For most people running a company in the 21st century, Internet marketing strategies are an indispensable part of the business plan. You should already be doing some form of web marketing through social media, Google AdWords, blog pages etc. any business that wants a broad customer reach should research the potential of a solid Internet marketing strategy.

As commerce continues to go global, companies that lack an easy-to-find, accessible website or landing page – the cornerstone of web marketing – won’t reach customers that don’t live in the same town or have never heard of the company. For businesses that aren’t household names, such as Pick n Pay® or Bidvest®, the easiest and cheapest form of market visibility begins on the Web. Having a sound Internet marketing strategy ensures the best chance of success.

Mobile

If you spend R10,000 ($1000), or 10 hours marketing and advertising your business and you get 100 leads, out of those 100 leads, 10 turn into clients. Most people would call that a good day.

With widespread growth of tablet and smartphone use, access to the Internet through a mobile device will be available to about 60% of the population, or 215 million people, in 2015, according to emarketer.com.

Already 80% of all google searches are conducted on a mobile device.

Mobile optimization will be an integral part of a website design now and in the foreseeable future. Websites will need to be mobile friendly, and mobile usability is a factor for Google search rankings.

As access to the Internet through a mobile device continues to grow, businesses will need to adapt in all areas of digital marketing: responsive website, mobile ads and mobile designed content.

Social Media

Social media networks also showed increase in membership and usage. There are multiple social media platforms and different strategies to use on each. All have their place in a social media strategy. Nearly one third (33%) of South African adults who are online use Facebook, according to surveys. Women tend to dominate the usage as marketing statistics frequently demonstrate.

Businesses continue to refine their tactics and strategy with a focus on:

  • Engagement: How to engage the audience and best connect (customer service).
  • Audience: How to find and target their audience
  • Tools: What are the best social media tools?
  • Measurement: How to measure their return on investment from their social activities?

Why Customer Service Is the New Marketing – Social media means that good customer service is the same as good marketing. It’s time to listen to your customers and give them what they want – you will get more out of them by asking them and acting on it. This video demonstrates how businesses and marketers DON’T listen to their clients. We’ve all been guilty of it

How Marketing Has Changed – Advertiser VS Consumer

Email

Email marketing will continue to be a part of Internet marketing strategy and should be in sync with content and social media. According to surveys most consumers (72%) prefer email marketing, and 40-60% of consumers are reading email on smartphones.

Email needs to work across all devices. The number one priority for online marketers is to redesign an email to improve click through rates on a mobile device.

In a recent survey of marketers 91% were using email marketing campaigns. Below are some of the tactics and results as reported by exacttarget.com:

  • Email capture via Facebook was found to be used 45% of the time, and 31% rate it as effective.
  • General email signup on the website used by 74% of respondents. Respondents rate it as 42% effective.
  • Sign-up requests specific to different sections of the website were used by 52% of participants and are 45% as effective.

Email lists experience a 25% attrition rate due to bounces, unsubscribes, and inactive users. A big reason for customers to unsubscribe is because the content consistently doesn’t relate to them. Besides content that doesn’t relate, marketers need to monitor their email frequency. If customers are opting out at a growing rate then you have to question the frequency of your email – are customers overwhelmed by the amount of email you’re sending? – would be the next thing to look at after content.

Content and Context

Content plays an incredibly important role in your online marketing strategy. What makes your content more powerful is the context in which you use it. You need to ask yourself: “Is this relevant to what is happening in the marketplace currently?” Creating good content in a sea of competition and distraction is a challenge. Budgets for search-engine optimization (SEO), pay per click (PPC) and media could be impacted by the need for more frequent and higher quality content. When you have the right context by making your content relevant to current affairs, you will get more engagement from your audience, promoting sharing of your content, brand awareness and positioning you as a thought leader or expert in your industry.

Content is also a Google ranking factor and will help sites attract high-quality inbound links, build trust, credibility and authority with your audience.

When creating content, the goals should be focused on the audience with respect to a mobile view. This can be tricky as longer content is generally better for a desktop experience while mobile needs to remain highly informative but stated with a lower word count. Studies have shown that people have shorter and shorter attention spans – 10 seconds at most (almost like a goldfish) which means you need to capture their attention quickly in order to keep them reading.

Using images is a good way to keep people on the page longer and increase engagement. 40% of people respond more when there’s an image in the content.

Video Marketing

Video marketing is another pillar of content marketing. Generally, videos are informative, entertaining or promotional. Video is more personal and easier for an audience to connect with. It can be highly targeted and that is why it is so effective.

Video tends to build credibility and trust. It builds engagement, can double time on page, creates more opportunity for inbound links, and has been found to have higher click-through rates, increasing it by as much as 200-300%, according to wirebuzz.com. It also increases searchable footprint.

Whether you currently run your own business, or are thinking about starting one, you need to know the top website marketing strategies in order to use the Web to its fullest potential and become a successful entrepreneur.

Email marketing is the most profitable way to make money on the Internet. When you build a list of hot and hungry prospects you control your future

Once you have your site or landing page set up, launch an email newsletter and collect lead information through the signup process. Give people something free and useful and they will return to your site, increasing the possibility they will make a purchase from you or one of your sponsors.

For more info on how to optimise your internet marketing, automate your income and grow your business online, download my E-Book. The Automation Playbook: How to Replace Staff, 50x Your Sales and Automate Your Growth Online

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