25 Aug How to Create a Consistent Online Marketing Strategy
When you’ve read this post, you’ll know EXACTLY why you NEED and online marketing strategy. And HOW to implement some of the most effective strategies.
I also give you some key examples of real life case studies, so let’s dive right in.
What is Online Marketing Strategy for a website?
To me, having an online marketing strategy is about having a structured approach to growing sales through your website.
You should ask yourselves several questions, including:
- Who am I targeting?
- What are their challenges?
- What are they searching for in Google? Note: This includes longer phrase questions that they’re asking about your products not just one word queries
There are lots of tools to help you answer these.
One of my favourites is SEMRush, I use it every day to make sure my clients websites are heading in the right direction.
Once done, you can start to prioritise where you want to focus your efforts. For example, if you have 20 personas to target, you need to put some focus in just a few of those to begin with.
It helps decide on your website page structure and which pages should target which queries. This is key so that your pages don’t compete with each other in the search rankings.
This is true for both B2B and B2C companies.
Here’s an example:
I was working on a client’s website. I knew they offered multiple services, the main one being Soda Blasting
I though, if people type in Soda Blasting, the search engines will show the home page. However, they also had Soda Blasting as its own page in the ‘service methods’ section of their website.
I didn’t want this page to compete with the home page.
So what did I do?
After a little investigation, I found that people were typing in ‘What is Soda Blasting?’ and soda blasting near me.
So I recreated the inner page to focus on these queries.
With just a little planning and research, I was able to maximising traffic opportunities with a simple page strategy
I then did the same for their other 2 ‘service methods’ and BOOM!
A 6 times increase in search opportunities and of course traffic.
On the other hand, I don’t want you to think you need to know ALL of this before you get to the implementation stage. You don’t.
Because the only way to learn and identify opportunities is by having something out there, on the web.
So defining your strategy will be an iterative strategy.
The best thing?
You WILL know when you’ve found a strategy that’s going to work for your business.
Your Online Promotion Strategies
The next and easily the most important part, is your promotion strategy.
It’s one thing having a website and a good page structure, but how are you going to tell people about it?
Which will be your core activities?
Content? SEO? Social Media?
TIP: Using all these strategies together is by far the best way to maximise profit. And here’s some examples in my content marketing strategies
Don’t forget, when you mix effective offline promotion with online promotional strategies you will be creating an almost unstoppable form of growth for your business.
Mini online marketing strategies
Just because you have a marketing strategy for your wider website business, doesn’t mean you can’t have lots of mini strategies within it.
For example, each time you write a piece of content, you need to think about who it’s for, why they need it, what will cause them to buy.
Here’s some great content strategies you can put in place that are all but guaranteed to increase sales.
Here’s my online marketing strategy for this post
This post is a prime example of a mini marketing strategy.
I knew I wanted to write about ‘online strategy’.
So I typed that exact query into ‘Answer the Public’
If you’re unfamiliar with Answer the Public, it’s a website that gives you all the questions and propositions, that people are interested in, based on a particular subject.
When going through the list, I removed all the non-relevant questions before using the relevant questions to target in each heading of this post.
Does a small business need an online Marketing strategy?
In short, everyone needs an online marketing strategy! I you don’t have the in-house skills, hire a strategy consultant
Many successful small business owners spend thousands £££ on creating, what they think is a ‘beautiful’ website.
BUT are then shocked when they get ZERO traffic or sales.
Of course Ithe conversation goes:
Me: ‘that doesn’t surprise me’.
Client: What do you mean? I’ve spent ages on that and it’s a lovely website.
Me: “I know but what’s your marketing strategy and techniques?”
Them: “We don’t have one”
Me: “Okay, well let’s stop spending all your time, money and effort on creating a complex website and get some marketing strategies set up – that’s the only way you’re going to make sales”
Why is online marketing strategy important?
I hope I’ve answered this question in the above paragraphs but here’s some of the ultimate benefits of having an effective marketing strategy.
Knowing your strategy will allow you to create consistency when you’re adding or changing anything on your website.
It allows you to specifically target your market. As we know this is a must in any business and just because you’re online – that doesn’t change.
A strategy will make sure you are using the right channels to promote your website so you aren’t just.
You can build strong relationships with others in your industry who own influential websites. A great way of getting referral traffic and a bump up in Google
You will be able to better monitor results from the actions you take to grow your business. This will allow you to build on strategies that work and change strategies that don’t. Remember the front page of Google should NEVER be your KPI.
You WILL act and be MORE productive. Knowing WHAT you need to do is the first step to actually DOING it. The doing is key when growing your business with your website.
