Digital Marketing Strategy & You… Why It Matters?
It may be surprising but “digital marketing” has existed a long time in the arsenal of marketing experts. In the 1990’s, a magazine would have a “reply card” that you could fill out in order to request a CD-ROM that demonstrated the product in question. For the time, this was considered advanced “digital marketing”. In fact, the auto manufacturer Jaguar received awards in the advertising industry for this kind of “integrated” digital marketing effort.
Things have changed in online digital marketing…
In today’s internet marketing, the above example would likely map out quite differently:
- The advertisement would have a QR-code that could be “read” by a mobile device to immediately connect the interested party to a website landing page and teaser message.
- In exchange for a little bit of information about the visitor (name and Email) there would be an offer of “insiders access” to some kind of added material about the product or service.
- The interested visitor would be further warmed by a stream of well timed Email messages along with tracked interactions so that messaging could become more and more individualized as the contact works through the sales pipeline.
- All of this would be highly automated and only require human intervention at certain critical “touch points” or when the lead raises their hand to convert to a prospect or a client depending on the sales funnel.
Of course a strategic approach to Digital Marketing demands generating interest and visitors via a wide variety of different mechanisms that look beyond search engine optimization alone…
So, What is Digital Marketing Anyway?
Digital marketing is a set of activities that includes:
- Brand and market research
- Integrated planning
- Infrastructure development and deployment including websites, social media, review sites, and more…
- Properly targeted ROI-aware search engine optimization (SEO)
- Search engine friendly content development and deployment
- Brand broadcasting
- Client relationship and reputation marketing
- Marketing automation and
A digital marketing expert properly optimizes these activities resulting in an increase of traffic to your company by more website visitors from search engine and social media activity, increased phone calls, and more interested visitors to your physical locations. Naturally, a well conceived digital marketing process conceived by experts works to deliver better pre-qualified leads so that the enterprise can more readily convert these into paying clients.
This has become such an important function, a position called Chief Digital Officer has gained traction in corporate America. The median salary for a CDO is $250,000 to $300,000 with well-qualified experts commanding salaries in excess of $600,000! The rise of the CDO is directly proportional to the rise in complexity of understanding and grappling with “all things digital” including creating and implementing a well-developed digital marketing program.
Why is Digital Marketing Important?
If you haven’t figured this out, your leads and clients are online. It’s that plain and simple truth that is foundational to “why digital marketing”.
Still need convincing? Here are some stats to drive the truth home:
- 72% of all adults leverage social media on a regular basis.
- 99% of all adults leverage Email daily.
- More than 64% of traffic comes from search engine activity.
And the younger the generation, the more the above stats veer toward 100%. 100% are socially engaged. 100% leverage Email. 100% leverage a search engine to find what they are looking for, including products and services.
Yet most small business owners are so increasingly concerned with “what is it going to cost me” they’ve missed out on the bigger picture that the world is changing and they are being left behind. For companies that survive what we call the “digital shift” they will have long shed the debate about whether they should have a digital marketing strategy and instead will be concentrating their energies on making their digital strategy work… they will become digital marketing experts or else they will work with one.
Do You Have a Digital Marketing Strategy?
Hopefully you are reading this because you’ve come to recognize the need for “something beyond” what you are currently doing within the company to create clients and increase revenue. And if you’ve managed to build a company with at least $500,000 per year in sales and a decent profit margin, you are likely ready to put digital marketing to work to grow your brand to deeper levels of market penetration.
The question is, do you personally have the time to learn about all the intricacies of digital marketing that experts already possess? If you discover you need to invest your energies elsewhere then you will either seek to hire an expert or consider outsourcing… and this is where things become tricky. Do you know which digital marketing solution to choose? Which is going to have the best “bang for the buck”?
At Anton Digital we offer a layered approach to Digital Marketing. We start by understanding your Client Lifetime Value and then help you concentrate on the digital marketing areas that will achieve the greatest possible return on investment. Whether it is targeting a search engine with specific content or seeking to drive traffic from social media websites, our goal is for clients to generate $3 to $5 of profit for each $1 invested. “Cost” becomes a secondary consideration to “impact” which is truly where one’s energy should be concentrated when beginning to implement a digital strategy.
As your on-call experts, we start with research and develop a Digital Marketing Blueprint that can then be leveraged so you can make smart decisions about investing to build your brand’s presence online.
Armed with a research-based digital marketing strategy, you can strategically invest in online marketing, knowing that you are pulling the levers with the greatest impact and best ROI potential.
