The digital marketing numbers for this year are in, and the research shows that your biggest audience is online, in more ways than one. There are now three billion internet users, translating into 40% of the entire world’s population. The numbers are impressive: 91% of these users access the internet via a PC or laptop, and 80% access the internet via Smartphone. The research didn’t even factor in how much of the population uses both!
This puts content marketing professionals in reach of a great opportunity to connect with their customers like never before. However, this also adds a new challenge to their overall digital strategy: competition. Smart Insights and TMF&A’s study offers recommendations to help you keep your online audience engaged.
Computers and laptops, smartphones, tablets, and game consoles (respectively) are the most popular devices used to access the internet. 2019 will also see an increase in emerging devices inspired by the IoT (Internet of Things). For example, 34% of internet users access the network through a Smart TV, and less than 10% use either a Smart Watch or Smart Wristband. Essentially, your customers are easily within the scope of digital outreach.
Smart Insight’s research showed that the most used tactic to engage with online B2C and B2B consumers was through social media other than blogs. Blogs, eNewsletters, and articles came in a close second, demonstrating a strong shift towards content marketing. 2019 will require digital marketing professionals to hone their digital strategy to target the right content to the right consumers in the right context.
Conversion is one metric you can use to determine the efficacy of your content marketing strategy. The study showed that there are higher conversion rates for PC users and tablet users (regardless of manufacturer) versus the conversion rates for smartphones and iPhones. Conduct an analysis of your audience and determine how they are accessing your website. Create a website marketing strategy and plan to ensure you deliver appropriate messages to the right audience. For example, target messages geared towards a purchase to PC and tablet users and target messages geared towards engagement and brand awareness to smartphone users.
Additionally, you have to acknowledge digital marketing as a part of the future of society. Your online audience will only grow as access to the internet extends beyond PC's and mobile devices. Content marketing and digital strategy will only grow in importance to your overall business and marketing strategy. If you haven’t already, research shows that you should make plans to join the other 19% to 33% that are moving towards full integration of your digital strategy.
Lastly, a little more than half of all businesses currently practicing digital marketing and content marketing are not optimized to maximize their ROI. Many businesses don’t invest the time, money, or resources to test their digital strategy and implement the methods that are most effective. In other words, many businesses are not utilizing the full benefit of content marketing.
Every successful internet marketer is using this very same formula to make money online, whether they realize it or not. Implementing this formula will get you way ahead of most of your competition. Although this is the same formula used by almost everyone, not everyone takes the same roads to implement it.
The formula consists of 4 steps, which are the 4 C’s of internet marketing. These steps are: collect, capture, communicate and close. Together these 4 C’s form a Grade-A marketing formula (lame joke intended). I will go over all of these steps and teach you my preferred way of implementing this internet marketing formula.
The first step of the process is what a lot of people are struggling with, as it is (in my opinion) the hardest step. What we mean by collect is collecting eyeballs and getting them on your website or rather to you. Online we refer to this as getting traffic to your website, Facebook page, or wherever it is that people can find you. Obviously, there is not just one way of doing this, there are A LOT of different ways. I will shortly discuss my favorite ways here:
I’m a strong supporter of attraction marketing, which reflects on my marketing. This may not be for everyone, but it does work very well. As the name says it’s about attracting people to you as a person and a leader. Facebook marketing is a great way of branding yourself and showing people that you are someone who can help them. It can be branded completely to help people see the value that you have to them, which is just awesome!
A blog is one of the most valuable assets for an internet marketer as it allows you to:
Obviously, there are a lot of other benefits, but we’ll stick with the basics here. You need to be seen if you want to have a fighting chance to make it in internet marketing, and a blog can give you just that. Blogs have the ability to get traffic from the search engines and in addition to that, people can link to all pages on your blog giving you even more traffic.
And more importantly, you can attract the people who visit your blog to yourself by sharing awesome content on your blog! By showing how much you know about subject X, you will get people to like and respect you for helping them.
And then there’s video marketing, which I think is absolutely awesome! I always combine video with blogging by including the content in a video as well. The video combines the best of both methods above: It shows you as a person, which creates a connection and gets people to know and trust you. At the same time, you can share the same value with your audience that you could in a blog post, which shows knowledge of the subject and builds authority. While these are not the only ways of marketing yourself, these are three of the methods that I like most.
This is really an easy step, but it’s very important! You’d be surprised if you knew how many people are not doing this, even though it’s stupidly easy. Capture means turning your visitor into a subscriber in your autoresponder. After that, you can constantly stay in touch with that person through email.
This is a step that a lot of people get wrong as well, or worse they try to skip this step. Now that you have a person on your email list it is crucial that you stay in touch with that person and provide more value to him/her. The goal here is to become someone they know, like and trust. Think of it this way:
I am a regular customer at the local snack bar, as I don’t always have the time to cook a healthy meal for myself. As a result of coming there often, I know most of the employees’ names and they know mine. Most of them know what I’m going to order before I actually order it and before I know it I’m taking out my wallet to pay.
Now let’s take a closer look and put this in perspective: Over the time I have gotten to know these guys through regular communications. In internet marketing you want your potential customers to know you, so you should communicate with them often so you become a recognized face to them.
Where a lot of people go wrong is that they are focused primarily on promoting products and making that commission, I am not. What I do, especially right after someone subscribes is to personally introduce myself in a welcome video. Then over time, I share tips, tricks and useful information with my subscribers to help them make money online. I recommend having some sort of fantastic giveaway, like an eBook, an email series, or a video series (which I’m in the process of creating myself). This will immediately boost your authority and credibility.
The final step, closing the person. This is where you will be going for the sale. If you have read all the way to this point you have seen the way I go about selling, which is an indirect selling approach. I don’t know about you, but I hate to have to sell to people. Instead, I’d rather help you reach your goals by providing helpful training (which you are reading, and for that I thank you).
So here is how I do the closing: I don’t, I simply teach and point. I teach you a skill, a strategy, etc. and then I point you towards a required tool or an additional resource that I know will benefit you. From that point on the product or service will do the selling for me, I’m not the salesman at all. All I do is recommend (not sell) something that is of real value.