New Articles

5 Reasons Businesses Should Bare Their Souls To Customers

5 Reasons Businesses Should Bare Their Souls To Customers

We live in the information age — aptly named because we have unprecedented access to information through many platforms. Researchers estimate that between television, radio, the internet, email and social media, the average person receives the equivalent of 174 newspapers worth of data every day. That means consumers have a lot to sort through and choose from when shopping for virtually any type of product. And studies show they demand more transparency from companies to help them make an informed decision. 

“This is especially critical in digital marketing,” says Jonathan Musgrave, owner and chief digital marketer for Steep Digital Marketing (www.steepdigital.com). “With information so abundant and readily available, companies are becoming increasingly transparent in an effort to engage the potential customer. They’re inviting potential customers into their world rather than talking at them.” Musgrave offers five ways that being transparent in digital marketing can win over customers:

Builds trust. “You deserve more than someone playing games with you and withholding information,” Musgrave says, whose digital marketing agency specializes in seminar advertising, lead generation and marketing automation for financial advisors. “The consumer expects and is entitled to know exactly what they’re signing up for. The financial advisors my firm works with, for example, tell us that they build such good rapport with their seminar attendees before the event occurs because of the way they’re featured on the event landing page. There’s a lot of ‘gotcha marketing’ going on in the world today, and no one likes to feel like they got fooled.”

Develops loyalty. Surveys show that the vast majority of consumers will be loyal to a brand that practices transparency. “Brands now have the enhanced opportunity to show their personalities and values due to the internet and social media,” Musgrave says. “So consumers expect to know more about companies than ever before. And if you give them transparency, they’re willing to pay extra for it.”

Shows authenticity. “To do digital marketing right,” Musgrave says, “companies need to take a deep dive into who they are, where they’ve been — warts and all — and show a vulnerability that potential customers can relate to. People can see themselves in what you truthfully present. The whole objective is to create a human interaction, and being authentic in this way is one of the most powerful things you can do.”

Pairs a great offer with great value. “Regardless of what you’re selling, there is some ulterior factor we’re using as an advertising carrot,” Musgrave says. “An example would be a time-share presentation; get a free cruise if you sit down and listen to them talk about some product they’re trying to sell you. But the carrot blinds you from the actual intent of the event. In order to be transparent and build good trust, the offer has to be paired with value.”

Increases efficiency. “Becoming more transparent through digital marketing can greatly improve a business’ efficiency by spending less time talking around product limitations and sidestepping customers’ concerns,” Musgrave says. “By not embellishing your results, you save time for more productive work.”

“Giving consumers access to all the information they need to know without masking your intentions is a proven way to build better relationships through digital marketing,” Musgrave says. 

Jonathan Musgrave is the owner and chief digital marketer for Steep Digital Marketing (www.steepdigital.com), which he founded in 2017. Musgrave got his start in the direct mail business, using his communication skills to craft powerful marketing messages that reached more than 1,000,000 households each month. He’s started his own wholesaling company that brought digital marketing tools to the financial advisor space for the first time in 2013 that were responsible for doubling sales for three consecutive years.

6 Advanced Digital Marketing Strategies You Should Try

Marketing is crucial for your business to succeed. Whether you are an online retail shop owner or a first-time entrepreneur, you probably already know the importance of smart and effective advertising.

In order to kick-start your business and support it as it grows, you should have a detailed marketing plan. This article will look into six advanced digital marketing strategies you should try in your campaign.

1. Guest Posts

Guest blogging is often being overlooked by the majority of entrepreneurs and even marketers themselves. The primary purpose of guests posts is link building, and perhaps they are the best tool for it.

Guest posts are essential for growing your business, and here’s why:

They help build relationships: If you are an expert in your field, you will easily be able to establish a connection with your audience and with the bloggers you collaborate with. Being professional about what you do and displaying an insightful look at the industry can help inspire loyalty and trust in your customers.

They are good for SEO: When you leave a link to your website on the guest post you write on an authoritative blog, you will not only receive more traffic through those links, but your website will rank higher in web searches. Google sees backlinks from different places that lead to your site and this makes the search engine prioritizes your website over others.

They are relatively cheap: Compared to other marketing techniques, guest blogging is fairly cheap. The thing to keep in mind though is that you must mainly focus on the quality of content instead of trying to sell your products. If your article has no value, then what use is it?

They provide new leads and opportunities: As mentioned before, being an expert in your field can potentially lead to new customers. If people like your content, they will want to find out more about your business and eventually become your clients.

2. Translations

The logic behind this strategy is fairly simple: the more accessible you make your content, the more people you will reach. By translating your website into different languages, you will be able to appeal to the foreign audiences, which will lead to your business going global.

If you are not good with languages and don’t know anyone who can translate your content, you can always turn to online translation services which have become very popular in recent years. Such sites as The Word Point offer translations to dozens of languages for a decent price and in a small amount of time.

For this marketing strategy to be effective, you should consider translating to at least two or three languages other than English. If you are based in North America, a good idea would be to spread into South America. This means that you will have to localize your content for the respective countries, whose main languages are Spanish and Portuguese or variations of these.

Likewise, if you are based in Europe, you can target the biggest potential markets that you are missing out on at the moment. Don’t try to hurry though, and start off with several languages first. You can increase that number once you have established yourself in your target countries.

3. Skyscraper Technique

When using the Skyscraper Technique, you will be able to develop many aspects of your business marketing. The technique itself is pretty simple:

Find Trending Content: The first thing you do is find the content in your niche that is currently trending. Sometimes such topics can die out as fast as they sprang up, so be sure to act fast.