What Your Brand Stands ForMay Surprise You
Brand crisis can sneak up on a company and sometimes are difficult or impossible for owners to see. Rose-colored glasses are often their strongest when looking at your company. Of course, dealing with changes in a market has been true since before the founding of America… all the way back to the Silk Road itself. But the pace of change is much, much faster today. Mobile devices, the need for social media engagement, the cropping up of unexpected competitors, increasing trends toward disruptive models of attracting business such as via a search engine, and huge shifts in the generational make-up of customers, employees, and corporate leaders have created a “perfect storm” for companies that may still be struggling to recover from “The Great Recession.”
If you founded your company, you may have been the trend-setter… but with all of the creeping changes taking place in the broader industry your “better mousetrap” may appear a little worn to the broad market because of inadequate messaging or a lack of awareness about the changes in the market itself.
The only response is to give up or to engage…
Understand Brand DNA
Each company is unique within its market. This is the result of the combination of a number of factors including its founder(s), the talent that has been attracted to it, and the overall strength of core principles that serve to organize and inform corporate decisions.
And ultimately brand is all about the implied pain a potential client faces and the brand’s ability to eliminate that pain. The greater the clarity on this, the more likely the brand is to succeed. The best performing companies within a market are the ones that have the kind of total clarity on these elements to really cut through the competitive “noise”.
Leveraging Technology to Connect Your Brand
If you think Social Media is a fad and are proud of the website you created for yourself in your spare time, you probably are missing the boat as the experts pass you by. Insecurity about making the right kind of investments in digital marketing simply amplifies the likelihood that your brand will get lost as smart competitors move in and dominate Google search engine results, social media, mobile, and the like.
The good news for you is that the competitive landscape is always shifting meaning there’s an opportunity for you if you seize it and call upon experts who can drive results. At Anton Digital we are committed to helping you leverage the best technology to connect with your target market while always keeping an eye on ROI.
Great Brand Success is Based in Research
What is the competition doing? What amount of “noise” must you cut through to properly connect with audiences and get them to take action? What is the market worth? How strong are the brands you’re up against?
The best research doesn’t fear the corporate leader’s ego. It moves beyond it. “Let the chips fall where they may” must be the guiding principle of the experts conducting the research. Only with a clear understanding of where you are as well as where you are going can you then begin to plot the best path to achieve your desired end results…
Time to Change Course With Your Brand?
A renewed concentration on the value of brand, what the brand’s DNA is, and the best path forward to reconstitute it for a competitive market will lay the foundation for a digital marketing strategy that is most likely to succeed…
At Anton Digital we’ll concentrate message on what makes your company outstanding, to tell your story in more dynamic ways, and to give your clients and potential clients the greatest opportunity to understand and connect with the real people within your company. The natural byproduct of this is happier, more loyal clients and better, more qualified leads.
Why is Content Marketing so Important? Four Reasons to Consider…
It’s become clear that content marketing is an important part of all digital marketing strategy. Content has a broad impact on marketing websites whether we’re talking about Search Engine Optimization, Social Media, or Email Marketing.
And it is easy to forget having good, solid content is important in a world of video and 15 second first impressions. Yet, content is still important… perhaps more important. After all, your message will attract visitors and it will aid in converting visitors into leads. Content helps in “being found” and it serves as the basis to transfer your brand’s DNA as THE ANSWER to your prospect’s needs.
In the world where big brands have seemingly limitless digital marketing budgets, small brands have an opportunity to leverage great content as a cornerstone to their digital marketing efforts… to help themselves stand out as experts within their market.
First, What’s content marketing?
In the context of Digital Marketing, content marketing is about the creation and distribution of valuable and informative content that attracts decision makers toward your brand. The content can be entertaining or serious. It can be somewhat tangential, though it should always have some kind of tie-in with your brand’s core DNA and ability to answer the needs of your “perfect clients”. The key of content marketing is “attraction” where you are seeking to attract people to your brand. This is different than “telling and selling” where you are merely pushing out a constant sales pitch. More attractive content will result in better website search engine optimization ranking and more social engagement.
Why Invest in Content Marketing?
If you’ve constructed what we call a “set and forget” website… effectively a digital billboard on the Internet, you may be quizzically pondering content marketing and trying to figure out the possible benefits to your online marketing presence. And the truth is that if that is your situation, you likely are past-due for a “digital marketing intervention”. (At Anton Digital, we specialize in helping brands “look beyond” so that they can unleash their brand’s true potential via online marketing.)
