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Beginners Guide To Digital Marketing In South Africa (PART 6)

What you need to know about mobile marketing in South Africa.

Jandre de Beer

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It’s a fact that more than 90% of South Africans own one (or more) mobile device, and 92% of smartphone users say that they are incapable of living without their smartphones.

Companies world-wide are taking note of the mobile trend and research indicates that they cannot ignore a mobile marketing strategy.

The next time you are in town, take a look around. You will be surprised how many people’s eyes are glued down to their phones.

Major brands are already jumping on the opportunity to talk to these customers, and platforms like Google, Facebook, and Instagram assist in making it easier for any business.

Now that the world is going mobile, there are endless opportunities and a number of different ways to communicate to reach out to potential customers.

For example: You are a restaurant owner looking to get awareness on social media. Most phones (as well as social media accounts) link to GPS, so you could use a platform such as Foursquare to reward customers for checking-in to your restaurant on social media.

Related: Beginners Guide To Digital Marketing In South Africa (PART 5)

That then creates a ‘reward’ system for your customers, encouraging organic reach on social media for your restaurant.

Understanding mobile marketing

As of now, more than 70% of all YouTube views are happening on a mobile device.

And when it comes to Facebook, it’s safe to say that more than 90% of users access it through a mobile device.

We already know that the e-commerce space is growing at a rapid pace, but what’s interesting is that more users are starting to use their mobile phones to make purchases.

Now, I understand not everyone uses their mobile devices in the same way. However, to succeed in your marketing strategy, it’s important to listen to your customer’s digital signals. Learn how they use their mobile devices, and do research on their shopping behaviors before you roll mobile marketing strategy.

There are numerous channels to implement mobile marketing; there is social media, SMS, search ads, email, and more.

With that said, it’s important to find out which of these channels work best in communicating to your potential customers, and which one brings in the highest ROI for your business.

Mobile marketing channels and functions

Mobile marketing channels

Mobile is not like any other marketing channel. As I have mentioned above, it can cover a wide range of marketing strategies, and the reason for that is because today’s smartphones can do a lot.

The average smartphone has roughly eight ways to help enhance the customer experience and communication from a brand. These channels include:

  1. SMS
  2. Emails
  3. Push Notifications
  4. Browsing the Web
  5. Social Media
  6. Bluetooth
  7. GPS
  8. Applications.

All these functions can be incorporated into your marketing strategy and can form part of your mobile marketing campaign.

Using these functions will allow you to add a whole range of different advertising methods to your brand (and campaign), not to mention that it can help your brand stay at the top of your customer’s mind.

Related: Beginners Guide To Digital Marketing In South Africa (PART 4)

Mobile marketing channels and functions

It’s imperative that you try to understand each of your customers’ journey, and with that, I mean, try to find out how they came across your brand, what made them decide to give it a try and what made them a loyal customer. Understanding your users’ journey, you can help streamline your marketing efforts.

You might be wondering; what has this got to do with mobile marketing? Well, today, I can guarantee you that a big part of your customers’ journey is influenced on mobile, whether you like it or not.

The purchase funnel and how it’s affected by mobile

purchase funnel

Over the years, marketers have come up with a way to create a visual outlay, or framework, if you will, to help organise our marketing strategies. Thus, the ‘purchase funnel’ was born.

The purchase funnel visualises the customer’s journey and contains the following segments:

1. AWARENESS

Awareness is where the consumer is learning about your brand, and this is now heavily influenced by social media.

Social media and search engines are usually the first places where customers learn about a brand, and today, that happens predominantly on mobile devices.

It is, therefore, one of the main reasons why you need to ensure that your brand has a social media and online presence.

2. OPINION

The next segment is where users click through to your website (again, this happens mostly on mobile) so it’s essential to ensure that your website is mobile-friendly.

After viewing a few pages and reading a few pieces of copy on your website, the customer forms an opinion of your brand, and this is where your brand might spark an interest in the customer’s mind.

Related: Beginners Guide To Digital Marketing In South Africa (PART 3)

3. CONSIDERATION

The third segment is the consideration stage. Your customer now begins to interact with your brand and form an impression about your offerings.

