11 proven digital marketing strategies you’re (still) not using
From content marketing to SEO and conversion optimization, contributor Stoney deGeyter lays out key strategies that you can't afford to overlook.
There is no shortage of web marketing tactics and strategies that you should be using. In all my almost 20 years in the industry, there have only been a couple of times where we reached the limit of what we could do for a client. And that was before social media was a thing!
There’s tons of information out there covering the main priorities of digital marketing. Dig around enough, and you’ll find some deeper-level strategies that you may not have thought about. Dig further, and you’ll find some other strategies that kind of smack you in the head, leaving you wondering why you weren’t already doing them.
Hopefully, this will be the head-smacking kind of post for you. Below are some proven and effective web marketing strategies that, based on my experience, many businesses still aren’t using — or at least not to their full potential. Well, starting today, that won’t be you!
SEO strategies you’re (still) not doing
Search engine optimization is a given when it comes to digital marketing, but there are some aspects of SEO that are often ignored or overlooked, or maybe you’re just not aware of them. Each of these can be an important part of having the most successful digital marketing campaign possible.
- Navigation optimization: Effective navigation organization is as much about helping the visitors move through the site as it is about letting visitors see the scope of what you offer. Keyword research can and should be used to build out a navigation that provides numerous landing pages based on searcher interests and behavior, while also aligning with your products and services.
- Tag optimization: Large sites can’t have every page optimized in a short period of time. For many sites, it can take years to get every page fully optimized. However, optimizing your title, description and heading tags can be done across the entire site in a fraction of the time. This will at least cover some of the high-level areas that the search engine algorithms look at and that impact visitor click-throughs and on-page engagement.
- Link reclamation: If you have ever switched domains or moved content to new URLs, link reclamation is critical to holding onto your built-up site authority. Use tools to find links pointing to any old URLs that are no longer being used and request that those links point to an existing, relevant URL. Search engines are pretty good at transferring most of the value of those links to the new URLs if redirects are in place, but if enough URLs have changed, it can amount to a sizable loss of value if such links are not reclaimed.
Content marketing strategies you’re (still) not using
- Buyer personas: To ensure your content makes the biggest impact, you need to know a thing or two about the people coming to your site and (hopefully) buying your products or services. Developing buyer personas will help you understand your ideal customers and their demographics and buying habits, so you can create content that is most likely to turn visitors into customers.
- Content messaging review: With the persona information in hand, you then need to make sure all your content is getting the right message across to the right people. Perform an in-depth review of your site’s written, audio and video content to ensure it’s consistent throughout. Check to make sure it is effective at reaching your audience through organization, visual appeal, level of professionalism, thought leadership, calls to action, links and more.
Social media marketing strategies you’re (still) not using
- Email marketing: Many businesses have still not gotten on board with email marketing. This should be one of your top goals. If you can’t get a sale, the next best thing is to get an email address with permission to send updates. Of course, the best solution is to get the sale and the email address. This allows you to continue to market to those who have shown an interest in engaging with your company, allowing you to bring them back to become a new or repeat customer.
- Social media tag optimization: When visitors socialize your content or products, the social tags play a role in what is said or seen in the social posts. You don’t always want to socialize your page title tags and meta descriptions. Reviewing your social tags allows you to control the message based on the social platform being used, which can have an impact on whether people actually click on it when it is shared.
- Social media profile optimization: If you’re going to be successful at social media marketing, you have to make sure the social profiles you are using are set up and optimized properly. Without properly optimized social profiles, you’ll be hindering your ability to reach your audience effectively.
Conversion optimization strategies you’re (still) not doing
- Analytics goals: To know whether or not your marketing campaigns are successful, you have to track their progress and performance. That means you have to make sure the analytics code is installed properly and that you have established your goals and are using the right metrics to measure results. Data can be confusing and overwhelming. By establishing your goals and metrics up front, you can make sure you’re looking at the right data in the right way.
- Best practices review: The starting point for conversion optimization is ensuring you have implemented general digital marketing best practices. While many of these may be tweaked and changed over time, best practices allow you to cover a lot of ground in improving user experience without having to take the time to gather specific data. That day should come, but this is a nice shortcut to get you started.
- Live user testing: The true test of on-site user experience is to see how real users work through your site. Use your personas and goals to create instructions for live visitors to use your site. As they do, document what they do and say. This will provide valuable information that you can use to improve your site to get more conversions.
There is rarely a point where you run out of things to do to continue to propel your digital marketing campaign forward, but it’s important to always be investing in things that will produce the best results. At some point, doing the same thing will only get you incremental success, and a whole new strategy is warranted.
The 11 strategies above can be just the diversion from the norm you need to push your web marketing campaign to the next level. If you’re not already doing them (and you’re probably not), maybe it’s time to invest in these strategies and see if they give you the boost you need.