When you consider all of the digital marketing channels, tools and tactics available to businesses today, crafting a successful digital marketing strategy can seem anything but straightforward.
With almost 10,000 martech tools on the market, for example, how do you know which one is going to provide the most benefit for your business?
At Cognition, we’re committed to reducing complexity in all areas of marketing - because greater complexity leads to declining returns on investment. As a digital marketing agency, our role is to demystify the digital landscape and help businesses like yours to build a strong marketing strategy - that’s why we put together our Digital Marketing Made Simple guide.
The guide is full of our marketing experts’ insights and advice on the core pillars of any digital marketing strategy - let’s take a look at some of the highlights.
What is digital marketing?
Cognition’s definition of digital marketing might be slightly different to any you’ve heard before - we believe that, “digital marketing is knowing how to create extraordinary customer experiences through the tactical use of digital technologies and channels.”
Although there may be a whole host of digital tech, tools and channels at our disposal, as marketers we must remember that our goal with digital marketing is the same as any other type of marketing: to provide an excellent customer experience.
Developing a digital marketing lead generation strategy
Before you begin to bring in leads, you need to focus on the fundamentals of digital marketing first - and that means making sure your website reflects your brand and performs well.
Your website is likely to be one of the first impressions any potential leads get of your business, which means it’s crucial to get it right. Many businesses choose to work with digital marketing agencies like Cognition when building or refreshing an existing site, because there are many elements that make up a good website.
The design should reflect your brand, for example, but also provide an excellent user experience. And it’s important not to neglect the back-end of your site either, as the amount of time it takes to load and the way it’s structured can make a real difference to whether you secure a new lead or not.
When you’re confident that your website looks good and works well, it’s time to start bringing potential leads to your site. There are a range of ways you can do this - some which require investment from your business, and others that simply require you to dedicate time and have digital expertise either in-house or within your marketing agency.
You can help leads to find your business through Google, for example, by focusing on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) on your website. Making changes like ensuring every page is optimised for mobile devices and including keywords in the meta data of each page can boost your website’s Google ranking and increase the chances of new leads coming to you through Google.
If you want to reach a wider audience, investing in Google Ads may be the way to go. Their new responsive approach to ads means that you get greater value for your money than ever before, as they’re constantly testing different combinations of your ad copy to optimise your results.
You may also look to accelerate your lead generation by increasing your social media presence, or carrying out a conversion optimisation audit on your site to discover what might be causing prospects to drop off before they share their data. To discover our expert recommendations for lead generation in digital marketing, download our free Digital Marketing Made Simple guide.
Optimising your approach to lead nurturing
Gathering a prospect’s data is just the first step - to encourage them to become a customer, you need to have a solid lead nurturing strategy in place.
If a prospect has shared their data in return for downloading a piece of gated content or receiving your newsletter, then they’re likely to still be in the ‘awareness’ stage of the sales funnel. At the awareness stage, they’re typically experiencing symptoms of a particular challenge and have come across your company while researching how they can overcome it.
This means that they may not be ready to buy when they first interact with your business. Most buyers - whether B2B or B2C - prefer to take time to consider their options, researching all of the approaches they can take to tackle the challenges they’re facing before they make a purchasing decision.
That’s why lead nurturing is a vital part of any digital marketing strategy. Lead nurturing involves sending your prospects regular, relevant content to establish your organisation’s expertise in their eyes and to ensure your products and services are front of mind when they are ready to buy.
This might sound daunting - how can you ensure that you’re consistently sending timely content to your prospects when you’re busy bringing in new leads? But thankfully, there are marketing technology (martech) tools that can help you to:
Reach the right people at the right time
Rather than setting aside hours upon hours to send out emails to your prospects, you can use customer relationship management (CRM) tools like HubSpot to automate all of your lead nurturing activity.
HubSpot is a powerful CRM system that can not only help you to stay in touch with all of your prospects, but also enable you to segment your audiences so you can tailor your communications to their specific needs.
And its benefits go beyond your marketing team - HubSpot tracks and stores all of your interactions with every prospect, which will help your sales team to seal the deal when they’re ready to buy.
As we’re HubSpot Diamond Partners, it might sound like we’re biased - but we’ve seen first-hand how HubSpot has transformed our clients’ lead nurturing strategies.
Continuously optimise your nurture strategy
Having the right martech tool to hand can also help you to make ongoing improvements to the way you nurture leads by providing you with in-depth insight into how your prospects are engaging with your current approach.
HubSpot gives you detailed data on how known prospects are interacting with your emails, for example. You can see which prospects have clicked on a CTA, whether a prospect has visited your website, and determine which subject lines generate the highest open rates by carrying out A/B testing.
By regularly reviewing the data you collect from your lead nurturing activity, you can make sure that you’re always engaging your prospects and maximise your chances of turning them into customers.
Become a digital thinker
The digital landscape evolves so rapidly that staying ahead of all of the latest developments, tactics and technologies is an impossible task. Instead, you should aim to become a digital thinker - shifting the way you think in order to:
- Make digital decisions quickly
- Simplify your goals and approach
- Become more experimental and agile
- Collaborate to create excellent digital campaigns
- Adapt to an ever-changing environment
To find out how to become a digital thinker and optimise your digital marketing strategy, download our free Digital Marketing Made Simple guide today.