4 Simple Tips for Expanding Your Digital Reach
Today’s world is a digital one, unequivocally and without a doubt. Many people live as much online, if not even more, as they do in the physical realm. What this means for businesses is that 63% of customer journeys, regardless of where the final purchase is made, begin online.
If that statistic alone doesn’t surprise or impress you, let me add that it comes from research that Google conducted in 2018, so not only has two years passed of commerce generally trending toward online spaces, but it also predates the coronavirus pandemic.
With people stuck at home and many brick-and-mortar businesses either closed or under restrictions, obviously online shopping has increased its market share. However, the more pertinent and long-term impact is on the relationship between businesses and consumers, on how the former has to adapt their marketing strategies to the changing lifestyle of the latter. Traditional above-the-line marketing, such as billboards, has lost value and thus driven the importance of digital marketing.
Regardless of the size or industry of your organisation, having a strong, clear digital presence is a necessity into today’s economy. If you are a beginner at this function, the following tips will help you get started at expanding your digital reach:
- Focus Your Social Media Presence
Conventional wisdom says there are five major social platforms: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. There are only so many hours in the day and so much budget for advertising, so while you can in theory exist on all, you will likely be stretching your resources inefficiently to do so. Instead, look into which platforms are most popular among your target market and focus your efforts there.
- Learn as Much as You can About Your Audience
While you are learning about your audience’s preferred social media platforms, consider what other customer information could be useful for you, such as demography (e.g. age, gender, location) and behaviour (e.g. when they are most likely to make purchases). An easy way to capture this information is with post-purchase surveys, which have the added benefit of showing you ways to improve your product/service too. Be prepared for surprises too; there may be entirely unexpected groups interested in what you are selling that you have yet to target.
- Familiarise Yourself with Google Analytics
If you create a marketing campaign and have no method for tracking its results, does it generate any awareness or leads? This might sound like dollar store philosophy, but its an important question. Much of digital marketing operates with A/B testing as it’s a simple and effective method for optimisation, but it requires you to objectively and quantitatively analyse what campaigns are performing best. Google Analytics is the most widely used software for tracking and reporting web traffic and advertising ROI, and you can begin using it free of charge, so you can safely experiment with it.
- Commit the Time and Effort to Growing your Digital Skillset
There are two reasons why it will prove very valuable for you to actively build and improve upon your skills in this area. The first is that while the tips above will help you make a start at growing your organisation’s online footprint, they are only the beginning steps and you will require greater expertise to take full advantage of the digital realm. The second reason is that the technology and applications used in digital marketing are constantly advancing and evolving. By actively investing in your learning, you will both be able to optimise your use of current tools and be best positioned to integrate technology that emerges in the future.
AIM’s Faculty of Digital Marketing has a variety of Short Courses and Vocational Qualifications to help you master this function. We have partnered with Indago Digital and Social Media College, both experts in the field of Digital Marketing, to design and deliver these programs and ensure that they are applicable to experienced and uninitiated practitioners alike. Explore our range of Digital Marketing training courses to see how you can expand your organisation’s online presence and reach.