Every business wants a robust online presence in today’s digital economy. But before we talk about how to make that goal a reality, let’s define the term.
An effective online presence has three components: a paid strategy, an organic strategy, and an engagement strategy. Each of these three areas of your online presence can focus on different audiences, but ideally, there will be some overlap. The template is as follows:
- Your paid strategy captures new customers.
- Your organic strategy retains existing customers and builds loyalty.
- Your engagement strategy brings like-minded customers together to create a community.
This article will review seven tips to help you effectively grow your brand’s digital presence.
1. Start with an Email List
Just because it’s been around for a while doesn’t mean it’s outdated. On the contrary, email marketing has been experiencing a resurgence during the past couple of years because it reaches customers directly. Not to mention, it’s comparatively inexpensive when you consider what you’re getting.
The best part? If you’re diligent about collecting email addresses whenever you can (at checkout, in exchange for a discount, etc.), you can grow this list of interested customers over time. Even if only a tiny percentage converts, you’ll see a positive investment return.
2. Learn the Basics of SEO
Search engine optimization – or SEO – is a strategy to put your business at or near the top of the list when a user searches for the products or services your company is selling. It’s simple in theory, but executing SEO effectively requires a persistent and conscientious effort. You may not notice results for up to a year or more, but eventually your work will start to pay off.
It’s impossible to list all the boxes to check for search algorithms to view your business favorably, but a few tips can help you get started. First, upload blog posts and other helpful, consumer-focused content each month, and make sure you’re using the SEO best practices for your posts. Additionally, engaging with your audience on social media can boost your search ranking.
3. Be Active
Nobody likes being ignored, and the omnipresent algorithms are watching. So when a member of your audience engages with your business online, it’s crucial to respond quickly, whether it’s a message or comment on a social media platform or a form-fill on your website; rest assured that networks are monitoring your response rate, which allows to boost your online presence quickly and easily.
For example, Facebook publicly displays a business’s response rate (see below).
4. Focus On Your Website
Consider your website your business’s digital storefront. If you neglect it, it will eventually fall into disrepair and discourage customers from coming inside. Perform a monthly (or quarterly) audit and see where you can make improvements and optimizations where they’re needed.
Focus on putting your most attractive and important information front and center. For example, if you have a seasonal promotion, feature it on the home page or build a landing page dedicated to the offer/event/etc. When designing your site, think about reducing friction for your customer’s journey through the sales funnel.
5. Develop a Personality
Your brand’s voice may largely depend on your industry, but there is always enough room to carve out your own space. You’ll develop a rapport and connection with your audience when you endow your company with human qualities such as humor or attention to online trends.
Though cultivating a strong personality could alienate part of your consumer base, your approach will resonate with many current or prospective customers and build brand loyalty that will pay off in the future. Don’t be afraid to take a stance on issues, make lighthearted jokes when appropriate, and remember to give your brand some humanity online.
6. Embrace Paid Advertising
Organic content is great, but it has limitations. If you want to achieve online presence actualization, it will take some financial buy-in. Fortunately, most digital ad platforms are self-serve and intuitive, and you can begin serving targeted ads for less than $100/month.
Hiring a digital marketing expert is a worthwhile investment if you don’t feel comfortable executing a paid advertising campaign without prior experience. The digital space is hypercompetitive, and running paid ads that reach your potential customers where they’re spending time online is arguably the best way to generate new business.
7. Seek Out Influencers
The phrase “social media influencers” sounds like something only big brands need to worry about, but businesses of all sizes can benefit from influencer marketing. Although paid advertising gives you a chance to let the algorithms find the audience you want, influencers already have an audience that is engaged and ready to act.
Let’s say you own a company that sells camping gear and other outdoor essentials. Several online personalities have thousands of followers regularly tuning in to watch their “outdoors” content. Visit a site that lets you search for influencers by category, and select one who appeals to your idea demographic. Then, send them one of your products to promote, have them include a link to purchase it, and let the internet do the rest!
Running a business is a full-time job – so is effective digital marketing. Investing in a partnership with a team of digital branding and advertising experts is an investment in your company’s future. Brick Solid Brands offers customized strategies and solutions tailored to your needs while staying within your budget.
If your organization could benefit from digital marketing help or needs assistance in branding or design, get in touch for a free consultation.