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marketing

Five tips for making it big in the digital economy

marketing

David Graham
David Graham's passion is business-to-business digital marketing with a specific focus on value networking and inbound marketing. He consults on business-to-business digital marketing strategy and execution, with... More

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So many organisations are missing the trick completely in the online space because they are incapable of ridding themselves of dated marketing behaviour of the past. I have listed five things you should do to derive tangible benefit from your online marketing activities.

1. Provide value at all costs

Good content marketers keep harping on about this but so many do not listen. The internet was developed all those years ago for people to find information that would add value to their lives. The emphasis here is on the recipient, not the person developing and sharing content. Online marketers that want to truly see notable results must produce information that is interesting, insightful, value-adding, intriguing and sharable. The more content you share that carries these attributes, the more people will continue to listen to you.

2. Change the “I” to “you”

Go on a first date and talk about yourself all the time and see how well you fair. Generally, your will not make it to the second date. Online marketers that want to get noticed must talk about the customer, not themselves. Lose words like “I”, “we”, “us” and “our” and replace with “you” and “your”. The more you place the emphasis on the recipient, the more you instil a feeling that you actually care about them.

3. Give away content

Ensure that at all times, that you give away content without ever expecting anything in return. It may take some time for recipients to realise that you are not going to ask them for anything in return, and when it does, you are on the road to developing some good online relationships.

What happens during this process is that people continue to listen to you, but you are building credibility along the way and being viewed as a trusted adviser. As you are communicating regularly with your community, you are staying top of mind, and there is a greater propensity for your subscribers to contact you when they have a business challenge or a requirement that may be addressed by the services you provide.

4. Never mention the products, services and solutions

If you are an opportunistic salesperson or marketer, then mention all the products, services and solutions you sell, but remember this will be a once off exercise. You may land a few orders, but you will also upset a great deal of people who will report you for spamming them or who will unsubscribe from any future communication.

5. Focus on subtle promotion

People employing best practice techniques will:

  • Focus on the clients’ challenges and problems
  • Offer solutions, methodologies, approaches, tips, advice and guidance to resolve problems
  • Not talk about themselves, their company, their products, services and solutions
  • Give selflessly without expecting anything in return

But this does not mean they will not include links to:

  • Their website where they talk about their company, products and solutions
  • Their LinkedIn profile and company page where they showcase their skills and qualifications
  • Invitations to meet to discuss specific business topics in more detail
  • Business events which they are hosting or attending

This advice is based on our past experience and results we have achieved through the adoption of this approach. Do you have any anything to add?