If you are new to the realms of digital marketing, you may be a little overwhelmed. There’s a lot to marketing. The further you dig, the more you’ll discover.
But worry not. We’ve put together an A-Z guide to give you a starting point. Having a good understanding of what’s involved with marketing will make it far easier to gain traffic – whether you do it yourself or outsource.
A – Analytics
Analytics is at the core of every marketing strategy. You need to track every avenue to ensure you are getting results for your investment, whether its time or money.
Luckily, most services have tracking and reports that allow you to see how the channel is performing. Social networks, email services and other marketing tools will have at least a basic report.
Keeping track of everything can be difficult, but pulling everything into a spreadsheet can help you get your head around each channel and how you are performing.
B – Branding
Branding can help your company become instantly recognisable.
Branding consists of
- Slogans and other wording
- Design styles
Creating a consistent brand strategy will keep your marketing consistent across all channels. By aligning your brand with your target audience, customers will feel more trust and positivity to you.
C – Content
Content is king. It’s a phrase you will hear a lot on the internet. Content touches every part of the marketing strategy. Your content marketing helps with all areas of your marketing, from building your email list to improving your SEO.
Content consists of:
- News articles
- And more
Your content should aim to build trust and authority for your audience. You need to prove to your audience that you know them inside out and that your product or service can help them.
Create content that does at least one of three things: inform, educate and entertain. These three things will help build an audience, help them to trust you and convert sales.
D – Decision Making
You must be clear and concise when planning your marketing strategy. You must decide on a path and stick to it.
Constantly changing direction will muddy your message and confuse your audience. But that isn’t to say you can never rebrand.
When you’re starting out, decide what you are selling and who you will be selling it to. Make informed decisions from facts and data. Choose your audience wisely. Stick to brand guidelines. Ensure everything stays on track to hit your goal.
E – Engagement
Engagement is a vital metric in any marketing channel. You need your audience to interact with your marketing message.
Engagement could be a like, comment or share on your social media posts. It may be a subscriber opening an email. It could be a fan subscribing to your RSS feed.
Your business needs the engagement of your audience. You need that interaction. Marketing is a two-way stream. By tracking and monitoring your engagement, you can build an audience of loyal fans.
F – Funnels
Funnels are designed to collect a large amount of liquid and channel them into a smaller opening.
In marketing, you’re aiming to move a vast audience through to purchasing your product or service. You need them to move through your marketing funnel.
There are three stages to a marketing funnel:
- Top of funnel (ToFu) – Where your audience is introduced to your brand.
- Middle of funnel (MoFu) – Where your audience are enticed by your product and decide whether to buy.
- Bottom of funnel (BoFu) – Where your audience decides to buy.
Targeting content at customers in all three parts of the funnel will help move them from one stage to the next. There are many pieces of software out there that can help make this process easier, but you can also do it for free.
G – Growth Hacking
Growth hacking is a bit of a buzzword. Basically, it consists of growing your company as fast as possible by as much traffic driving measures and A/B testing the site for conversion rate.
The idea is to grow as fast as possible without real worry for budgets or short term profits. Big companies such as Facebook and Air BnB achieved this to perfection. As have other brands.
Growth Hacking is a good concept to understand and implement in small doses to help grow your company.
H – Heatmaps
Knowing where your audience is clicking is a critical report in marketing. It’s all well and good rearranging your home page to move all your important things to the right, but if your audience is only clicking on the left, then you’re going to have an issue.
If your budget extends to it, some fantastic software packages can help you map your clicks. You could also hire an agency. Another way is to use UTM tags to track your clicks.
I – Influencer Marketing
You may have heard of the rise of the “Instagram Influencers”. Influencers are a controversial subject in the marketing world, as it is difficult to track their effectiveness.
Many online influencers, such as “Instagram-famous celebrities” and Youtubers have devoted fans, who will often follow their lead. Using the right influencers for your product or service can come with significant effect.
However, before starting any influencer marketing campaign, make sure you define what success means for that campaign. Is it sales? Is it brand awareness? Is it more email signups?
J – Jargon
Marketing is full of Jargon. Sometimes it can be hard to keep up with all the trends. Sometimes Agency salespeople can come out with a load of it to confuse you. But, most of the time, they are easy to understand.
Keeping track of Jargon will help keep you up to date, and you may even find some new strategies to try.
K – KPIs
Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) help keep you on track. KPIs are metrics that help define success for your brand. These could be anything such as sales, traffic, email signups, or time on site. You can have one KPI or many.
Defining your marketing KPIs early can help shape your strategy. Asking “how will this blog post increases my KPIs” can help keep you aligned to your business goals.
L – Live Streaming
Going live is all the range. From Instagram Stories to Facebook Live, every social media service is embracing live chats.
Going live helps confirm there are humans behind your company. It gives you nowhere to hide and proves you know your stuff. While this may sound scary, it will actually be advantageous.
Live webinars are a fantastic piece of content marketing that can increase email signups and introduce audience members into your sales funnels.
M – Mailing list
Your mailing list is your most important business asset. Whether you’re sending physical mail or emails, having a list of customers that you can contact when you need is a fantastic way to get sales.
