8 Things To Transform Your Business In 2019

8 Things You Can Do To Transform Your Business In 2019

How was your 2018?

If you have a steady stream of new customers and clients and they are consistently buying from you and they are referring new business to you, then you are doing well and probably don’t need to read any further.

However, if you are finding yourself away from your business and spending more time reading articles, searching for ways to use the latest digital marketing tools and implementing strategies to grow your business, drive traffic to your website, convert more leads into life-long customers, then 2019 might be the year for your breakthrough.


Webster defines BREAKTHROUGH as:

  1. an act or instance of moving through or beyond an obstacle
  2. a sudden advance, especially in knowledge or technique

We define breakthrough as that moment when your brand gets unstuck and moves ahead. This movement can be slow or fast but there is new movement and it is towards your business goals.


This time of year, people look ahead to 2019 with anticipation and possibly even some dread. Maybe they have new challenges to overcome – like an aggressive sales goal – or they will again be facing a reoccurring challenge – like trying to turn around another year of flat customer count.

Whatever challenge your business or organization faces, it is likely that you are looking at digital marketing to tackle them. But there is so much to know about digital marketing. And figuring out which digital marketing levers to pull and how much time and money to invest learning them can be downright overwhelming. Before you know it, you will be two months into the new year and still trying to move forward.

So to give you a head start on your breakthrough year, here are a few things to think about that could help transform your business in 2019.

1. TUNE UP YOUR WEBSITE

Your website is the heart of your marketing. Whether you are an e-commerce business that depends on online sales or a single-location business that offers a service, your website is a crucial part of your marketing, your brand and your lead generation.

Because the first step in most customer’s journey to your front door happens with a Google search, your website needs to be high-functioning, optimized for search, filled with relevant content and be effective at moving people from your website to your inbox or appointment calendar.

Here are important tune-ups you can do on your website:

Over 55% of all website searches are done on a mobile device.  Google has made it clear, if your website is not mobile friendly, they will not rank your website. Without website ranking, your business is simply not an option for people searching.

Related to being mobile-friendly, Google knows that consumers will not wait for a website to load – on any device.  So keeping your site loading fast, images coming up quickly and all the site features activated in an instant is a key ranking factor for Google.

If your site’s URL starts with HTTPS, it means it is secure and your data is encrypted.  Data crimes and hacking continues to be a problem. If your site is not secure, you are putting your business and your site visitors at risk.  In addition, Google has included https in its ranking algorithm which means that if your site is not secure, your site traffic will likely suffer in rankings.  Beyond that, people are becoming more aware of the security of the sites they visit and may choose not to visit your site or provide you with important contact information if they see your website is not secure.

Website optimization takes many forms but at its most basic level, making sure your website is optimized on the BACK END is critical.  This means making sure that every image has a description, every page has meta tags and descriptions and other ‘on-page’ optimizations are complete and accurately done.  Many website developers forget the basic optimizations and, as a result, compromise their client’s website and search performance.

Does your website have features and functionality that your customers and prospective customers are using on other websites?  Features such as chatbots, site search boxes that help them find what they are looking for fast, appointment options and other user-friendly features are more common place.  Consider adding features that improve the customer experience for your site visitors and match up to what they expect.

When was the last time you added new content to your website?  Content could be new images, a new blog post, a new section on your website that talks about your latest services or products or even tweaked your About Us page?  If you can’t answer this question quickly, then you are probably not updating your site enough. When you regularly update your website, among other benefits, you are telling Google and your customers that:

  • You care about your business enough to invest in being relevant
  • You are engaged in your website experience
  • You are continually adding value to those who are visiting your website

More information about content is a little later in this post.

2. FOCUS ON WEBSITE CONVERSION

Getting people to your website is important.  But unless those visitors do what you ask them to do (give you their contact information, make a purchase, donate to your cause or some other action that is connected to your goals), they are just a window shopper.  Similar to someone walking into a retail store who says ‘I am just looking’ before turning around and walking out, a visitor does nothing for your business unless they convert.  Furthermore, if you spent money to get them to your website – such as advertising with Google AdWords or Facebook advertising – visitors that do not convert into a qualified lead can be costly.

When looking through your Google Analytics and you see people are visiting your website but are quickly leaving or aren’t interacting with your page, it is time to look at optimizing that page so you can make it easier to get more conversions.

By focusing on how visitors use your website, how well your pages are working, what people do (and don’t do) when they get to important pages you can make adjustments to increase the conversion rate on your pages and can drive more leads.  When you convert visitors into leads, your sales team can have a chance to make a personal connection or your email marketing team can connect with them again to encourage a sale.

If you are like many businesses, it is likely that you need several opportunities with a lead in order to make a sale.  So being able to connect with them after they visit your website – even just once – is critical to you making a sale.

