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1 - 5 - Low Cost Ways to Increase Your DIGITAL MARKETING Presence

2 Contents Introduction Social Media Marketing Blogging Video Marketing Website Optimization Final Note

3 Taking a Digital Approach Operating a small business is no cheap date and neither is marketing a small business. Although many traditional marketing tactics tend to cost money, there are a variety of digital marketing options that require little or no money, just an actionable goal and some time from your daily routine. Digital marketing is the targeted and quantifiable act of marketing products and services through digital outlets in an effort to establish leads and transition them into customers. There are many ways in which digital marketing enables a business to reach target audiences with the use of little or no monetary resources. In order to maximize your use of digital marketing, it s important to find the right channels, optimize those channels with quality and fresh content consistently to consumers. Whether you re just starting your digital marketing endeavors or looking for a refresher, this ebook can help you gain a better understanding of: What your low cost or free digital marketing options are How to determine which platforms are best suited for your business How you can get started building your digital footprint today Digital marketing is the new way of reaching consumers and building relationships, and has become a vital part of doing business in today s marketplace. We hope you enjoy our ebook! 3

4 Social Media Social media is one of the most widely used and well known free marketing outlets for small businesses. Yes, there are add-on marketing features that you re able to use on your social pages that cost money but by all means, those are optional. The most important thing to keep in mind when building your social presence is to make sure you re on the right social media platforms. It doesn t make sense to build a Twitter presence if your customers and target audience is mainly on Facebook, right? Pick the right channels, push the right messages and reach as many people as possible. If you aren t sure how to determine where your customers are on social media, start with a little research. Check out your competition and see where they interact socially and what types of content they re posting. Important note, look for what s working for them (where they get the most likes, comments, etc.). If you see that posting pictures gets a lot of interaction, adjust your strategy to include more images. If you see people respond well to informative articles, consider posting more relevant articles on your page(s). Next you can go a little further and dig to see what your overall industry is doing to reach customers through social media. If you see everyone is on Pinterest, create a Pinterest profile and start sharing so you don t miss any opportunities to build relationships with your target audience. Anywhere you see potential to reach out to your target audience, try it out and see if it works for you. 4

5 How often should I post? Again, there is no magic number that s going to grant you instant success, however, Facebook and other social media websites have relevancy algorithms that push relevant content to the top of someone s news feed depending on who that person shows interest in (by visiting the page, liking the content, etc). The relevancy of a page differs from person to person and can be determined from different factors including the ones listed above. A simple way to break it down is the more you post relevant content, the more people are likely to see your content, the more they see your content, the more they will likely interact and share your posts and in turn, your relevancy to them will then increase and your posts will be pushed to the top of their news feed each time they visit Facebook. We know it s a mouthful! It s important to understand that more doesn t necessarily mean better. Quality (not quantity) is the leading factor in whether or not people like what you post. Don t assume posting seven times a day will make everyone interact with your posts because they see them often. There is such a thing as posting too much. Through your implementation (or re-evaluation) of social media, remember that there is no exact recipe for success. The best advice we can share with you is to consistently provide great content and relevant information. Knowing that, you have to participate in a little trial and error to find the right combination of platform(s), learn what content works and what a successful posting schedule looks like for your business. As you re experimenting there are a few questions that you re sure to ponder and lucky for you, we re going to shed some light on them! This can become overwhelming to some and they will end up unfollowing you because they don t want posts that often. On the other hand there is also such a thing as not posting enough. In this case, people won t remember you exist and they won t think to visit your page for news, info or deals. This ultimately defeats the purpose of having a page at all. Start with 4-5 posts per week and adjust your posting schedule from there depending upon what you see fit. 5

