There is a lot of talk about online marketing, often complexity of marketing and advertising, long-term relationships and strategies to go to the market with occasional, maybe effective, but episodic tactics.
The growing number of online systems, platforms and applications has created a marketing era in which technology shows new capabilities, but complexities also grow.
Working every day in contact with companies, it is easier to understand how buyers and sellers meet online and how it is possible to transform complexity of marketing into better performances.
1 – The marketing button is always on
For 15 years the Internet has been a commercial fact and if you have a website, marketing should always be active and in real time. It seems obvious, but for many companies it is still a challenge.
- Offer fresh content, well-optimized landing pages and a well-constructed, simple and clear process to engage prospects and customers.
- Develop a plan for your website that offers practical, useful content for customers, that follows their information needs and positions your brand, your products and services in the most effective search engine: people’s heads.
- Commit to listening to your potential customers in your blog and through social media. Customers should be able to connect with other customers and employees of your company. Set up clear processes to monitor your company on social networks, on blogs, if you want to respond to requests and doubts as quickly as possible.
- Make it easy for customers to buy from you. From easy information, use simple ways to browse the site, facilitate contact with a sales representative to better understand the range of products and services.
2 – Simplify
According to Forbes in five years a company’s marketing managers will spend more on technology than IT managers. We really hope it happens, because today in many companies the marketing functions are entrusted to IT managers or those responsible for communication, with genuine scorn for ridicule. But we will have to be at a turning point in advertising and marketing management.
There are new terminologies like
- DSP (demand-side platform)
- DMP (direct marketing project)
- Native Advertising
- Re-targeting Network
- Marketing automation
In addition to an impressive number of new platforms, systems, applications, which have made marketing a well of complexity. If we follow this trend we get to the increase in costs, to the decrease in the return on investment and we are distracted from the fundamental things.
Therefore simplify your approach, focus on the main customers and potential customers, define your value proposition, and involve the customer in the purchase proposal. Don’t get caught up in the urge to have everything and control everything.
If someone tells you “you have to have the latest technology”, “without this (or that) eCommerce platform, you’re not going anywhere”, he’s just trying to sell you something.
3 – Follow the marketing process
Marketing is a long-term activity. To win over a customer you need an awareness of commitment, instruction for the purchase and you must effectively engage the potential customer along the crucial moments of the buying process. How many times has an incapable salesman lost a sales opportunity, just by asking a customer: “Are you convinced?” And how many sales have been wasted by presenting too many choices, too many variations, instilling in the customer the dilemma of choice?
There are people who surf the net looking to buy products or services they need. Your complexity of marketing efforts must necessarily be in the journey and help a navigator become a customer. The difficulty is that potential customers are in many places and not just where they would like them to be. If a potential customer wants to talk to you, it must be possible. If you want more information about a product or service and want to download a document to learn more, you need to give them the exact type of information when they need it.
Following a customer in his buying process is easier today than in the recent past.
4 – Turn prospects into customers
Your potential customers follow you and watch you, even if you don’t notice. If 70% of buyers have in mind who to buy before they become customers, it means that they are following you well before making a purchase. You therefore need to reach your customers at the top of the “marketing funnel” when they are in the research phase, and then hire them when they are in the learning phase. A great way is to provide information in the form of content marketing with the aim of creating subscriptions to be supported with new information.
- Quality contacts with buyers who want to know more about your company, your products and services.
- Original content to position your brand as a leader.
- Building trust, respect, and affinity.
- Grow in sales step by step.