The new year is right around the corner! So it’s time to do some strategic planning. What is the best way to create an effective marketing strategy? Focus on the least number of digital marketing channels that yield the most results. Do you know which marketing channels you should really be focusing on? Find out here!
Despite all the economic and political stirrings, this year has brought, the last couple of years have been a big year for digital marketing. The global digital marketing industry was estimated at $350 billion in 2020 and is projected to rise to $786.2 billion by 2026. The growth rate of digital marketing spending from 2020 to 2021 was an impressive 14%, while 63% of businesses increased their digital marketing budgets in 2021.
So, there are no signs that digital marketing channels will become less relevant in 2023. However, what is the best way to approach your marketing strategy? Should you focus on just a few online channels or adopt an omni-channel marketing approach?
What is omni-channel marketing?
You may have heard the term floating around, but what is omni-channel marketing, exactly?
It means promoting your business across all marketing channels, devices, and platforms using the same strategy and creating an integrated, seamless user experience. For example, a customer might receive a flyer about your business with a QR code leading to your website or an abandoned cart email after browsing through your online store.
There’s no doubt that omnichannel marketing has numerous advantages. Here are some stats:
- Marketers using three or more channels had 287% higher purchase rates than those using a single channel.
- Customer retention rates are 90% higher with omnichannel marketing than when a single channel is used.
- 90% of customers expect consistent interaction across all marketing channels.
But while a multitude of channels seems to be necessary for modern marketing campaigns, spreading your resources thin can be harmful. Remember that different channels cater to different segments of your target market, so design, copy, and messaging may need to be adapted accordingly.
Moreover, each marketing channel comes with its own technical requirements, so it’s usually impossible to reuse the same creative across the board. Instead, it’s much better to focus on several critical channels for marketing.
This is for you whether you’re a small business with a tight budget or have a limited marketing team. Discover what are marketing channels you should be focusing on in 2023!
4 Digital marketing channels to prioritize in 2023
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It’s the end of 2022, and we’re still talking about emails? You bet! Email marketing still has the highest ROI of all other online channels; some studies show that it averages 3600%!
However, there’s more to it than crafting a well-written email and pressing send. Here are some tips for running a successful email marketing campaign.
Use the right frequency & familiar sender name
Hitting the sweet spot for email frequency is no easy task and largely depends on your industry, audience range, and type of campaign. However, according to UK’s Data & Marketing Association, most B2B and B2C marketers find that 2-5 emails per month is the optimal number. Of course, the number may vary if you’re running an intense email campaign, such as a flash sale.
Finding the right day and time to send your emails is another significant factor that impacts open rates. Again, there’s hardly a formula for this. Some data suggests Tuesdays and Thursdays are the best days for sending emails. At the same time, the timing should coincide with hours people are not focused on their work (e.g., 8 o’clock or around 1pm when many are using their lunch break).
Still, while knowing the latest data is helpful, you won’t know the best time for your campaigns until you’ve done some testing.
Finally, you should ensure that email senders are consistent. At the end of the day, your goal isn’t just to get people to open your emails or even click on the CTA button. It’s to establish a long-term relationship with your customers. If they can put a name (or even a face if you wish to include a photo in the signature), they’ll be more likely to keep opening emails and remember your messages.
Optimize for mobile
According to the latest data, 81% of emails are open and read on mobile devices. Mobile devices also have a higher open rate than desktops.
So, you must ensure that your emails are displaying correctly and make any necessary tweaks if not. Don’t forget to send a test email to yourself before launching your email campaign.
Mobile-friendly emails have larger headings and CTAs and use images with dimensions that fit mobile screens. You should avoid exceedingly long emails - no one wants a whole landing page in their inbox!
Take a look at the example below. The desktop version of the email has more whitespace and a larger banner image since people are more likely to scroll down when using their desktop. The email design for mobile packs more information into a smaller format to prompt readers to take action.
Write catchy subject lines
As someone who’s written my fair share of email subject lines, I am happy to admit this is one of the most challenging marketing tasks. It’s like delivering a brilliant elevator pitch but 10 times shorter.
