Let’s be real, 2020 has been hard. It’s been a year full of unexpected challenges that aggravated issues and drove difficult decisions. Whatever your team and business have experienced, we hear you and want to help you bounce back and succeed in 2021.
With a well-rounded digital marketing strategy, you can effectively illuminate your brand and fuel profitable connections. Here are 14 tips to help you establish the right digital marketing plan and boost your revenue in 2021. Use them to identify new strategies for growth.
1. Understand Your Target Audience
First things first—who are you trying to reach? Before you can win customers and boost your sales, you need to understand your target audience.
Listen to your prospects’ questions and problems. Be conscientious of the way they consume content and how their online habits can change the way they seek information and services like yours.
The key is connecting your solutions and strategies to your audience’s needs. Any disconnect can push people away and have them looking elsewhere.
Start by finding out who your current customers are. What are their demographics? Use online survey tools like SurveyMonkey and Google Forms to gain more insight into their buying and online habits.
Also, be sure to conduct a competitive gap analysis. What are your competitors currently offering? Who are they targeting? Where are they ranked on Google and other search engines? Discover the gaps you need to fill to win trust and loyalty.
2. Get Your SEO in Order
SEO changes constantly, which throws marketers for a loop, but we still keep it central to our strategies. Why?
Seventy-five percent of online users don’t look past the first page of search results. If you’re not on the first page, your business basically doesn’t exist to more than half of the global population.
SEO doesn’t just help you stay visible—it helps drive traffic a.k.a. potential customers to your site. And if they like what they see (we’ll get to this in a bit), they’ll be more willing to convert.
There are numerous ways to level up your SEO game, but here are a few to get started:
- Conduct a site audit: Do you have broken links? Is your site slow? Do you have duplicate content? A site audit via tools like Screaming Frog can give you direction on both the technical and creative aspects of your site that need some work.
- Come up with better keywords through search intent: Keywords are crucial in helping people find your company for search queries. But rather than focusing on the specific key phrase itself, focus on the context surrounding it. In other words, think about search intent. Why is someone typing a certain phrase into Google? This can help you discover related phrases and more specific queries to create long-tail keywords. Long-tail keywords generally have a higher conversion rate than regular keywords.
3. Automate like Crazy
Time is money. It can get tricky finding ways to efficiently get tasks done AND win more leads and conversions. But one marketing tool that can make it all happen? Marketing automation.
Marketing automation enables you to reach more people on a more personal level. We know, this sounds impossible. But with the right tools and marketing automation team, it’s possible, alright.
Automation generates 451 percent more qualified leads. Not to mention, 77 percent of marketers have seen their conversions increase.
Look into marketing automation software like Hubspot and Pardot. Then, depending on your marketing needs and goals, you might want to consider looking into:
- Segmentation: Marketing automation lets you segment your potential customers based on specific characteristics. That way, you can send out unique messages to each group. Those who segment their email campaigns see a 760 percent increase in revenue.
- Sales enablement: Combine your marketing automation platform with your CRM system. Doing this can help your marketing and sales teams collaborate and find ways to sell more effectively.
For tips on setting up your marketing automation platform the right way, check out our ultimate guide to marketing automation. It’s important that you set the right foundation to efficiently drive customer engagement and sales.
4. Engage through Email
Every dollar spent on email marketing brings an average ROI of $42. Better yet, you can drive these dollars even further by using marketing automation to automate your emails. Start sending out messages to the right people at the right time.
Here are a couple of ways to make the most of your email marketing campaigns:
- Create autoresponders. Your prospects want to feel heard, seen, and loved. Autoresponders is a simple and effective email tool that allows you to send a series of scheduled follow-up emails to your leads and customers. It helps you build relationships and compel them to take the action you want them to take.
- Promote stellar content: As much as it’s important to stay connected with your leads, if you aren’t showering them with valuable content, then you’re just throwing dollars down the drain. So think about what your prospects want and need. Use this to put together a content strategy, which brings us to our next point.
5. Plan out a Robust Content Strategy
Seventy-two percent of marketers not only say content marketing increases their engagement rates, but it also increases the numbers of leads. In our recent case study, a solid content marketing strategy boosted our client’s site sessions by 80 percent and organic revenue by over 1,000 percent.
Content should be central to your digital marketing strategy for 2021 and beyond. It’s the love language that kindles trust and lasting relationships. After all, how else are you going to communicate with potential customers?
With your team, discuss each section of the marketing funnel. What are some types of content you can create for every stage of the buyer’s journey?
Here are some ideas:
- Awareness stage: Blog posts, infographics, videos, and newsletters.
- Consideration stage: Case studies, E-books, downloadable guides, and quizzes/surveys.
- Decision stage: Free trials, testimonials, and customer support/help documentations.
Don’t be afraid to repurpose older content. If it has value, update it with new statistics, facts, and examples. Then, re-promote it. This can save time and allow more room to focus on big-picture strategies.
6. Create 10x Content
The online landscape is loud and crowded. To help you really stand out, consider creating 10x content.
Coined by Moz founder, Rand Fishkin, 10x content is content that is 10 times better than your competitors’. It’s about providing the highest quality content and a uniquely positive user experience.
Get started by:
- Taking a look at the topics your competitors are covering. What are some ways you can add further detail to these topics? Maybe it’s adding in reputable sources and statistics; maybe it’s providing actionable takeaways. Whatever it is, make them bigger and better.
- Creating a good mobile experience. Every piece of content should be optimized for easy viewing on mobile. Why? Fifty-one percent of the time we spend online is spent on mobile phones.
- Making it fun and creative. Find exceptional ways to present your content. Whether it’s illustrating your findings in a helpful graph or including an interactive component to it, create something people will want to stick around for.
Keep in mind, it takes experimentation and practice to find something that really lands. The more you create, the more you’ll develop a better sense of what works and what doesn’t.
7. A/B Test to Boost Your Site Conversions
Got some pretty stellar content on your landing pages? Great. But how’s it laid out on your site? Does it compel people to click and take action?
Having a website is crucial, but if it isn’t generating leads and customers then it’s all just junk. That’s why you need conversion rate optimization (CRO)—a digital marketing strategy that boosts your on-site experience and increases conversions.
If CRO is done right, you can enjoy a 223 percent increase in ROI. Good CRO involves A/B testing, or comparing two variations of an element on your page.
There are a ton of tips on how to boost your CRO and what to test. Here are a few good places to start:
- CTAs: Are you using boring language like “submit”, or are you using active language like “grab yours” or “claim your free site audit”? Weave in active verbs and test out different CTAs to see which ones convert the most.
- Longer landing pages: Longer landing pages make up to 220 percent more leads than shorter pages. If your site page is rather short, try going long-form. Address all of your customers’ queries. Then, A/B test your short and long pages.
- Pop-ups: Add in a 30-second delay on your pop-ups and provide different offers. You might just win up to a nine percent conversion rate.
8. Stay Active & Transparent on Social Media
More than half of the world’s population is active on social media. Are you?
Failing to be present on social media gives the impression your brand is dead. And failing to respond to people’s comments/questions gives the sense you don’t care about your customers.
Get a social calendar going and test out different types of content to feature in your posts. This will likely take some experimentation in the beginning to see what brings in the most engagement.
By creating a social calendar a month in advance and providing valuable content, one of Big Leap’s clients was able to win a 1,500 percent increase in engagement and over 900% increase in reach.
9. Focus on Reviews
Ninety-three percent of users say online reviews impact their purchasing decisions. And a one-star increase in a Yelp rating brings a five to nine percent boost in revenue.
How’s your online reputation looking? Do most of your customers love you or do they despise you? How’s this impacting your business?
