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In today’s age, you need to digitally market your business to remain competitive. A successful digital marketing campaign requires that you be mindful of the customer experience. In this article, we explore ways to get the best digital marketing results.

Any good digital marketing plan needs to prioritise the digital customer experience.

The pandemic has caused thousands of businesses to shut down across the world. Many businesses that have been lucky enough to survive and stay afloat in these trying times are still facing uncertainty. A lot of this is the result of customer habits that have been impacted by the pandemic. The most significant change in consumer behaviour has been how they shop for and purchase goods and services. The need for social distancing to lower the risk of getting infected caused many consumers to move their purchasing activities online and stop shopping in brick and mortar storefronts. The past year has made it an undeniable fact that both buyer and seller activities can be done online as well as, or often better than, in physical storefronts.

There are an estimated 4.66 billion people active on the Internet. Even before the pandemic, a lot of people were spending the majority of their time online. With the onset of the pandemic and all the associated changes in consumer habits, the number of people spending time online is rising every day. If you haven’t moved your business operations to the online space yet, you are missing out on invaluable opportunities for profit and growth. With more people than ever before working from home right now, and with the majority of online shoppers browsing the Internet via their mobile phones, it is more important than ever before that you bring your marketing efforts online as well. Only through effective marketing can you draw out the true online potential of your business.

If you want your business to keep growing in today’s market, it is vital to have a comprehensive digital marketing plan to guide the online side of your business. Taking your business digital can be tricky at the start, but if you develop a good plan and implement it in the right way, success will come and be reflected in your business output.

A fundamental part of taking your business online is digital marketing. The term ‘digital marketing’ refers to a set of techniques and strategies that allow you to effectively get your marketing across to valuable leads (people who are interested in what you are selling). Any good digital marketing plan needs to prioritise the digital customer experience. The term ‘digital customer experience’ refers to the type of content you produce and the level of interaction you have with your customers. If your online customers have a good experience, your profits and your company’s reputation will increase manyfold. Read on to learn the essential elements of digital marketing to help grow your business.

Core elements of the digital customer experience

A good digital customer experience is made up of things that let people easily learn about what you are selling. The process of buying your goods or services needs to be seamless and transparent, which means that the payment options should be easy and user-friendly. Other essential aspects of a good digital customer experience include the customer service channels (such as social media engagement) and email marketing. If you want your customers to have a good experience buying from you and keep coming back in the future, you need to incorporate best practices and continue to improve.

Easy and meaningful communication with customers

A single line of communication is not good enough in today’s digital landscape; you will need to take an omnichannel approach..

To deliver the best digital customer experience, it is very important to optimise the ways in which your customers can communicate with you. A single line of communication is not good enough in today’s digital landscape; you will need to take an omnichannel approach. It should span a number of devices and platforms and offer your customers multiple ways of communicating before, during, and after purchasing your goods or services.
Plan to make use of platforms like social media, which enables potential and returning customers to engage with you at any time and any place. A key consideration for doing this is to provide a seamless and well designed mobile experience. Most people use mobile phones to check their social media or browse the internet, so it only makes sense to ensure that the mobile experience you offer should be of high quality. Creating a bespoke mobile website is a great way to enhance the user experience and engagement.

Another important consideration here is to make it easy for customers to get in touch with you through the medium they prefer. This means taking the time to design and implement user-friendly and quick ways to communicate over email, chat, SMS, phone or other channels. You can’t offer good customer service if potential customers can’t get through to you on the phone number or email address that you listed.

Feedback from Customers

Customers feel more valued when their feedback is heard, and it fosters a sense of loyalty to the brand.

Making your customers feel as if they are a part of your business is always a good policy for digital customer experiences. Be proactive in asking potential customers for their feedback. You can add depth to the customer experience by including surveys to gauge how people feel about buying from you. Keep a watchful eye on your social media profiles to quickly respond to any questions and monitor the reviews and mentions that your business is getting.

Setting up methods of communication is not enough on its own. You also need to listen to what your customers are saying and work to address any complaints or issues that get mentioned. If you’re getting a number of queries or complaints about a particular issue, you need to act and remedy those issues quickly. Customers feel more valued when their feedback is heard, and it fosters a sense of loyalty to the brand.

Digital Marketing Strategies for Success

Now that you have an idea of how you should tailor your digital customer experience, you can dive into the nitty-gritty of what makes a digital marketing a success story. We have a lot of technological capabilities available to us, but the number of software tools that you can use can get confusing very quickly. Apart from knowing how you will design your customer experience, you will need to make sure that other aspects of your online business are designed perfectly as well.

Elements of a good social media marketing plan

1. Set up a presence on all major social media platforms.

Social media has become ubiquitous in today’s world, with almost everyone active on at least one or more social media platforms. It has been observed that approximately 75% of purchasing decisions are made when people are going through their social media feeds. This makes social media platforms an invaluable tool to meet your marketing goals and make sure that you reach as many people as possible and the people who are likely to become your customers. By setting up an engaging presence on social media platforms, your brand will have a gateway to drawing in more business.

2. Focus on enhancing the strategy for servicing your customers

Once you have set up multiple delivery channels where your customers can get in touch with you, you will need to make sure that those channels remain user friendly and provide a seamless experience. Customers who are used to making online purchases will be more likely to try out the product or service you are selling. Your social media accounts should be responsive to any comments or queries and respond in as little time as possible.