If you are a B2C business, then there is a big chance that this stage also happens mainly on mobile.

Today, most consumers will send a message on Facebook or leave a message on your contact page if they have a specific question about your product or service.

4. PREFERENCE

You have now engaged with the customer, and they form a liking in your brand. Once you have reached this phase, your chances of converting the customer have more than doubled.

However, if your brand doesn’t have an online presence, and is not on social media, or if your website is not suitable for mobile devices, then you would struggle to move the customer past the awareness stage.

5. TRANSACTION

The customer physically buys your product or service at this stage, and this is increasingly happening on mobile devices, which makes it another reason to ensure that your website is 100% mobile friendly, fast, and optimised to improve the user’s experience.

6. ADOPTION

The sixth segment is the adoption phase. Now, this is probably one of the only segments that is not influenced by mobile or digital marketing.

The customer has now bought the product, loved it, and adopts a recurring purchasing behavior with your brand, which then takes us to the final segment.

7. LOYALTY

Loyalty is self-explanatory and can be influenced by mobile through constant communication from the brand, along with a strong social media and online presence to keep your brand top of mind.

Now that you understand how mobile is changing the way customers find, engage, review, and purchase from brands, it’s important to ensure that your business is mobile ready, to prepare for the future.

Auditing your mobile readiness

mobile readiness

To ensure that you are mobile-future ready, you will have to do a thorough audit of your business. Is your company using some of the following tools below as a part of its marketing strategy?

  1. SMS
  2. Mobile Optimised Email
  3. Social Media Campaign for Mobile
  4. Mobile Display and Search Ads
  5. 100% Responsive Design Website
  6. Click to Call Services on Website
  7. Mobile SEO
  8. Mobile Retargeting Services
  9. Mobile Optimised Videos
  10. Mobile Applications
  11. Push Notifications
  12. Location Enablers.

If not, then you are probably falling behind.

The list can go on. However, these are some of the key elements you need to have checked to ensure you aren’t missing on new ways to drive more sales.

If you have realised that you hadn’t checked many of the boxes, then don’t worry, because I’m going to map out where you can start, in order to catch up with the trends.

1SMS Marketing

 

As I have said earlier in this guide, more than 90% of our population has mobile devices. With that said, I suggest you start by collecting contact numbers from your customers, which will allow you to send them an SMS the next time you have a specific offer or promotion.

This works like a bomb as it’s an easy and convenient way to remind customers about your brand. It’s also a great way to capitalise on customers that are between the transaction and loyalty segment of the funnel.

A few tips that can help to optimise your email for mobile include:

  1. Include Who the SMS is From First – Due to so many ‘spam’ SMS’s flying around, always ensure to put your brand name first. That way the customer can immediately see that it’s from a brand he or she trusts.
  2. Be Clear – I might say this more than once in the article, but be sure to keep it simple. Have clarity in what you are trying to say. g., 50% OFF on everything.
  3. Include a Link – The last thing you want to do is work on a great line and realize there is no way for the customer to learn more about the offer. That is why I always suggest including a link that the customer can click on to take him to the necessary landing page.
  4. Optimise Landing Page for Mobile – It will be a waste of money if you went through all the trouble to create and send an SMS, only to realise that the page you are driving customers to is not optimised for mobile. Make sure the landing page is mobile friendly and be sure to see your conversions increase.

2Mobile optimised email marketing

In Part 5 we discussed how effective email marketing is, and it can be even more effective if you optimise it for mobile devices. Did you know more than 70% of people open their emails on a mobile device?

Now, imagine you had this great promotion you wanted to share with your customers, but soon realised 70% of your customers weren’t able to see it properly. All the hard work that has gone into making the promotion happen would have been in vein.

So, what to do?  Make sure to code, design, and create your emails in a way that it’s suitable for mobile devices. This will allow your message to come across with clarity and it can help spark the engagement of users which will lead to more sales.

