Is your digital marketing budget depleted by fluff?
Let’s consider three types of “fluff” that totally saps your digital marketing budget. Specifically, this is the stuff you are doing and [probably] paying for, that has no actual bearing on your performance as a business.
DIGITAL MARKETING BUDGET FLUFF 1:
Focusing your digital spend on visitor traffic instead of conversions
A big thing that differentiates ‘digital’ from other types of marketing is that you can measure everything – easily. With an e-shop for example, not only can you measure online sales, you can measure your visitor to sales ratio, your average gross margin per visitor, the navigation route a visitor took that resulted in a sales conversion (so you can improve the process), most popular products, most profitable products etc… Armed with this information, you can up-sell, cross-sell, after-sell, solicit referrals and so on, much more effectively than you could otherwise do – and in a completely automated way.
So if you are just measuring the number of visitors, how much they cost you to get and the number of sales you made, how do you know if 90% of your visitor investment was loss-making whilst 10% of it was extremely profitable.
Your future strategy? Identify and eliminate your spend on non-converting traffic, and re-direct your investment into two areas;
- Growing the 10% that is performing, and
- finding new visitor communities that can buy from you.
Any website can get lots of visitors – it’s very easy. But you should want “high quality” visitors – those that convert rather that those who do not have a buying or conversion intention. High quality visitors may be much fewer in number, but your conversion ratio will be a lot higher. In search, these high quality visitors pre-qualify themselves based on the actual search query they used. That makes channels such as SEO and PPC, when used correctly, very attractive.
DIGITAL MARKETING BUDGET FLUFF 2:
Directing your focus on aesthetics instead of lead generation.
We all want beautiful websites that reflect our brand, our values and which present our products and services in the best possible light. Typically, in medium or larger organisations, some degree of website integration with an accounting or CRM system is required. In many cases, this is relatively simple and straightforward. In others, it can be a complex challenge. Nevertheless, the vast majority of websites are simple “brochure” sites; websites which serve no other purpose than to sit there, looking pretty!
Whatever the sophistication of your website, and whatever the size of your business, using your website merely as a brochure is a big mistake.
Every website has the potential to
- independently seek out its own, unpaid visitor traffic (for example, via organic search results),
- capture at least a name and an email address (a generated sales lead) from that traffic based on a compelling online value proposition,
- initiate an automatic email-based follow-up campaign to the leads generated, and
- engage the leads in an online sales process that nurtures them to the next stage in your [pre-defined, mapped-out] sales process.
In summary, set monthly improvement targets for your website, measure the value of the sales leads it generates based on your ability to close them and never, ever consider your website merely as a brochure!
DIGITAL MARKETING BUDGET FLUFF 3:
Paying for digital media with a traditional media mindset
The transition from traditional media advertising to digital media has brought with it major opportunities for vastly improved return on advertising investment for those who “got it’! Unfortunately, for those who still think like traditional media advertisers, the correlation; applying that traditional advertising thinking to an online context, has had the opposite effect. For example, the purpose of a marketing email is not to present a beautifully designed advert with a big sales message to an email reader. Does that surprise you? I’ll elaborate on that elsewhere as space is limited here!
One of the legacy effects of the transition is that big advertising agencies got used to enormous budgets being pumped into traditional brand experiences at massive cost – often with ineffective performance measurement. Post-transition, these big agencies are still left with lots of hungry mouths to feed, very scary wage bills and often overvalued skill sets for the modern digital age. The result? Organisations are still paying far more that they should for their digital and display advertising and media production by following the best judgement of those who are heavily influenced by traditional mindsets.
If you had to pick one thing in the digital age that will get you through to the far side of success unscathed, it would have to be – Analytics. Learn it. Become fluent in it. Know what can be measured and what can’t. Know what you need to know and ensure that any agency or contractor is setting-up for that measurement to occur.
A good place to start is: the Google Analytics IQ Lessons.
Your next stop – a general digital marketing audit from PraxisNow – call John directly on: