I can feel it coming on. I’ve gotten used to this recently; this onset of a strong point of view or opinion about something. It comes on like flu symptoms; itchy brain, strategy fatigue. Things just don’t feel right anymore.
This is how I’m starting to feel about my marketing. Somewhere along the line (any maybe it’s happened to you too) I started caring about clicks, and numbers and hits and emails – instead of the only thing that really matters – engagement and conversions.
I’m not ashamed to admit it because it’s my business to look at shiny objects and try new things. Sometimes that very activity becomes a goldmine and sometimes it’s a trip down the rabbit hole.
There are 6 important online marketing ideas you could use today to drive conversions:
1) Incorporate video – don’t like it? Than find another way to be visual
As internet marketing experts know, videos are a budget-friendly way that small business owners can advertise the goods and services that they offer to a large number of people.
By creating a cost-effective video and releasing it through online venues such as YouTube, you have the potential to reach an unlimited number of people.
Additionally, creating great videos increases the likelihood that your videos will “go viral,” meaning that the people who view the videos will share them with other people in their social networks.
The process of creating the video is incredibly simple, incorporating the following steps:
- Choose your YouTube video’s content
- Record your YouTube video
- Edit your YouTube video
- Upload your YouTube video
You can do these things right inside of YouTube! So give that a shot.
2) Create content that exudes who you are and what people can count on you for
KA KA! You talk don’t you? If you can talk, you can write.
Look. I don’t like video, but you don’t see me running away. If you don’t like to write, maybe you’re great on video, maybe you’re a great interviewer or researcher.
Your customers choose you based on who you are. This is a fact. More than 90% of all decisions are made emotionally and the way people make emotional connections is by getting to know you. What’s the best way for your customers to know you – show it off as content.
There are several strategies you can carry out to make your content great, and one of them is ensuring that the content is “scannable.” This means that readers can quickly skim through your content in order to find the specific information they came in search of.
As many internet marketing experts know, most readers who go online and view content are not interested in reading the work in entirety. Instead, they just want to pull out pieces of information that are relevant to their lives or some goal they're attempting to do.
In recognizing this principle, remember to make your content scannable by adding textual elements such as bullets, numbered lists, and headers.
3) Mobile optimization is a must
As the 21st century rages on, use of mobile devices is increasing at an exponential rate. In fact, the sale of mobile devices has been known to exceed that of PCs in recent years.
With this reality in mind, small business owners interested in increasing their website conversion rates should know that people who access their product pages via mobile devices must be able to navigate through them easily.
Making this happen is a process called “mobile optimization.” When done correctly and consistently, it can make sure that you capture and keep up the interest of your mobile market.
There are a multitude of strategies you can carry out for mobile optimization. For example:
- Eliminate the mobile user's need to scroll. Mobile users typically hate scrolling. To make sure that they won't have to when they access your website, break up the content of your text into separate pages.
- Put your important information in a prominent place. For example, mobile users who access a pizza parlor website are likely searching for the hours of operation as well as the physical address. This means that the information should be placed in a highly conspicuous area of the homepage, and it may require that you omit displaying other less useful pieces of information on that page.
4) Leverage social media connections
For quite some time, SEO has been the main buzzword of website conversion in the world of internet marketing-and for good reason.
SEO strategies such as link building and the creation of good content are oftentimes the key to helping small business owners earn page one ranking in the results pages of major engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo.
However, the emergence of social media as a platform through which business owners can connect with prospective clients and thereby build their base of loyal customers means that utilizing these channels is immensely important. (Also keep in mind that the creation and use of most social media channels is free, meaning that it's a very cost-effective strategy for small business owners who are on a budget.)
There are a lot of fun marketing ideas that solopreneurs can use for social media optimization. Some of them include tweeting links to their product pages via Twitter and running free contests via Facebook that feature promotional prizes.
If you're interested in using Twitter as the primary channel through which you conduct your social media marketing work, simply log on to www.twitter.com and follow the user-friendly steps to create an account.
Once you've done that, conduct a strategic search for Twitter users who conform to the criteria you've identified for your target market. Begin adding these people and roughly 1/3 of them will follow you back.
You can begin and continue growing your Twitter following this way while getting in the habit of tweeting links to your product pages. Once these links begin getting retweeted, you can start attracting serious traffic to your site.
There are also a lot of great tools that will help you find folks to follow. Check out SocialOomph for one.
5) Get a brand, for crying out loud
I can’t emphasize enough how powerful a great brand is.
Before I get into the details, let me just get you focused on what I think is THE MOST important part of a great brand – THE NAME. Did I say THE NAME?!
Create a great descriptive name that either resonates with something the audience wants or with a benefit or that clearly describes what you’re up to.
Your next branding step has to be a great logo (which needs to have an icon). Icons are hot, you’ll need them for your web site, social branding and so on. DO NOT skimp on this. It is the one thing that will make your small brand look big – if it looks and sounds big and grown up.
When you come up with clever branding ideas that distinguish your business from the competitors, you are much more likely to catch and keep the attention of your target market.
And just as companies need to start great branding techniques via traditional forms of marketing such as print ads, this advertising technique needs to be employed on your website.
For example, if your company logo is a half-full coffee cup, this image should be in a conspicuous place on the main page as well as the pages of your content. If it's not, you're not doing enough to give your readers a lasting, clear impression of who you really are.
Also remember that one of the most effective brand-building strategies you can incorporate is the use of promotional products. This can include something like a t-shirt or pencil with the company logo. Give these away as freebies in contests that you announce and run through channels like Twitter and you will develop loyal customers who eventually become faithful brand ambassadors.
6) Getting professional help will help you
Although it's safe to say that many if not most small businesses are on a budget, it's also important to note that this reality shouldn't prevent you from thinking about the great value of hiring a professional to help you.
Digital marketing professionals typically have extensive education and experience in developing and optimizing websites so that their clients can maximize conversion rates.
Moreover, the increasing prevalence of the internet has made the digital marketing industry incredibly competitive. This means that your likelihood of attaining reasonable rates for internet marketing services is relatively high.
With that idea in mind, it's a good idea to look into hiring a professional (if only part-time or for highly technical tasks) to help optimize your online marketing campaign.
To get started, conduct a simple internet search for digital marketers and begin the selection process. To make the most of this opportunity, try to select a company that will allow you to get a free quote and come in for a complimentary consultation.
Turn conversations into conversions
Conversions are really a function of conversations. Everything I’ve talked about here starts with a conversation between you and your ideal client.
Turn those conversations into a powerful brand, content, videos and social media engagement and you’ll convert like crazy.