If you’ve been the victim of bad reviews and publicity, luckily, we’re a reputation management professionals that can lend a hand. We can help bury the negative reviews/results and shed light on the positive aspects of your business.
And if you’re just swimming through a pool of positive reviews, great! Keep at it by asking old and new customers for referrals and reviews. For more ideas, check out the five ways to gain more positive reviews to help further enhance your online presence.
10. Network & Collaborate
Find your tribe! Take advantage of any events or organizations related to your industry.
Rather than thinking, “What’s in it for me?” think about how these resources will help build valuable relationships. The people you meet can help you formulate new ideas and introduce you to new people and customers.
Reach out to friends or former colleagues by posting on your social platforms. Ask your contacts to refer you to those who might be interested in your company and initiatives.
You could find a potential partner who can help drive new business in the future.
11. Offer Freebies/Samples
Ninety-three percent of U.S. consumers believe discounts and offers are important factors when it comes to their purchasing decisions. Moreover, more than half search for coupons online before making an online purchase.
Committing to a new product and service is a big decision. Whether you sell hand cream, provide roof repair services, or sell CBD products, always present discounts and special offers.
Provide 2-for-1 deals, free samples, or referral programs to your customers. Give them the opportunity to get to know your services. Make committing to a new brand a pleasant experience.
12. Get Ready for Voice Search
Nearly 22 percent of the world’s population uses voice search every day. If you haven’t already updated your SEO strategy to accommodate voice search, you gotta do it now.
Siri and Alexa have made quite the impact on SEO. Voice search results load in about 4.6 seconds; this is 52 percent faster than the load time of the average web page.
Optimize your site for voice search by:
- Aiming for featured snippets: 40.7 percent of all voice search answers come from featured snippets. With tools like Answer the Public, you can find common questions relevant to your keywords. Use these key questions as H2s in your content and answer them directly below in the body. Make it direct, concise, and short.
- Earn quality backlinks: The average domain rating (DR) of voice search is 76.8. This is high. To boost your DR, you have to circle back and fine-tune your SEO, content marketing, CRO, etc.
13. Add Paid Search for an Extra Boost
Add a kick to your organic efforts by peppering in paid search/PPC (pay-per-click) methods. PPC entails:
- Retargeting: Ads that remind your past site visitors of your products and services.
- Display ads: These are ads that are embedded and displayed across various site pages.
- Paid search ads: These search results are usually above organic results when you look up something on Google. They are marked with an “ad” next to them.
Start with organic marketing strategies to secure the long-term success of your company. This can help you decipher what converts well, too. Then, add in paid search strategies to fill the gaps.
Platforms like Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and AdRoll provide PPC options. So, find out where your audience is hanging out and plan your paid strategies accordingly.
14. Prepare for Change
In 2018, Google reported over 3,000 updates to their search algorithm. In 2020, 44 percent of marketers faced mid-year budgets cuts due to COVID-19.
What will be the new normal tomorrow? Will you be ready to move swiftly with the changes our world throws at us?
Brainstorm and create agile marketing strategies in 2021. This means considering:
- Activity/performance: If organic methods have been bringing in the most returns compared to paid search, you need to be able to move your money accordingly.
- Changes in the marketplace: Your competitors can change their strategies and products at any time. You should be ready to shift your plans, too, to stay competitive and relevant to customers.
- Shifts in the digital economy: With the numerous Google algorithm updates and tech inventions we have yet to see, your business needs to adapt to these transitions. One small change can affect your rankings and how people see you online.
Amplify Your Digital Marketing Strategy in 2021 with Big Leap
Do you have ideas for your marketing strategy and want some input? Contact us. With over a decade of experience in the digital marketing world, our team has helped 600+ businesses elevate their online presence and get well-prepared for the challenges ahead.
Whatever success looks like for your business in 2021, we’re here to be your trusted partner. So reach out to us, and we can get you started with a free 30-minute strategy session.