Your marketing strategy is without doubt, the most single defining element of your success online. Think of your marketing strategy as how you present your products and services to your audience and engage with them as you continue to grow your business.
Your marketing strategy takes into consideration the tone of voice you use when writing the copy for your website and crosses over into the printed media you use to promote your business, your services and your products.
Let’s take a look at our top 10 components that come together to form a solid marketing strategy to help get you started.
1. Setting goals
When setting goals, ask yourself – what does success look like?
Make your goals realistic to ensure your best chance of achieving them. Ensuring they are measurable will also help you determine if the strategies you are implementing are successful.
Practicing the SMART Goals method is a great place to start when defining your goals, both personally and for your business.
SMART Goals are:
Specific: This is what will the goal accomplish.
Measurable: How will you measure whether or not the goal has been reached.
Achievable: Do you have the necessary knowledge, skills, abilities, and resources to accomplish the goal?
Relevant: Is reaching your goal relevant to you so that you will have the desire to achieve it?
Timely: Ensure the goal has a target date so you have a deadline to focus on and something to work toward.
Read more on SMART Goals.
List these goals and have them visible when planning your content to ensure the tasks you are performing daily and weekly are getting you closer to achieving these goals.
2. Marketing funnel
A marketing funnel requires you to map out your customer’s journey, starting from when a customer is a complete stranger to when they become a lead, and then move through particular strategies you have in place that will encourage them to move through the funnel.
Elements like calls to action, lead magnets, opt-ins and offers are all effective and important elements of a marketing funnel.
Call to action
A call-to-action (CTA) is exactly that, a clear, unambiguous, visual queue to a user, that helps and guides them through a process of becoming a lead.
CTA’s should ultimately direct people to landing pages, where you can then collect the visitors contact information in exchange for a valuable marketing offer – an opt-in or ‘Gift’. In many cases this could be a free ebook or whitepaper for example.
A call-to-action can take the form of:
- link, or
An effective call-to-action is not too distracting for a user and is presented contextual with the users experience on your website. For this reason, size and placement of a call-to-action becomes important when deciding where to position one and in what context.
A call-to-action should be part of every design and style guide. When discussing design requirements with your designer (if you’re starting out), be sure to include a few varied call-to-action styles (primary and secondary) in your design guide and requirements.
A lead magnet can be used alone or in combination with a CTA. This will also be used either within your marketing funnel or as a way to drive potential customers into your funnel. Supply them with something relevant to your product or service that they want or could be looking for.
Use your offers and gifts as a way to gather more information about a potential buyer while at the same time, driving them further into your funnel. This brings them closer to becoming a quality lead that will spend money on your product or service.
3. Driving traffic
In order to be able to drive visitors into your marketing funnel, there first has to be traffic on your website.
There a variety of ways you can drive traffic to your website, including;
Use content such as blog posts and articles and insert links to various places on your website within this content to build your brand name through exposure and drive traffic to your website.
Inserting related keywords into content will help your content and website show up in more search results, this leads to higher volumes of web traffic.
Ensuring that your website is optimised for speed and usability and functioning at its best is essential. People don’t want to visit a website that doesn’t work properly or provides a poor user experience.
Use engaging social media posts to attract more traffic to your site. Using pictures, video, and other relevant media will help your posts get more engagement.
4. Content planning
Planning your content starts with the very basics. Ask yourself, what pages do you want and need on your website as well as those that will help and assist your customer and visitors to your website?
A typical content planning map usually begins with pages such as; home, about, services and contact.
Consider if you need a news (or blog) section. This type of chronologically ordered content is great for Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and gives you another way of communicating with your audience over and above the written copy.
5. Your avatar
Defining your avatar is key in understanding the tone of voice of your website copy and will greatly assist in many marketing decisions.
Your avatar is your one perfect audience member that wants and needs the value you have to offer.
Knowing who you are talking to (literally), enables you to craft your content in a way that makes sense to your audience and also assists in engaging with the right individual.
Once you define and know your avatar, you will be able to attract the right customer to your product and eliminate anyone that is either not the right fit for your business or not at the right engagement level.
Defining your niche will help you determine what specific content you’re going to offer your avatar based on their pain points and needs.
Knowing where to start when setting out to define your niche can be difficult. Begin by asking yourself:
- What do I enjoy doing?
- What am I good at?
- What does my ideal customer look like?
Where your strengths meet your interests is where you will find your ‘magic'. Use this to target your niche.
Your website is typically many people’s first impression of your business, company, product or service. As a result, your website represents and is the face of a vital and critical component of your branding strategy. It communicates who you are and what you promise to offer your customers. It does this with its content, layout, design and overall look and feel.
A well branded website gives your organisation a great foundation for an online presence, a platform from which to communicate what you do and everything you stand for. It’s the place where you can tell your story and engage your customers.
8. Your logo
Your logo is one of the key elements of your brand you can leverage consistency and identity awareness. A logo is essential to any brand and is a key element in your website.
Consider hiring a designer to not only design a great logo but to also develop your business collateral including business cards and letterhead paper. By making that initial investment, you’ll create a cohesive visual voice and begin to establish control over your brand.Tip: If you need a little help getting started, head on over to 99designs and have a poke around. 99designs is the #1 marketplace for graphic design, including logo design, web design and other design contests. You get to review and critique designs and work one on one with the winning designer for your project. The entire process is straight forward and very simple to manage.
9. Value proposition
When a visitor hits your website, they inevitably think to themselves – what’s in it for me? What’s service or product is this company or website offering and how does it help or benefit me?
To ensure you are attracting the right customer or audience, ensure your value proposition or statement is clear and concise and easily visible to your visitor.
In a few words explain exactly what benefit your site provides to the visitor, so that they’ll know not only what your site is about, but why they should keep using it.
10. Tone of voice
The language you use on your website and the manner in which you talk to your visitors must reinforce your brand’s character and personality.
It’s not just about what you say it’s also about how you say it.
Be sure to choose a tone of voice that reflects your brand’s character and suits your audience.
Defining your marketing strategy is just one step in setting yourself or your business up for success, both online and offline. If you’re just starting out, try and make it the first step and give it the time it deserves. It will form a strong foundation for the steps that follow and make communicating with your initial, potential customers just that bit easier.