Digital marketing is constantly evolving, and, in 2019, it is projected that over half of advertising budgets will be spent in digital (and this will only continue to grow). This means that digital should be at the heart of your sales or marketing strategy. While most businesses have embraced digital marketing, the question remains – am I having the biggest impact possible? Is my strategy and execution focused on the right areas?
The reality of digital marketing is that the “shiny new objects” rarely get consistent results until they’ve hit mass adoption. A solid strategy focuses on what actually works in digital marketing and finding creative and focused ways to take advantage of these. This is why I wrote the book Digital Marketing that Actually Works to help businesses make smart choices in digital marketing based on what works now.So what actually works in 2019? Where should you focus your sales or marketing dollars to maximize return on investment?
Social Media: Social media is still a big part of most digital marketing strategies. Facebook and Instagram continue to dominate (Facebook mostly as paid, Instagram still offers both opportunities) and LinkedIn is emerging as a more powerful player worth your time and attention.
Digital Advertising: Digital ads represent over 50% of most ad budgets and are able to address full-funnel marketing or sales concerns. Funnel or Inbound marketing approaches are taking advantage of digital targeting while measurement is making digital advertising even more effective.
SEO: Search Engine Optimization is a tried and true strategy that gets business results. Don’t forget the importance of search, as for many businesses it represents over 50% their website traffic – and that traffic is very valuable. With the growth of mobile and voice, a solid search strategy should aim for a top three search result to break through.
Website: Your website is still incredibly important and likely the center of your strategy. Focus on making sure that your website is fast (Google recommends under three seconds) and optimized for mobile.
Conversational Marketing: Influencer marketing is growing in importance – for both B2B and B2C. Word-of-mouth and digital PR continue to provide opportunities for business growth. These areas tend to be under-invested in by businesses and present unique opportunities.
E-Mail: With mobile and chatbots, email doesn’t get a lot of attention but it is still one of the top tools to drive conversions and purchases. Don’t just focus on sending emails, but look at your ROI thoughtfully and be sure to link every email to a single and clear marketing objective.
CRM: CRM data is becoming more and more connected to other digital marketing channels, which is what powers the opportunities for personalization and customization. There are effective CRM solutions for businesses of all sizes, but effectively connecting internal sales, marketing, and customer service teams is still a big challenge.
Mobile: We know that mobile overtakes desktop in almost every digital marketing channel, so mobile optimization should be second nature. Emerging opportunities exist within mobile such as AR and VR.
As you build your digital marketing strategy digital marketing strategy for 2020 your focus should be on choosing a few digital marketing channels that really matter and focusing on mastering them. Do a few things well vs. many things poorly.
To facilitate this, we created the Investment/Impact graph to help businesses plot potential investments and make smarter choices. There is almost no end to what you could do in digital marketing, the question is what you should do. The investment impact chart allows you to plot your ideas or marketing investments based on the investment (total cost) and the impact that they are expected to have (sales).
A healthy marketing plan will have investments in low hanging fruit, the ROI center and big bets. As digital maturity increases so will the choices in investment/impact. There will be less low hanging fruit freeing up more investment for big bets.
Using the investment/impact chart to prioritize digital spending will help you prioritize digital investments. The challenge is to have the knowledge and experience to graph opportunities appropriately.
In 2019 and beyond digital will only continue to grow in importance. The challenge is to fully take advantage of it and focus on the most impactful areas for your business.
To learn more about Digital Marketing That Works Right Now, check out our webinar being held on September 26, 2019.
” Blockchain is making waves and is the new change on the horizon. This novel technology is not only affecting the financial world but also many other sectors. The four industry sectors that currently blockchain are supply chain, corporate responsibility, fashion designing and digital advertising. “
1) Supply chain sector
The problem that large food companies face is trust issue because their customers are skeptical of many things such as where their food comes from and the factory conditions. It is the job of the marketer to build trust to be able to sell the product successfully. Above all, transparency about the product is the quickest and the surest way to gain that trust. For example, Walmart used a strategy to bring a certain level of transparency in their logistics and supply chain. They enabled their customers to track digitally from where the products came. By doing so, the goal was to boost the trust of Walmart consumers in their products. This strategy of storing products through blockchain makes room for transparency and prevents tampering. Some services such as Metamask and Keybase already offer the user control of their transaction history and identity.
