If you’re like me, you want to make certain that you’re getting the best bang for your buck from your digital marketing efforts. After all, what’s the point of paying money for marketing that doesn’t work? If you want to maximize your digital marketing ROI, keep reading for some helpful tips.
The Prerequisite – Track Everything
Before you can maximize your digital marketing ROI, you must know what your ROI is in the first place. The biggest mistake I see businesses making today when it comes to digital marketing is inadequate tracking. In some cases, there’s no tracking happening at all. But even in the best of cases, the tracking is often insufficient to give a full picture of what’s happening.
Some areas to pay attention to when you’re tracking digital marketing campaigns are:
Likes – How many thumbs up, hearts, etc., is your content generating?
Shares – How many of your followers think your content is worth sending to a friend?
Comments – How engaging is your content?
Follows – How many people think your content is so good they want to see more of it?
Tip #1 – Leverage Video
Video killed the radio star way back in 1979. You don’t want to be the radio star, trust me. If you haven’t already done so, create a YouTube channel for your business and start putting out video content. You don’t need to be a professional videographer, and oftentimes the phone in your pocket has a good enough camera to put out a serviceable quality video. Even content like simple how-to videos is better than no content at all. Oh, and make sure you’re sharing and cross-posting your videos to your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.
Tip #2 – Recruit Your Audience
Tip #3 – Start Relationships
Chances are high that what your business does could work well with what another business does. Referrals are the best form of advertising, so use them to your advantage by creating meaningful and mutually beneficial relationships with other businesses. Ask them to promote your business on their social media accounts while you do the same. (Hint: This is easier to do if you have some cool content for them to share.)
Tip #4 – Shepherd Your Flock
If you’ve managed to garner a bit of a following on social media, keep them coming back for more by making sure the content you’re producing is relevant and actionable. People don’t want to see the same old “hey, look at me” content that every hack in the world is producing. They want content that is highly actionable and valuable to them. It could be advice on how to reduce their tax liability, how to shop for a home, how to reduce their body fat, how to cook a delicious Thai dinner – you get the idea (see tip #1). The key point is to make sure your content includes concrete steps your audience can take to benefit from the information you’re providing. Don’t expect them to just figure it out on their own.
Tip #5 – Build a Community
To be sure, you need a website, a blog and all the major social media accounts for your business to succeed at digital marketing. But the most powerful thing you can possibly build for your business is a community. If you’re consistently producing valuable, actionable and relevant content based around your brand, it’s only natural that your audience will want to engage with you and each other. While they can engage in a limited capacity in the comments section of a post, article or video, purpose-built tools like Facebook groups or forum software are really what you should be focusing on. These will allow you and your audience to have deeper and more meaningful conversations that are centred around your core business offerings.
Tip #6 – Modernize Your Website
Mobile is king. Most of your customers are going to be reading, watching and interacting with your digital marketing efforts via their smartphones. And while it’s important to have a blog and social media accounts for your business, you still need a central hub that people can visit to learn more about you and your business. That hub is your website, and it is imperative that it's mobile-friendly. This may seem like a common-sense tip, but I've seen some pretty heinous excuses for websites that are still out there in the wild today (I’m talking ‘90s-era abominations that would make GeoCities blush). Don’t fall into the trap of spending the time and money to create awesome content only to lose the sale because of a terrible website.
Tip #7 – Affiliate with the Right People
I mostly see retail businesses using this approach, but with some forethought and strategy, it can be effective for all types of businesses. What am I talking about? Why affiliate marketing of course! You know those oh-so-perfectly-staged Instagram posts you see with the #ad written at the end? Those are perfect examples of affiliate marketing. I know it may seem silly at first glance, but don’t discount this as part of your digital marketing repertoire. You can leverage the existing audiences of affiliates to promote your business for what is often a fraction of the cost of more traditional digital marketing campaigns.
ROI Isn’t Just an Acronym
It can be fun to talk about digital marketing and improving ROI. For many businesses, that’s all they ever do. Don't be like them. If you don't take steps to track and maximize your business' return on its digital marketing investments, you likely won’t be in business very long. Publish videos, create a company hashtag, build beneficial relationships with other businesses, give your audience definite steps to follow, start a Facebook group or company forum, make sure your website is mobile friendly and leverage affiliate marketers to get your brand out there. If you take these steps, you’re guaranteed to improve your digital marketing ROI and make your business a success.