While Halloween isn’t a part of Australian tradition, it is creeping into our culture more every year, due to globalisation, especially driven by the internet, social media and its ability to connect us with information from all over the world.
Although I don’t actively participate (apart from the odd themed profile pic) I love any excuse to create themed content such as this.
So for me, more than anything, it’s a great time to reflect on a few areas of digital marketing I often see neglected by businesses, that can lead to some pretty scary marketing situations…
Try and avoid them, if you can.
Improve your business marketing by avoiding these scary situations
1. Not having a strategy and goals for your marketing
The word “strategy” itself can scare the pants off many of us in business. Mainly because it has turned into one of those common pieces of business jargon and we often forget its meaning:
1. a plan of action designed to achieve a long-term or overall aim.
A strategy is basically how to get from A to B, so you need to know what “B” is (i.e. what your business goals are).
At the very least, you should be able to answer “why?” for any of your marketing efforts.
Why are we using social media?
To reach and engage our existing customers and attract new potential customers
It doesn’t have to be complex. Just know why you’re doing it, as that will help to answer a stack of other questions, and keep you on track.
2. Not installing Google Analytics on your website
A couple of years ago I had two clients (within the same month actually) approach me for assistance with search engine optimisation (SEO).
Nothing wrong with that. However after a review of their websites, I detected that neither had Google Analytics installed, so had no idea of how much traffic their websites were currently getting, and how much traffic they were currently getting from search engines. They just wanted more.
Of course, you don’t know what you don’t know, but the beauty of Google Analytics is that it allows you to KNOW exactly what is occurring on your website, for FREE!
I look at it like insurance. You may not be regularly reviewing it, but by having it installed, it is tracking activity in the background and you can look at it at any point in the future.
Google Analytics only tracks data from the date that it is installed on your website. It can’t track retrospectively (and did I mention it’s free to use?) So at the very least, get it installed and take the guess work out of your (or your marketers’) future analysis.
3. Ignoring the rise and impact of mobile internet browsing
In October 2016, mobile internet browsing surpassed desktop internet browsing globally.
In Australia, we are hovering just under the 50% mark, but it has been on the rise, and we soon will also be at the tipping point.
This means that the majority of people are browsing the internet (and your website) using mobile devices (smartphones and tablets). So at the very least, your website should be mobile responsive, providing a good user experience for mobile browsers.
Another scary consideration is Google’s plan to switch their search index to mobile first. This means that they will index the mobile version of a website OVER the desktop version (to provide a better experience to the growing majority of mobile browsers).
Even more reason to make sure your mobile responsive website is top notch. Don’t ignore it.
- Read more about Mobile-first indexing from Google’s blog.
- Learn how to prepare for mobile-first indexing from Search Engine Journal.
4. Letting your social media and digital marketing channels go quiet
We’re all busy. Scarily busy. And it is easy to let certain things slide. Like marketing. Especially as it can be difficult to always measure it’s exact ROI.
However, you’ll quickly see the impact if you let your marketing slide…
Successfully managing digital and social media marketing comes back to a few key concepts:
- Have a strategy, know why you’re doing what you’re doing.
- Focus on a few main, relevant channels, rather than trying to be everywhere.
- Allow suitable resources and time to regularly contribute to and manage your digital and social media marketing. Don’t let it be an after thought, or a crammed in additional task. If you don’t have the resources or skills, outsource it.
- Have a steady stream of regular, relevant content to share.
- Spend time reviewing your results and engaging with your online communities.
I’m making it sound simple, but acknowledge that it IS hard. That’s why you really need to know what you’re focusing on and why, and get help if you need.
These resources may help:
- How to keep on top of your small business marketing
- The one thing to do to win at social media marketing
- Making social media and digital marketing a habit
- How everyone in your business can help unearth your content marketing gold
5. Failing to regularly report or review your results
It’s no secret that I LOVE data and reporting, but I also understand that finding the time to report on what you’re doing as well as actually doing what you’re doing, is hard!
At the very least, if you’re not able to commit to regular monthly reports summarising your digital and social media marketing activity and results, you should be regularly glancing at the insights and analytics you have available to understand what’s working, what’s not, and use the information to adjust your engagement tactics as you go.
— Yurbi (@yurbi) 7 June 2013
If particular updates that you are posting are just NOT getting the love you think they deserve, look at when you’re sharing them. Perhaps the time doesn’t suit your target audience? Try sharing them on different days, at different times, and see if it makes a difference.
Facebook Page Insights allows you to see when the users who like your Page are online, so aim to post your updates just before they peak, to try and get maximum reach and engagement.
If certain updates continue to fall flat, set them aside, and consider new content ideas that might be of interest to your audience. Remember to think about what they want and need.
Review what your competitors are doing, and see if it offers any inspiration for similar types of content that you could produce (we’re looking for inspiration here, not playing copy cat).
If a particular type of update is performing really well, getting high engagement, look at producing more of that, and try to understand why it’s resonating well with your audience. Is it the style, content, hashtags etc?
The purpose of reports are not just to record historical activity, but critically reflect on what has occurred, and use it to refine and improve our strategy and results.
If you’re unsure where to start with reporting, you might want to check out our Adelaide digital training courses, and subscribe to be the first to learn about our 2018 course offerings.
These are skimming the surface of some marketing situations to avoid, and are not intended to scare you off, but hopefully inspire you to take control of your digital and social media marketing.
2017 is winding up, so let’s be prepared for a successful 2018!