But getting back to the question of “why invest in content marketing” the answers are really quite clear:
- It enhances the value of your brand online… which is where at least 72% of all potential clients are engaged…
- It builds your personal brand and works to establish you as the thought leader within your space… lending you tremendous credibility…
- It attracts traffic to your website from your social media presences…
- It lifts other efforts including search engine optimization and backlink building
The value of an investment in content marketing is far-reaching with an impact that is initially nuanced but more powerful if leveraged consistently over time. As documented by the Content Marketing Institute, ROI for clients after 9 months of consistently leveraging content marketing is about break even. After 36 months, the ROI is closer to 200%. At the end of the evaluation, clients that invested in content marketing found a 1000% overall lift in organic traffic over time by properly engaging content marketing. Consistency + Time + Value Brought to the Reader = Content Marketing Success… (see Content Marketing Institute blog)
What is Content Marketing’s Influence on SEO?
While SEO is highly technical, content marketing is all about visitor experience. They go together “hand in glove” to reinforce each other. They are two sides of the same coin. By properly leveraging SEO and Content Marketing, a brand significantly increases its chances of maximizing exposure in search engine results while simultaneously engaging (and converting) visitors that result from that exposure.
In reality, SEO without Content Marketing is dead because it is content itself that Google (and Bing) is evaluating when determining where to position your company relative to others within the SERPs (search engine results pages). And this is proving to be more important as Artificial Intelligence does a better job of separate the wheat from the chaff when it comes to online content. Sites that have “old” content and that are keyword stuffing will continue to see their brands fade as more digitally engaging brands take center stage…
Give Them What They Want!
Recognize that content must be developed with people in mind. It isn’t about maximizing one’s position in Google or Bing. That, instead, should be the natural consequence. Content must first and foremost concentrate on relating with the human being who is seeking answers to questions. For example, this page seeks to help those searching for answers to questions such as “What is Digital Marketing” or “Who Are The Best Digital Marketing Experts Online”. In other words, the content must fulfill a promise of value. It must answer some sort of question. Content for the sake of content is meaningless. Content that’s designed to meet needs and bring about actions… that is the best possible content to deliver.
When we think about the sheer volume of questions a search engine like Google or Bing answers in a day we realize that people are always in need of something. The key is in finding a way of expressing your brand’s value so that your novel solution stands out above all others. It is in finding this unique angle that will create genuinely unique, game-changing content that creates a positive impact both for the visitor and of course for your brand as well!
If you are trying to figure out what kind of content to write about, a tool like Google Trends will help you with your research… experts use it and so should you!
Getting Started Requires Attention to Detail
Like all other aspects of Digital Marketing, effective Content Marketing is born out of deep research… something we layout in what we call a Digital Marketing Blueprint. We work to:
- Understand what we call your IS-DNA or “Industry Solution DNA”: Your brand’s unique personality and answer to your client’s overall pain. (see brand archetypes here)
- Understand what your client’s are seeking
- Define your “perfect client”: Their wants, needs, and persona
- Clearly target the problems your “perfect client” has and the manner in which your brand clearly solves them
- Target the websites, forums, and social media properties where your target audience spends their time
- Define the topics that should be pursued as a part of a broad strategy
- Develop and implement a content plan and an editorial calendar, making sure to map out any important calendar events that you can create content around
Of course reaching out to influencers is important as is measuring your content’s performance so that you can make adjustments in your overall digital marketing plan based on results…
Social Media Marketing Strategy: Sizzle or Fizzle?
Social media shapes consumer behavior. Here’s one example: 47% of Americans say that Facebook has a huge impact on their buying habits. (In 2011, the number was 24%!) At least 50% of all Americans have a Facebook account so it represents a huge potential market depending on the type of service being offered.
Mobile is also on the rise, particularly as people shop for goods and services. Roughly 82% of mobile owners leverage their devices to perform research first before making a decision on where to buy what they are seeking. (This according to Adweek). Given that 2 out of 3 Americans own at least two mobile devices, the need for thinking about mobile becomes clear.
Why talk about social media and mobile? It’s simple. With mobile use replacing desktops, more social media platforms will spring up while existing platforms continue to evolve. One of the biggest impacts is in how Google displays search engine results and its continuing to shift of energy and resources toward mobile. As a company, ignoring this sea-change means leaving revenue on the table. Understanding the ways to target social media and Google so that one’s effort has staying power is becoming hyper-critical and critical to creating a winning social media marketing strategy…
Ignore “Social” At Your Peril
As we look at technology penetration across generations it becomes clear that Millenials are driving the conversation. They grew up at the dawn of social media and are highly connected digitally. Millenials are to a point where they are making major purchase decisions such as their first home and may already have their second child on the way. And Generation Z is right behind them… turning 20 and coming into their own disposable cash. Both of these groups are also invading corporate America and altering the process for making purchase decisions. Digital social influence is at the center of purchase decisions and the trend is growing.
Social Media and Mobile Marketing
If it hasn’t become obvious, the reason this is concerning is that Millenials and Generation Z are already a huge factor in purchase decision and all brands wanting to capture their attention will have to make significant adjustments to be present where those buyers exist… in Social… on Mobile. Brands must combine the benefits of social media and mobile in order to reach these two groups.
