Growing a business is no small feat. The amount of time, effort, and investment that is required can be overwhelming. However, should these efforts yield positive results, the ability to continue growing your business can present a multitude of opportunities that will pave the way for larger endeavors.
Given 81% of customers nowadays research a product or service before making a purchase online, having an online presence to help foster sales is key. And with mobile commerce expecting to grow beyond $600B alone this year, it’s clear that businesses who can connect with their audience online will be well placed to experience revenue growth.
But where exactly is the best place to start?
In today’s blog post, I’ve curated from multiple blog posts to help you implement effective marketing strategies that will foster business growth.
1. Teach and Add Value Through Blogging
92% of companies who blog multiple times per day have acquired at least one new customer and businesses that blog witness their monthly leads rise by 126% more than businesses who don’t.
Knowing this should help drive you to ensure that blogging becomes a weekly or monthly part of your business. The great thing about blogging is that you can leverage it to provide more insights about your products and services, including CTAs, to drive sales. You can also leverage it to include special promotions, feature loyal customers, or display testimonials, case studies, etc.
You can easily use your blog as a creative outlet beyond just text-based posts too.
Here are a few stats to check out
- 37% of marketers said visual marketing was the most important form of content for their business, second only to blogging (38%).
- When people hear information, they’re likely to remember only 10% of that information three days later. However, if a relevant image is paired with that same information, people retained 65% of the information three days later.
- 4X as many consumers prefer to watch a video about a product than to read about it.
Just getting started with your blog? SEMRush offers a content marketing toolkit that helps you through the whole process — from finding relevant topics, planning out posts, writing them, and then optimizing the blog posts after they are published. SEMRush is offering a free trial, so check it out here!
2. Have a Deep Understanding of Your Audience
If you haven’t done this already, develop personas for the different types of customers that already buy from you or otherwise interact with your business. Not all customers are going to have the same needs or priorities, but they all will eventually make the same buying decisions.
I offer a free template for creating buyer personas on my blog that you’re welcome to use.
The whole point of having a deep understanding of your target audience is to focus on one type of customer and the specific path they take to buy from you.
You might have several unique personas that buy from your company. But for our purposes here, let’s focus on one or two of them. When you include too many different users and their unique priorities, your customer journey map can start to look confusing. You can always go back through the mapping process for your additional personas later.
I recommend starting with your most popular persona — the one that embodies the majority of your customers. Consider the route they take to go from awareness (this could be awareness of their problem or awareness of your company) to purchasing.
Lastly, here are key stats as to why focusing on the customer behavior, experience, and needs are important:
- 76% of customers expect companies to understand their needs.
- More than 80% of companies who prioritize customer experience are reporting an increase in revenue.
- Customers will spend 17% more for a good experience.
- Customer-centric companies are 60% more profitable than companies that aren’t.
3. Get Social and Encourage Others to Participate
Start off by asking yourself how a solid social media strategy can play an integral role in helping you drive targeted traffic, leads, and sales to your website. The important part here is to make sure that you align social media goals with the overall business objectives. From there, you can lay out a specific and measurable game plan to hold yourself accountable.
Just as you would use SMART goals when it comes to the entire marketing plan, do the same with your social media strategy. Here’s an awesome example you can use by Hootsuite:
The S.M.A.R.T goal framework is all about creating relevant, achievable goals that help support your overall business objectives. The acronym stands for:
- Specific: Be clear. Does “increase engagement” mean you want 100 new followers or 1,000? Making your social media goals specific helps you track progress and measure success.
- Measurable: Every goal needs some kind of metric. “Improve customer service” is a great concept, but it’s not a goal unless you have a way to measure that improvement.
- Attainable: Your social media goals should absolutely require you to stretch, but they should be within reach if you put in the required work.
- Relevant: This is the piece that ties your goal-setting back to larger business objectives. If your goal involves increasing Facebook likes, for example, make sure you understand how that will benefit the business.
- Timely: Deadlines keep everyone accountable. Include a timeframe for the completion of your goal so you know when to check in on your success. You might also want to include some milestones along the way for incremental check-ins.
4. Get Conversational with Email
A healthy email subscriber list is a surefire way to engage with your existing and potential customers. Use email blasts and newsletters to share upcoming events, offer exclusive deals, share popular social media posts, and repurpose your blog content.
- When your emails are engaging and interactive, you’ll begin building relationships with your customers. Each stage of your email marketing campaign should be engaging and should help educate your customers.