2) Corporate responsibility sector
Sustainable practice is something that customers used to take on the organisation’s word. Rather, when it comes to initiatives as corporate social responsibility, there used to be no accountability. Blockchain can generate digitized agreements, wherein the company is then held accountable by making these promises public.
3) Fashion designing sector
Innovative ideas are coming through in the fashion industry using blockchain. Shanghai-based Vechain is authenticating fashion products and providing a background of the items using blockchain technology. At Shanghai Fashion Week, Babyghost provided a link between the fashion and digital worlds. The customers can verify if a particular fashion item is genuine or not by scanning the tag using blockchain, and even see where it came from as well as who had previously modeled it. Verification of the authenticity of the products can be traceable from the point of origin. This feel to each product allows the customer to create a unique connection with the item. Thus, blockchain can tap into authentic advertising without being seen as marketing. The possibilities are endless for those marketers innovative enough to jump on the bandwagon.
4) Digital advertising sector
The advertising industry is not only dynamic but also susceptible to change. Intrinsically, it fluidly adapts to the shifting focus of consumers and new technologies. The blockchain comes into this arena by creating more value for ad campaigns. For advertisers, the future could be different on many fronts and applications. They include permanent contracts with consumers, verification of ad delivery and handling consumer data transparently. This surge shows how much commotion is happening right now in the digital marketing industry. And it all results in an increase in the profit margin and a decrease in extra costs.
There are 4 distinct benefits for accepting Bitcoin payments. For marketing agencies struggling to increase cash flow and reduce risks, Bitcoin is the solution. There is no risk in accepting Bitcoins but an advantage regarding improving the cash flow. Since the emergence of Bitcoin in 2009, it has grown to become the most extensively used cryptocurrency in the world. Vendors including Amazon, Overstock.com, Dish Network, Target, Dell Computers, PayPal, eBay, Expedia, the Sacramento Kings, Home Depot, Kmart and Sears now accept it. Bitcoin payment solution also has some financial benefits and less tangible advantages.
Marketing agencies that get paid via Bitcoin can either accept actual Bitcoins or merely turn them into cash using a third-party payment processor, much like credit cards do. From a risk standpoint, the former approach is much safer because there is virtually no exchange risk when using a third-party processor. There are no processing fees unless the transactions exceed a high amount. There are no chargebacks either because Bitcoins are push transactions, meaning the buyer initiates them.
Marketing agencies should consider accepting Bitcoins because there are non-financial benefits. Agencies get paid faster because payments are processed immediately without any delay. Also, the agencies do not need to safeguard or hold sensitive customer payment information such as bank account or credit card numbers because of the push nature of the business. Therefore, the marketing agencies are not at risk of confidential information being leaked, stolen or hacked if it experiences a data breach. And converting them into cash eliminates the risk of fraudsters taking the Bitcoins through a cyber-attack.
Chief amongst the reasons to accept Bitcoin, as one of the accepted forms of payment, is customer satisfaction. Marketing agencies can allow their clients to pay for the services in the way that is most convenient and easiest for them thereby offering them more options.
- Capture lucrative customers
While people have not widely adopted Bitcoin the way they have done with credit cards it is prevalent amongst high-tech and dot-com firms, which can be very profitable customers for the agencies. There is a growing but small cadre of advertising and marketing agencies that are accepting Bitcoin such as Quintain Marketing, 5ivecanons in Jacksonville, Florida, and DiMassimo Goldstein in New York. Because there are so few of marketing agencies that are taking Bitcoin, those that do are enjoying a significant amount of press coverage.
To learn more about emerging technologies visit our online learning center.
Photo by André François McKenzie on Unsplash