Internet Marketing Basics - How it all Works
Marketing online begins and ends with leads and customers: you need leads in order to get customers. A beautiful website is great, but if no one knows it's there, how can you get people to buy what you are selling?
At a high level it is very clear what needs to be done:
- Drive lots of traffic to your site
- Entice your traffic with awesome content into becoming a lead
- Nurture your leads down your sales funnel to become customers
Of course the devil is in the details, so here are the key steps:
Develop Your Marketing Strategy
Background work is essential to any good plan. You must first know where you are and where you want to go in order to get there!
- Who are you? What are your brand strengths, and what do you stand for?
- Know what your goals are
- Assess existing educational assets that can be used on line
- Categorize buyer personas
- Social media involvement plan
- Blogging strategy
- Content development planning
- Identify desired outcomes
- Lead-nurturing objectives & strategy
Purposeful Website Design
Central to your plan is the need for a well designed and optimized (for search engines) website. Beyond this, you need to make sure you personally are able to make content changes without the help of technical staff. In other words, your site needs to live within a content management system (CMS).
Drive Traffic to Your Site
You might have the most convincing and attractive site on the internet, but it does you no good if it cannot be found by your customers. Plug in the essential elements so that your site is visited by people interested in your business!
- On-page SEO
- Off-page SEO
- Keyword development
- Social media
- Video & webinars
Convert Traffic into Leads
Develop your site into a resource for your prospects. Know that most leads will not convert into customers right away, so understand what your customer lifecycle is so that you can develop a conversion strategy that is correctly timed.
- Create educational content that addresses your leads' questions
- Segment leads based on their personas and lifecycle stages
- Develop interesting calls to action
- Build irresistable landing pages to collect contact info
Make Customers out of Your Leads
Now the final piece: generating customers from your prospects - are they ready?
- Nurture your leads to keep them moving closer to a sale
- Evaluate your leads' activities to score them appropriately
- Manage them with intelligent workflows that build your relationship with them
Analyze and Repeat
Central to the success of a strong inbound marketing plan is the ability to try an approach, run it for a period of time, and then evaluate the results. Then do more of what works, and stop doing that which doesn't.
In short, make sure you are using a suite of powerful internet software tools that provide visibility into your leads' interactions with you and your site.
Sound Like a Lot?Indeed there are many steps and a considerable amount of learning that needs to happen to do well in this, but if you don't have time, consider using the services of a qualified Inbound Marketing Consultant.