Online marketing is an ever-moving target. Social networks change. Strategies change. As a social media marketer, one of the biggest parts of my job is to listen, read, absorb everything that is happening in social media so that I can roll with the changes. I wanted to bring you some of the trends I am seeing and how it will affect our online marketing campaigns and strategies.
Mobile is No Longer a Luxury
Every year, more and more of us are using our smart phones and tablets to access the internet and visit websites. It is now a high priority to make sure your website looks good on a smart phone. If it does not, you are missing out on large amounts of visitors who leave because they can't navigate your site on their smart phone. If your website looks bad on a smart phone, it is time for a website redesign. It really is that important. The money and time you spend, will greatly increase the effectiveness of your website. A website that is not mobile-ready is worth about half of what is was worth when you first had it created.
Video is Getting Even Bigger
You need look no further than the Gangnam style video on YouTube to see that millions of people saw the video and found it entertaining. Popularity will be defined on how you are received in the social media space. More shares and more views mean that social media will shift its focus to become an entertainment power house.
As marketers, we have to refocus our attention in coming up with content that is not text based but more on videos and audio. For many businesses YouTube needs to become a larger part of the marketing mix. There are many ways video can be used to market a business. We each will need to find the right fit for video in our marketing. For a law firm, that could mean bio videos introducing attorneys. For businesses such as a quilt shop, it could mean more how-to videos. For an auto repair business it could mean video tips on good auto maintenance. Those that find a way to use YouTube and video on their websites will be in a good position to capture the attention of more prospective buyers.
Don't Be Afraid to Create Super-Targeted Content
Social media marketers will have to realize that we all are becoming accustomed to a much more personalized flow of information. We can now pick and choose where we receive news, which blogs and magazines we consume, and what websites we visit. At every turn, we are also using social media with our flow of information. If you watch a YouTube video, you get to “Like” it or leave a comment. The same is true for any blog posts you read. You are able to leave your thoughts and ideas. It is now easy for us to share what we see with our friends and contacts.
As social media marketers, we need to create content that is designed for the prospect we want to attract. You may have several audiences that you need to market to. For instance, a CPA may be looking to work with more young professionals, or a specific industry such as veterinarians. This CPA should create some pieces of content that are aimed specifically at young professionals, and some that are aimed directly at veterinarians. It is alright to include both types of blog articles on the CPA's website. The audience will sort themselves and come to the articles that are appropriate to them.
The mistake you don't want to make is to create content that is broad and will please everyone. What you end up with are articles that are watered down, and don't seen to speak to any specific audience. Instead of appealing to everyone, the articles are vague and appeal to no one. It's okay to drill down and create content that is very specific to particular prospects you are looking to attract.
Good Marketing is a Moving Target
In order to stay successful in your online marketing, you need to constantly re-evaluate your strategies and add new ones from time to time. What works today will not always continue to work tomorrow. Over the last few years I have seen a lot of changes in the types of online marketing that work and the strategies that don't work. If you find one strategy started to become less affective, it's time to do some brainstorming and try new things.