6 What should I post? Before you post or publish anything, ask yourself if your target audience would find that post useful. If the answer is no, there s no reason to post it. Depending on what social platform you re using, you can use anywhere from 140 characters (Twitter) to a small novel of text in your post (Google+). Generally, people are not looking to read a short story when they hop on to social media so it s important to get their attention with as little as possible. If you have a lot to say and only have a little space, it s a great idea to share blogs, photo galleries and any other content that links back to your company website. This shows consumers that they can think of you as a resource. Sharing non-competitors blogs and articles is also acceptable and shows that you are happy to provide customers with the best and most relevant information, even if it doesn t come directly from you. Use this logic to consider when your target audience is doing the same and try to capitalize on those moments. As for the other part of the equation analytics meet your new best friend. Lots of social media websites and apps have built in analytics that can provide insights to many of the questions you ll ponder. Use analytics to understand when the best posting times are for each platform. When should I post? You may get tired of hearing this, but there is no magic posting time that is guaranteed to get your posts more interaction. The good news is you can use some logic and a lot of analytics to find the right time frame for sharing content. Think about when you go on Twitter, Pinterest or Facebook to check out what was posted. We re talking about you and your own personal accounts. Maybe while you re on the train for your morning commute? How about on your lunch break or around 2:30 in the afternoon when you need a mental break? Sometimes you hop on right before you hit the sheets to get some shuteye or maybe you re on during all of the above times! In general, social media is a great resource to have. With the exception of paid advertising and paying a dedicated employee to oversee any accounts, it s free! Want to know more about social media training for beginners? Check out Constant Contacts Quick-Starter Social Media Training 6

7 Marketing marketing can be one of the most effective digital marketing tactics because it allows you to personalize your message to groups of people, even customize it down to each individual person. With s you re also able to provide more text and images within a single interaction compared to social media. Recipients of your s can also save the and reference it at a later time, giving your content a longer life span. Every business should capitalize on the opportunity that marketing provides. Did you know that 91% of people check their daily 1? That s a HUGE opportunity for you to build your brand and increase sales. If that isn t enticing enough, knowing that over 60% of consumers have made a purchase as a result of an marketing message 2 should do the trick. begin, look for inspiration in your inbox. See what s catch your eye and take a second look at any s that have prompted you to take action such as making a purchase online, visiting a store, initiating the purchase process by conducting product research, subscribing to a blog/newsletter, etc. With marketing (and many other things), there s no need to reinvent the wheel. Design a few templates that replicate features in existing s that you ve been drawn to in the past. Don t forget to mix it up and see what s you get the most responses to. When you find something that works, stick with it and continue to see how you can make it better. To start sending your own branded s, you re going to need a service provider and someone who can complete basic design tasks. If you aren t sure where to 1, 2 Source: Hubspot 7

8 There are plenty of pretty darn cheap options available for marketing via . One popular option is Constant Contact. Constant Contact charges monthly based upon the number of s in your address book. For example, if you have between addresses, you are charged $5 per month. As the number of s that you have increases, so does your monthly payment. Regardless of what your monthly payment plan is, you re able to send an unlimited amount of s to your contacts each month. Constant Contact is a great tool because you pay in proportion to what you re using. If you have quality addresses (not purchased lists), paying more for the increase in addresses is worth the investment. Keep in mind that as your marketing initiatives gain traction, you ll have new subscribers coming at you left and right and the cost of the upgrade should correlate with the influx in addresses that you receive. For specific details and pricing visit 8

9 Companies who blog bring about 97% more traffic to their website 3 Blogging Blogging is a great tool for increasing your digital presence. The most important thing to keep in mind while blogging is being consistent. No matter how often you decide to post, make sure you are regular with your timing. If you plan to post a blog once a month, make sure you get to it once a month. If you plan to post once a week, make sure you get to it once a week. Consistency is extremely important in bringing people back to your website. Blogging can also serve as your gateway to connecting with consumers and showing them that a relationship with you can be very valuable. This is the platform where you can provide a greater amount of information and dig deeper into relevant topics than you re able to with social media or marketing. For instance if you want to tell consumers about an upcoming event, you can send an or create a social post that links to the blog containing all the information about the event. Blogs give you space to include the details, links and images that you wish to include. 3 Source: Hubspot 9