3. USE MORE LANDING PAGES

Related to conversion optimization mentioned above, if you drive all visitors to your home page and expect them to make the right series of clicks in order to complete a sale, fill out a form or do another action that leads to an eventual sale, you are being overly optimistic.

Site visitors EXPECT to find exactly what they are looking for within SECONDS of hitting your page. If they land on a page that has several different topics, many choices of things to look at and click on or does not have clear calls to action, they may find it easier to hit the back button and do another Google search instead of trying to navigate your website to get the information they want.

This is where landing pages come in. Landing pages are pages that are specifically designed to connect to a single topic, match up to the search terms / topics that someone is searching for and quickly move them to engage in a single, desired call to action. By removing the potential left and right turns along their path, getting them to where you want to take them becomes easier.

Related BLOG POST – The Difference Between Home Pages, Landing Pages and Content Pages:

Difference Between Landing Pages, Home Pages and Content Pages

By using landing pages effectively, you can streamline the conversation between your site visitor or customer and you. And when you use landing pages effectively, you also improve the quality of your page which can actually lower the cost of paid search ads and improve your organic search results ranking.

4. GET SERIOUS ABOUT WRITING (GOOD) CONTENT

You have likely read dozens of articles about content and why content marketing is so important. The reason for this is that when people need something, they start with a Google search. But before they look for a place or a business or a product, they look for INFORMATION about the situation they are currently in. In other words, they are in “research and education” mode before they are in “buy” mode.

For example, let’s say you sell car detailing products. You might think your customers are typing ‘car wax’ into Google. But really, your target customer is likely searching for something like ‘best product to remove a scratch from a black car’.

The first thing you notice about their search is that it is long and pretty specific. They are telling you (and Google) exactly what they are looking for and you can imply what problem they are initially trying to solve. At this point, they are not looking for you or even car wax. They are looking to remove a scratch from their black car. Your job is to tell that person that:

  • You understand their specific problem
  • You have a product that will help them solve that exact problem
  • You are the best source to provide that solution
  • You can make it really easy for them to get your product (i.e. solve their problem)

But if you have a page on your website that only lists the various car waxes you sell but do not have content that talks about how your waxes can remove scratches (and a bonus if you talk about black cars), it is likely that Google will not rank your website for that search – especially since the person never mentioned car wax. Without specific content on your site that matches with what your customer is looking for, you are leaving it up to Google’s algorithms to decide if your website is a good option for that search query.

By having a blog post that talks about why black cars are more prone to scratches and describing ways to remove scratches and to protect black cars from future scratches, you now have content on your website that matches what they person is searching for and Google will have more content in which rank your article. Then, when the person is reading your article, they will learn new information about black cars (from an expert like you), be exposed to the best solution to fix their problem (your new car wax) and will be able to interact with your brand, ask questions and to stop searching and buy your product.

RELATED LINK: VISIT HERE FOR INFORMATION ABOUT OUR CONTENT WRITING SERVICE

5. STEP UP YOUR EMAIL MARKETING GAME

The old adage still applies: it is easier and more cost-effective to resell to your existing customers than to acquire new customers. With the onslaught of messaging, ads, social media content and other interruptive marketing, reaching people through email continues to be an effective way to connect with people who already know and trust you. Furthermore, satisfied customers tend to make the best salespeople and influencers of your brand.

The customer in our example who bought the car wax from you is highly likely to also purchase other cleaners, protectants and car products from you as he obviously cares about the appearance and protection of his car. By sending him regular emails that talks about your products, includes useful content on how you can help him protect his car and reinforces your brand as a brand dedicated to protecting his car, you can keep him engaged and can likely see future sales from him. He may also be likely to share your content on social media and become a trusted brand advocate – just because you viewed him as more than a single sale of a bottle of car wax.

Take a close look at your customer database as there should be a trove of information that can help you create different email campaigns based on your customer data. From segmenting customers based on what they last purchased, how long it has been since their last purchase, how much they have purchased, etc, you can target your email messages so they can drive your customers back into your store, your website or to your ecommerce platform to purchase from you again.

Keep in mind that just because they purchased from you in the past does not keep them from doing a Google search the next time they need something that you sell. By continuing to invest in your relationship with them, you can help lock out your competition the next time your customer has a problem that you can solve.

6. REFRESH YOUR STRATEGY

When is the last time you reviewed your business and marketing strategy? Do you have a well-thought out strategy that clearly defines the customers you want to reach, those people you do NOT want to reach, where to find them and how to engage with them? If you haven’t looked at this strategy in the past year, then you are at risk of veering off course.