But if you’re thinking the impact of social and mobile is limited to these two groups, think again! Boomers, Gen-Y, Gen-X, and yes even the “Silent” Generation are all leveraging mobile technology and social media in one form or another. In response, as of 2015, 98% of Fortune-500 companies leveraged some form of social media to connect with potential clients, often with full departments of social media experts working round the clock to build their brand.
Bridging Social Media and Mobile
Mobile = immediacy. As individuals interact with brands, the likelihood increases they will quickly leave feedback on their social media network about their experience. Without some intermediary process, reviews (including negative posts) will appear in Facebook, Google, Yelp, the BBB, and many others at a quickening pace. Smart brands recognize the need to get ahead of the curve and create dynamic processes designed to capture consumer sentiment before it turns into negative reviews while fully taking advantage of positive reviews by sharing them across the brand’s network of top social media sites.
Mobile will grow to be a huge part of client-to-brand interaction. Engaged brands will cultivate positive “social proof” across these various networks to therefore attract more clients seeking the Brand’s products and services.
Having an effective, expert driven social media strategy combined with mobile creates sizzle for sure!
Does Social Media Content Matter?
Connecting on social media is all about understanding your brand’s DNA… the pain you solve and your effectiveness at communicate that with your target audience.
For most enterprises, publishing content on various social media networks is a haphazard (at best) process that typically results in content being deployed in the name of the company that has little or nothing to do with what the company offers. Why would a company allow their brand to be leveraged to discuss “off topic” information, and yet it happens with great regularity.
Content should be deployed with the purpose of demonstrating brand value and engaging the “likely to buy” in a way that will draw them ever closer to a call-to-action.
Between The Clicks
Content that attracts will cause social viewers to connect directly with the brand’s website. But a recent study by Chartbeat found that 55% of visitors will spend only 15 seconds on a website before forming an opinion about that site. These visitors will spend those 15 seconds quickly scanning the site, looking for pictures, videos, scanning headlines, etc. At Anton Digital we offer advanced analytics that “watch” visitor behavior to capture learnings and better optimize the site for conversion. The bottom line is that your site must meet the visitor at a deep level when you are working to attract viewers via social media.
Engagement is Key
Throwing content into a site that is generic, cookie cutter, and devoid of visual interest is a sure-fire path toward disappointing results. While your site may find it ranks for a time within a search engine like Google or Bing, such ranking is irrelevant if the resulting traffic fails to convert. For Social Media Marketing this is ever more critical. For example, adding a post without a branded image misses an incredible opportunity to connect written word with visual stimulus.
Content should be interesting but incomplete. It should drive the viewer off the social media site and back toward your main website. Further, it needs to be engaging enough to attract social approval. “Likes”, “Tumbs Up”, “Plusses”, and “Shares” signal your content is worthy of consideration. This is a main driver toward content being viral within Social Media.
But beyond these “signals” the ultimate arbiter of success is whether your content creates more inquiries and more leads.
At Anton Digital we concentrate your energies on publishing quality content regularly and consistently. We work to create better engagement with your brand and ensure that “social proof” is properly broadcast so that more and more of the “socially engaged” begin to see your brand as the “best” choice within the market.
Value vs. Viral
Hundreds of millions of dollars are spent each year by brands trying to find that “magic” piece of content that will make their brand go viral across social media and attract better positioning in Google’s search engine alike. But in the world of digital marketing, “viral” is equivalent to “flash in the pan” because it rarely lasts long. Furthermore, brands may compromise the integrity of their message for the sake of being “viral” which creates a counter-effect that is the opposite of what you’re seeking. We believe strongly that you should emphasize value over viral and we assist clients to make sure their content is topically relevant. In the long run, the cumulative effect of this strategy outweighs any one single “viral” event. If your content happens to go viral, you can hold your head up high knowing that it WILL result in more sales because your message was properly honed to attract the right audience with a message designed to attract and convert.
I Thought I Only Needed to Worry About Search Engine Optimization?
While many so-called digital marketing experts espouse Search Engine Optimization (SEO) as the ultimate way to drive traffic to a company, at Anton Digital we recognize it is merely part of a greater whole. After all, true digital marketing is about far more than merely search engine optimization and ranking. Still, it’s good to explore what we seek to accomplish as your SEO digital marketing expert:
- Research: Where most companies make mistakes is in assuming what keyword concepts they should target and what will create connections with their target audience. Research cuts through assumptions and elevates opportunities. And our research is special because we can discover keyword terms that have genuine purchase intent versus those that are merely the result of tire-kickers. We further examine your client-lifetime-value and make sure keywords are targeted with the greatest likelihood to profitably convert. This is the difference that Anton Digital’s experts can offer most all other search engine marketing agencies.