A few tips that can help to optimise your email for mobile include:

  1. Be Clear – Make sure to provide a clear call to action. No matter what you are promoting, make sure the customer can easily see and understand it. Think about it, there is a limited amount of space on a mobile screen, so ensure to get the message across swiftly.
  2. Provide an Offer – The last thing people want to do is get an email that delivers no value. Make sure to provide your customers with some form of offer which they can click on or claim in a convenient way using their phones.
  3. Use a Service Provider – You can make your life easy by opting to use a platform like MailChimp, Constant Contact, Emma, or Drip. They all allow you to optimise your email for mobile.

Related: Beginners Guide To Digital Marketing In South Africa

3Social media ads and mobile

It’s all good and well having a social media presence, but one will have to pour petrol on the fire if you want to drive more sales.

With that said, in Part 4 we talked about social media marketing (especially Facebook), and with that in mind, make sure to optimise your social media ads, creative, and messages for mobile users. Also, make sure to include mobile devices as part of your targeting when you run your next social media marketing campaign.

A few tips to optimise your mobile and social media marketing include:

  1. Instagram – 99% of user’s access Instagram on a mobile device, so an easy way to target people on mobile is to run ads on Instagram through the Facebook Ad platform.
  2. Facebook Mobile Feed – I love the Facebook mobile feed, as there are no distractions on the left or right-hand columns. The user’s eyes are constantly centered, and that is where you want your ad to pop up. By increasing or running ads only for the mobile news feed you will be able to see a higher click through rate.

4Mobile search and display ads

In Part 3 we talked about Search Engine Marketing (SEM). If you are currently spending money on search ads and display ads then like social media, ensure that they are optimised for mobile devices.

When running display ads make sure that your message is clear and test it on a mobile device before you roll it out to the public. Also, ensure that you include mobile targeting on both your search and display ads.

Another thing to do is to break the analytics down. Have a look at how many impressions you are getting on desktop vs. how many you are getting on mobile. Chances are you are more popular on mobile which in return gives you a better CTR (Click Through Rate) and lower cost per click.

A few tips to optimise your ads for mobile include:

  1. Click to Call – When running a search ad, make sure to add the “Click to Call” extension. This will allow customers to call your business or support line with the click of a button.
  2. Call to Action – The clearer your call to action is on mobile banner ads are, the higher your CTR will be. That will help bring your cost per click (CPC) down and increase conversions.

5Responsive web design

In Part 2 we talked about SEO and what you can do to optimise your website for search engines. One of the first things on your checklist needs to be ensuring that your website is 100% responsive to the different mobile and tablet screen sizes.

If it’s not, I can promise you that there are a bunch of annoyed customers out there that are about to consider rather buying from a competitor.

A few tips to optimise your email for mobile devices include:

  1. Expanding Menus – Include menus that expand rather ones that take up real estate on the page and might distract the customer.
  2. Short Titles – Due to limited space, make sure that you don’t over think titles and make them sweet and short.
  3. Images – Don’t overload your website with unnecessary imagery as that might just slow your web page down, and annoy your customer.
  4. Don’t Make Them Guess – So many websites aren’t clear on what they want the customer to do when they are on the page. Be clear, ensure to say, ‘Give us a Call’, ‘Click Here to Learn More’,
  5. Screen Sizes – Consider the different resolutions devices have. High resolutions screens will demand high-resolution And smaller screens would want smaller quality images to load faster.

There are numerous other ways to ensure you maximise mobile and its marketing capabilities, but as a beginner, I suggest you start with the five mentioned above.

By implementing the following tips and strategies, you will help narrow the gap between you and your competitors.

Having started his first business at the age of 22, and selling it at the age of 25, Jandre fell in love with marketing! Jandre is a sales and digital marketing consultant with an appetite for entrepreneurship, and is the Founder and Managing Director of V8 MEDIA: V8 MEDIA.

Online Marketing

A Basic Guide To Twitter Analytics, How It Works, and How It Can Help Your Marketing

As a business owner, your marketing efforts on Twitter can now be tracked via the new Twitter Analytics tool, which shows engagements & impressions on each tweet.

