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Give Your Home Business a Boost with Digital Marketing!
Digital marketing is a phenomenon.
Twenty years ago it was hard to convince some Fortune 500 Companies that they should invest in a web presence and today entire empires like Facebook and Google are founded and flourish online.
Of course, just twenty years ago when landlines were bombarded by telemarketers and companies paid millions to send out fliers, digital ads now follow users everywhere online.
Even with the ubiquity of digital ads, users can use software to block those ads, giving consumers greater control over the information they consume.
Paid ads on social networks or PPC ads that appear in search results are just one facet of digital marketing. Just like there are seemingly numerous ways to use the internet, there are many ways to advertise on it.
In the past few years, we’ve seen the content revolution take hold as companies now pay publications like the New York Times to create “sponsored articles” that indirectly promote a product or reinforce a brand position.
Simply put, digital marketing is an ever-changing animal that is hard to put into a cage; digital marketers by nature are ever-evolving, reading such useful resources as Search Engine Land, Neil Patel, and the Content Marketing Institute to learn the latest trends in online behavior and digital marketing methodologies.
When approaching a digital marketing campaign for your home business, it helps to think of marketing online as a pie with six slices.
Below we walk you through a brief introduction to each of the six steps that make up a full digital marketing campaign and how you can utilize strategies employed by companies like Google to earn a fortune of your own online.
1. Content Marketing and SEO
There’s no better example of how fast digital marketing changes that looking at the evolution of content marketing and search engine optimization (SEO) over the past ten years.
SEO is the practice of employing various strategies to rank higher in Google’s and other search engine’s search algorithm, thus appearing near or at top of the search results for keywords like “new car” or queries like “pharmacy nearest me.”
Since Google’s search ranking algorithm has always prioritized links, SEO used to focus primarily on building or buying links to a site to inflate its rankings.
However, Google got wise to these practices and deployed several new algorithms that penalized webmasters who scraped content or built links against Google’s guidelines.
These days, fresh content is the most surefire way to rank with Google giving preference to pages with more words.
Of course, more words do not mean better ranking.
The reason we’ve grouped SEO and Content Marketing together is that not only do you need to employ the best practices of SEO to get the most out of your content marketing efforts, but content marketing is the best way to earn quality links to your website.
It’s not all just blogging as there are plenty of best practices to learn how you can format your pages and use keywords. Familiarize with the essentials of SEO and content marketing and start creating content that will earn you money online.
2. Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
Now this is where some people get confused with the digital marketing puzzle.
While SEO is certainly one form of search engine marketing (SEM), it’s only one side of the coin. As we mentioned above, SEO used to involve a good deal of buying links, a practice that would often fall under the heading of SEM.
Today, that term still refers to a paid form of search marketing but this time it’s PPC, which we will break down next.
What’s important to understand is that SEM is a practice removed from SEO and PPC in that it looks at both to dictate what the overarching SEM strategy should be and how both one’s SEO and PPC efforts should be tweaked. Speaking of which….
3. Pay-Per-Click Advertising (PPC)
For about as long as there has been the internet, there has been ads.
Google changed the whole ad game, however, when they introduced AdWords, a type of text ad that would appear on a search results page and the advertiser would only pay a price for it if a person clicked on the ad.
These days, PPC ads are everywhere, from Google to your favorite site. Google itself offers an extremely sophisticated set of tools that enable home business of all sizes and types to establish a refined PPC campaign in little under an hour.
Simply determine which keywords and search terms you want to appear for and place a bid; the more searches a keyword receives, the greater the price.
PPC is both relatively easy to learn and difficult to master; here’s a helpful guide to jump starting your first PPC campaign.
4. Email Marketing
In spite of the proliferation of email marketing campaigns that rub some consumers the wrong way, a well-researched and targeted email marketing campaign is still a highly effective way to bolster customer allegiance and expands one’s customer base.
What’s more astonishing is that a well-run email marketing campaign averages 3800% ROI (return on investment) so that monthly fee you need to pay to MailChimp is likely a drop in the bucket compared to what you could stand to make.
When establishing an email marketing campaign, it’s wise to do some in-depth research into your audience and what they typically respond to.
If you’ve already done some email or content marketing, you’ll have some idea of the type of content that your audience likes. If you haven’t, then try different approaches until the right one works for you.
Check out this guide to learn the essentials of email marketing.
5. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is one of the more time-tested ways of making money from home.
Simply put, when you sign up for an affiliate marketing network, your ads will appear on the type of sites that your audience reads.
And if you own your own site, participating in an affiliate marketing campaign is another way to earn revenue through your site via commissions on ad clicks.
To learn more about this digital marketing method, click here.
6. Social Media Marketing
Last but certainly not least is Social Media Marketing, also known as Social Media Optimization (SMO).
At the end of last year, 2.8 billion people were using social media with 2.5 billion of them using smartphones to access social media.
No two SMO strategies are ever the same as each home business needs to learn what platforms their audience members are on and target their messages to those platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and much more.
Here’s another helpful guide to the essentials of social media marketing.
At the end of the day, how much of you budget you allot to each of the above six slices of the digital marketing piece depends solely on you and your audience.
By learning what your audience wants and responds to, you can establish a social media strategy and marketing campaign that will get you real results!