Every business has unique business and marketing objectives, and while the world of digital marketing offers numerous approaches to promoting your business, selecting the right one for your objectives is essential.
But that requires a solid understanding of the different approaches available to you; you need to know your search engine marketing from your SMM and SEO.
Confused? Don’t worry, we’re here to clear things up for you.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Search Engine Marketing is an important part of getting your website discovered by the right people. The concept is simpler than it sounds, so let’s get it out in plain English…
When a user searches for products or services like yours on Google, they are presented with results that are relevant to what they searched for. But how does Google know which websites will have what they are looking for?
Simple. A well optimised website will be using those search terms as keywords in their content; when Google sees these keywords being used, it can (using a few other identifiers) determine whether that website is relevant or not.
What are the benefits of SEO?
SEO is more than just about benefits, but should be seen as a critical foundation for digital campaigns. Why? Because even the best built websites are useless if nobody can find them. Additionally, unlike other types of digital marketing, SEO happens naturally, that is to say, you don’t need to put a budget behind it to make it work.
Being competitive in SEO means doing a better job of it than your competitors, not outbidding them. This makes it accessible to businesses of all sizes, as opposed to those where the marketer with the larger budget generally wins.
Which objectives is SEO good for?
While SEO should be a foundational part of just about any digital campaign, it does serve to meet very specific objectives as well:
- Marketing directly to interested prospects
- Increasing the amount of traffic to your website
- Driving more e-commerce sales
- Building brand awareness
Search Engine Marketing
Search Engine Marketing (SEM) takes a less clinical approach, but still requires a little finesse, and it also requires a budget. This type of online advertising uses paid media to promote your brand, products, or services on search engines like Google, predominantly through the Google Ads platform. The concept is simple enough: You draft one of many different types of ads, give it a budget, target a specific type of audience, and have those ads shown to it as a result when its members are browsing the web using search engines.
There are different approaches here as well:
- Responsive search ads
- Responsive display ads
- Shopping ads
- Video ads
The one you select will depend on your marketing objectives, but more about that a little bit later.
Benefits of SEM
While you need to put a budget behind this type of ad, you do get a fair degree of control over how that budget is spent. Part of this comes from the fact that you can target specific types of people based on their interests, income, location and various other demographic factors. This means that your budget goes further and is more focussed on people who are likely to become leads.
The next major benefit, particularly where pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is concerned, is that you only expend budget when someone actually clicks on, views, or takes action on your ad. If used alongside carefully crafted SEO, search engine marketing can also yield better results. In many cases you can even lower your costs per click.
What objectives is SEM good for?
Each type of ad in SEM offers a great approach for different objectives, let’s have a closer look at them here:
- Responsive search ads – driving leads and traffic to your business
- Responsive display ads – building brand awareness and promoting products
- Shopping ads – getting users to make online purchases directly
- Video ads – increasing user engagement with your brand (building a community)
Social media marketing
Social media platforms include several different options, with the most popular including Facebook (Meta), Instagram, and LinkedIn. Each of these platforms gives marketers a chance to engage with an online community of interested people in different ways, but more importantly, they are home to different types of audience members.
Facebook, for instance, is great for semi-formal marketing that uses a mix of text and images or videos to get customers to engage or convert into leads. Instagram is much less formal and relies heavily on rich media like videos and images which communicate the fun side of your brand. LinkedIn is a platform for professional networking, making it ideal for B2B marketing and reaching corporate decision makers. Marketing can also be done on other social media and content curation platforms like TikTok, 9GAG, Reddit, Pinterest, and while we’re at it, even Tinder (but this is highly situational).
Benefits of social media marketing
Social media marketing gives you a more personal approach to communicating with your audience, which is an excellent way to build and strengthen brand/audience relationships. It also opens up two-way channels of communication, letting you find out how your clients and community feel about your brand. Get your community to become brand ambassadors by sharing your posts and their own sentiments about your brand with their various communities, groups, and friends. This carries the same benefits and effectiveness as word-of-mouth marketing.
What objectives is SMM good for?
- Increasing brand awareness
- Driving traffic to your website
- Generating leads
- Increasing brand engagement
- Building brand loyal communities
- Finding out how the community feel about your brand (social listening)
Email and SMS marketing
Both email and SMS marketing represent some of the most tried and tested approaches to reaching new customers, but are especially effective for prospecting: finding potential new leads. The concept is simple and casts a wide net. Targeting is possible, but only through market research on who your audience is and how to reach them (particularly with email marketing).
A list of potential leads is generated, usually through referrals or an internal database, and mails or messages are sent to them to communicate promotions or the offers held by your business. While the drawbacks of such an impersonal (and often invasive) way of marketing are that you won’t get a high ratio of conversions, the sheer volume of people marketed to means you should get good returns if done correctly.
Benefits of email and SMS marketing
- Messages sent are direct and instant, often yielding the fastest results.
- Responses can be used to keep building your databases.
- You can easily monitor performance based on responses.
- Reach a much wider audience than through any other approach.
Which objectives are ideal for email and SMS marketing?
- Keep your potential customers informed of your offers at a moment’s notice
- Attract in new business from all corners of the market
- Get direct engagement from your prospects
- Create sales funnels and nurture leads through them
Video marketing falls somewhere between SEM and social media marketing. Organically, it acts in the same way social media does, while when paid for using Google Ads and YouTube, they fall more closely to SEM. There is a bit more involved in terms of producing ads, since producing professional videos requires a lot of effort and some talent; not to mention time and equipment.
The approach is one of the most popular ways of marketing however, since a massive percentage of all internet use is done so for watching videos on various platforms. Videos can be instructive, can promote specific events, services or products, and can even speak directly about your brand. They get your audience engaging, hold their attention for longer, and video messages are significantly more likely to be remembered by your audience.
Benefits of video marketing
Video marketing gets more engagement than just about any other approach and also benefits from targeting audience members based on interests, locations, and various other demographics.
It can be conducted through Google Ads, which provides you with numerous tools for measuring results, targeting audiences, and managing budgets.
Videos can be used across numerous platforms such as on your social media profiles, on YouTube or TikTok, or even directly on your website.
What objectives are video ads good for?
- Build brand awareness
- Increase community engagement with your brand
- Increase leads
- Improve traffic to websites and stores
- Build interested and brand-loyal communities
- Instruct audiences about services or products
Promote your business online with Atkasa
These are just a few of the most popular types of digital marketing offered by us here at Atkasa, and is by no means an exhaustive list of the advertising approaches and resources available to brands of all types. If you would like to know more about our online advertising services, be sure to visit our website today for details.