By Oliver Jäger
People in the service industry have always preached the customer is king. This dictum holds even greater weight in the era of e-commerce, social media and sharper customer focus. As a leader in digital marketing and Web content management, e-Spirit has drawn on its expertise to share 10 top tips that companies should consider to create a strong foundation for successful digital marketing.
To most effectively reach target groups, it has become vital to adopt digital marketing strategies that embrace online, mobile and social. Only by addressing target users on cross-channel basis with effective content can companies stay top of mind, achieve an emotional response, improve customer loyalty and, of course, increase sales. By focusing on the following 10 areas, digital marketers can greatly improve their chances of coming out on top.
1. It depends on the content
The most essential factor for a digital marketing campaign is well thought-out, entertaining and even surprising content that is tailored to the needs and interests of a previously defined target group. That’s why it is important to create high-quality content as a foundation as well as to analyse and define your target audiences.
2. A picture speaks volumes
No matter how good the content is, website visitors do not want to wade through too much text. Well-organised colorful layouts with interactive content, photos and videos make websites and online stores much more interesting and appealing. Visual aids are fun, generate discussion, complement text, increase comprehension and usually do a better job conveying information than text alone.
3. Integrate Web analytics
How do you improve content, user interaction and navigation? By analysing your website users’ behavior with the help of statistics, graphics and other information to give you greater insight. Have your analyses and enhancements made directly in the CMS to save your marketing managers time and more quickly see eye to eye with your customers. Website owners should ensure that their analysis tools don’t violate data privacy regulations.
4. Multiple use is better
Using content only once costs time, money and effort. At the beginning of a campaign, marketing departments should make sure that content is used multiple times—on the website, in articles, in mailings and in social media postings. Content compiled using an automated system that also can be customised for targeted user groups and delivered by a CMS to the appropriate channels results in better campaigns, a more complete pipeline with qualified leads and increased sales at lower costs.
5. Dove-tailed campaigns
An effective combination of several channels, such as social networks, landing pages and personalised special deal mailings increases the success of any online campaign. Ad campaigns that dovetail with one another ensure better conversion of interested parties to qualified leads and customers, repeat purchases and higher sales. E-mail and newsletter notifications aren’t enough; customers more often respond better to text messages, personalised websites or apps. Many systems can adapt content to different channels such as mobile, but not all, and companies must take that into account. Intelligent solutions can determine whether notification attempts were successful or not.
6. Staying in touch
Marketing managers can stay in touch directly with existing and potential customers via Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. However, they should make sure that their social media activities are just as professional and well thought-out as other marketing activities. Creating and updating all of your news items, tweets and other communication directly from the editorial interface of the content management system will lighten your workload considerably.
7. Search engine optimisation
To gain top billing in search engines, it’s not only the content, but also the crafting of a good URL that’s important to reach target groups. URLs should be memorable and multilingual and able to flexibly adapt, so the website has a relevant format for SEO.
8. Testing efficiency
The success of the landing pages, mailings and teasers can be easily analysed using A/B testing tools. The goal is to constantly optimise campaigns as well as continuously increase the number of downloads and click-through rates (CTR).
Contact forms and other applications on websites and landing pages should be intuitive and easy to use. For marketing managers, it makes sense to create and configure the forms directly in the CMS and incorporate them into campaigns. It’s also helpful to have the ability to easily set up rules for sending mailings and creating automatic forwarding of information to sales or events managers. Data privacy and security issues must be observed with such activities.
10. Automation saves time and money
For a uniform online marketing strategy that consistently targets customers, the customer journey should be regularly checked, analysed and optimised. Potential customers can be identified through defined rules, provided with custom-tailored information and transferred to sales as qualified leads. A CMS that bundles and automates online marketing processes provides additional support.
A good product or a high-quality service alone is no longer sufficient to be successful. It is important to stand out from the competition through a well-designed digital marketing strategy. It takes a personalised, targeted user approach and interesting content that’s individualised and presented consistently in different channels to create loyal customers. A good CMS helps you to combine and automate marketing activities.
About the author and e-Spirit
Oliver Jäger is Vice President Global Marketing & Communications at e-Spirit. Founded in 1999, e-Spirit (www.e-spirit.com ) has a growing presence across Europe and North America. The company’s FirstSpirit content management system is used by more than 1,000 international brands including Speedo, Airbus, BASF and Nintendo, giving them an efficient way to create compelling websites, integrate complex systems and portals and provide a more engaging user experience on the Web.