Steven Slotow

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In 2014, Twitter finally launched Twitter Analytics, which allows the more serious user to track their tweets from a marketing perspective. Using this tool, you can see which tweets reached the most users, how many impressions it received, and the overall reception for specific marketing campaigns. Here is a simple guide to using Twitter Analytics.

Using this tool means that you can gauge tangibly and transparently the reach of each marketing campaign you launch. The launch might have been long overdue, but since then Twitter has been updating their analytics tool little by little and improving the user experience.

They have since launched a Twitter Analytics standalone app called Engage. They also launched Twitter Moments, which allows users to edit multiple tweets and stitch them together into a single slideshow or video. This is another excellent tool for concluding or summarising a marketing campaign from beginning to end for prosperity and marketing purposes – for example, Rocket Ellie, the flying elephant billboard in Cape Town, South Africa.

For any regular Twitter user, you might have given Twitter Analytics a quick look when it first came out, but unless you’re interested in evaluating the reach a sponsored tweet would have versus a regular tweet, it won’t mean much to you. Just a glance shows that you can view impressions and engagements, but unless you know how to use this tool to its full potential, it might as well be useless.

How To Use Twitter Analytics

This tool can be found in the drop down menu underneath your name on the homepage. Here you’ll also find options for your profile, Moments, Twitter Ads, settings and more. With this tool, you can see your Twitter engagement rate. This is where you can view how many people saw your tweet, how many new profiles have followed your account, and how many likes, impressions and retweets each tweet has gained. It also includes replies and how many clicks your links or hashtags received. This is very helpful to see if your content is getting the desired reaction, and maybe you should take your hashtag back to the drawing board.

What’s the point in posting content that your audience isn’t interested in? This tool is an excellent way to evaluate how your target audience has received your content. You can use it to see what works, and what doesn’t. Your audience will tell you if they like your content, but it might not be as blatant as you would prefer. Therefore, using this to drive your content and marketing strategies provides a massive benefit when launching future campaigns, if you want them to be successful.

Use it to better connect with your audience, and at the end of the day, more prospective buyers will become real, paying customers who are interested in your business, and who will help further your brand.

Related: 10 Examples Of Companies With Fantastic Cultures

Impressions vs Reach

A Twitter impression is how many times your content has appeared on someone’s timeline. Twitter’s new algorithm has made this easier by posting your tweets onto other users’ timelines if many accounts they follow have liked or replied to your content already. The point of this algorithm is to help people engage with others who are like-minded, which means that if five like-minded people enjoy your content, the chances are high that some of their followers will enjoy it too. However, the number of impressions doesn’t tell you how many accounts, if any at all, actually interacted with your tweet. Therefore, how do you know how many people you are reaching with your content?

If impressions tell you how many times your content appeared on people’s feed, then your reach is how many users have the potential of seeing it. When your content appears on the timelines of people who do not follow your account, as stated before, that is your reach.

Tweet Activity

So how do your tweets perform on this platform? The tweet activity tool allows you to see, in a chart, if your tweets are achieving their goals. For many users, a question they ask themselves frequently is how their tweet took off so suddenly, in comparison to others? Even regular accounts who use Twitter for the social aspect of it, can spend time constructing the perfect joke only for another to perform better. There are tools available that can analyse your followers or recommend what time of day, or day of the week, is best to post your best content. However, the easiest way to answer the question of performance, and how to get to know your audience, lies within your own account data.

There are two ways to do this: you can either post tweets in groups within a particular time frame or analyse the activity on specific tweets individually. The latter is simple – when you select one of your own tweets, along the bottom bar, next to the attach images, GIF and emoji tabs – picking the bar graph icon shows the number of impressions, likes, clicks and retweets that single tweet received. It can be time-consuming; however, it provides valuable information according to what your audience likes. For example, your tweets with images or video content attached may receive more impressions than tweets without, meaning that you should post more content like that, more often.

Related: Beginners Guide To Digital Marketing In South Africa (PART 4)

In Twitter Analytics, under the tweets tab, you can customise your tracking to show only a certain period – for example, the weekend where most people receive their salary, or over the Christmas holidays – to see how your tweets performed during that time.

