The number of businesses using digital marketing as part of their overall marketing strategy increases each year. Without a doubt, many organizations have achieved positive results after taking at least some of their marketing efforts online. Digital marketing is certainly a game-changer for many organizations – from changing the way in which they generate leads, through how they interact with their clients. It’s no surprise that many organizations will increase their digital marketing budgets in 2015.
These are 4 basic questions you can ask yourself as you decide whether (or how) your business might benefit from digital marketing:
#1. Why should my business consider using digital marketing in the first place?
Aval Solutions offers a solid answer to this question:
More often than not, your target market will already be online; whether they are using social media or networking sites…or using search engines (e.g. Google) to find the products or services that your business offers.
Being online opens your business up to a larger audience and more opportunities to reach them.
#2. Do I have marketing people in-house who are skilled and savvy enough – and who also have the time – to handle digital marketing activities effectively? Or should I hire an agency and/or freelancers?
Many businesses, and small businesses in particular, have a limited number of employees who are already wearing several hats. Effective digital marketing takes both creativity and time, as well as marketing skills. If your organization lacks the personnel and/or time, then outsourcing is another option. In fact, you may end up being pleasantly surprised by how affordable marketing agencies are. Even better, an agency offers staff who can completely focus on your digital marketing needs, leaving you with the time you need for your own business activities.
#3. How much money should I expect to spend on digital marketing, and where should I focus my budget?
There is no simple answer to this question. For example, you’ll face dozens of options for social media and blogging platforms, with prices that range from free to expensive. Your digital marketing spend ultimately depends on the direction you choose to take with your strategy.
In regards to where you should focus your budget, you should probably consider your staff as your most valuable resource. Since one of your best bets for digital marketing success involves hiring (and retaining) creative and committed people who will dedicate their time and skills, you’ll want to make sure your budget allows for this invaluable resource.
When some companies first got involved in digital marketing, many felt they needed a strong presence on every major platform for success. The thinking behind this was they felt that the wider they cast their nets, so to speak, then they would acquire more leads. However, most soon realized how exhausting and nearly impossible this was; nor did they notice a significant increase in client acquisition.
Rather than casting that wide net, savvy businesses find that using metrics and analytics helps them more efficiently discover where they can find their target audience online. A little research often goes a long way towards positive digital marketing results for your business and saves you time and trouble in the long run.
On a side note, you may decide you should set up pages on each major social media platform for your business. There is nothing wrong with this either. However, if your plans include posting infrequently (or not at all) on a page, then you should clearly notate this, and let visitors know that the page is only a “placeholder.” As well, make sure you use verbiage which directs visitors to the places where they can find information about you, such as your website or a social page where you are active.
Over to you
As you can see, there are no cut-and-dried answers as to whether digital marketing is the “perfect” solution to your business’ marketing needs. All marketing strategies require time and commitment – as well as a lot of trial-and-error.
Answering these questions for yourself and your business about digital marketing is a good place to start though. I’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions as well. Please feel free to leave your comments below.
Images: ”Digital marketing concept. Human hand with a megaphone, laptop, mobile, tablet, lightbulb, Baskets/ Shutterstock.com“
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