Plus, you have to consider that people’s inboxes are flooded these days with promotional messages that are likely similar to yours. So, here are some tips:
- Avoid spam words: Overly salesy words like “buy now” or “free” can mean your email lands in spam. Unless it’s absolutely vital, try to focus on informational value.
- Be truthful: A clickbait subject might get you a few clicks, but people will quickly learn what you’re onto and stop opening your emails.
- Ask questions: They’re much more engaging than statements and appeal to our natural curiosity.
- Use humor: Whether it’s a pun (my favorite!) or something a little more sophisticated, humor is a fantastic way to connect with your audience. If you don’t have inspiration, don’t force it. There’s nothing worse than a joke that lands flat.
Make CTA buttons visible
Ultimately, you’re sending emails because you want to see action. Say you’re doing well with open rates, but have a hard time getting people to click. Then, there’s likely an issue with the design of your CTA button.
Let’s look at a couple of examples. This email from Reiss is professionally designed, and the copy is fine too. However, the “Shop Now” button is easy to miss and conveys no sense of urgency or excitement.
On the other hand, New Look hits the nail on the head with this simple banner that conveys powerful feelings (excitement, fun, summer vibes) through a great image and minimal copy. The CTA buttons are simple yet super noticeable, almost urging you to click.
Your website (SEO)
Do you know that 93% of online experiences last year began with a search engine query? So although social media is great for building stronger relationships with your target audience, when acquiring new leads and brand visibility, nothing beats search engine optimization.
If there is one marketing channel where trends matter, it’s SEO. Due to the constant changes in Google’s (and other search engines) algorithms, you must know the most vital aspects that impact a website’s ranking. Here are a few of the most relevant ones for 2022.
Core Web Vitals (the technical stuff)
Core Web Vitals are a set of performance metrics used by Google to rank your website. They consist of three key sets of metrics:
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) shows how many layout shifts a web page has been through. Its aim is to measure a page’s visual stability as a critical component of a good user experience. Ideally, it should be under 0.1
- First Input Delay (FID) is a way to measure your website’s interactivity. It represents the number of milliseconds from when a user clicks on a link to/on your website to when the browser can respond to that interaction. It’s similar to loading speed but much more encompassing. Ideally, it should be under 100 milliseconds.
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) measures the time from when the page starts loading to the moment the largest text block or image is rendered on screen. Ideally, under 2.5 seconds.
You can access your Core Web Vitals report through Google Search Console. If some of the metrics are a lot over the recommended metric, there may be a technical issue you need to address.
All the technical stuff looks good, but your website is still not getting enough traffic? What’s the issue?
Chances are you’re not dedicating enough time and effort to creating high-quality content. Keyword research is critical, but there’s no way you can rank your pages high without informative, original content.
There are a few things you can do to improve this:
- Write long-form content: Despite people’s attention span shortening, Google loves information-heavy content. And if you’re talking about complex topics, a few hundred words just won’t cut it.
- Cite reputable sources: Make sure your claims are backed up by data confirmed by reputable sources. If you’re ever in need of marketing data, sites like Content Marketing Institute and Hubspot are definitely worth checking out.
- Be original: Don’t just stuff your content with other people’s data and insights. Try to draw your own conclusions from the sources you’ve used to create something original.
- Make use of graphics: Don’t forget that a useful image, like an infographic can also rank in Google’s image search results. So, for example, if you’ve written a comparison article, it’s a great idea to include a simple table like the one below, that quickly answers the search query in visual form.
Another nifty hack to improve your content and, therefore, your search engine rankings? Include videos!
According to the latest research from Wyzowl, 86% of marketers use videos, while 92% claim them to be an essential part of their marketing strategy. Even more importantly, 81% say it directly impacts sales, while 87% agree that video brings a hefty ROI.
However, videos can also be a great way to improve your content and search engine optimization. Embedding valuable video content such as tutorials or ad examples makes your content more engaging for the reader, which, in turn, makes it instantly more attractive for search engine crawlers.