Using Twitter Analytics, you can do so much more than what has been mentioned. You can track your followers, and more specifically, the types of people who follow you. If you notice that a large portion of your followers is stay-at-home mothers between the ages of 28 – 35, you can customise your content according to the interests of that demographic. You can also learn about Twitter ads, how to promote your business, what works and doesn’t work, and if it is even worth the money. Twitter Analytics is an untapped oil reserve when it comes to tracking and gauging your audience’s reaction to your content, and adjusting your content and marketing strategies accordingly. Take the plunge into Twitter Analytics; it’s worth it!

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Online Marketing

The Top Ten Marketing Trends To Look Out For In 2019

With 2018 behind us, there is no better time to start looking to the future.

Jandre de Beer

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chatbots

Most people start making their new year’s resolutions this time of the year, goals to make things better for themselves in the coming year. This is something that businesses need to look at doing too.

Running a digital marketing agency means one needs to keep ones finger on the pulse.

The world is continually changing and developing, and if businesses want to survive and thrive, then they need to grow and develop too.

As with everything else, marketing is also continuing to change over time, so it is important for businesses to be on top of the newest trends. Even if 2018 was a successful year for you and your marketing team, don’t get left behind by ignoring the latest trends. Make the necessary adjustments to ensure that 2019 is just as successful.

Maintain an advantage over your competitors by preparing yourself and adjusting your marketing strategy before they do. Whether your current marketing strategy is working for you or not, this article will help you by identifying the top ten marketing trends that businesses should look out for in 2019.

The first few trends look at technology that you have likely already heard of, but with constant advancements in technology, it is still worth taking a look at.

1. Chatbots and live chat

Although this is not a new technology, chatbots and live chat is becoming very popular with businesses all over the world. People are interacting with more and more chatbots on a daily basis. This technology has become so popular because of the benefits it offers businesses in terms of customer interaction and better customer service.

In a very conversational way, chatbots message back and forth with customers for a number of tasks, such as suggesting products to customers and ordering the items. Chatbots enable businesses to provide a 24-hour service to customers by providing customers with an instant response to questions, providing an easy form of communication, resolving complaints quickly and providing a good customer experience. It is a lot easier for customers to communicate with chatbots online than it is for the customer to phone or send an email to a company representative.

According to research, live chat makes it three times more likely that customers will complete the purchase process. With so many benefits to businesses, it is very likely that the use of chatbots and live chat will continue to grow in 2019 and beyond.

If you want to experience chatbots, feel free to visit this link and click on the chat button that appears on the screen.

2. Enhanced personalised recommendations

This technology has already stared becoming the way of the future. Personalising the customer experience is a trend that most businesses are already starting to implement, whether it is recommending movies or series when watching Netflix or recommending other products that the customer might be interested in based on previous buying behaviour, this technology can help businesses enhance the customer experience by giving the customers more of what they want.

This artificial intelligence algorithm is constantly being bettered and is making more accurate recommendations as time goes on. This is a trend that should not be ignored in the coming year.

Related: The Complete Guide To Writing A Marketing Plan

3. Facebook and Instagram adverts

The trends around paid social media ads are constantly changing. With these changes it is becoming obvious that businesses prefer to focus their attention on Facebook and Instagram ads over other social media platforms.

Social Media Examiner published the following data to show how ads on social media sites like Snapchat and Pinterest are becoming less popular with businesses, while Facebook and Instagram are growing in popularity.

social-media-marketers-paid-social-usage-trends-graph

As we know, Instagram is owned by Facebook, so it is not a surprise to see these two social media sites growing in popularity together. Businesses are able to manage ads on both these social sites in the same place. The format of these sites make it much easier for businesses to create ads that target the right audience, based on its needs.

Although it is a good idea to advertise on as many social media sites as possible to ensure that you are reaching the largest audience possible, it would be wise to focus most of your attention on these two top trending sites. If you are only looking at making use of paid social media ads in the coming year, then these two sites are the ones to start with.

