Google ‘digital marketing plan for small business owners’ and you may not return until next year. The internet is full of complicated ideas on how to sell your business.
In reality, digital marketing is not complicated. You can learn without the headaches that accompany the endless noise on the internet.
There are 7 types of digital marketing – below you’ll find their pros and cons, and examples of how each one may apply to you. And an example of how to build your strategy.
So what are those 7 types of digital marketing?
7 Types of Digital Marketing
SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- People find your website through search engines, like Google. Having a spot on page 1 of Google is worth its weight in gold. If possible, you should look to research appropriate keyword searches your company may benefit from being attached to.
- Pros: A great way to find new customers
- Cons: Optimizing for SEO is complex, like advanced calculus. It may take a long time for Google to give you authority. And competition is always present.
- Creating content (like blog posts) to attract new customers. This is adjacent to SEO, but the content of your blog & articles give readers knowledge and shows you are an expert.
- Pros: Great for SEO and shows your expertise.
- Cons: It is time-consuming to be done well.
- Using your email list to market your products or services. This is one of the most underutilized tools by small business owners. Creating an email marketing list and updating the list with your current customers is a valuable strategy for retention and referrals.
- Pros: The only form of advertising where you are completely in control – you own the list and have a captive audience.
- Cons: You need to constantly foster your email list to keep them engaged
Paid Search Marketing
- Paying for your ads to appear in search engine results, like Google AdWords.
- Pros: Able to target people looking for what you are offering.
- Cons: Easy to waste a lot of money with not a lot of results. You can create similar results with a great SEO strategy. It may be expensive depending on your industry.
Social Media Marketing
- Using free social media channels to attract new followers and create fans.
- Pros: It’s free, there’s a huge market and social media is widely used.
- Cons: The content lasts for a short amount of time – it’s out of someone’s feed and mind quickly. You don’t control the platform or how people are shown content on it. Doing SMM well is very strategic and time-consuming.
Paid Social Media Ads
- Buying ads on a social media channel to reach people outside of your current audience.
- Pros: Reaching new audiences and bringing your brand to the front of your current customer’s mind.
- Cons: Easy to waste a lot of money with not a lot of results if not managed properly.
- Turning visitors of your website into customers and loyal fans.
- Pros: Launching point for every point of digital marketing, the keystone of your online presence.
- Cons: Needs to be constantly updated, and requires attention to the latest browsing standards, mobile standards, etc.
What digital marketing strategies are you using?
This isn’t as overwhelming as it seems, we promise!
- All 7 types fit together.
- You don’t have to use them all. Use what makes the most sense to your business.
Figure out which aspects you would like to use and then start building a digital media strategy.
A great digital marketing strategy needs 3 parts.
- A foundation – where customers learn about you!
- A strategy for how people find out about you & your services.
- A strategy for how you keep in touch.
Putting that Digital Marketing Plan in Action!
Pete’s Dog Daycare has been steadily growing its business since it started a year ago. Pete’s has no digital marketing strategy. They know they could be doing better with their marketing. All marketing is done as they remember – an Instagram post here, a newsletter there. A lot of time is spent putting out fires.
Pete’s Dog Daycare needs a plan to turn into a well-oiled digital marketing machine. They already have their website, social media profiles (Instagram and Facebook are where their target customers are), and email list set up.
The first step is asking, “what is the goal of our digital marketing strategy?”
Pete’s Dog Daycare’s goal is to increase brand awareness and really connect with their customers.
They want to grow without paid advertising for now – eliminating paid social ads and paid search ads from types of digital marketing to use.
Pete’s needs to build the foundation for the house. They are going to start by creating foundational blog posts to attract more visitors to their website and gain authority. Great SEO starts with 8-10 foundational blog posts on topics that customers are searching for.
Start searching for things your customers might be searching for and find gaps in what’s out there. Google is your best friend here!
These blogs will create your cornerstone content. Google will use these to give your website more authority (bringing you higher in the search results).
Foundational blog posts are important because you can use them for your social media posts and repurpose them to send your email list.
All the digital marketing components are coming together! Pete’s started with one component – blog posts – and now there is content for social media, email list and it will increase your SEO. Checking off 4 of the components of digital marketing in one shot!
Digital Marketing Plan Steps for Pete’s Dog Daycare
- Research and write 8 foundational blog posts
- Do a website evaluation to make sure it’s clear how to navigate
- Create a social media calendar with posting ratios (batch schedule content)
- Start a monthly newsletter
All of this is easier with monthly themes. For example, if May is senior pet month use that as the inspiration for the newsletter and social media content.
How do you know if it’s working?
Carve out time to review! Create benchmarks before you start. Currently, Pete’s has 0 newsletter subscribers, 100 Instagram followers and 150 website visitors a month. In a month, Pete can go back and see how these stats compare his current following to these numbers.
The 7 types of digital marketing all work together to create your strategy. You don’t have to use them all! Find what works for your business and create your strategy from there.
Create a foundation and then layer on the rest of the parts – how customers will find you, how you will keep them engaged.
A digital marketing strategy is a great investment that will pay off big in the long run!
Ok, awesome — But what if Ireally do not have time to sit down and create a marketing plan?
Great question! Did you know the team here at Pilot Solutions creates digital marketing strategies for you? You didn’t? Now you do and we are a great fit with your company because:
- More time to run your business and wow your clients and spend time with loved ones all while we make magic for you.
- A solid marketing plan with clear goals based on your vision.
- Empowers you that you’re getting it right! You tap into our experience and start digital marketing a step ahead.