With ever increasing ways to contact your potential customers, marketing across multiple channels is becoming more of a minefield every week.
The following points should hopefully put you on the right path to negotiating that minefield.
Know Your Audience
Research your present and potential audience as this will help go a long way to finding the correct marketing channels on which to focus.
Age and gender are a good starting point and then start drilling down into more specifics, like location and affluence; this will give you a picture of your customer base.
From the audience you can then start pinpointing potential marketing channels.
Which channel should I choose?
Each marketing platform will have specific types of customer interaction which should help you match your customer base.
Facebook, for example, is no longer the haunt of the teenager and has been taken over by the middle to older age groups. Teenagers have moved on to chat platforms, such as Snapchat, and image-led platforms, like Instagram.
Twitter is much more focused on B2B interaction, as is Linkedin, while Pinterest is fast becoming the home of the ‘brand’.
So you have identified your customer base and think you know the ideal online platform to target, so now you need to look at some specifics for that particular platform.
Do you just market using text or would a single image help, perhaps multiple images or even a short video?
It may seem trivial but certain approaches work better on certain platforms – Facebook interaction is far greater if an image is posted and more so if a video is uploaded, while Twitter works well with a single image, short punchy text and a link.
You also need to consider the time of posting, as certain demographics interact with different platforms at different times of the day – some research online will pull up information on when to post and taking a look at your competitors to see what they are doing, and when, will show you what sort of interaction they are getting.
Time of posting is particularly important if you are trying to engage international customers, so be aware of time differences and also be aware that certain countries prefer some social platforms over others, or perhaps have their own country-specific platforms.
Should I pay?
If your budget allows it, then yes; it is worth trialing things like Google Adwords, Facebook adverts, Facebook post boosting or other similar activities.
Most of the monthly, paid-advertising campaigns can be started relatively cheaply and you can monitor all interactions to see what is working or what is not.
I’ve heard print is dead!
This is not true; you only have to see the amount of post you still receive to see companies use print for advertising.
A look at your demographic will help determine if print is worth investing in and some short print runs, to test the water, can be very cost effective and impactful.
It is worth investing in a copywriter to write a good article as they will often have the contacts within the magazines and newspapers to which you wish to send your article. And always have a high-resolution picture to go along with your PR piece as it is, consequently, more likely to be published.
There is nothing better than a happy customer, so use them to publiciseyour product or business; do not be afraid to ask for a review, and get them to post online through Tripadvisor, Google Review or other review portals – or just ask them for some words on email for you to post on your social media, website or blog.