- You may choose to have a short quiz to help guide your customers to products you offer that are best suited to their needs. This type of engaging content also helps you educate your customers about what you offer and creates an air of authority for you. When a customer is in the awareness/engagement stage of the buying journey, your interactive emails can help push them toward the consideration and buying stages.
- If a customer has valuable interaction from your emails, they’re more likely to buy. Plus, they may be willing to share some of their personal data with you, allowing you to segment them and further personalize emails that guide them to a purchase.
- You may also wish to include a video or link to a video that demonstrates your products or gives insights into the benefits of your services. In fact, landing pages that have videos have 80% more conversions than landing pages without videos.
If you are having a hard time managing your email list, I recommend using Ontraport. Ontraport is loaded with features to make your email workflow easier to manage, as well as helping you analyze what is working and what isn’t. They offer a 14-day trial with no commitment so you can see if it’s a good fit. Make your account today and start simplifying your communications
5. Run Retargeting Ads
Businesses of all sizes need to optimize digital innovation and online marketing, in general, to have the best chances for growth. However, with 97-98% of e-commerce visitors not likely to buy from a store on their first visit, retargeting can be the ideal solution to bring those people back and turn their clicks into actual sales.
In fact, retargeting can increase your conversion rates by 150%, and if you are in the B2B space, you can expect to get over 400% more conversions per impression.
Retargeting ads is a great way to re-engage with site visitors who haven’t converted into customers and engage with customers for upsell opportunities as well as brand awareness.
Further, look at retargeting by lifecycle stages to help you identify objectives within each. The important factor to consider here is that you want to ensure your ads are relevant per funnel phase and that you’re not just serving the same ads across all actions that take place on your website.
Finally, keep these following tips in mind:
- Ad fatigue. This can happen very quickly if not controlled, so push to have anywhere between 7-10 different ads per month. You can even push for more if you have the necessary resources to help.
- Cap impressions to 2 per user per day.
- Rotate creatives from static to animated.
- Continue A/B testing in conjunction with your landing pages. It’s important to understand which generate the most clicks and how you can then turn those clicks into conversions.
6. Use Instagram for Microblogging
Instagram is a visual platform so you have to find a way to deliver content that teaches your audience something they’re interested in and inspires them. If your audience is able to see themselves as part of your brand, the likelihood of getting them to follow you, visit your website, and ultimately, buying from you is much higher.
Captions shouldn’t just be for hashtags. Look at how you can repurpose your blog content over to your Instagram captions. To be more specific, the average length for captions have doubled since 2016.
The recommended length is 405 characters, so don’t shy away from increasing the potential of your Instagram engagement by writing longer captions. Additionally, the strategy here is that the more engagement you can earn from having a great feed accompanied by thoughtfully written captions, the higher of an opportunity you’ll have to grow revenue.
7. A/B Test What You Can
A/B testing can help you make informed decisions in order to improve your bottom-line. With controlled tests, you can see which marketing strategies are most effective and then focus your resources there.
Here are some KPIs that you can hone in on to see if your A/B testing is working:
Higher Conversion Rate:
You can use A/B testing to test anchor text, colors, or different locations on your CTAs to boost the number of people going to landing pages. Create more leads by getting more visitors to click through and fill out forms on your website.
According to a Conversion Rate Optimization report, 71% of the companies which tested landing pages before publishing noticed a visible sales increase.
Gmail once performed A/B testing with 50 shades of blue for their CTA in order to see which converted more customers. SAP too used A/B testing for the same purpose to check the color which was most effective in bringing in more sales. They were successful in increasing their conversion rate by 32.5%
Lower Bounce Rate:
Each second counts and as per a study, a delay of even a second can result in a 7% reduction in conversion. Pop-up ads and other heavy elements can play a big role in hindering conversion rate. You can test different website design versions, features, and fonts to see which ones retain more visitors.
Wrapping It Up
As you’re growing and scaling your business, the same rules you followed to start your business still apply: you don’t have to be everything to everyone.
Growth can happen faster when you focus on your strengths rather than trying to improve on your weaknesses. Evaluate your opportunities to ensure you’re still prioritizing what you do best.
Another great way to stay on the right path is to keep a pulse on competitors and industry-specific reports, making sure you use this information to help identify the opportunities as well as gaps in your niche.
From there, you can then stay focused on ‘who’ your target audience is and ‘what’ they want. This will help you best position your products/services and aid with good messaging to bring in interested buyers.
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links. I only recommend products and services that I use and stand behind, and if you decide to try them, I will earn a commission at no cost to you. Doing so helps me run this blog and provide free content for you, my readers.