10 Content ideas for your blog can include (but are not limited to) answering FAQs, promote benefits of new products, sharing tips, how-to s, showcasing customer testimonials or anything that your audience will find value in. This gives you endless opportunities to position yourself as a valuable resource and increase your digital footprint. As mentioned before, the key is picking a posting schedule and sticking to it. If you re only going to blog once a month, that s fine, just make sure you post every month. Quality over quantity works best for blogging. With that, blogging requires a lot of time on your part but is a great way to provide information and value to consumers at no cost. A popular option for blogging is WordPress. There are upgrade options available with WordPress that can offer you a variety of features but those will cost you. It s safe to start with the free blog that they offer. WordPress is a top choice for many users because you can customize your page with a pre-built theme and its backend is extremely easy to use, even if you aren t savvy with web design. You simply choose how you want your blog to look with a prebuilt theme, log into the backend and start publishing blog articles. In just a few steps and an on-going time commitment, you can build an optimized blog of your own. To learn more about what WordPress has to offer, visit https://wordpress.com/. 10

11 Video Marketing Thanks to Smartphone's and YouTube, video marketing can be a part of almost anyone s marketing initiatives. Take advantage of the 1 billion active YouTube users each month 4 and get your brand, product or consumers in front of your target audience. Some good ideas for video marketing content include: Tutorials Customer testimonials Answer FAQs Behind the scenes action Product demos Animated infographics Thank you videos Company info / Employee involvement Contests Events If you don t have a fancy camera, don t assume that video marketing can t be a part of your game plan. If you have a smartphone, play around with it. Try different settings and see what gives you a look that you enjoy. The key to video marketing isn t necessarily having the most professional looking videos, it s having the best content that can be clearly heard. If you have an idea worth sharing, people will share it. Your message is the highest priority when using video marketing. Like blogging, video marketing can be free except for the cost of your time (and maybe a little data used from your plan if you take the smartphone method). Around 20% of consumers time on mobile devices is spent sharing content 5. This means that the door is wide open for you to share your messages with the masses. If you re interested in learning a few tips on how to improve the quality of your video marketing products, check out this article; 7 Ways to Get Professional Video From Your Smartphone Source: Huffington Post, 5 Source: Hubspot

12 Website Optimization Every business should think of their website as their home base of information. Anything that a consumer would want to know about your business should be located on your website. That means your contact information, locations, hours, products/services, current deals, promotions, etc. should be accessible somewhere on your website. It s important to not only provide the right information on your website but also to optimize your website with the keywords that are relevant to your business. For instance, every business should optimize their website with keywords that describe their business and ultimately make it easier for their target audience to find them through search engine results. You can optimize a website with backend coding, keyword smart content on all pages, blogging, etc.. Some areas require a little more experience than others to complete (like coding) but a website with good content and keywords is ultimately optimized. Some of the main keyword ideas you should focus on are: Location If you are targeting people or businesses in a certain area, include the location in your content. Products & Services Include the name of the product or service that you re selling so your website shows up in the results of relevant keyword searches. For instance, ABC Bank would include the keyword(s) Chicago community bank because it captures its location and services. Keyword Phrases of FAQs If there are phrases that your company should be associated with, create content & include keyword phrases that can capture the audience who is searching for the phrase. For example, continuing with the ABC Bank example, a keyword phrase would be tips for choosing the right checking account or breaking down different mortgage options. These phrases are things that our target audience types into a Google search and if optimized correctly, the ABC Bank website would show in the search results and can answer their questions. 12

13 Website optimization is the best way to make use of your resources. Your website is a tool that is used more than you probably know and can be a great platform to garner leads. Keep your website full of fresh content that properly reflects your business and target audience and you ll be on the right track. If you want to know more about how search engines like Google analyze your website, take a look at this article; 10 SEO Tools to Analyze Your Website Like Google Does DID YOU KNOW The top 5 search results get 75% of clicks? Source: Hubspot

14 To build a solid digital presence, incorporate a successful combination of multiple digital marketing practices. Digital marketing is a small business s dream come true due to its low cost and high efficiency. Through reading this ebook you probably grasped the idea that digital marketing requires some trial and error before you encounter success but make no mistake, these are all great ways to increase your digital presence and market your business. Play around with your strategy and have fun. If you don t enjoy what you put out there, it s likely that no one else will either. All information contained in this ebook is only suggested and for informational purposes only. ABC Bank makes no representations or warranties with regard to the information contained in this ebook or results obtained by your use of any information contained in it. ABC Bank disclaims any liability arising out of your use of, or any action taken in reliance on, any such information. 14

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