- On-page SEO: Properly structuring each page to maximize your exposure and increase your success within search engines is still as critical as ever. We evaluate more than 30 core on-page elements to ensure your on-page search engine optimization is properly structured while working to prevent over-optimization which can have the opposite effect and cause your content to slide in search engine results. These also include the rather “technical” elements that deal with proper structuring of your site’s code to maximize cross-browser readability, site speed, and overall SEO efforts.
- Content: Content marketing is critical and small businesses can benefit by leveraging fresh, unique, engaging content to attract visitors. Google loves content. And with Anton Digital’s assistance, Google will especially love your content.
- Assets: Each element of content should be accompanied with visual assets designed to draw the reader into the content. Our experts offer direction to graphics designers to ensure your message is clearly, visually delivered.
- Social: Social media engagement is integral to search engine optimization. It is designed to reach “beyond” your website to attract organic traffic from targeted audiences.
- Links: Yes, links still matter… but in different ways than before. Google is far more interested in “natural” links via “link earning” rather than seeing sites that have leveraged inappropriate techniques to “link build”. Our clients navigate the complexities of “link attraction” with ease…
- Analytics: Once deployed, it is critical to track success so that informed decisions can be made regarding strategy to achieve greater search engine ranking results.
What About Email Marketing?Isn’t it Spam?
Email was invented in the 1970’s by Ray Tomlinson. It was a pet project and far away from what he was supposed to be working on at the time. He thought of it as something “neat” and novel. Today we can hardly picture existing without it. And while some have questioned Email’s staying power, the constant reality is that Email is still one of the most important communication methods available.
When it comes to Email marketing though, company leaders tend to stop their marketers in their tracks and say “I don’t want to be sending spam” resulting in the company missing out on one of the most potent forms of marketing available. While Email marketing isn’t as “sexy” as “social media”, its importance to lead generation is critical.
Good Email Marketing Isn’t Spam
The reality is that people want to hear from companies they have an interest in or that they are already working with. They expect that they’ll hear from those companies via Email. They want to be kept in the loop with what’s happening with the company, what’s interesting on the horizon, and what special offers may exist. They want to know more about getting the most out of what they are paying for. They want and need answers and they would rather hear from you than have to invest time in Google or Bing searching for answers.
While automation begins with sending Email out at regular intervals, it has evolved to being activated based on actions. Merely sending static messages on a consistent schedule isn’t enough. Email marketing needs to have automated responses. And for the most sophisticated, it should be linked with specific client actions.
Delivering messages based on the content visitors are engaging with lifts your Email marketing to an entirely different level than the simple sort of “campaign” thinking that drives most of the common Email marketing platforms like Constant Contact or Mail Chimp.
Curate Your Content
Gather your most recently deployed content into a format that is easily digestible via Email. Leverage your Email Marketing as a way to reconnect your clients and prospects with your brand and what makes you so relevant to their needs.
You can also include curated content from other sources as well. This relieves the pressure of constantly coming up with content while still communicating value to your prospects and clients.
And as you’ll be sending information to folks that already have an affinity for your brand, the content will strengthen your relationship with them and they’ll be all the more grateful for what you are sharing.
This also happens to reinforce to your client that you happen to know your stuff. This will firmly establish in their mind’s eye your position as an authority… especially if your content is unique and engaging.
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, it is critical to ensure that you personalize your message deliver to yield the best possible results.
This requires special attention to detail. You must make certain your data is 100% clean and accurate. Take the time to get this right because one wrong move in personalization will make the contact believe you don’t care about them at all.
But when implemented properly, personalization has a huge impact on lift and click-through rates.
It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, No…It’s Marketing Automation!
Properly structured Email marketing fits within the scope of what Marketing Automation is about though the best marketing automation efforts look far beyond Email and leverage more paths to connecting directly with leads in order to warm them to prospects and convert them to clients.
Marketing Automation is the Superman of digital marketing and helps to fill this need. It’s the single reason why investments in Marketing Automation doubled in 2015 and why Marketo just sold for $1.6 Billion.
The goldilocks dilemma… finding “just right”
In the world of Marketing Automation there are various systems that accomplish different tasks, some better than others. Nearly all of the solutions targeting SMB tend to concentrate on Email marketing alone. To find more engaging platforms, a small business will find the need to significantly increase their budget. More robust services such as Marketo can easily cost $3,000 to $6,000 per month depending on which modules are leveraged!