A digital marketing strategy is not just a roadmap, it is a GPS. A roadmap is like a paper map where you plan out the route to your destination before you leave and periodically view to make sure you are on the right track. Without checking the map frequently, you may miss a turn and suddenly find yourself hundreds of miles off course. When your strategy is like a GPS, you can be instantly alerted when you are off course and can correct quickly to save you time and money. It can also help you recalculate when new obstacles, objectives or opportunities appear on your journey.

A solid digital marketing strategy defines your customers, understands what is important to them, creates the right tactics, programs, content and marketing materials to connect with them and includes ways to measure your results and correct on the fly.

An effective strategy should define and communicate your brand, help tell your unique brand story through your marketing and define the various digital marketing tools you will use to reach your goals. And speaking of goals, it goes without saying that your goals should be clearly defined and your marketing should always track back to your goals. If your goal is to drive 100 new site visitors each month to your website, your strategy should include how you will reach this goal and ways to measure against this goal.

Your digital marketing strategy should also be shareable so that any employee, agency, partner or contractor can easily see where you are going and how they can fit in to the plan.

7. HIRE A DIGITAL MARKETING CONSULTANT

No matter if you are experienced or brand new to the world of digital marketing, hiring a Digital Marketing Consultant will likely turn out to be the best investment that you can make in your business and certainly your marketing. For a cost that is generally less than the cost of a single, full-time, in-house employee, you will be hiring someone who has deep expertise, relevant experience and scalable resources to solve your specific business issue.

Digital Marketing consultants are experts in what they do. They will focus on your goals, create a clear strategy and bring together the best solutions to help your business achieve those goals. In addition to this, they also have access to internal and external resources, marketing agencies and experts to implement the work so that you can implement new ideas quickly, do not have to learn how to implement or design the solutions and can ‘run with the ball’.  This last point is important because coordinating a digital marketing strategy and execution plan is a full time job.  Your digital marketing consultant can direct the resources, keep projects moving and on schedule and still bring you new ideas to improve your business.

But perhaps the best reason to hire a digital marketing consultant is to free up your time and your team’s time so you can focus on other critical tasks to your business – like developing customer relationships, turning leads into customers and focusing on your employees.

For more reasons why hiring a Digital Marketing consultant can actually save your company money, check out the recent blog post below.

Related: BLOG POST – 5 Reasons Hiring A Digital Marketing Consultant Saves Your Company Money:

5 Reasons Why Hiring A Digital Marketing Consultant Can Save Your Company Money

8. OUTSOURCE YOUR DIGITAL MARKETING ACTIVITIES

Digital marketing is not one thing done well. Digital marketing is doing many things done well in coordination with and against a strategy to find, drive and convert the RIGHT visitors to your website and into your brand. To be an effective digital marketer, you need a:

  • Website Developer who can make website changes quickly and frequently and keep your website running well and well-protected
  • Content Creator and Manager who can create content specific to your customers and who can write for both search engines and for humans
  • Social Media Manager who can start conversations, cultivate relationships and protect your brand’s reputation online all the while posting relevant content
  • Paid Search Manager who can create ad campaigns, manage keywords and make sure that you are not spending too much for keywords important to your business or spending money on keywords that will not lead to sales
  • Digital Marketing Strategist to create a solid digital marketing strategy AND to make sure that everyone who is touching your brand is supporting the strategy and working together
  • Email Marketing / CRM Manager who can look at your sales and customer data and create effective and consistent email marketing campaigns to keep your customers engaged with you and immune to marketing efforts by your competitors
  • Analytics Manager who can see what digital marketing activities are working and what are not so you can always be focused on the return on your marketing investment and your strategic goals
  • Digital Marketing Consultant who is always looking out for your best interest, providing recommendations and new opportunities that can improve your business, separate you from your competition and keep your focused on what is important

For many businesses, hiring these 8 people to handle these digital marketing activities on their payroll is a major investment. At an average of $65,000 per position (which is low in many areas), you would be spending over $500,000 per year, not including benefits. By outsourcing these digital marketing activities, you benefit from having deep expertise without having to invest in hiring, training and managing these employees.

Furthermore, your digital marketing consultant can manage the people on this digital marketing team which frees up your time to work on your business instead of managing a digital marketing team.

THE TAKE AWAY

No one likes to do lists but this is the time to create a list of things you want to change, improve and accomplish in the coming year. 2019 will be here before you know it and with the change of calendar comes all new pressures and expectations.

If you are serious about a breakthrough for your business in 2019, consider investing 30 minutes of your time on a call with us to talk about how we can help your business navigate the complicated and overwhelming world of digital marketing. Whether it is to tune-up your website, answer a question or two you have about digital marketing or to talk about your specific goals for 2019, we can help.

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2018-12-20T19:51:21+00:00