Need of the hour: Digital is the way to go for your business
Due to the indoor confinement, consumers are spending more time online, than ever before. Digital channels for marketing communication are no longer an option, but a necessity for businesses of all sizes.
Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) have been slow to implement digital channels for promotion and distribution need, to accelerate their digitisation and to remain relevant to their customers.
How can you promote your business through digital channels?
You can classify your online business promotion into two categories:
Inbound Marketing is used to spread brand awareness and attract new customers by creating valuable content that is educational and addresses the customer’s pain points.
Inbound marketing is primarily online and is aimed at driving traffic to your website and other digital properties.
Outbound marketing refers to a proactive customer outreach, to create brand awareness and generate quality leads. It involves offline activities, such as trade shows, cold calling, telemarketing and advertising.
Outbound marketing also uses online channels, such as e-mail, internet advertising (search engine and social media).
How can you use Inbound marketing, for business promotions?
Listed below are some of the online channels, to generate inbound traffic and leads.
A website is a foundation for your strong online presence and also an important customer communication tool. Even though a website is meant to provide the most basic information about your business, you need to take a customer or a buyer-centric approach to design and develop the site. A good user experience design, optimised pages and appropriate CTA’s (Call to Actions) are important elements for your inbound website.
More than two-thirds of customers begin their purchase journey through search engines. It is important to apply the best Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) practices, to get higher rankings in organic search results. This will help your business get discovered by prospects at every stage of their purchase decision journey, without incurring heavy costs.
A blog section on your website is an effective and efficient means for generating organic traffic. A blog helps you publish relevant content at regular intervals and is the core element of content marketing strategy. The blog focuses on topics that help educate and inform prospects and customers.
Social media helps to amplify your online presence. The value of your content increases when shared on personal and professional networking sites. It helps your business in getting discovered by prospects and social search.
Social media helps you share customer success stories and also enables your customers to share their honest feedback. This adds to the authenticity of your brand.
Inbound marketing, though cost-effective, takes more time to generate results. If you are interested in getting results in a shorter time frame, you can use digital outbound marketing through the digital medium.
How can you use Outbound Marketing to promote your business?
You can use the Pay-Per-Click advertising on search engines or social media platforms, to generate high quality leads. You can also use display advertising to reach prospects and generate leads. Though outbound marketing provides instant results, the long-term value is limited, when compared to inbound marketing.
Data Analytics will help derive maximum value.
Your business type and target customer segments, along with the available budget & promotion objectives will be the determining factors in deciding on inbound or outbound marketing programmes. Whatever marketing programme you select; you need to leverage data analytics, to get the most of your initiative.
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