Understandably, 2020 saw a surge in ecommerce due to the covid-19 pandemic. However, there’s no sign of stopping, as the global ecommerce market is expected to reach $5.55 trillion by the end of the year.
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Whether you already have an online store or are starting to research your options for the best ecommerce platforms, here are some tips that will make these different channels for marketing successful!
Businesses and customers agree: personalization matters. Companies that invest in personalization see a 200% return on investment, while 66% of consumers claim that non-personalized content defers them from making purchases.
Personalized retargeting ads can help you secure purchases and previously mentioned abandoned cart email reminders. However, you can also create a more personalized experience on your ecommerce store. Here’s an excellent example from Shoeline.
The customer order status allows users to view purchases and products they’ve viewed. Not only is this a fantastic way to encourage more purchases - but it’s also a great example of user-friendly design. How many times have you wished you’d bookmarked a product once you couldn’t find it anymore?
Although we’re talking about digital marketing channels and how to utilize them best, remember that it still pays to be present offline. People prefer to buy certain products (e.g., food, everyday products, and even makeup) in physical stores for several reasons. For example, they don’t want to wait for their order to arrive, ecommerce stores require them to spend a minimum amount, or they want to try on products.
So, if you’re a business that operates both online and offline, you should consider investing in a hybrid ecommerce approach. This might mean paying online for in-store pick-up (this soared during the pandemic). Or you could develop an extensive online catalog that allows users to locate an item in the nearest store.
Facebook shops launched in 2020, which was definitive proof of the growing importance of social commerce. Currently, over a million sellers are using Facebook shops, while 44% of this platform’s users shop on Instagram weekly.
If you’ve taken a lot of time and effort to build a robust social community, it’s only logical that you’d try to monetize these advertising channels in some way. If you already have active social media, setting up an ecommerce feature won’t be too difficult. Just make sure you follow all the guidelines and, of course, run some appropriate ecommerce ads!
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We all know that social media channels are highly effective. Hopefully, you have a list of these marketing channels that are the most relevant to your audience (I don’t assume many banks will be jumping on the Twitch bandwagon just yet).
However, there’s probably one marketing tactic that you’re overlooking, and that’s influencer marketing.
If you’re anything like me, you shudder at the word influencer and consider yourself a person who’d never take an influencer’s word seriously. However, have I bought or at least looked up a ton of stuff advertised by celebrities and influencers? Definitely, (For example, I seriously thought about buying this product called PooPourri simply because Johnathan Van Ness was so hilarious in the ad!).
The most important thing to remember about influencer marketing is to find someone who is the right fit for your business. Go thrifty or splurge - chances are there’s an excellent influencer in your price range. Take a lot of time to get to know what type of content this person shares, and ask them to truly get to know your brand before promoting.
Numerous influencer marketing horror stories revealed that these internet celebrities were only in it for the money. Interestingly, they usually manage to salvage their reputation after a while. But it leaves a very permanent stain on your brand name.
There are numerous influencer marketing horror stories that revealed these internet celebrities were only in it for the money. Interestingly, they usually manage to salvage their reputation after a while. But it leaves a very permanent stain on your brand name.
Here are some excellent places to find influencers/brand ambassadors:
- Your social media channels: You might already have a perfect influencer following your brand; nothing beats that kind of organic pairing. Or simply a person who isn’t quite influencer-level yet, but has lots of followers and fits your brand identity. Reach out to them to see if they’d be open to collaboration.
- Your competitors’ followers: If you stumble upon a perfect influencer following your competitors but not you, try to win them over. Samples and trials of your products are always a good idea.
- Influencer marketing tools or influencer marketplaces: Many great tools allow you to find the perfect influencer based on audience, budget, reach, and more.
Ready to put your marketing in gear for the new year! Fantastic! Make sure you include these 4 digital marketing channels into your strategic planning.
Of course, don’t forget about the importance of marketing design. Whether it’s a catchy email banner, or stunning social media post announcing your collaboration with an influencer, ManyPixels can help.
Learn about our all-encompassing design service, or book a free consultation to find out more!