By Joanie Griffin / CEO, Griffin & Associates
Monday, January 15th, 2018 at 12:02am
The new year of 2018 is upon us, and it is the perfect time to implement new marketing strategies to grow your business and market share. As you get your priorities set for the year, it’s important to keep in mind the top marketing trends, so you’ll be on track to meet your objectives.
Today, 90 percent of the world accesses the Internet on their phones. That’s why it’s absolutely necessary that your website is easy to navigate via mobile devices. Your website must be responsive — a website that changes its format based on the equipment being used to access the site (desktop, laptop, tablet, smartphone).
Once people find your website, you need to make sure the content is persuasive and the site is easy to navigate. When analyzing your website, think from the user’s perspective. And remember, less is usually more. The basic rule of thumb is that you have three seconds to capture someone’s attention. When you’re looking at the content, avoid heavy verbiage and jargon. Tell stories to make your case. Compel the visitor to want to find out more. Have a “contact us” button or tab on each page, along with a phone number and contact email, so if a visitor is interested, they can easily reach you.
More communication takes place on social media platforms than any other medium. Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest and Snapchat are the most popular. Pinpointing your target audiences via social media can help optimize your sales. However, you have to do it well if you’re going to do it at all. For a business to be effective on social media, the business owner must commit the staff time necessary to regularly post relevant content.
Also, it is important to know who you are trying to reach, and which social media platform will be the most effective. For instance, if you are in the business—to-business market, LinkedIn is the best place to be. If you are trying to reach millennials and tweens, Snapchat is the place to be. If the market is baby boomers, Facebook should be your social media platform of choice and part of your marketing strategies.
Also known as earned media, public relations or PR is where your company is featured in the news or where the business leader writes articles, op-eds or opinion pieces. Despite what some people might say, the news media is a very powerful ally. People look favorably on businesses that appear positively in the news. Not only can PR put your business on the map and establish your products or services on both a local and national scale, but positive news stories can also be shared on social media, on your website and in electronic communications to clients and prospects.
We are bombarded with information daily, and most people look to minimize the amount of information coming at them. People turn more and more to reviews and recommendations from people and organizations they trust. That’s why micro-influencers – the small group of people that wield large influential spheres — serve as a powerful trend to tap into this year. Analyze your client demographics and understand who they are – age, sex, ZIP code, income level and lifestyle, as well as the psychographic nature of what makes them tick, and what makes them buy. Then find the people that are connected with those key demographics. Micro-influencers have large social media followings and are well respected. Having them endorse and recommend your company and its products and services will go a long way toward achieving your 2018 goals.
The way we digest and interpret information is constantly evolving and changing.
Today, more and more of us are turning to live streaming and video recordings for the most up-to-date news and product information. Integrating video into your marketing strategy will increase your customer reach and strengthen your brand image in the marketplace. When producing a video, keep it simple and compelling. Ideally, the video shouldn’t be longer than two minutes. The video can be utilized on your website, in social media and in electronic communications to clients and prospects.
The number of people blocking paid ads is growing, making it harder to break through the clutter. Digital advertising, as part of your marketing strategies, allows companies to target people by very specific demographics (even down to within 1,000 feet of a particular location). The key to successful digital ad campaigns is developing the right messaging and reaching the right target audience.