Every business knows they need marketing. But not every business knows how to go about creating and implementing a marketing strategy.
No matter your industry, product or service, marketing is at the forefront of your business’ growth and success. It’s how you build brand awareness, boost sales, and bring in customers.
But what does marketing really mean? And who does what?
Often, businesses aren’t sure where to start.
A few decades ago, when the internet was still new, all anyone needed was a website. Then, as the internet evolved and competition grew, the matter of getting your website ‘noticed’ became more complex.
Blogging was essential, then social media, then SEO...
Marketing is hugely diverse. When it comes to strategy, ‘general advice’ is no longer applicable.
And that’s where some business owners can get confused. What happens if you don’t have a clue what your ‘sales message’ might be?
Some businesses may jump into a particular strategy such as video simply because they’re told they should, or they’ve read about it somewhere. They may end up spending money on putting together a video that isn’t right for their business and ultimately doesn’t work.
If you’re not sure how to implement digital marketing strategies on your own, a digital marketing agency can help.
Why pick a marketing agency to help your business?
1. You’ll get an outsider’s perspective on your business.
When you’re immersed in running your business, it can be difficult to have an objective view of your audience.
An agency will take your own ideas and combine them with their outsider’s perspective to come up with a unique brand message that fits with your business. They’ll come up with ideas you might not have come up with yourself. Because agencies are experienced in working with different clients, they have a unique perspective on what works for which business.
A good agency will get to know your product or service, then they will tailor their digital marketing techniques that get you results.
2. You’ll get help from the pros.
When you’re just starting up, you may stick to in-house marketing to keep costs down. But, as you grow (and in order to grow), you’ll need to implement a really effective strategy. And that’s a job in itself.
Sure, you can train up a few employees to do a bit of social media every now and then, but this can be sporadic – and, let’s face it, it might not be their ‘thing’.
When you hire a digital agency to do your marketing, you’ll get a team of people who know what they’re doing, and they do it well.
3. You’ll get more time to do your own business stuff.
Digital marketing isn’t a matter of running the odd Facebook post. It’s an ongoing project that requires regular time and attention.
As a business owner, you’ve got enough on your plate without trying to promote yourself as well. That’s where an agency can come in and take over the nitty-gritty of marketing – leaving you free to focus on your business.
There are loads of companies calling themselves a digital marketing agency, but each may offer slightly different services. Here’s how to work out which one is right for your business.
Here is a breakdown of the services each type of agency can offer...
Not sure if you need SEO? Well, consider that 93% of online users start with a search engine and 47% click on one of the first three listings that come up.
An SEO agency can help boost your company’s ranking on the search results page. There are around 200 ways they can do this. It usually involves a mixture of technical SEO optimising your site web site structure and creating great content that your audience and Google will love.
The agency will create a plan for improvement to your on-page content as well as create a strategy for ranking high volume and long-tail keywords.
An AdWords/PPC agency
Google AdWords is a pay-per-click (PPC) advertising platform. It allows you to reach people through a) the Google Search Network and b) through the Google Display Network. Advertisers bid to have their ads shown to relevant audiences.
An agency will make sure your budget is used wisely. A team who is properly trained in Google's programmes will know how to optimise your site using AdWords and ensure you comply with best practise.
A Website agency
Here’s where the line between ‘website agency’ and ‘marketing agency’ can be somewhat blurred. While both may be doing website design AND website building, each will be more focused on one more than the other. For example, one agency might be able to create beautiful websites that have poor back-end systems, while another agency might be highly skilled in back-end development but produce rather bland websites.
A Content marketing agency
A content marketing agency will develop a content marketing strategy, and then create content that reflects your business, and deliver it across the appropriate platforms. This involves locating your online audience, developing ideas for content, creating guidelines and a tone of voice, and much more.
Is there a one-stop shop for all my marketing needs?
A digital marketing agency can do all of that
Digital marketing services can include:
- Social media
- Search engine optimisation (SEO)
- Website design/management
- Content marketing
- PR/Influencer marketing
- Email marketing/EDM
Marketing – at its most basic – is about creating campaigns that generate leads. A good digital marketing agency will be made up of different specialists who contribute to each project. This can include Search Engine Marketing (a blend of SEO and AdWords) in order to guide search rankings and boost advertising performance. Most agencies will offer both these options as they can cross-sell services from one to another.
A marketing agency will conduct extensive research in order to understand the business’s aim and target audience. This research will help them figure out how best to build relationships with that audience and what their marketing strategy should involve in order to generate more interest in the product or service being offered.
Of course, web design agencies may also offer some of these services, too – particularly SEO, social media or even content marketing.
If you’re not quite sure what your sales message might be, a digital marketing agency like Creative Content is a good place to start. We’ll be able to kickstart a strategy and take a multi-faceted approach to helping your business.
Do you need help with your marketing? Contact our team for a free one-hour strategy session.
Check out our other tips for small business marketing here.