As an investment bank, we receive calls and emails from business owners with flat or falling sales that want to sell their company or raise capital. Unfortunately, we often can’t help them. Much of the time, they have not developed their inbound and outbound digital marketing capabilities, and they are losing market share to competitors which have already developed theirs.
We have seen so much demand for an integrated digital marketing product that we decided to develop a comprehensive solution. We have used our own digital marketing program as the foundation.
Our solution integrates digital reconnaissance (big data), with Outbound marketing, Inbound Marketing, Press Releases, Social Media, all of which are pulled together by Content Writing. You will notice that we have no mention of SEO. Post-Penguin SEO in now limited to on-page key phrase optimization to meet the semantic search algorithms being developed by Google.
The world of marketing has changed dramatically in the last decade. Businesses are winning or losing market share based upon their degree of adoption of digital marketing. Yet few middle-market business owners really understand how their customers are deciding what products and services to buy, and how to position their company in the digital marketing era.
Today, Google search dominates both b2c and b2b purchase decision making. Customers make decisions based upon organic search results which include websites for you, your competitors, Facebook, Manta, Angie’s List, Google+ company pages, and others. Understanding Google’s search algorithm is essential to achieve productive organic search results.
Recent changes to Google’s algorithm include Panda, Penguin, and Hummingbird determine who the winners and losers are in the race for organic search results. Google has also changed the game by creating Google Local pages, and now awards a certain number of first-page results for local searches. Those companies that don’t get favorable organic search coverage must turn to Pay-Per-Click ads and outbid their competitors.
Many middle-market companies hire a website designer, and they buy SEO services, create a Facebook page, and believe that’s all that’s required. But were all your digital assets really integrated and automated? Its all about how you rank for your business’ key phrases. If a prospective customer was doing research prior to a purchase, would your website or social media page pop up on page one of Google?
First page Google search results and your Google Analytics engagement metrics are the ultimate judges of your digital marketing proficiency.Bounce rates, page speed and time-on-page are among the key metrics to master in the race to win at inbound marketing.
Content writing and press releases are continually overlooked as enhancers to your digital marketing strategy.“Content is King” is that mantra of 21st century digital marketing. Without it, success will be more elusive. Who is doing your content creation and do they really know your business and customers?
Social media pages are an overlooked supplement. Even for B2B companies, it’s important to have a presence on LinkedIn, Facebook and Google+. There are some unique ways to increase traffic to your website by using these sites, and others we won’t mention.
If this all sounds like gobbledygook, you have lots of company. But, as a fellow business owner, I can tell you without question that some of your competitors are working day and night to perfect their digital marketing campaigns.
The winners in the digital marketing game will be the winners on the corporate battlefield. The Greatest Generation are mostly retired. Baby Boomers have changed their purchase behavior and have adopted Google search to find vendor data and product information. They are or will be retired soon. In their place, Gen X and Millennials will become the big spenders in B2B and B2C products and services, and they will demand a digital marketing approach.
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