Invariably there is a price-to-performance ratio that is fairly constant across services. The better, more powerful the solution, the more you’ll spend per month to make it work. So small companies are faced with a choice of breaking the bank to obtain a feature-rich platform, or miss out on key features in order to fit the budget.
What Are the Best Key Features in Marketing Automation?
- Email & Drip Marketing with A/B split testing, campaign management, and automated responses
- Inbound and Online Marketing designed to capture responses across various channels including social media networks
- Lead Management allowing for list segmentation, lead nurturing, automated alerts, tasks, and more
- Campaign Management that works across multiple marketing channels
- Integrated Reporting that gives direct insights on the effectiveness of campaigns
- Automated Lead Generation processes that leverage outbound activities to drive inbound response
- Easy Platform Management including access management, workflow management, and resource management
- Integrations that allow for connectivity to 3rd party systems via data import & export tools, APIs, etc.
What are the Most Important Marketing Automation Elements?
Based on the evaluation of reviews of the top marketing automation solutions, the most important elements that most SMBs mentioned include Email Drip Marketing, Inbound Marketing, and Lead Management. In fact most solutions, especially at the lower price point, tend toward “outbound only” and have limited support for dynamic interactions via phone and SMS text messaging.
Powerful Enough, Affordable Enough
At Anton Digital, as experts in marketing automation, we’re keenly aware of the need for both effective Marketing Automation as well as for “best practices” to get the most out of such systems. We have created a platform that combines the power of attraction via outbound marketing (including phone, sms text, and Email marketing in one unified platform) while marrying that to full inbound marketing capabilities as well… creating a “closed loop” lead generation and warming system. Better still, we are able to offer a solution for a fraction of the cost of platforms like Marketo meaning our clients can finally afford to implement tools that were previously available only to the biggest corporations…
Marketing Conversion Rate Optimization… It’s a Thing!
Ever been to a rock concert in a stadium? Think for a moment about the sounds of the audience… perhaps 40,000 or more screaming fans. Picture the stage. Imagine the audio equipment. What kind of sound output is required to drown out the noise of the crowd and still deliver the performance?
In many ways, the Internet is becoming like that crowded stadium. All the people there are shouting. You want to elevate yourself to the center stage! Drowning out all the noise so your brand rings through with clarity and purpose is critical. Such is the state of companies competing for search engine rankings moment by moment and search by search.
And once you capture a connection… an opportunity… what next?
Yes, content continues to be “King” for ranking in a search engine but really content is a beginning. Strategy must influence content so that when someone lands on your page from a search engine or social media site they are “called to action” in meaningful ways designed to further them along in the sales pipeline process. Conversion Optimization works. That’s why it is so important to incorporate it early on in the construction and implementation of all digital marketing efforts.
According to a recent survey performed by Venture Beat 95% of 2,938 surveyed marketers were able to generate ROI via conversion rate optimization. Nearly 6% of those were able to generate ROIs of over 1,000 percent for their extra effort.
Think about it. For local market domination a brand might invest $30,000 to $60,000 per year on their efforts. National efforts in highly competitive fields typically require investments of $300,000 or more. Assuming successful ranking and traffic, that effort and investment is wasted if the visitors (who should be highly qualified) quickly bounce off the page.
Investing in conversion rate optimization may add 10% to 15% to the cost of an online marketing endeavor, but a slight improvement in conversion will more than make up for the cost differential.
The truth is that only 22% of companies are satisfied with the performance of their digital properties and most haven’t taken the time to fully optimize their content for conversion. Remember that conversion rates typically range from 1% to 3% so bolstering conversion by a mere 1% can increase results by 25% to 100%.
But conversion optimization isn’t limited to website content. Landing pages, Email marketing, phone campaigns, and more can benefit from such efforts…
Here are the top 6 conversion optimization methods that our team of experts apply to deliver maximum positive ROI on your marketing efforts:
A/B testing is the most leveraged method for improving conversions. It is the fastest, easiest way to test a theory and see the impact minor tweaks can yield in response rates and conversion. But only one out of eight A/B split tests will likely yield significant changes, so continual testing is a part of refining messaging until it is highly optimized.
The kind of elements that can be changed include the look and color of your “call-to-action” buttons, backgrounds, and overall colors of a design.
- Pay attention to insights: Listen to your clients, prospects, leads, and suspects and pay attention to what they say they like and are attracted to. Leverage this information in designing future marketing endeavors.
- Monitor: Measuring split test efforts is critical to understanding them. At Anton Digital virtually all of our platforms have A/B testing mechanisms in place to improve overall optimization.
- Improve: Each A/B test offers some nugget of wisdom. Regular versioning can catch changes in sentiment that might impact message. Some marketing messages are so powerful, they’ve lasted for 20+ years. But rarely does one land upon that kind of message right out of the gate.
