The 21st century has the seen the emergence of so many technologies that enable us to successfully market businesses in a more integrated and impactful way compared to the past. From blogs, ecommerce stores, online marketplaces to social media channels, the web has become a public arena of information for customers to search and consume. For the first time, the Internet has created new opportunities for businesses as digital tools have helped streamline and automate marketing efforts across multiple platforms.
But as a marketer in the digital age, it can get overwhelming on where to begin when it comes to discovering where your customers are and how to connect with them.
Attracting customer attention is more challenging than ever before as that attention is spread amongst many channels, devices, and platforms. To make it even more challenging, traditional broadcast messages are no longer effective. Customers want relevant messages reaching them via their choice of medium and delivered as a conversation. Mike Dover, co-author of WIKIBRANDS: Reinventing Your Company in a Customer-Driven Marketplace
With the endless options available on the Internet, its hard to pinpoint what actions need to be taken in order to build an effective customer engagement strategy to help build your business. But it all comes down to establishing what your course of action will be. Marketers need to create a strategy to not only attract customers, but to create an impactful long-term relationship built on transparency and trust that in turn will generate commerce and brand loyalty.
Here are some tips for marketers on how to build a successful marketing strategy:
Identify New Modes of Marketing
Instead of spending all of your budget on traditional marketing like print advertisements or radio and television commercials, also focus on digital marketing channels that will help your business grow online. Integrated marketing combines the old modes of advertising with today’s technology through email marketing campaigns, blogging, and social media channels like Facebook or Twitter. Today’s customers are transitioning online to connect with brands. These avenues not only enable you to improve your overall reach, but increase your chances of connecting with a wider audience.
Create a Relevant Content Strategy
Building a digital presence is about leaving a digital footprint and being found by potential customers. In today’s marketplace, 70% of consumers prefer getting to know a company via real information rather than ads. Start building better relationships through transparency and trust by generating relevant, multimedia content. Customers are constantly looking for information online and instead of creating content for the sake of creating content, focus on your specific industry and topics that are engaging. Not only are you increasing your ability to be found online through relevant content, but also building your reputation as a trustworthy authority. Add more value to your content by adding other forms of media like photos, videos, and even podcasts – this will improve your chances of being found online by providing meaningful information for existing and potential customers.
Join the Conversation with Your Customers
Communication with your customers is key. Whether it’s a simple reply on Twitter, answering their questions through customer support, or offering them a private deal for their loyalty, engagement is is crucial when building a long-term relationship with consumers. Customers have more power and influence than they have before as the Internet has amplified their voices to be heard through social posts, forums and reviews. Listening and connecting with consumers allows marketers to understand what communities to plug into and which conversations they should be a part of.
Analyze Your Marketing Efforts
In order to understand how well your content strategy is performing, you have to check the numbers. Through detailed analytics, you can gain insight on which blogs are more successful, what your overall reach is, and what areas you need to improve on. Analytics are essential when creating an effective digital marketing strategy because over time you will be able to predict what trends are going to occur, what type of media is more receptive when it comes to your audience, and what marketing channels work best for your business.
Wrapping it Up
Without a comprehensive digital customer engagement strategy, marketers will continue to run into gaps when it comes to building their brand. Instead of focusing on advertisements that are pushed onto customers, today’s marketers need to make the shift into the digital realm and build long-term strategies centered around engagement that pulls customers in.
Simply put, it begins with building a dynamic content marketing strategy as well as identifying what tools and marketing channels are needed to share and distribute. This convergence of multimedia creation, social media and analytics is essential for succeeding online whether you’re a large enterprise, a small business, or even an entrepreneur. Engagement builds conversation that begins with transparency through content marketing, enabling all customers to find you online through search queries that link back to your site.
Today’s marketplace requires all brands to be digitally competitive and marketers who understand the importance of being content, consumer, and data driven are the ones that will drive their brand to succeed.