What are your goals? What are you looking to do? Where do you want to be in three years? Read this. We’ll help you get there.
The words “Internet Marketing,” “SEO,” “SEM” and “digital this” and “digital that” are tossed around everywhere nowadays. Certainly on the internet, certainly in blogs, but now even on TV, in the newspapers, magazines, radio, you name it… Digital This and Digital That are “happening.” Well, that’s somewhat true, but we want you to know it’s actually been going on for a long time. It’s just that it’s becoming so well recognized and used by millions of people, that it’s becoming news.
Who’s The Target? Where Are They Spending Their Media Time?
So, let us decipher all of this “Digital” stuff for you. You see, it’s really pretty easy and not that hard to understand. Why? Because it’s still just communication, with some marketing and new channels. In fact, that’s a big problem for many “old line” companies… there are unlimited channels. Now the FCC or a big capital investment like in millions of dollars of printing plant equipment don’t stand in anybody’s way of entering the marketplace. It’s the Internet baby… welcome aboard!
Thus if you are a business owner and are looking to increase your sales, your choices of how to go about it have multiplied significantly. There are not just three radio stations in town any more, nor are there just three TV networks… It’s basically unlimited. So what is a businessperson to do? Find a pro to help you out. You can do it on your own, but the time involved to bring yourself or your in-house marketing staff up to speed isn’t worth it. Hire it out.
Here are our suggestions on how to dissect the marketing whirlpool today. The vortex is spinning and we want to keep you out of it. Once sucked into the vortex your budget gets blown and you probably won’t see any results, so your ROI is zero.
- Hire a pro in today’s digital marketing landscape. This doesn’t mean that she/he should not be competent in traditional media, too. Radio, TV, Outdoor still can be effective depending on your product/service to be sold, and your target purchaser.
- Where to advertise? This is no time for playing favorites. The starting point is what are people in your target doing with their time? What media are they spending the most time with?
- This can easily be ascertained from research. Much of it is readily available over the internet, such as eMarketer’s “Time Spent With Media 2016.” It’s updated every year if you are reading this in late 2017 or thereafter.
- It only makes sense that your message needs exposure, so your message must be placed where your target audience is present and spending much of their time.
- So, in looking at the eMarketer report we see that adults in the US spend more time with Digital than any other medium. When the time spent on the cell phone, computer at home and office, and in-car streaming is added up, Digital wins.
- Let’s say that Digital is a good match with the product or service you are looking to advertise, what is next?
- A good internet marketing company specializing in Detroit should be well versed in how to match your product/service to digital media offerings.
- For example, first ask what kind of market exists for your product? This will greatly influence how your digital marketing company will respond in recommending digital media choices.
- Following this line of thinking, ask yourself if your product/service is in a “broad-based” industry, or a “narrow-based” one. This is the crucial first step in defining your internet marketing plan for Detroit, or any U.S. market for that matter.
- The broadness of the industry will dictate how you go to market digitally… and here the business owners in a “narrow market” finally get a real break. They can now market efficiently and effectively for the first time in the history of advertising. This now gives “the little guy” marketing power!
- This is because there is a product by the name of AdWords Text Search that is created by Google. Never in the history of advertising has a “narrow based industry” such as Heating & Cooling been able to advertise efficiently. With Google Text Search your Detroit internet marketing company can bid on terms that you and they have agreed that potential customers of yours will type into the Google “query box” to find a seller of your product/service. With competent management and strategy your business name will appear in front of a prospect who is IN THE MARKET TO BUY your product or service. Holy smoke! No waste. Just tenderloin.
- Even better, the AdWords Text Search ad can just be shown by zip code. Period. That’s right. If you only want to dominate one zip code with your ad message, now you can do it.
- Let’s say, that your product/service has a “broad base.” Let’s say that you’re McDonald’s and you know that everyone in Metro Detroit is going to eat three times today, and you want to make sure that they visit one of your hundreds of restaurants. You could still use AdWords Text Search, but you need volume sales and that will take way too long on Search. Plus, most people in Southeast Michigan already are familiar with your brand, you just need to give them a little nudge by reminding them that you’re ready to serve them, and what your specials are.
- This calls more for “awareness” advertising than “search” advertising. Now there are many more opportunities for advertising your product/service. You could use Google Placements, or banner ads, that might run on thousands of websites with your message. You might use ads on Facebook and Instragram. How about a “customized overlay” on Snapchat targeting an office building, college, or school? If you want to get real sophisticated there are all sorts of programmatic digital advertising available that can be very effective and very targeted.
- And this is just Digital advertising. A “broad based industry” also can look into their potential ROI from Broadcast TV, Cable and/or Radio. These are great awareness mediums, and still up there in the eMarketer report on Time Spent with Media 2016.
The steps above have hopefully helped you to navigate the digital internet advertising space, as well as see that traditional media can still have its place. It all begins with that priceless extra of experience. So do your “due diligence” and determine:
- How long has the agency you’re talking to been in business?
- How many years do the principals have in the industry?
- Who are their clients… current and in the near past, and for how long have they been on their agency roster.
- How much money do they spend a year for their clients on all forms of media?
- Can you get three client references?
- Can you get three trade references? You want to know if they pay their clients bills on time.
Choose these premier options as you vet your new agency. Taking the time to do this will serve you well in the long-run. Good luck, and onward and upward!
The author, Bob Ottaway, is President and Founder of Ottaway Digital. Established in 1999, it has been a pioneer in SEO, digital advertising & social media since 2006.