A/B split testing is available on:
- WordPress LandingPages
- OpportunityLocater (Inbound & Outbound Email, SMS, and Phone marketing)
If you’ve spent much time looking around this site, one message is clear: Mobile is a way of life. There are many individuals who spend far more time on their mobile devices than on desktop computers. This has had a huge impact on individual shopping habits with roughly 4 out of 5 shopping (at least performing preliminary research) via their mobile devices!
TRUTH: More than 60% of buyers develop more positive opinions about brands that give a great mobile experience.
Yes, having experts develop a mobile-friendly version of your website is that important! It is expected to be the norm… a “must have” rather than a “nice to have” element of overall conversion optimization. And yes, Google is watching, and yes sites with better mobile experiences perform better in Google search results.
For mobile, the rule that “visitors who have better experiences are the easiest to convert” is magnified. Anton Digital helps you achieve better mobile optimization via:
- Fast load time: Mobile sites should be devoid of anything that gets in the way of core message delivery. If having a fancy visual effect adds 5 seconds of delay on mobile, it should be excluded from mobile. Our site optimization methods will improve mobile load times dramatically.
- Optimized & easy navigation: Menus, buttons, visuals all should be appealing regardless of screen size and should encourage the visitor to take action. We eliminate items from your mobile site menu that aren’t relevant to mobile shoppers.
- Eliminate unnecessary extras: Flash based sites, “walk-on” videos, background music… these are the things that kill conversion. (True for your regular site too.) We eliminate these and concentrate on clean, simple, direct optimization.
As a part of your broad digital marketing effort remember that all optimization:
- Begins with having a complete digital marketing blueprint designed to maximize your efforts…
- Requires excellent operational follow-through…
- Should be evaluated regularly to make sure it takes advantage of the latest trends and technology.
If Fortune 500 companies are willing to invest in marketing automation, what do they know that you don’t?
- The most successful companies have been putting marketing automation to work for more than two years…
- The companies that implement marketing automation see conversion rates jump by 53% or more…
In fact, marketing automation is a critical part of all successful digital marketing strategies. The truth is that being found in a search engine should be one source of traffic and leads rather than relied upon as the single biggest source of traffic and leads for a company. Neither should social media networks. The reason is that both of these can change resulting in a sudden drop in leads and converted clients. Marketing automation fills the void and ensures stable, predictable revenue.
- Did you know that 76% of corporate leaders site lead generation as their biggest marketing challenge? (Does that sound familiar?)
- Did you know that 85% of marketers say that they aren’t using marketing automation at all or as effectively as they should be?
So, in light of these stats, what steps does Anton Digital assist with in implementing Marketing Automation?
- Goal Setting: We’ll help you define the goals you are looking to accomplish with marketing automation. We’ll guide you in setting a workable budget. And we’ll make sure that marketing automation is woven into your overall Digital Marketing Blueprint.
- The Perfect Automation Solution: We’ve handled the research and development for you and offer two incredibly powerful systems to help with generating leads and nurturing opportunities.
- OpportunityLocater: Our own lead generation and lead warming system unifying outbound AND inbound Email, SMS, and phone campaigns into one convenient, easy to implement system.
- OpportunityLocater LinkedIn Edition: Complete done-for-you lead generating via LinkedIn leveraging methods developed by our experts to create a consistent flow of leads into your sales pipeline.
- Start Small & Grow: Marketing automation changes the way a company thinks about getting leads and converting them to clients. It takes time to fully integrate marketing automation into corporate processes. The most successful implementations are carefully layered into a company rather than merely being “bolted on” to existing processes.
- Cold Calling 2.0: We’ll work with you to implement Cold Calling 2.0 processes… the same methods our founder used to help launch Japan’s largest medical diagnostic equipment manufacturer in the U.S., launch the world’s first self-managed 401(k) product, and that worked to transform a company into the largest middle market mergers & acquisitions firm of the day. And yes, the same methods were used by Salesforce.com to become the juggernaut they are today.
Which would you prefer? To receive a generic Email or a message where the person on the other end has clearly demonstrated they’ve taken some time to get to know you and address your needs? This is what personalization is all about. In fact, one simple personalization trick in Email marketing can increase sales by 20%!
Personalization makes your brand stand out against others and this is critical if you intend to hold the attention of your audience and drive them toward conversion.
Here are some areas where personalization stands out:
- Website design: You have a local market so why are you leveraging a cookie-cutter website design and generic content? Make sure your content frames you as experts within your market and truly speaks to your local target market and resonates with them…
- Email personalization: Talk with your targets rather than talking at them. Invite them into conversation. Demonstrate that you care.
- Segmentation: When sending messages via phone, Email, and SMS text messaging, be sure to segment your audience so that your message is relevant to them.
