Last week I was having dinner with a friend who owns a small business in town. We started talking about his current digital marketing tactics. He was struggling with engagement rates and generally connecting with his audience. He posed the question, “how do I improve my marketing without a team of people and on a small budget?”.
After we took a step back and reviewed his approach, I provided him with three simple, easily integrated checkpoints to implement into his campaign concepts.
1. Ask the people what they want.
As marketers and business owners, typically we dictate the information consumers receive; however, I experienced an “Aha” moment listening to Maggie Lang, senior director of Marketing at Kimpton Hotels, speak a few years ago. When developing their rewards program, they asked their customers what rewards were valuable to them. It’s such a simple idea, but so many of us never think to ask our consumers what they want. Most would assume a free night stay, however, the experiential features of the hotel that were the most requested reward. The free night stay that most marketers would jump to fell to the bottom of the list. Listen first, do second.
2. Define your business objective.
Sure, it may seem like a no-brainer. But too often this simple step gets overlooked. Defining your objective and key performance indicators (KPIs) shows an incredibly valuable perspective. It allows you to understand success and how to repeat it or uncovers opportunities and how to adjust your strategy. This could be applied to anything from a marketing campaign, social platform or website.
A business owner may tell you they have a Facebook page because they’re supposed to or because it’s “free” advertising. But without a true purpose, it’s a waste of time. Utilized correctly, with a defined strategy, social media can be a powerful marketing tool. For example, its purpose could be defined as a way to drive traffic to your website, then measure KPIs of click-through rates, referral traffic and time spent on your website. Or if your Facebook page’s purpose is to engage with your audience, measure KPIs as growth of a defined demographic, response time to inquires and engagement rate. The point is, without defining your goal, there’s no way to properly measure success.
3. Be relevant.
Now that we’ve identified what our consumers want and why we’re doing it, then we establish communication to the right audience with the right message. The first step is to begin thinking about how you can create a one-to-one marketing experience that connects to the individual versus a broader demographic. Use the data available to whittle down to a psychographic segment and tailor a marketing message that can resonate.
There’s a number of different methods to create one-to-one marketing experiences. You could start with those that you know best: past customers. Using pre-existing sales data and segmentation strategies you can create repeat purchases.
Let’s say you’re a big-box store creating an email marketing campaign. Through Step 1, consumers told you after purchasing a major home appliance they’re interested in upgrading their other appliances within the next 12 months. With this data, you can create a segmented audience of the previous year’s home appliance purchasers. Your team then works through Step 2 by setting a goal of creating a 50% lift in email click-through rate. You now have a campaign with a defined purpose and the data to create relevant marketing messages that resonates with a specific audience.
So there you have it – three realistic methods you can begin implementing today to improve your digital marketing strategies. There are many digital marketing tools out there that allow us to be so much more refined in who we want to reach and how we communicate to them. By learning about your targets, setting goals to track, crafting relevant messaging and finally measuring your progress, your campaign will find greater success. The days of blast messages to a broad target are firmly behind us. Attention spans are shorter and greater competition in the marketplace. The more targeted and relevant your marketing messages can be the more growth you’ll find in the outcome.