Compile A List Of Distributors: Now make a list of websites or blogs where you will be posting your future content. Your articles might be guest posts, so you have to find out if the sites permit backlinks beforehand.

Create Better Content: Go through the content you found and make it better. Develop certain points or include additional analysis. Maybe the content lacks facts or statistics. If the language is too complicated, simplify it so that more people can understand it. Your goal is to create an article that is better than what you found. Because you are using a trending topic, you will most definitely succeed in finding an audience for your work.

Post It & Receive Feedback: Once you post the content on the sites you chose, keep interacting with your readers. Show that you are willing to stay up-to-date on the topic and are a professional in your industry. The backlinks should increase your traffic too.

4. Smart Emails

You are probably thinking about how useless and ineffective email marketing is nowadays. But this is actually not the case if you know how to do it properly.

A good email will possess all the qualities of a good ad. To make your emails more appealing, think about these features:

  • -Design is everything. Make it stand out.
  • -Less text. More images.
  • -Saturate your content. Only on topic.

Along with the things listed above, try targeting specific people instead of the general public. Look for certain users on the Internet and aim your emails at them. One way to make email marketing easier is to use such a tool as MailChimp or analogs. It makes sending these messages faster and more efficient.

5. Moving Man Method

This is a fairly new tricky technique that was coined by Brian Dean. The system goes like this:

  • -Find Defunct Websites: Find websites in your industry or niche that have moved to a new URL, changed names, stopped offering services, or went out of business completely.
  • -Look Through The Data: Carefully look through these websites to find the content you like.
  • -Create Better Content: Just like with the Skyscraper Technique, create better content than what they used to offer.
  • -Reach Out To Sites With Backlinks: Find sites and blogs that contain backlinks to these defunct websites. Reach out to them and ask if they would change the links to your own articles.

Quite a witty technique that is gaining popularity right now, the Moving Man Method is an easy way to create quality content and get backlinks to your site.

6. Advertorials

Last but not least, advertorials are the way to go because of their unique nature. Unlike traditional advertisement, advertorials serve the purpose of connecting with your audience rather than plainly selling your product.

There is a great article on How To Write An Advertorial that you can check out to get acquainted with what an advertorial is. Here’s a rundown of how to make your advertorial more appealing:

  • -Find the right media outlet. Don’t choose at random.
  • -Clearly label your advertorial as ‘advertisement’ (according to FTC’s guidelines), or else it will be banned.
  • -Advertorials are like blogs: don’t sell the product, sell the content related to your product.
  • -Share your advertorials on social media.

To sum up, these are definitely not the only advanced digital marketing strategies that will aid you during your advertising. But they are most obviously worth a try and may be of great use when implemented right. Don’t pass by and take note!

How Traditional Marketing Can Benefit From A Digital Twist

At one time, marketing meant using such tactics as buying commercial time on TV or radio stations, advertising in a newspaper or magazine, or sending your message through direct mail.

All of those remain options today, but they are joined by a plethora of digital alternatives for reaching potential customers or clients, who spend a lot of time hanging out in the digital world.

“Websites are optimized for sharing content with others, and people are getting on social media to be educated or entertained, so delivering on those ‘needs’ is super important for any business or professional who wants to remain relevant,” says Jonathan Musgrave, owner and chief digital marketer for Steep Digital Marketing (www.steepdigital.com).

Yet, Musgrave says many businesses and professionals don’t always take advantage of what digital marketing offers, instead falling back on what worked in the past, either out of habit or due to a lack of understanding of the power of digital.

And that’s no way to move forward, he says. But choosing between digital or traditional approaches to marketing isn’t an either/or proposition. Musgrave offers a few examples of how the two can be married to produce great results:

-A text instead of a call. Musgrave says one of his clients, a financial professional, would buy TV time each month for a show in which he would talk about money issues. At the end of each segment, in an effort to generate leads, his firm’s telephone number would be displayed so viewers could call if they wanted more information. “I suggested that instead of a number to call, they should show a number that people could text,” Musgrave says. That change might appear insignificant on its face, but it proved to be extraordinarily consequential. The financial professional went from receiving about three responses per show to about 300.

Billboards and digital calls to action. A message on a billboard provides the same opportunity to elicit a digital response from anyone who sees it. Once again, instead of urging people to call, urge them to text. You can also include your website address in your billboard ad so those intrigued by what you have to offer can learn more there, Musgrave says.

-Work digital connections into all marketing materials. Likely, you have business cards, brochures or any number of other marketing materials that people can hold in their hands. All of those should let people know how they can find you online, whether it’s on your website or on social media channels, Musgrave says. By the same token, if you have speaking engagements, you can put that information on a display poster or include it in a PowerPoint slide. “Since people always carry their phones, if they see how to find you on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or wherever, they may follow you right then and there,” he says. 

“The most dangerous thing I hear people say is that digital marketing is the future,” Musgrave says. “That’s not quite accurate because the future is already here. Advertisers globally spent more on digital advertising than any other medium in 2017, displacing TV at the top of the chart for the first time. If you keep kicking the digital can down the road, by the time you catch up to it again, your competitors will have already passed you.”  

About Jonathan Musgrave

Jonathan Musgrave is the owner and chief digital marketer for Steep Digital Marketing (www.steepdigital.com), which he founded in 2017. Musgrave got his start in the direct mail business, using his communication skills to craft powerful marketing messages that reached more than 1,000,000 households each month. He’s started his own wholesaling company that brought digital marketing tools to the financial advisor space for the first time in 2013 that were responsible for doubling sales for three consecutive years.