Studies show that about half of all startup companies are bound to collapse in the first four years unless they develop a competitive market presence.
No wonder why developing a solid digital campaign has become a guiding star for all marketers.
However, what holds most of the startup businesses from building a compelling digital strategy is the low initial budget. According to a recent study, 82 percent of entrepreneurs go into business with the money they got from savings, family, friends or banks.
Still, there is always a way for you to effectively integrate proven marketing strategies with your business on a shoestring budget.
Identify the key trends in digital marketing
As an erratic ecosystem, digital marketing constantly goes through noticeable changes. Furthermore, it is not a secret that, in order to be appreciated in your line of business, you need to recognise and implement such changes in a timely manner.
Inbound Now recognised several vital trends in the field of digital marketing that will dominate in 2015:
– Content is still king. Since its early boom several years ago, meaningful content has become the golden rule in the world of SEO. According the CMI’s 2014 B2B Content Marketing survey, 93 percent of marketers reported that they employed at least some form of content marketing strategies. This essentially means that marketers will give up the traditional marketing tactics in favour of creating more valuable content.
– Marketing analytics. Every experienced marketer knows that analytic tools that assess the attitudes of their customers towards their services are essential. However, the importance of this aspect of marketing is supposed to gain even larger impact by the end of the year.
– Social conversion. Social media are constantly gaining ground as one of the most practical ways of content promotion. The Social Media Marketing Industry Report shows that B2B marketers use approximately 13 content marketing tactics, most popular of which is social media content that is used by 92 percent of companies.
– Videos. If a picture paints a thousand words, video definitely speaks millions. Apart from delivering an empathetic appeal to your marketing campaign, this splendid combination of text, image and sound is highly effective, easy to use and has an immense growth potential. The current reference that supports this statement is the research conducted by The Online Publishers Association, showing that 80 percent of all respondents who watched an online video were inspired to take some kind of action, such as browsing a website, searching for additional details or making a purchase.
– Contextualisation. Although considered the most objective method of addressing the audience, generic content has already proven ineffective for any of the surveyed groups. This is exactly why the integration of context with content marketing is believed to be the future of SEO, automatically rising the success rate of the entire campaign.
Marketers expect from their users to understand and memorise their content and what better way to achieve that than by providing something that can peak their interest? Last year, by creating personalised content, companies were able to increase the number of sales, lower costs and boost customer satisfaction.
– Going mobile. According to the latest researches, about 145 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones. In other words, nearly two out of every three Americans own a smartphone. With the use of such devices, the popularity of mobile web has gained a potential for rapid expansion. Its importance will keep growing in each and every aspect of business, especially when the word is about online marketing.
– Choosing right domain name. Reflecting exactly who you are, your domain name is equivalent to your ID in real life. Since it is the first thing your customers come across, thus it needs to be chosen carefully. A proper domain name should be short, simple and easily recognisable. For example, one of the latest trends is the .ME domain, used by numerous leading communities, such as Tearaway or Facebook.
Build your online authority with influencer engagement
In a dog-eat-dog world of modern marketing, people tend to do business with companies they trust. Being an online authority means that you are not only a guru on a specific topic, but also that you have taken time to reach out to your target demographic properly.
The best way to achieve such goals is to employ influencer marketing, which is seen as the next big thing in the digital world. This form of marketing has emerged as a direct result of recent tactics that focused on a specific type of individuals, rather than the target demographic as a whole. This entire strategy is oriented towards particular individuals that might have influence over potential buyers. They can be buyers themselves, or, on the other hand, third parties that exist either in the supply chain or as value-added influencers, such as journalists or academics.
Being widely applied in a commercial context, influencer marketing comprises four main activities:
– Identifying influencers and ranking them in order of importance
– Addressing to influencers, to increase brand awareness
– Addressing target audience through influencers
– Marketing with influencers, making them the advocates of the company
Although marketers are still hesitant about this branch of marketing, there are many studies that show how powerful it might be. For example, the research done by Tomoson shows those businesses make $6.50 for every dollar invested in influencer marketing. This only proves that influencer marketing is the fastest growing channel that can take your digital marketing strategy to a completely new level.
Revise your content planning and publishing activities
Content marketing is believed to be the future of SEO. Many online companies resort to it as the most efficient method of attracting customers, driving traffic to their site and improving sale. However, in order to make your content relevant, you need to establish a solid content marketing strategy.
Although the stats show that 89 percent of startups use content marketing strategies, only 35 percent of them have already documented it. In order to boost your online campaign, you need to pay special attention to your content planning and publishing activities.
The first step towards creating valuable and effective content is the research, during which you will get to know your target demographic. This process plays a vital role because it defines your customers and shapes the information they want to read. Once you do the research, you are supposed to create the content in accordance with your target demographics’ needs. Finally, it needs to be distributed and promoted.
Taking into consideration the abovementioned research conducted by the Social Media Marketing Industry, it is more than obvious that publishing content through social media is more effective than traditional marketing tactics. However, what you need to know is that doing social networking right requires an immense time commitment. Namely, the WPCurve’s research has shown that 91% of startups published content once a week or more. Therefore, if you believe that your social media campaign won’t distract you from your primary obligations, then start tweeting away.
Get creative with you approaches
You don’t have to be a marketing expert to realise that being unique is essential for success. What you need to bear in mind is that people need to be fascinated by what you have to offer. When the word is about getting creative approaches, you need to follow these steps first:
– Clarifying your primary objective
– Defining the target audience
– Call to action
– Setting the budget
One of the best ways to achieve such an effect is to apply guerrilla marketing, which always emphasises creativity over budget. The strategies its entails are often affordable and easy to implement, especially when the word is about localised, B2B companies. What makes guerrilla marketing so special is the fact that it enables you to think outside the box, express your uniqueness and present your product in the best possible way.
Either you decide to use a plain wall as a canvas for your street art or broadcast your Twitter handle with sidewalk chalk; you won’t need a sky-high budget to succeed. In other words, guerrilla marketing helps startups in something they are concerned with the most- creating a catchy and yet cost-effective marketing strategy.
Although it may be a time-consuming and complex procedure, putting a startup on a digital map is the key to every entrepreneur’s success. Keeping all these proven marketing strategies in mind, you will always manage to gain a competitive edge and compete with the growing cohort of your rivals. What else can you ask for from such a turbulent digital landscape?