Email newsletters often have excellent conversion rates and can be a powerful sales tool. But that isn’t all. You can talk directly to your audience, and personalise the experience.
Most email software companies can tag users with interests based on clicks. This means you can segment your audience and send relevant information straight to them.
N – Networking
You need to talk. Marketing these days is about opening conversations with your audience. This could be through networking events or chatting with people through social networks.
While there are a lot of people who claim it doesn’t work, for the right industries network marketing is critical. Meeting people in real life has a fantastic benefit.
Networking online is no different. Get commenting on social networks through your brand and your personal channels. Meet people, discuss interests and chat.
You don’t need to just network with potential customers. Network with other people in your industry. Meet other marketers. Why? You’ll learn new tricks and trends that may not have reached your company yet.
O – Organic
Organic marketing is anything where money isn’t exchanged for results. For example, a social media post with no paid spend, or SEO results are both considered organic.
Organic reach is decreasing, as corporations are looking to increase their profits from online marketing results. However, you can still get a good return from organic marketing promotions.
P – Pay-per-click
Pay-per-click advertising is any marketing channel where you pay every time someone clicks on your advert.
Probably the best-known example is Google Adwords, which appear on search results within Google’s search engine.
Other examples of Pay-Per-Click adverts include:
- Banner adverts
- Social media adverts
- Related article links (sometimes sponsored)
Q – Questions
When running marketing campaigns, asking questions is always important. You need always to be asking:
With everything you do, you need to ask these questions. For example, with a social media post it may be:
- Who am I targeting?
- What do they want to know
- When will the need to know this?
- Where can they get my offer?
- Why would they want to use this information?
- How can they take action?
By having these questions running through your head, you will continue to improve your marketing messages. Just don’t get stuck with Analysis Paralysis.
Questions shouldn’t be one-sided though. You should be using surveys and polls to help learn more about your audience.
R – Responsive
Google is heavily promoting the move to mobile. Having a responsive website is going to be increasingly important.
Responsive websites are websites that resize depending on the screen that it appears on. This means the same website appears across mobile, tablets, desktops and TVs.
If you have a separate mobile site, now is the time to redesign your website so it becomes responsive, as it will begin to affect your SEO.
S – Search Engine Optimisation
Search Engine Optimisation, also known as SEO, is the process of tweaking and testing your website to boost its visibility in search results.
Google has over 200 search ranking factors that we know of. These range from big things like the number of backlinks pointing to a page to smaller things, such as having the keyword in your post title.
SEO is a huge part of marketing – and it’s a huge job. It’s a lot of hard work, and it’s a long process. This may be an area where an agency will come in handy, even it if is just to get you back to ground zero.
T – Testing
You should be testing everything. You’ll never know if something will work until you test it out.
The most precise way of testing is A/B testing. An A/B test is where you show two versions of a post, email, webpage or other medium and see how they compare between them. The results can be anything from higher click-through rates or more sales.
When A/B testing, it’s essential that you only test one theory at a time. Either test button colours or test images. If you test too much at once, you will never know what the true outcome is.
It’s also essential that you are clear in what you are testing. If you are testing two different images, make sure you know what the difference is. For example, a smiling face vs stern face. A black and white photo vs colour.
U – User Experience
If no-one can use your website, then you will lose valuable sales. You need to ensure that your customers know exactly how to use your website. User experience extends to all products and services that you offer.
There are many conventions with all kinds of products, services and marketing material. Making things as easy and intuitive for your users is of high importance.
There is a whole industry based around user experience so it may be worth bringing in an expert for advice.
V – Video
Video is a great tool. Facebook and other social media channels favour video. They are easily digestible and increase time on site.
YouTube is so interwoven with Google search results that you can’t really ignore it. Having video in your strategy is vitally important.
When paired with blogs, you can ensure cross-pollination of sorts. Embedding videos from YouTube or Instagram can keep users on the page and gains more views and links on the video, increasing engagement on those channels. Win-win!
X – Xenagogy
Xenagogy is a guidebook for tourists or visitors. And really, your website needs to be that for your industry.
The current trend in marketing is creating the ultimate guide. Google favours them, visitors love them, and it helps to guide people through your industry.
The more you help, the more authoritative you will be. The more your audience will trust you. The more you will sell.
Y – You
You need to be at the centre of your business. As a business owner, your personality should shine through. Don’t just be another faceless small business.
People buy from people. By being at the centre of your company, people believe that you can be trusted. You are open, honest and human. That helps build your business.
Z – Zeitgeist
You need to be at the moment. Be of the times. Your marketing needs to reflect what’s going on around you.
You need to be at the moment. Be of the times. Your marketing needs to reflect what’s going on around you.
If you try to stick to what worked a few years ago, you are missing out on a whole new way of doing things, which people come to expect. Keep an eye on trending topics. Ensure your marketing reflects that.
Now you have an overview of marketing, it’s time to dig deeper. Keep an eye on our blog or follow us on Bloglovin to learn more about offline and digital marketing.