So, last month we talked about how to identify your target audience in our post on local marketing in Milton Keynes. Today’s post is about how to begin integrating the different elements of your online marketing plan, including blogs, ads and social media profiles.
There are three points to consider here:
Firstly, you need to ensure that your branding is consistent across the different platforms you use – so your website, blog, social media profiles and advertising all carry your logo, perhaps your tagline and the same or similar colour schemes and imagery. You want all your marketing online to work cohesively together so that when a customer finds you on a new platform they instantly recognise that it belongs to your business. This not only keeps things from getting confusing, but it also fosters trust and familiarity.
The same goes with the keywords, titles and usernames you use. If your website is called: “Small Business Milton Keynes” but your Facebook account is something like “MK-MiniBusiness”, it won’t be immediately clear that they’re one and the same, and your customers certainly won’t be able to find you using the search option.
Another thing you want to keep consistent is your tone. Your business should have its own personality and social media is a fantastic way of getting this across. Are you humorous? Well-informed? Irreverent? Serious? If you don’t know what kind of ‘voice’ your company should have, look at your core values, goals and target audience – what does your business stand for and what kind of person are you aiming to attract?
All these things may change, adapt and adjust over time, but it’s important to keep things cohesive and recognisable, so that all the different facets of your online marketing act as ‘divisions’ of your company rather than separate entities.
There are two main types of connection we’re talking about here. First, there’s connection between your brand and your various points of contact online. There’s no point having a website, blog and social media profiles if they’re not connected with each other. The purpose of using different platforms for your internet marketing is that they serve as different outlets for your customers to interact with your company. It’s very simple to add a Facebook or Twitter button to your website pages and blog posts, or link from one to another using social media, and yet we’re often asked, “Why is no one ‘liking’ my Facebook page?” when there’s no direct link to it from the webpage – how are customers meant to know it exists? You can also use blog posts to link to internal content and remind users that they can get in touch with you in a variety of different ways.
The other type of connection that’s important is, of course, connection with your customers. Once you have set up the different ways for your customers to find information and content about your business, you also need some sort of platform for them to contact you online. Social media goes beyond the slow and often impersonal dialogue of email, and allows your customers to reach you in real-time, and share their experiences, questions – and yes, complaints – in public. When you start adding content to your social media profiles, think about what your followers want to know or hear about. Tap into your demographic and make it reciprocal; provide them with discounts, promotions and exclusive information about your products and business, and in return they will give you recommendations and market research information for free, within your conversation.
If you are running a local marketing campaign, make sure you are making connections with other local businesses, groups and individuals who relate to your industry or company. Look into ways to cross-promote and mutually support complementary businesses to increase your audience.
Finally, you need to find a way to make your online marketing efficient and cost-effective. This means becoming organised in how you approach your social media management. It’s no good occasionally logging on to Facebook and posting a link here and there. If you are going to use social media as part of your internet marketing strategy, then you must treat it like any other part of your campaign and monitor, measure and adapt it according to its performance. Implement social tracking and analytics on your site and social profiles, and study what kind of content receives the best response from your followers. You can manage multiple social media profiles in a client dashboard like Hootsuite or Tweetdeck to make things simple, or schedule blog posts ahead of time to ensure your content is going out regularly.
To start with, write a list of basic tasks that need to be done every day (such as checking your social accounts, looking at relevant daily news and any messages you need to respond to) and get into a routine of making sure they get ticked off. Set aside research and development time each week to look at trends within your industry, current news and what your competitors are up to. Think of short and long term goals you want to achieve with your online marketing and work towards them methodically – a very real danger of using social media for business is the tendency to get distracted and run away with the social element of things, while your original business intentions get left behind!
We hope some of these tips will give you a good starting point in your online marketing plan – this is just a brief overview of the kinds of things you should be thinking about, but if you want more help please get in touch with us at Ikroh.com. We’ll be going into more detail about making valuable social connections, organising your social marketing and creating a cohesive brand in future blog posts, as well as more ideas on local marketing in Milton Keynes, so keep your eye out for those on the Ikroh blog soon!
About Ikroh SEO tm
Ikroh has over 35 years of experience in the industry.