There is no denying the fact that digital has changed the face of marketing. Sometimes however we are too quick to jump for our keyboards before considering the wider marketing issues. If you would like to read more about this, you might find these posts interesting:
- Internet Marketing for SMEs: Step 1 – Forget about the Internet!
- Marketing development – is the tail wagging the dog?
But the fact remains that, for SMEs, digital tools are the key to success when it comes to implementation of marketing ideas, So how do we make the most of these without ending up with the tail wagging the dog?
The Role of Digital
Whilst digital delivers many other benefits, There are 4 key things that make it so valuable to SMEs
- Digital can significantly reduce the cost of delivering messages to your marketplace
- Digital significantly improves the level of feedback available form marketing campaigns
- Digital increases the availability of demographic info to allow more accurate targeting of messages
- Digital significantly simplifies the management of customer information
Let’s look at each of these in turn:
Cost of Delivery
Digital Marketing has effectively removed the cost of delivering your marketing message. Websites social media and email have effectively reduced the marginal cost of delivery to ZERO. Whilst this is great, the danger is that this low cost of delivery reduces the thought put into into the content and quality of the message. Potentially this results in us becoming “busy fools”; working hard on marketing campaigns which, in reality, are having little effect in terms of building your business.
Whenever you send an email, publish and article on your blog or post on social media, you will immediately get feedback on how your audience views your post. Do they like it/find it interesting? Do they have something to say about it? Feedback now much more nuanced that the old do they buy, or not? Feedback allows you to tune your output to your audience and to ensure that every piece of marketing you put out is moving you towards your ultimate business and marketing goals. Furthermore, the low cost of delivery allows you to experiment with ideas and messages to see what works, and what doesn’t.
Improved Customer Information
While feedback is immediately useful in assessing the effectiveness of marketing messages, the fact that it also allows you to build up more accurate information on who your (potential) customers are, and what makes them tick, help you to better target your marketing as time goes on. Segmenting your market will assist in ensuring that your messages are as relevant as possible to their recipients. This approach also avoids the danger of trying to be all things to all people.
Simplified Information Management
The capture and analysis of data are central to effective digital marketing. Having good processes to handle data important. This said, don’t get fooled into thinking you must have a complex and expensive CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Tool. The important things is to have a system that you understand, and use! Whilst a dedicated CRM system may be appropriate, any system (even a simple spreadsheet) that allows you to you keep track of customer and prospect information, interactions and planned actions with them will be a useful tool.
The important thing about any CRM is that you understand and use it
If this has got you thinking that you would like to make more effective use of Digital marketing, we would love to talk to you