We all want more visibility for our website – right? It’s certainly big on many business’ agendas so I’ve decided to write a series of five articles designed to help inform, educate and provide some useful plain talking advice. If you’re struggling to see the value in online marketing, or think it’s done by Wizards using dark secret arts, then these articles are for you.
Before we get started let me just say that this isn’t one of those ‘everything you’ve been told is a lie’ articles, but it won’t surprise you to hear that I like to think the Thrive approach to online marketing is a little different than the norm – would you seriously expect anything else?
Here’s my top level view on things
Talk about online marketing and most of us immediately think about search engine optimisation (SEO being the common abbreviation). But let’s take a step back; consider the bigger picture and view online marketing as an umbrella term to describe a range of disciplines which come together as part of an overall strategy to generate more website traffic. Most commonly these components include:
Search Engine Optimisation – methods and techniques to get your site the best chance of visibility in free search engine listings – mainly Google.
Paid Search – using tools such as Google’s Adwords where you pay for site visits.
Social Media – promoting your services and engaging directly with your target audience in an ideally two-way (or even two-hundred way!) conversation.
Content Marketing – originating good, relevant and informative content to keep the site fresh and up to date. And no, this isn’t just blogging!
Quality Link Building – more links to your site means more traffic – of course it does, I don’t need to tell you that. However, there are pit falls here and keeping inside the lines is very important.
Offline Media – controversial? No not really. For me whatever methods of communication you use to promote your business there’s usually an opportunity to promote your website.
In the coming articles we’ll look at each of the above in more detail and gain an understanding of how they can all work together to deliver results.
Now for the really important bit
If you’re considering online marketing, or you’ve already committed to it these two things are essential to bear in mind:
As with any marketing it’s important to set measurable objectives – whether it’s online or offline your communications must integrate to deliver a coordinated and clear message. Always have this in mind.
Driving a million visitors to your website doesn’t equal success. Converting a percentage of them into customers does. To achieve best results you must ensure that your site is up to date, uses excellent persuasive design to ease the users’ journey through it and won’t suffer as a result of any technical fault in construction. In other words, make sure your website is in tip top shape before investing in traffic driving exercises, you risk not maximizing your return on investment if you don’t!
I can’t stress the importance of the above two points enough. In short a successful online marketing campaign starts with good planning, which leads me nicely into….