4. Voice search

Voice recognition software has been around for a while, but the technology is evolving at a steady pace. Google Home now has a 95% word accuracy which shows how the technology is gradually getting better and more accurate. Voice search makes it easier and faster to search apps, to conduct web searches and even conduct image searches. Very soon, voice searches may represent the majority of total searches.

With voice search technology, people are searching for information, making purchases and even interacting with websites using only their voice. In time businesses will need to rethink how information is presented to audiences and may even be forced to come up with entirely new structures to keep up with this change.

In was reported that as of January 2018, voice searches were conducted 1 billion times a month, and in 2019 this figure is expected to grow. As a business, this should be flagged as technology of interest.

5. Mobile payments

Marketing your products and reaching potential customers is only half the battle won, the other half is completing the sale. Being able to offer customers a variety of payment options is something all businesses need to look at. A growing trend in this regard is mobile payments, so this is another option that businesses need to look at offering customers.

One portion of mobile payments allows customers to pay for goods and services directly from a mobile app, another portion of mobile pay comes from alternative payment options.

In 2018 an estimated 440 million users across the globe used contactless pay options, and this number is expected to increase in 2019.

The following graph shows exactly how this trend has been growing.

mobile-pay-is-expanding

Your business should be prepared to accept these types of payments because consumers are getting used to it. If you don’t have their preferred payment option, they may take their business elsewhere.

Related: Free Sample Marketing Plan Template

6. Interactive video content

Video marketing is a trend that has been on the rise for many years. More and more videos are being uploaded to social media and websites as part of marketing strategies. Video blogs (vlogs) have also been taking off in this regard. In 2019 we will start seeing changes to the way video is consumed with an increase in interactive videos.

An example of an interactive video is a 360-degree video that allows users to view the whole area being discussed in the video by clicking the navigation button in the top left-hand corner of the screen while the video is playing.

interactive-video-youtube

This 360-degree video was uploaded to YouTube by Washington Post.

Offering interactivity with videos means that more people can engage with your content. Interactivity also makes your videos more exciting for your viewers to watch than traditional videos. Research has shown that 360-degree videos have a greater click-through rate than traditional video formats, offering a higher return on your investment.

This is a trend that will continue to grow due to its popularity, so it definitely worth looking into now.

7. IGTV

Instagram has decided to re-envision mobile video with the introduction of IGTV. This new standalone platform has been developed specifically for mobile phones. Instagram has caught onto the fact that people these days are watching less TV and more videos. They have decided to develop this trend and cater to the growing wants and needs of the masses.

Instagram is definitely evolving with the times and its popularity has continued to grow because of this since its launch in 2010. Instagram currently has over 1 billion active users on its site, so even if a small percentage of these users download IGTV, it is still a large audience for marketers to target.

instagram-marketing-numbers

It will be highly beneficial to have an active presence on both Instagram and IGTV in order to use the large number of current users to your advantage. With the IGTV platform being so new, try to get a step ahead of competitors by getting to know the platform and producing content for it.

Related: Beginners Guide To Digital Marketing In South Africa

8. Beacon technology

In a mobile era where mobile apps are becoming more and more popular, businesses need to get onboard with the latest technology if they want to stay current. Beacon technology is a great way for businesses to improve the profitability of their mobile app. This new technology works in a similar way to GPS, just not quite as complex.

Firstly, with this technology retailers need to encourage their customers to download their mobile apps. Once the customer has downloaded the app on their mobile phone, the app will be able to track their location. Retailers can then strategically place beacons around the shop so when the app users walk past a beacon, the business will know exactly where the customer is and what the customer is shopping for. With this information businesses can then send the customer a promotion via push notifications.

This technology can even be used by businesses that only have an ecommerce platform. Beacons can be placed in public areas relevant to what the business offers. Promotional push notifications can then be sent to the user when they are in the vicinity of the beacon.

Below is a visual representation of how the beacon technology works.

beacon-technology-diagram

2019 Will see a rise in popularity with this technology because of the rise in popularity with mobile apps.

9. Predictive analytics

Predictive analytics is very much related to personal recommendations in the sense that it uses a variety of statistical techniques that analyse current and historical facts to make predictions about the future. Businesses can use predictive analytics to gain a competitive advantage by uncovering new opportunities. Predictive analytics are used to determine customer responses or purchases and help businesses to attract and grow their customer base.

