Digital Marketing Strategy tips to get ahead in 2017
Your digital marketing strategy should change with the times, but often, businesses get stuck using the same tactics over and over – even if they don’t provide the kind of results we’re looking for. But the great thing about digital marketing strategies is that you can change them quickly – today, even. Here are a few ways that you can update your digital marketing strategy right now.
Do a quick audit of your social media profiles
If you set up your social media profiles some time ago, it’s probably time for a quick audit of each.
This is a time to reevaluate each and decide what’s working and what’s not. Are you spending lots of time writing posts on Medium, but not seeing much ROI? Maybe it’s time to reallocate that effort somewhere else.
Are your Instagram followers growing steadily? That’s probably a platform you want to focus more on.
As you’re doing your audit, remember that you don’t have to have profiles on every social media platform, especially if keeping up with them all is becoming a burden. Dump the ones that are sapping your time and energy, and put all that effort into the ones that are really working.
When you have more time to spend on your more worthwhile accounts, you can do some deep dives into your analytics, to see what kinds of posts are working best for you.
Do your retweets peak on Twitter after you post a product video?
Do you get more Facebook comments when you post your own original content, versus curated content from somewhere else?
Repurpose old content
After a few years, any business with a content marketing strategy ends up with pages and pages of old content, much of which rarely sees the light of day once it’s a year older or more.
But that old content can be a valuable resource, one that not only improves your SEO but also gives you a high ROI.
Outdated blog posts can be updated with new information fairly quickly, and shared on your social media channels again. Just make sure you’re transparent about the fact that you’ve updated an old post.
Since the ideal blog post length has been getting longer and longer – now it’s at least 1,200 words – another good idea is to take several of your old, shorter posts and combine them into one epic post. Smooth out the transitions, add updated info where you need to, and voila! You’ve got a new, long-form piece of content ready to share with the world.
Up your social media game with hashtags and emojis
If you haven’t been using hashtags to their fullest potential in your social media posts, this year is the time to start.
Hashtags can go a long way toward spreading your brand’s reach, and getting a particular social media post or piece of content maximum coverage.
To get started immediately, you can create your own branded hashtag and start attaching it to whatever you share on social media. It doesn’t have to be something as simple as your brand name, but it certainly can be.
You can also start joining in the conversation around trending topics (you’ll see a list of current trending hashtags in the left sidebar on Twitter, for example) – as long as you’re not forcing yourself in just for the sake of the hashtag.
Trending topics Mar.13, 2017, via Twitter
The cardinal rule of digital marketing, after all, is be authentic. Inserting yourself into a conversation for no other purpose than to stay current has as much chance of backfiring as it does succeeding.
You may have also noticed that emojis are popping up everywhere – in Instagram bios, Twitter posts, Snapchat profiles, you name it. These eye-catching symbols are a must for your social media posts – again, as long as you’re not just using them for the sake of using them.
Twitter also has something called hashflags, which are emojis created for specific events or movements – the NRL State of Origin, for example, movie releases like Finding Dory or the X-Men, or political events like Mardi Gras. Many of these custom emojis are paid for by brands, but Twitter releases plenty all on its own, too.
Using hashflags, emojis, and hashtags wisely can make your posts look more current, catch more eyes, and ultimately increase the number of people who see them. And that, of course, is one of the biggest goals behind digital marketing.
Review and update your SEO keywords
When was the last time you reviewed your SEO keywords? If it’s been a while, you should take some time to look at the keywords you’re using to guide your SEO practices and revamp them as necessary.
Have you added a new product or service? Changed high-profile members of your staff? Opened a new location? It’s vital that take any changes like these into account when revising your SEO strategy. You might be surprised at how many new keywords you can come up with.
Another key development in SEO is voice-based search, which is becoming more and more the norm. Google Home, Amazon Echo, Apple’s Siri, Windows’ Cortana – all of these voice-activated tools continue to grow in popularity.
This can affect your SEO because people may ask questions through speaking differently than they would type.
Take this very simple example. A person might easily type “pizza cheap deals coupons,” but they’d be more likely to say something like “Find cheap pizza near me,” or “pizza coupons for tonight.” If you want your SEO to truly be ready for 2017, make sure you’re taking these differences into account.
Start a Facebook Live stream
2016 saw live streaming become mainstream, with the release of Facebook Live. If your business hasn’t started live streaming, 2017 is the perfect time to start.
That’s because live streaming is now within reach for literally any brand – if you have a smartphone and an account, you can use Facebook Live, Instagram Live, or any other of the number of live streaming apps now available.
You’ll want to set up a bit before hitting the “go live” button, but you don’t need fancy equipment, expensive locations, or anything like you might for shooting a video.
What is so great about live streaming is that simply broadcasting a live stream, you’re putting the odds in your favor. Facebook’s data shows that users spend roughly 3 times longer watching live streams than they do pre-recorded video.
Check your analytics
Analytics dashboards like Google Analytics, Hootsuite, and others are incredibly powerful tools for refining your digital marketing strategy.
If you’re just using them to look at things like how many people visited your website last month, you’re not making the most out of your analytics platform.
Each tool is different, but you can create very specific reports that allow you to see things like what pieces of content are bringing visitors into your site and how long they’re staying, which types of content (like video, blog posts, gifs, etc.) in particular are performing the best, and which content is prompting the most conversions.
Not every marketer is a natural when it comes to analytics. For us, there are lots of custom reports that people have created – especially for Google Analytics – that you can download, often for free.
Increase your influencer outreach.
An endorsement by an influential blogger or YouTube star can be worth more than one by a massive celebrity – especially for Generation Z, those born between 1998 and 2008. According to a recent survey by Deep Focus, 63% of Gen Z respondents prefer advertising with “real people” rather than celebrities.
But it’s not just Gen Z that values reviews, endorsements, and coverage from digital influencers. It’s also Millennials, Generation X, and … well, pretty much everyone. After all, new customers who are referred by existing customers have a 37% higher retention rate than customers who find a brand on their own.
This means you can’t afford to skip out on influencer outreach. Digital marketing strategies have to evolve as the online landscape changes – and that happens pretty quickly. If you don’t update your strategy regularly, you could be missing out on valuable opportunities to reach new customers.