Start on the right marketing path
(Or take a detour to a better one than the one that you are currently on)… By now, you are probably getting excited about the prospect of thousands, or even hundreds of thousands of new visitors coming into contact with your business.
You probably already have the basis of a way of creating or revitalising your companies online presence. In fact online marketing is just like offline marketing in so many respects.
None of which are more important than having a good plan.
Depending what goods or services you sell, you will have more or less of a captive audience to listen to your value proposition. If you sell houses, you might be able to talk to a prospective client for half an hour even if they are not really interested. If you conduct seminars, the audience might feel like they have to stay all day, because they paid up front and want to get as much as possible in return.
Online things are very different, attention spans are much shorter. This is one of the main differences between offline and online business. Visitors can back-click to their search results in a few seconds if it looks like they haven’t found what they are looking for.
Because of this, you have to distill your sales message to make it instantly recognisable. At a glance, each page of your website should tell a visitor how they will be enlightened or entertained. If they have arrived at your site in error, that is fine, but if they are a suitable prospect then you need to engage their attention really quickly.
Gather information about your business
In order to proceed in the most efficient manner, you need to collect some information regarding your business, offers, and your favorite type of client or customer.
Before getting started in helping you with your online campaign, we need you to to gather some information. We are unlikely to be experts in your particular sub-section of the industry. While we can research, guess and extrapolate, we prefer some factual input from you in order to make sure that we are on the right track.
As you are probably aware, the internet search engines use algorithms to order data. The most important aspect of this revolves around keywords, key phrases and associated synonyms. One of the best ways of increasing online visibility is to identify which of these words and phrases best relate to your business. We then use these words and phrases as much as possible, in as many places as possible alongside your company name. (We use these words as much as possible, while making sure our content is very readable, we also avoid overuse of keywords).
We also ‘spoon feed’ these words and phrases to the search algorithms in a way that ticks as many algorithmic boxes as possible. There are many other tasks ahead but keyword research and proper use is the most important building block, along with link building.
When we build links carefully and gradually across the internet, they have to be in blocks of text that also contain relevant keywords and phrases.
We need to answer some important questions
So, we start the process with a few questions that need to be answered in relation to your business.
These are the most important questions to ask:
- List as many keywords and key phrases that you can think of that are applicable to your business. If you sell bicycles then you will write ‘men’s bikes’, ‘men’s bicycles’, ‘women’s bikes’, ‘women’s bicycles’, all the way down to ‘cycle chain’ or ‘bike sprocket’.
- Who are you targeting? I.E. Who is your perfect customer? Who do you want to find your website and take action that leads to revenue?
- Give us a 30 second ‘elevator pitch’ for your company. This elevator pitch should be more far important than any mission statement.
Do you know what an elevator pitch is? Just in case here is a quick explanation:
When you are at a dinner party and someone asks you what you do for a living there can be a tendency to ‘dress up’ the explanation. Many of us like talking about ourselves or our business and we can easily bore or confuse people. If you are stuck in an elevator with someone and they ask you what you do for a living, or what your company does there is little time.
A badass businessperson can very quickly sum up what they do, who they do it for and the results they get.
(The value proposition, target audience, and problem solved).
This is what we need to distill into a few sentences because this fits into the attention span of an internet surfer.
When a client comes to us, first of all we ask them to answer the 3 questions above. After this is done, there are a few more questions that we need answered in order for us to help them:
- Please list direct competitors websites for your business. We can research how well they are doing in the internet marketing areas that we are targeting. We can audit back link profiles for example. This means that we will know how hard they will be to outrank, and how long it might take. When reviewing competitors back links we can find opportunities to get the same back links as them. Then if we get some extra ones we might be able to outrank them.
- Please list places that your target audiences go online. (The people and companies from question 2 above). The best place to recruit a larger audience is to go and ‘hang out’ with them. LinkedIn and Facebook are 2 obvious places, but please list as many others as you can think of.
- Please provide Admin/Login credentials for anything that fits into our action plan. We DON’T need to see anything valuable such as your hosting, domain or email management accounts. We DO need to be able to log in to any Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook or any other social media accounts. We also need to be able to log into the admin control panels WordPress or whichever content management system you are using.
Our immediate strategy
Research is the first step. We will audit your website for important statistics relating to site speed, health, and SEO ranking factors. We will also do this for a number of competitors. (If you don’t have a website yet, we can just conduct competitor intelligence).
While we are conducting research we will get started on developing the social media presence for all 5 companies. We will organise a platform where any of us can log in and review, edit, comment or post on any article across the whole set of social media accounts.
We will put a system in place where we can set up alerts for when any of your businesses keywords are mentioned across the internet. From this alert, updates, links or articles can be posted across the social media platform. This will keep a regular supply of ‘hot news’ that can be discussed.
A list of relevant back link targets will be compiled. Some of these will be easy to create, some will require outreach, and others might cost money (e.g. high quality directories). These links will be created gradually and carefully so as not to cause unnatural spikes that search engines do not like. After a month or 2, ‘before and after’ external audit tools will show clear progress across the web assets.
Longer term strategy can then be discussed, depending on initial results. Our strategy will evolve as we shelve misses and double down on hits.
I hope that we have explained our process clearly, feel free to supply as little or as much information as you have time to compile. We can obviously do our own research but some of these requirements can only come from you, and all the requirements are best coming from you.
Don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you have any questions!