Technology like this can be so beneficial to a business, and that is why more businesses are making use of it. Its popularity is growing and will definitely continue to grow throughout the coming year and many years to come.

10. Artificial Intelligence and machine learning

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning is by no means new technology, in fact, many of the trends discussed in this article make use of AI and machine learning. It is so important for businesses to learn the marketing skills needed to survive in this age of AI as it is the fastest growing technology and no business can afford to ignore it. Ignoring developments in technology could mean that businesses will not be able to keep up with competitors.

Related: The Curious Case Of AI And Legal Liability

Conclusion

It is so important for all businesses to recognise the newest trends and to keep developing their marketing strategies along with new technology in order to be able to compete in such a competitive, ever-changing market.

2019 Is sure to be a very big year for marketers so I hope that by following these trends, your business will find success in the coming year.

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Now’s The Time To Go Digital

The digital age has completely transformed the way businesses market their products and services to their customers. As a result, the playing field of industries both big and small has forced companies to relook their strategies.

Digital School of Marketing

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Vital Stats

Digital marketing is a broad term covering digital channels that people use to market their products. But what makes digital marketing different and unique compared to traditional marketing channels?

It gives the marketer or advertiser the opportunity to hone in on specific audiences that are more likely to purchase or see value in their offer, says Lisa Schneider, Managing Director at the Digital School of Marketing.

“Because digital marketing is computerised, it allows the marketer to get accurate analytical data about their campaigns, both in the research phase and when their campaign has finished. This makes digital marketing an easy way to gauge ROI of marketing and advertising efforts.”

Do you know how to market your businesses online?

Regardless of the size of your business, to remain successful, you need to have a good understanding and grasp of what digital marketing is and train your organisation on the skills it involves. According to Lisa, digital marketing skills encompass aspects that include:

  • Analytical skills
  • Social media skills
  • Search marketing skills
  • Copywriting skills.

“Without a doubt the most important element is understanding who your customers are and what makes them tick. One of the biggest advantages by far in digital marketing is the ability to market to an audience, assuring that your message will be seen, heard and appreciated,” says Lisa.

“The technology that is made available to market products in the digital realm is sophisticated software that allows the marketer’s message to be seen as widely or as granularly as they would want. A solid understanding of your target market is absolutely one of the most fundamental and important elements of digital marketing.”

Related: Beginners Guide To Digital Marketing In South Africa

Advance digitally without breaking the bank

Marketing is an expensive exercise no matter how you look at it, says Lisa. “Digital marketing requires a solid understanding of many different areas that are quite broad, and how to manage and understand a multitude of platforms and analytical data is imperative. This will allow the marketer to extract the most value without burning a hole in their pocket.”

As a business owner, you must look at what is out there in terms of online education providers. It’s important to do your homework about the company and what accreditation and endorsements the company holds.

Lisa suggests contacting the accreditation body to find out the legitimacy of the educational provider. The Internet provides a wealth of information regarding different institutions and how their courses can benefit the company.

What defines a reputable online marketing education provider?

Authentic online education providers have a third-party accreditation or endorsement. In a nutshell, accreditation means that a third party, that is usually government regulated, has looked through the institution’s educational material and internal business procedures to see that it has met their standards of approval.

What this means is that the education provider is not self-governed but is regulated by higher government authorities. This makes your course more credible, recognised and respected compared to a non-accredited provider.

For best results, choose the experts

“The Digital School of Marketing stays on top of trends through solid research,” Lisa explains.

“Google is constantly updating algorithms and adjusting their online marketing platform capabilities. Social networks also come and go and adjust their marketing and advertising platforms.”

Related: Free Sample Marketing Plan Template

DSM prides itself on the ability and appetite to constantly research trends by reading industry journals, attending workshops and seminars, but only publishing what is relevant and has longevity. “We also benchmark the changes that are made on online learning platforms, so we can offer our students an experience that is unique and truly fulfilling on their educational journey,” says Lisa.

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