Choosing your digital marketing channels

If you’re a small business owner who is relatively new to digital marketing, you may be feeling overwhelmed by the sheer amount of platform/channel choice. But don’t worry – we’re here to break it down for you!

In our latest blog we give a brief overview of the main options and then suggest questions you can ask yourself to help select the right mix of digital marketing channels for your business.

 

What are the main digital marketing channels?

Website

You’ll have heard websites described as ‘digital shop windows’, and that’s because your website gives potential customers all the information they need about your business at a glance. It needs to be easy to navigate so that customers never need to struggle to take the next step. At the very least, they should always be able to find out more about what you offer, and make a purchase and/or send an enquiry. Some small businesses start with just a one-page site (acting almost like a digital business card), and scale up to full ecommerce capability as they need it.  

Email marketing

Email marketing involves building a list of prospective and current customers who have opted-in to receiving communications. Once you ensure they do actually want your emails (don’t flout the UK GDPR laws!), you can then send them branded content such as newsletters, promotional offers, event invitations and product updates. We regularly engage our subscribers with an email version of our latest blog post.

Blog

Writing blog posts is a fantastic way to show your audience that you’re an expert in your field.  Adding a blog to your website gives your prospective customers access to valuable content that helps them solve problems. Blogs are also a great way to boost your website’s SEO (see below!) since you’ll be creating fresh, original content which Google loves!

Social media

Social media marketing is all about publishing content such as images, videos and posts on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok and YouTube. Nowadays it’s rare for a business not to have some sort of social media presence, and it can be a very effective way to gain extra visibility for your business and cast the net much wider for prospective customers, as well as showcase your personality and brand values.

SEO

The aim of SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is to improve the ranking and visibility of a website and its content in search engines such as Google. This can be done by optimising website content, structure and technical factors, and by attracting inbound links to your site. Spending time carrying out keyword research and better understanding what your target customers are typing into the Google search box is a vital component of SEO, allowing you to ask the question: “are these words even on my website”?  

PPC

PPC (or Pay-Per-Click advertising) is a form of online advertising where advertisers pay each time a user clicks on one of their ads. These ads can appear on search engine results pages, social media platforms, or other websites that allow advertising. Unlike social media or blogging, PPC ads need to be very sales-focused, as you will pay every time someone sees and/or clicks on your ad.

How should I choose the right digital marketing channels for my business?

Choosing the right digital marketing channels can be crucial to the success of your marketing campaigns. Here are some questions to help you choose the ones that are right for your small business:

  1. Who is my target audience and what types of media do they use?
  2. How does my choice of digital marketing channels help me achieve my business goals (in fact, do you know what your goals are)?
  3. How much time and/or money can I spend on digital marketing campaigns?
  4. What sort of digital marketing are my competitors doing?
  5. How do my customers currently engage with my business online?
  6. Which digital marketing channels are the most popular in my industry?
  7. How can I tie my choice of digital marketing channels together to form a strategy?

Answering these questions can help you make an informed decision about which digital marketing channels to choose for your business.

As long as you have a way of tracking what’s working and what isn’t – such as a simple spreadsheet where you log engagement or visitor metrics – you can keep testing out ideas until you have the optimal mix of channels and content.

For more help with your digital marketing, get booked onto one of our social media masterclasses, buy the Amazon bestselling book, or talk to our team – we’re always happy to assist!

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