3. Aim for a good reputation in the market

About 90% of business-to-consumer purchase decisions are made based on online reviews of the business. If you are able to provide a good customer experience, you will automatically draw more good reviews, and when potential customers read those good reviews, they will think well of your business and brand, making them more likely to become your customer.

4. Give your brand a human image

A social media plan does not consist of advertising alone. According to the 80/20 rule that was presented by TIME magazine, your social media content should be 20% for advertising, and 80% of your posts should be about topics that aren’t trying to sell anything. This can be in the form of posting photographs of your office to show people where you work and present a more authentic image.

Different types of Digital Marketing

Social Media Marketing

The importance of social media for any marketing campaign cannot be overestimated. With the majority of people worldwide actively using the Internet as a fundamental aspect of their lives, it makes it an essential avenue to focus marketing efforts. People use popular social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram every day for various purposes, from performing searches, checking their email, scrolling through social media, and purchasing products and services. There has been increased usage of social media and web monitoring and managing tools such as Awario and Buffer. If you fail to harness the immense potential of social media marketing, you risk losing customers to your competitors simply because they were easier to find and read about online.

Another thing that makes marketing on social media so valuable is that it allows you to target your audience a lot more narrowly than traditional methods. You can narrow down the people who will see your marketing content based on specific information about your target audience. This way, you can target only those demographics who will be more likely to buy what you are selling. You can segment your target audience based on different criteria and parameters to make your advertisements reach people who are good leads. You can thus obtain better results from your campaign and generate more leads that, in turn, improve the bottom line of your business.

Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is technically a subset of social media marketing. But, it deserves to be mentioned separately as it is so necessary for marketing purposes. Influencer marketing is defined as getting endorsements and product mentions from influencers with a large and dedicated following on social media, particularly Instagram. When a product is paired with the right influencer, it can provide significant returns on investment because of the trust and value placed on what the influencer says and does. In addition, having your product or service get a recommendation from an influencer will act as a type of ‘social proof’ to potential customers, increasing their likelihood of buying what you’re selling.

Email Marketing

60% of consumers have reported that an email played a role in their decision to spend money

Email marketing campaigns allow businesses to remain connected to their existing customers and gain further new customers. Emails can contain customised newsletters for customers or personalised based on the recipient’s past shopping activities and engagements with the brand. Almost 60% of consumers have reported that an email played a role in their decision to spend money, which certainly makes it a worthwhile investment.

Content Marketing

Content marketing engages customers by using the three stages of the buyer’s journey; the awareness stage, the consideration stage, and the decision state.

Content marketing orient businesses to be more proactive when interacting with their customers and answering their questions. For example, suppose a topic related to a product or service gets asked a lot in customer queries. In that case, a marketing team can create content, videos and other assets that aim to answer all possible questions and clarify any points of confusion.
A good tool to develop a digital content strategy is Google Analytics. It’s free to use platform that offers users a variety of tools to track data across their social media and includes tools that help analyse the data.

Content marketing engages customers by using the three stages of the buyer’s journey; the awareness stage, the consideration stage, and the decision state. The awareness stage is when the buyer realizes that they need something, the consideration stage is when the buyer decides upon a course of action to get this need met, and the final decision stage is when the buyer chooses on exactly which service/product to purchase to meet that need). In this way, quality content marketing can be an invaluable tool in the arsenal of a successful digital marketer. Compared to traditional forms of marketing and advertising, content marketing also tends to be less costly and leads to three times the number of leads.

SEO Marketing

SEO marketing goes hand-in-hand with content marketing. SEO marketing can provide small businesses with a level playing field to compete against more prominent organisations. With properly optimised content on your website, you will have a decent chance of having the same exposure among interested leads as larger organisations in search engine results.
There are three primary techniques to have a good level of ‘Search Engine Optimisation:

On-Page SEO

This is anything on your web pages, such as product copy, web copy, or any other type of online content. The content that is published on your website needs to include certain words or phrases a certain number of times to increase your chances of getting a high rank in Google searches.

Off-Page SEO

This refers to any event that happens outside your website, making use of backlinks to boost your SEO strategy.

Technical SEO

This is a more niche and specialized form of SEO that involves technical work geared towards improving the search ranking of the website.

Pay-per-click (PPC)

Pay-Per-Click is paid advertising that allows a marketing team to buy traffic to their website. Marketers place advertisements for their products and services on various websites or as sponsored results in search engine queries and pay a small fee every time they click on any external advertisement. These PPC advertisements usually appear at the top of the page and are determined by bids placed on specific keywords in search result pages. Banner ads that are hosted on websites typically have fixed rates.

There are other aspects of Digital Marketing that can increase traffic to your website and improve the chances of people spending money on what you are selling. But the six elements of digital marketing mentioned above make up the bedrock upon which any further marketing efforts should be based.

If you haven’t already made digital marketing the focus of your marketing efforts, it is about time that you did. Let us help make your business a success and take it to the next level. APM Digital Marketing Services will transform your business and make it stand out in today’s saturated digital landscape.

Summary:

  • E-Commerce experienced a dramatic rise in 2020 and has continued into this year as well. It is the way forward.
  • Online storefronts don’t have the limitations of brick and mortar stores and can thus reach far and wide.
  • Businesses are rapidly shifting away from a focus on physical footprint — a digital transformation is underway. 
  • It’s an ideal time to grow the reach of one’s business. The key components of digital transformation are:
    • Engaging with customers more intimately
    • Empowering the employees with the right digital tools  
    • Streamlining the business operations
    • Marketing and reaching potential customers digitally
    • Using data and analytics for strategizing 
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