Building an online business sounds like a dream: From the comfort of your own office, you can reach out to potential customers anywhere in Malaysia – or the world, even! However, it is easier said than done. Once your website and online store is set up, it doesn’t mean people will flock to your site naturally. How can you attract people to your site and boost your brand’s recognisability?
Digital marketing is your answer! This relatively new branch of marketing encompasses areas like social media marketing, online ads, and search engine optimisation. If you want to make your brand seen and heard online, you need to invest in at least some of these marketing strategies.
Here are some of the broad principles you need to keep in mind when you embark on a digital marketing strategy:
Know yourself, and know your enemies. Be super familiar with the products or services you are providing, and think of how you would position it to your target audience. How will you set yourself apart from your competitors, and capture the attention of potential customers?
You will also need to be aware of what your competitors are doing. What are the strategies that worked, and what didn’t? Learn from them, and yet distinguish your brand from them.
Finally, you need to get a keen sense of what your audience wants. What are their concerns? Tap into the consumer mindset to determine how best you should reach out to them with marketing that is relatable and attractive to them.
Content is king
A huge part of digital marketing is dependent on your content. People are online to search for information or entertainment – so make sure your content fulfils that! If your content is useful and engaging, it naturally draws people to it. If it is good enough, people will even share it with others, which gives you even more exposure.
Your content can be in the form of blog posts, or audiovisual sharings on social media sites. The content that your brand gravitates to will depend on your brand image and target audience.
Apart from striving for high-quality content, search engine optimisation is another aspect you can’t leave out. This helps your content reach the right audience when they enter relevant search terms.
Build customer relations
Today’s consumers want brands that feel like a friend to them. They expect the brand to have personality, and that the brand will respond and interact with them. Thus, you can’t overlook the importance of building customer relations through online channels.
This means having easily accessible chat widgets on your site, and being highly responsive to messages on all your platforms. Consumers also love to see customer reviews, as it shows them what people are saying about the brand, and creates a sense of community.
You can incorporate a brand voice to make your business more recognisable and likeable, as well. Whether you choose to stick to a safe, approachable tone, or inject some witty humour, make sure it extends across your platforms.
This brings us to a crucial overarching principle: consistency. In one sense, it means uniformity across your communication platforms. Incoherence will make audiences feel confused and give the impression of a disorganised business. On the other hand, a coherent branding across your online accounts will give a stronger impression.
Another meaning to consistency is the frequency of online activity. Digital marketing requires consistent work to continually keep your brand at the top of your audience’s minds. You don’t want to be too overzealous to the point of being spammy, but you’ll want frequent enough updates on your social media accounts, blogs, and e-mail newsletters to remind your audience that you’re still there.
These 4 principles can be easily extended to any internet marketing strategy you employ, from social media marketing to SEO. If you would like to find out more about concrete strategies you can take to elevate your brand’s online presence, you can take up an internet marketing course, or engage the help of professional SEO experts.