As a startup entering the fierce digital marketing landscape, you will compete with numerous established brands with bigger budgets. Unsurprisingly, having killer products and an awesome brand story is not enough for you to survive and grow your business. You need to use digital marketing to win your customers’ hearts, build relationships, increase reach, and brand yourself.
Here are a few simple tactics to use right now.
Build Trust with Content Marketing
Content marketing is a powerful weapon that not only increases your position in Google’s SERPs, but also helps you establish yourself as a highly authoritative online resource.
Now, there are numerous forms of content you may produce.
- Whitepapers and articles are perfect for sharing valuable industry insights and tips.
- Infographics let you pack massive amounts of data and statistics in an easily digestible and gorgeous content form.
- Charts and graphs visualize your most important data.
- Case studies and in-house research let you explain how your brand is helping its customers.
- Ultimate how-to guides provide an educational value.
- Any of these content types can be converted into interactive and highly-converting videos or podcasts.
- User-generated content, reviews, and testimonials increase brand transparency and gain customers’ trust.
Your content strategy should follow the different stages of a buyer journey. For example, a visitor who has landed on your site for the first time will want to learn more about your brand and its story, values, etc. Those who came here to buy something will, on the other hand, look for customer reviews and testimonials or special deals to make buying decisions.
That’s why your goal is to meet customers’ needs with quality content at every touchpoint and, in this way, increase their experiences. Once they notice the quality and relevancy of your content, people will start sharing it and linking back to it. Quality backlinks, page visits, and the time users spend on your site will tell Google that your site deserves high rankings.
Establish a Consistent Brand Image
When investing in digital marketing, maximizing your online reach and sales is just half the job done. The other half is building a lovable and memorable brand. In other words, you want to build strong relationships with your customers, build emotional relationships with them, and turn them into brand advocates. You want them to keep choosing you over your competitors and recommend your brand to other users.
For starters, you want to invest in brand consistency.
- Start with your domain name.
Your website is your brand’s online identity. And, to make it easy to find and memorable, you need to choose the right domain name. Instead of spamming your domain name with keywords, make it brandable, short, clear, and memorable. You could use your startup’s name as your domain name, as it will make it easier for users to find on Google. Above all, make sure your brand/domain name is also free on social networks. The idea is to maintain the same name across all online channels and provide consistent user experiences.
When choosing a domain extension, it’s up to you, given that Google ranks them the same. To build trust, you should go with the traditional .com. For more personalized user experiences, there are numerous alternative options. For example, the .me TLD is a country-code domain extension for Montenegro, but it gained global popularity. As it has the same meaning in multiple languages, you can create a strong call-to-action, just like see.me, mssg.me, or incourage.me.
- Establish a consistent visual identity.
Your brand’s logo, color palettes, images, and typography form your visual identity. This aspect of your brand depends on your startup’s values, personality, and target audiences. Let’s compare popular brands like Apple and Disney. As a renowned tech company, Apple wants its brand to seem trustworthy, sleek, innovative, and simple. Disney, on the other hand, chooses brand assets that stand for imagination, warmth, and friendliness.
Therefore, you should first determine your brand’s core values and then choose colors, fonts, photo styles, and logos that will work for it. Sure, once you choose them, you need to use them consistently. Create a detailed brand style guide to determine how your brand elements will be used across multiple platforms.
Combine SEO and PPC
As a new brand striving to increase online visibility and conversions, you should combine PPC and SEO to boost reach and traffic.
SEO is a long-term investment in your online presence. It includes lots of planning and the implementation of various tactics, from technical SEO to off-site SEO. Now, if you haven’t done SEO before, you should hire someone to do it for you. If you want to get started on your own, here are a few simple steps to take:
- When doing keyword research, don’t focus on popular keywords with high search volume. These keywords are highly competitive and you won’t stand a chance of ranking for them. Choose natural and long-tail keywords that have lower search volume, but are more targeted and will drive relevant traffic to your site.
- Optimize your title tags and meta descriptions, as these are the first things people see in the SERPs. Instead of spamming them with keywords, you should make them informative and user-friendly.
- As for the technical aspects of your site, make it responsive and easy-to-navigate. Meet users’ needs at every touchpoint and help them find the right products/content faster.
- Build trust and gain traffic with external backlinks. There are numerous link building tactics to implement, but the most popular is guest blogging. The idea is to find popular and SEO-friendly sites in the same niche and publish quality and relevant content there.
Now, it takes time to rank high in the organic search. That’s where PPC steps in. Its major advantage lies in the fact that, once your campaign is accepted by Google, your ads will appear for the target keywords immediately. Therefore, unlike SEO, PPC will increase your online exposure right away. Most importantly, pay-per-click caters to sales-ready leads. Namely, people who click on your ads have already made a purchasing decision and want to finalize the purchase.
Use Email Marketing to Increase ROI
With the rise of new digital marketing techniques, we often hear that email marketing is dead. However, statistics prove the opposite. According to the survey by Demand Metric and the Data & Marketing Association, the ROI generated by email marketing reaches an impressive 122%. As a young company entering the competitive market, you cannot afford to ignore these figures.
Now, just because you’re expanding your newsletter list and sending emails doesn’t mean you will start generating high ROI. To do so, you need to optimize your tactics.
- Write powerful subject lines – make them catchy, authentic, short, and clear.
- Optimize for mobile devices. More than75% of email opens happen on mobile devices. Make sure your CTAs are big enough and easy to tap. Shorten your preheaders and subject lines ad balance out your textual and visual content. Optimize your landing pages, too, as they should motivate users to convert.
- Segment your email campaigns. In other words, you should ask customers for their buying needs or the type of news they would like to receive from you and then, segment them according to their preferences. The idea is to create personalized email campaigns that would cultivate customer relationships and boost sales.
Over to You
Building and growing a successful startup in the digital landscape is not easy. Just because you have a website or you’re investing in PPC doesn’t mean you will maximize your online presence and drive better ROI. To do so, you first need to strategize each step carefully. And these are just some tips that may serve as a solid starting point.