Back in the late 90’s or early 2000’s, all business owners and people who dreamed of working for themselves and earning big numbers, heard of this new possibility called digital marketing.
Now that digital marketing possible, anything was possible! If you could just figure it out, you would have that mythical tap that you controlled, and that you could turn on and off at will.
Need an extra 100 sales to buy a new car? No problem, ALL you have to do is figure out digital marketing.
I wonder if all business owners and money hunters thought the same thing about Radio Advertising. And before that, print advertising in old newspapers, before radios were in peoples living rooms.
(I just found this print ad marketing radios (source) – I thought I’d share it to remember a time in history).
Digital Marketing Is Powerful
I don’t want you to think that I am suggesting digital marketing is not the best thing that happened to business owners – because I believe it is. But place digital marketing in the hands of a novice and he or she will quickly tell you “google ads don’t work!”, or “Facebook doesn’t work!!”.
Marketing online in the digital world is the same as any other avenue, you need to know how to use it and it is going to take some trial and error.
If you’re willing to invest some of your time to learning the basics, you’ll be a step ahead of your competitors.
If you’re willing to invest more than just some of your spare time, you’ll soon know as much as the self appointed “gurus” who claim to be pros in the digital marketing world.
How to Market Your Business Online
Make no mistake, when 999 out of 1,000 people say “digital marketing”, they are talking about online marketing. Even though, there are other “digital” things all around us, not just the internet.
Digitial or online marketing will also include:
- Your laptop and desktop computers.
- Your email accounts and those of your customers.
- Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.
- Advertisements on websites.
- Social Media
- Your customers Facebook and Instagram accounts.
- And so on.
So when you turn to digital marketing, you’re really only opening a new door that leads to a long, long, and often confusing hallway of almost endless other possibilities.
I’ll dive into the most common opportunities you’ll find within digital marketing below now:
1. Facebook Marketing
Of course, the first one to mention is Facebook. One of the top few, most busiest websites on the internet.
What you need to remember if you choose this path, is that people on Facebook are likely NOT going to be your customers yet. And they are not on Facebook looking to become your customer.
Marketing professionals know this, and Facebook is therefore often used first to be a ‘introduction tool’ for businesses to make the first and friendly contact with people who are likely to become their customers.
2. Google Marketing (Paid)
Along with Facebook, one of the easiest and quickest ways to market your business online is with Google paid Ads. If you’re on Google and you search for “Sydney Tour”, like you’d expect; you will get a list of search results for you to look through and see which one best matches what you searched for.
Take a quick look at the screenshot I just took below. The 4 search results I highlighted in blue below, have been inserted at the very top because businesses set up their Google Ads so that THEIR Ad will show up whenever someone searches for “Sydney Tour“, and a bunch of other variations similar to that.
This is a quick way for your business to appear at the top of Google. It’s also very expensive. The more competitive your market is, the more expensive this will be.
If you try this out, you will be charged every time 1 person clicks on your Ad. If your Ad is an exact match for what they are searching for, then this might be money well spent.
When you set up your Google Ad, Google will:
- Tell you what the approximate cost will be to get 1 click.
- Ask you how much YOU want to bid, to get 1 click.
- Compare your bid VS your competitors bids in 0.50 seconds and decide which Ad they will show.
3. Google Marketing (SEO)
SEO = search engine optimisation. If you look at the picture above, the two search results at the bottom in red, are NOT paid Google Ads.
They are the first two “organic” search results that have appeared for your search. The fact that one the same URLs is in the organic search results and ASO the paid advertising search results is just a sign that this company is playing the game well (the two placings don’t effect one another).
For any business or company to have their website appear at the top of the organic search results (like the first one in red: www.viator.com), WITHOUT having to pay Google to appear there, is a very highly desirable thing.
If you are wanting to get into the game of having your website appear at the top of the Google search results when one of your potential customers searches for the thing that you sell, then “search engine optimisation” is what you are doing.
You are attempting to optimise your website and the other things related to your website, so that Google will determine in that same 0.5 seconds that “this website should be number 1, this other website number 2, and then 3, 4, etc.”.
Warning: There are many people who can tell you they can make this happen for you guaranteed. I would advise you to learn more about this – and to look into it carefully before investing or making any decisions. The best way to have your website appear at the top of the search results for a particular search term is to:
“Have the best website for that search term”.
So start now. Start to build a website that will be the best website for Google to display when your target customers search for the thing that your website has!
4. Email Marketing
Yes, email is still a big avenue to get sales for your business. What’s different about email marketing is that in the large, large majority of cases: if you’re doing email marketing you’ve probably also done Digital Marketing Examples 1-3 above.
If you have a big list of email addresses that you can email, you’re probably already working online.
So if you are just starting out and you’re ONLY plan is to start and end with Email Marketing, it’s likely you’ve skipped a step, or misunderstood it. Don’t worry, there’s thousands of others.
Here’s what I mean:
- To gather a lot of email addresses, it’s easier to do it from your website.
- If you have a website and you want to get a lot of email addresses of your customers, you need to have a lot of people come to your website.
- No website visitors = no email address submissions.
- To get people to your website, the most common three strategies are:
- Facebook Marketing.
- Google Paid Ads.
- Google organic search result rankings.
On top of this, once you have a list of email addresses from hungry customers, it’s very likely you will tell them in your email “go to my website and buy my thing!” – So, you’re going to need a website anyway.
Email marketing is not a stand alone thing.
If you’re talking about digital marketing, it’s likely you already have a offline business. Or you’re planning to set up an offline business, and you want to use digital marketing as a way to get customers for your offline business. Which is absolutely fine.
If you’re wanting to quit your job, become your own boss and make money online I don’t recommend you start with searching for “digital marketing”.
If you’re just starting, what’s more important for you is to research and decide what problem are you going to solve for people. What is you’re business going to do for people. And make sure it’s something very important. Something that will be easy to sell, something that a lot of people are very very passionate about.
Exercise To Complete Before Starting a Business:
- Ask yourself; “what do I spend all my money on, without even thinking twice?“
Whatever you’re price insensitive about there will probably be others who are just like you. That may be a good starting point for you to think about. And then, you can work on what parts of digital marketing you’re going to utilise to launch and grow your business.