Social media is a useful tool for content marketing, but only relying on that for advertising is going to hinder a company’s overall marketing campaign. Social media needs to link with the brand’s website and connect with a call to action for an email marketing program. Kimanzi Constable of Entrepreneur reported recently that Facebook has already announced it’s going to limit the number of promotional posts that will be seen on its business pages. This will cut into a company’s presence and limit its ability to reach out to customers. Additionally, even if these paid advertisements go out and get found by the right people through proper usage of longtail keywords, it is still something that a business has to spend a lot of money on. Additionally, according to Constable, fewer people are going to use Facebook and LinkedIn in the future.
What this means isn’t that you should stop creating advertisements or posting to your social media pages. Instead, it means you need to diversify your content marketing strategy. Posting to a blog should coincide with making calls to action that present people with the opportunity to be added to a mailing list. The mailing list is powered by marketing software that follows what someone is doing on your website and pins the information down to a specific name and email address. That way, when potential customers receive their first newsletter, they get a welcome message that has been customized to represent whatever they would be most interested in from your company based on their searches through your website. The next email received by someone is customized further, in an ever-tightening sales pitch that changes along with the alterations in what someone reads. Eventually, the email marketing leads to a call to action to dial a phone number, and this is where the phone tracking would kick in if this is also being used.
Phone tracking takes the information gathered from the email newsletter and the website, and puts the information into the hands of the person selling the product to the possible customer through the phone. He or she will know the right pitch to use and any information gleaned from the call can be added to that potential customer’s information as it is stored in the marketing software.
Other ways to boost online sales
Writing in Business 2 Community, Kristin Hovde provides more ways of making a sale. One example is having an excellent website that is regularly maintained with new and exciting information. Properly functioning advertising software can record who a Web user is even without an email address. The information is stored by the website and gradually collects information about buying habits as someone continues to review your website. This is why calls to action are so important. By attaching a phone number or some other identifying information to an otherwise general IP address, the software can get a clearer picture of the people visiting a website. This enables marketing people to send out much more targeted online advertisements.
For example, advertisements can target local customers who live near your store. They can also contain unique phone numbers that directly connect specific individuals to their IP address, allowing marketing software to track them online. This allows businesses to use a much more customized advertising approach.
According to Hovde, it’s also important to track your online reputation. Depending on your business, there are websites that track the quality of your work as reported by your own customers. Keeping a careful watch on these sites and responding to any criticism quickly and effectively is a great way to avoid negative publicity.
Optimizing for mobile phones
Along with social media and website optimization, another consideration is making sure the content being sent to someone’s phone, such as a newsletter, is prepared in such a way it looks nice and people want to read it. According to Jayson DeMers of Forbes, one of the major changes in business marketing that will happen in 2015 is that mobile optimization will be increasingly important. If something can’t be read properly through a phone, people may simply ignore it.
“I predict that the latter half of 2015 will see many businesses finally incorporating mobile into all areas of their digital marketing,” DeMers stated, “A fully responsive website, mobile ads and separate content specifically for mobile website users. Businesses will also begin to realize the necessity of having a mobile social media strategy that considers how mobile users consume and interact with social media posts.”
He also predicted that content marketing will be even bigger than it is now. This further emphasizes the importance of calls to action embedded in content, along with the importance of being a thought leader who provides people with valuable information they would read even if they didn’t want to buy a product from a website.