016

Ken Bowden - Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Reviewing Your 2015 Marketing Plan: Planning for 2016

We’re about to exit 2015 and and transition into 2016. While we can never truly stop marketing our businesses, we do need to take some time to slow down, reflect on the past year, really study the statistics, and figure out what changes need to be made going forward. The yearly transition offers just that opportunity.

What Did You Learn?

Start by considering what you learned over the course of the past 12 months? What promotions or marketing campaigns did better than you thought they would? Can you improve upon them in 2016? Which didn’t perform as well as you’d hoped? Can they be revamped or should they be completely replaced?

Look at the statistics you’ve (hopefully) been gathering all year. Where were your greatest returns on investment? Did you meet the written goals you set for the year, both short and long term?

Set New Goals

What will your goals for 2016 be? Are you going to increase sales by a certain percentage? Will you have a certain number of new website visitors sign up for your mailing list? You need to know exactly what your goals will be before you can determine the methods you’ll use to achieve them.

Choosing Your Marketing Channels

What marketing methods have you been using and how long have you been using them? If you’ve been using the same methods for more than a couple of years you may need to really shake things up a bit to get better results. You may want to branch out more when it comes to social media, start video or content marketing, expand or create new PPC campaigns. You can delete the ones that are no longer working, too. Don’t be afraid. You really don’t need to pay for a full-color ad in the yellow pages any longer. That money is money you could be spending elsewhere for better results.

Focus on Mobile

Does your marketing campaign focus on mobile users? If not, you’ve ignored the issue long enough. Your 2016 campaign has to be mobile-friendly. There are no exceptions. Your competition is three steps ahead of you. Hire someone to make your website mobile friendly and find someone who can help you to alter your marketing campaign to include mobile components. You’re losing out on a huge segment of your audience.

So… truth? We know statistics and numbers and marketing plans aren’t what you like to work on. That’s why WSI New Media offers so many packages designed to help entrepreneurs like you. We’ll work on your marketing plan while you focus on what you love – your products and your clients. Give us a call to find out how we can help you in the New Year.

Does Your Business Have a True Content Marketing Strategy?

Ken Bowden - Tuesday, September 15, 2015

 

Does Your Business Have a True Content Marketing Strategy?

Content marketing. We’ve all heard of it, but not everyone has the same ideas when it comes to what the term actually means. Some people think it means making sure there is content, even new and revolving content on your website. Others think it means writing articles to drive links back to your website. Let’s take a closer look at what content marketing is and how to better utilize it in your business.

What is Content Marketing?

Content marketing is strategic. It means taking valuable information – information that is relevant, practical, and accurate – and finding ways to distribute it to the intended audience in order to drive profitable action. While in the past marketing meant mere text, it now extends to video, podcasts, infographics, social posts, ebooks, product reviews, lists of curated content, and so much more.

A good content marketing strategy is also developed by listening to what your potential customers are saying online.  Then develop content that meets the wants and needs of their enquiries.

Developing a Content Marketing Strategy

The trick to a good content marketing strategy is having a set, consistent plan. You need to know who your target audience is, the type of content they respond to most, where they generally look for it and determine how to use it to drive visitors to your landing pages for engagement.

Consistency is important because the longer you go between putting out new pieces of content, the more likely it is your audience will forget about you or be drawn towards another source with more frequent pieces of valuable information. You want to draw your audience’s attention and then keep it.

So how do you develop a strong strategy?

  1. Make sure you have someone within your organization who is the lead content manager. While everyone may be able to contribute, there should be one point person in charge of assigning, editing, and ultimately distributing your content.
  2. Decide what type of content you want to use and figure out who will create it. Will you need a social media manager or SEO consultant? Will you need a blogger? Will you need a graphic designer? Will you need someone with some basic YouTube skills? Is there someone within your office who can efficiently handle these tasks (without compromising his actual job role within your business), or should you outsource?
  3. If you’re going to handle the above in your office, do you have the tools and technology necessary to do so?
  4. Do you have a content calendar that outlines: a) the purpose for each piece of or that month’s content; b) the places you’d like to distribute content each month; c) the types of content you’ll put in each place; and d) deadlines for having each piece of content created?
  5. Once you’ve published your content, use your analytics reports to test and measure the effectiveness of your posts or campaign and revise accordingly.

Truth be told, content marketing can be a little overwhelming – especially if you run a busy business. Give WSI New Media Marketing a call if you’d like help with your content marketing strategy. We’ll take some of the burden off of your shoulders so you can focus on your clients.

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