How to create an online marketing strategy for your website
Here’s a few simple steps to getting started with your online marketing strategy
- Define your target personas
- Prioritise which personas you want to target first (you can’t do everything at once)
- Find out what your target market want from you (i.e. why they buy)
- Define your website page structure based on your products/services and the multiple interests of your personas (i.e. what are they searching for in Google)
- Begin building a VERY SIMPLE website
- Define your methods of promotion
- Take EVERY opportunity to build relationships with influencers and bloggers in your industry
- Promote your website by focusing on product by product or service by service basis
- Promote each of your web pages individually based on their target subjects and personas and how you structured your pages
- Monitor your results through Google Analytics
- Obtain user feedback
- Monitor Traffic improvements
- Monitor conversion rate for each page
- Calculate average sale per person (especially ecommerce)
- Adjust your strategy based on your checks
- Adjust your website based on customer feedback
- Improve pages that are landed on the most
REPEAT, REPEAT, REPEAT
What is an online content strategy?
This section tells you one of the biggest benefits of content strategy.
You may have heard that on the internet ‘CONTENT IS KING’.
This is quite true, but it doesn’t mean you should just create content for the sake of it.
If you don’t write for an audience, NO ONE will read it and you will feel like it’s a waste of time.
Having a content strategy is almost like having a mini business strategy within your website.
Often known as a blog, it’s the valuable section of your website that gives you the perfect opportunity to generate visitors before they are even ready to buy your goods.
But your blog is great opportunity to entice people to buy your goods when they aren’t yet ready.
I call it a web asset, because over time, content on your blog can become a very valuable part of your business. But only if you approach it in the right way though.
One of the biggest benefits of creating a content marketing strategy is the ability to prove you are a thought leader in your field of work. In turn, this creates trust in your products and services. Over time, people are buying from you because they trust you and know you are an expert.
An indirect benefit of creating a web asset is that it gives you more to promote on social media. It also allows you to create a strong following and open doors to other opportunities.
How to create an online content strategy
Here’s how to get the absolute most out of your content – every day.
The first step to defining your content marketing strategy is to define the purpose of your blog.
TIP: Don’t make it about YOU. There are many successful blogs where people write about themselves BUT it has no way near as high success rate as the ones listed below.
And most businesses don’t know how to write engaging enough content when making it about themselves.
So here’s a few strategy ideas your new ‘web asset’
Write practical tips and techniques for your target markets to read about. This creates huge trust in your business.
Don’t think too hard, just write and adjust, then upload. Improve as you go.
Inspire people to be better at what they do while using your products and services. Make sure it is about them though and not just you and your products.
Make lots of recommendations and discuss them with other experts. Don’t be afraid of a bit of controversy.
Focusing on statistics can create great content that people want to link back to. This could catapult your website to the front page of Google. Stats need to be good, interesting and fresh though.
A combination of these can also work well but again, the golden rule is to write for your audience not for your products or services.
Now you’ve decided on the purpose of your web asset (or blog), you can start deciding what to write about.
Use different tools to find out what your target market is actually interested in.
To keep things consistent, you can create a structure for your perfect blog post layout. It will save you loads of time in the long run and it will get your users used to your style of writing – BONUS!
Decide how you will promote every piece of content you have written.
Here’s some examples:
- Add it to your automated email marketing campaign
- Publish it on social media
- Reach out to other bloggers n your field about what you’ve written (build a relationship)
- Tell the newspapers (if it’s newsworthy)
How to create an Ecommerce Strategy for your online store
Having various products on your website creates an Ecommerce haven for a successful strategy. The problem is…
It’s also a haven for getting it horribly wrong.
I’ll now tell you how to use your products as the foundations for growth
I’ve seen so many websites where the user journey is so poor that they will just never convert into a sale.
I’ve also seen websites that have tried to create an exact copy of their offline model which has built up over more than 30 years.
And trust me, when you do that, it immediately becomes a barrier to selling online. That’s before you’ve even made a sale.
In Ecommerce, your products are gold dust to creating traffic, but they are also the biggest challenge
Here’s what many B2C Ecommerce website structures look like:
Every product on your website has its own page. This means you can target a different keyword for each product.
Take coffee for example:
There’s African Coffee, Ethiopian Coffee, strong coffee and many more
All the options for keywords need to be fleshed out and an allocated to each product without conflict depending on what the product is and how it matches the phrases
Don’t forget, you need some QUALITY, user friendly information on each product page you create. This is the perfect reason for planning your product strategy on your website.
You can’t do everything at once unless you have hundreds of thousands of pounds to invest. Even then you’re breaking the golden rule of keeping it lean and simple.
Hiring an internet marketing consultant
As a passionate internet marketing consultant myself, I don’t want to put you off hiring one. But it’s very important for you to think about just what your offering is to your customers. Without a super strong product and a super excellent service, a consultant cannot help your business grow. i.e. when you hire a consultant, it should be as a partnership.