Digital marketing for startups

Digital marketing is simply promoting products or services online by informing potential customers important features about your products or services, for instance, cost, locations, benefits, etc. Digital marketing can be done by either directly creating content about your business that is alluring and informative and sharing it on the internet or by buying and placing advertisements on the internet to persuade people to consume your products or services.

In this highly competitive business world, your startup needs to develop an edge over rivals for it to achieve its full potential. Digital marketing has been an effective tool for ensuring that business remains competitive by boosting sales through properly targeted market plans and marketing strategies. Digital marketing is especially important to startup businesses that have not yet established a market or businesses looking to increase their market share considering that digital marketing platforms are able to reach a large number of potential customers faster and at a minimal cost.

For startups, the following digital marketing strategies are best positioned to improve market share.

1. Social media marketing

Currently, social media platforms have emerged as influential marketing tools. Above 90% of marketers views social media as important to their business while 88% of marketers confirmed that their social media marketing attempts resulted in an increase in publicity for their companies according to a social media report done between 2014 to 2016. The huge influence of social media is attributable to the high social media usage where more people are currently on social media than watching TV, thus, the best way to reach customers is targeting them where they actually are.

Social media marketing is the use of social platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and others to connect with a targeted potential customer audience with an aim of building a brand, boosting sales, or driving website traffic. Social media marketing is simply done by publishing interesting content on the social media platforms, engaging the audience/follower, placing social media advertisements, and generally informing the followers of important events or products available and showing them how your products or services are better than other providers. 

For social media marketing plan to be successful, you should decide on the best social media channel for your business. This is done by considering platforms where your potential customers are.  If you are targeting a professional audience, then LinkedIn may be a more suitable platform, likewise, when targeting millennials, Instagram may be a more effective platform. 

2. Email marketing

Email marketing has existed for a while and it’s still capable of yielding high returns on your investments. The marketing strategy involves sending your business content to a group of the subscriber via email with an intention of generating web traffic, business leads, or business signups.¬† According to Demand Metric and the Data and Marketing Association (DMA), email marketing has a 112% return on investment (ROI), hence remaining an important avenue for reaching potential customers. Any startup would like such an ROI on marketing investment, email marketing does not only offer a high ROI but it is considerably cheap to run an email promotion.

Here are effective tips for running a successful email marketing campaign

  • Personalize the content
  • Target the campaign to recipients who have opted to receive the content, this eliminates unresponsive reaction to marketing attempts.
  • Offer different, appealing and valuable content in each newsletter.
  • Ensure the subject line is catchy, engaging and making the recipient eager to see the entire content
  • Eliminate the use of jargon
  • Talk more about the benefits rather than costs
  • Optimize emails for mobile devices since people are likely to read the content while commuting.

3. Google AdWords/Pay-Per-Click Marketing (PPC)

If your startup is aiming at driving website traffic, PPC marketing is the best marketing option for you. PPC marketing is a technique of using google search engine adverting to drive potential customers and internet users to your website. This marketing strategy is a very efficient marketing tool for generating leads that result in sales. For instance, when customers are searching for a commodity the wish to buy, they mostly search it through the search engines, various promotional adverts emerge for business selling the commodity offering the shoppers with details such as cost, discounts, and sales location, such are examples of PPC marketing ads. PPC marketing strategy is desirable due to the following factors;

  • Pay-Per-Click is easily measurable and trackable making it easier for you to know how your marketing investment is producing returns.
  • You can reach potential customers exactly when they are willing to consume your product.
  • PPC has a high Return On Investment (ROI)

4. Influencer Marketing

Social media influencer marketing has been gaining ground in recent years.

In case you are looking to authentically promote your products to a targeted customer base, then influencer marketing is an excellent strategy. According to the hootsuite.com study, 84% of marketers are projected to start a minimum of one influencer marketing campaign in the next year and above 94% views influencer marketing as an effective marketing tool. 

Influencer marketing is particularly effective in your startup business due to its lower cost compared to traditional marketing strategies such as TV ads. Also, influencer marketing is more targeted to reach only the required demographic through the use of an influencer who is relatable and appealing to the people that the business is targeting.

Influencer marketing is desirable for your startup due to the following reasons;

Irresponsiveness of customers to traditional marketing channels most people are no longer attracted to traditional marketing strategies and ads placed in such channels are viewed as disturbances by the customers e.g. TV ads. Influencer marketing brings a more appealing channel for driving marketing campaigns.

Inexpensive compared to other channels- influencer marketing is cheap which is important to startups which usually lacks a huge marketing budget.

Essential in building trust- for a new business building trust among customers is important in boosting sales volume. The word-of-mouth aspect of influencer marketing helps create the trust of the customer the products or services being offered.

Easier to implement- influencer marketing is easier to implement as it only requires understanding the customer demographic and choosing an influencer who can be trusted and well-regarded by them.