- Action Triggers: When someone interacts with your content, automatically trigger next steps within your systems to speed the up-sell and cross-sell processes
Sound daunting? At Anton Digital our experts will cut through the clutter, leverage the best systems available, and create a Digital Marketing Blueprint that can inform personalization. We’ll be there to consult with you on demand to make sure your personalization efforts have the greatest chance of yielding positive ROI.
We know that YouTube and Vimeo are “hot” properties on the Internet… in fact online video consumption is responsible for about 50% of all traffic on mobile devices! Video has power and it is here to stay…
- Consumers that watch a video about a product or service are 64% more likely to buy it.
- One Email trick with video increases open rates by 19%. Another trick increases click-through rates by 200%.
Video is so essential to communication that Google (and Bing by proxy) give “bonus points” for sites that offer engaging video as a part of their content offering.
Anton Digital is keenly aware of the impact that video can have and is why we offer several layers of video production capabilities. These include basic “interview” style videos that offer a big impact for a brand at a relatively low cost all the way through to high-end video production to create lasting brand impressions.
A Digital Marketing Blueprint will “set the stage” for video which can be incorporated into the overall digital marketing process…
Call to Action Optimization
A Call to Action is simply that: In sales it is “the close”. It is the single most important element in overall conversion rate optimization. And the good news for you is that most companies still fail at having clear calls to action. In fact more than 70% of small businesses have websites devoid of clearly understandable CTA’s throughout their sites. And of the folks who have implemented clear calls to action, 53% have it poorly positioned on their website, making it more difficult to see.
At Anton Digital, we’ll implement best practices on your behalf to turbo-charge your Call-to-Actions:
- Color: A/B split testing of button colors to help determine which elements stand out and which need to be reconsidered.
- Placement: Ensuring your CTA’s are properly layered within your site to increase conversion.
- Invitational: Make sure that the content of your CTA will help generate a response.
Integrated Digital Marketing: Convergence of Search, Social, Content, Client Relationship Marketing, and Marketing Automation
For almost all purchase interactions, almost 67% of a buyer’s journey is taking place online and often starting with a search engine or with social media. The chances of converting these interactions into clients increase when Digital Marketing is properly and thoroughly engaged. This requires an “integrated” approach to digital marketing and is exactly what Anton Digital specializes in.
As your brand competes in today’s market, it must differentiate itself and stand out above your competitors as THE ANSWER to the seeker’s needs.
By combining the various components of digital marketing into a comprehensive structure, beginning with research, you have the greatest chance of creating synergies which are exemplified by the formula of 1+1=3.
Structuring for Corporate Strategy Success in Digital Marketing
Competitive enterprises are concentrating their energies on search engine results, content that converts, client relationship and reputation marketing, overall marketing automation, and all of the other digital marketing processes to aid in improvement of service delivery, more cost effective ways of penetrating markets than offered by traditional marketing, and improved delivery of brand messaging to highly targeted (and highly qualified) “ideal clients”.
To gain a meaningful competitive advantage and drive measurable corporate outcomes, your company needs a framework that is well researched, clearly defined, contains actionable advice, and is supported by well tested technology and coaching backed by experts designed to create fantastic results across all potential traffic sources.
Custom Tailored Scalable Presence For ALL Service Oriented Companies
Anton Digital’s marketing advice and services are designed to be custom tailored for each client we serve. Because our approach is based on research and defined by your brand’s unique Industry Solution DNA, we are able to leverage our custom built technology, methods, and coaching across a wide array of industries and company sizes. Our approach can scale from local markets to national marketing endeavors… all while keeping ROI front and center throughout our process.
The ultimate outcome of our efforts is the movement toward a brand that clients are excited to work with… where you are attractive because of your dominance within your market. All efforts are interwoven across the various disciplines of digital marketing to strengthen the overall impact of the methods and to generate far greater results than more narrow “siloed” efforts that typically concentrate on only one part of digital marketing at the deficit of others.
Comprehensive and Innovative Expert Marketing Service
At Anton Digital we are a part of a small group of international online marketing experts that have combined resources to pay for the ongoing development of highly effective digital marketing technology that is at the heart of what we do. This “by invitation only” group represents the best thinkers of the industry and translates that thinking into systems that give our clients unfair advantages. When you work with Anton Digital you gain the value of our experience but you also gain the value of the insights we’ve collected from other extremely successful digital marketers as well. You can have confidence that our efforts are geared toward the future of digital marketing rather than living in the past. We become, in effect, your outsourced Chief Digital Officer… your digital marketing executive and evangelist. Our goal is to help you leverage digital marketing in exciting ways and unleash your company via online marketing.