Handling the responsibilities of a business is tough for anybody – even the most seasoned professionals. Whether approaching the task as an entrepreneur or an individual with a history of business management, there are a plethora of tasks that must be juggled effectively on a day-to-day basis.
Business managers often find themselves focusing on short-term goals and tasks, such as logistics, supply chain management, financial statements, and vendor relations. However, marketing is a crucial component to any business: while some business managers understand its complexities, others may not have full familiarity with the nuances of the practice.
To provide some guidance to those who fall into the latter category, let’s examine six specific elements that business managers should know about marketing. By understanding these concepts, they can be more effective champions of one core component of business expansion and success.
Targeting Is Fundamental
One of the most crucial components of any marketing strategy – whether it be digital marketing or traditional marketing – is an understanding of who you’re attempting to persuade. Without a complex understanding of your target demographics, marketing strategies are doomed to fail. This usually means that businesses must invest in market research and demographic analysis before any effective campaigns can be deployed.
A variety of intuitive solutions now exist to extract information about targeted demographics. From social media and email marketing analytics to professional consumer research, business managers must understand that marketing teams need to have resources to determine who should be targeted by their campaigns.
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Mobile Marketing Is Unavoidable
Any marketing strategy being overseen by business managers must factor in the effects of mobile device usage. While there is variance between brands based on their individual demographics, most internal traffic via social media and search engines comes through mobile devices. This can have a huge impact on the effectiveness of digital marketing campaigns.
Most platforms that allow paid marketing campaigns offer customizations based on mobile and desktop viewing experiences. Ads will look different to each group: if a campaign is only optimized for a desktop view experience, then a variety of factors – including image resolutions and ad copy length – may be less than optimal for mobile users.
Because of this, it is important to optimize ads for mobile users. Additionally, websites should be utilizing a mobile responsive design to ensure optimal user experience for each visitor, customer, and subscriber.
Content Is King
Above all else, business managers have to understand the role that content plays in digital marketing. Even the world’s best digital marketing teams cannot effectively cultivate a successful advertising strategy without the presence of meaningful content. Digital content can come in many forms and includes blog posts, web pages, podcasts, infographics, social media content, videos, and photos.
Virtually every form of digital marketing – whether it be search engine optimization, social media marketing or email marketing – needs tangible content to attract people. Whether the goal is to encourage additional product sales, shares or subscriptions, people aren’t going to interact with marketing campaigns if there’s nothing more than a bit of ad copy.
Business managers must be prepared to invest in content creation, whether it be through an existing marketing team or through additional professional services.
Social Media Produces Real Results
Business managers probably know that social media can provide tangible value to their companies, but many lack an understanding of just how powerful it can be. Social media offers businesses with a meaningful marketing budget the possibility of reaching vast numbers of people immediately; by using a combination of campaigns targeting specific individuals, companies can begin generating clicks, views, shares, and purchases on a massive scale.
However, most paid social media campaigns – with the exception of those specifically focused on retail products – do need to adhere to the prior advice regarding content. Audiences are not naturally going to find a particular brand’s marketing persuasive without content that informs, persuades or entertains. Business managers need to respect the plans and ideas of marketing professionals who are tasked with producing viral content.
Search Engine Optimization Is Still Vital
Arguably the most consistent component of digital marketing over the past 30 years, search engine optimization is an immense aspect of marketing for many brands. Business managers who want to extract maximum long-term value from marketing efforts must be prepared to allow investments in SEO. The reason? Long-term investments in SEO can yield substantial amounts of organic traffic; while many forms of digital marketing require consistent paid efforts, SEO provides free traffic and attention when done properly.
With SEO, brand managers need to hire professionals who understand how to create content, optimize a website for mobile audiences, research keywords and build links. Dozens of other on-page and technical optimizations also exist, but ultimately, the basics of SEO revolve around serving quality content and targeting select search engine results pages.
There’s arguably no other form of digital marketing presently that can continue to deliver such a meaningful return on investment than SEO. Business managers should absolutely consult with marketing professionals to determine how SEO can be applied to their specific marketing efforts.
Business managers absolutely have to accept that marketing efforts are not a one-time effort, regardless of the medium or channel used. It is impossible to make a lump sum investment into email marketing, social media marketing or search engine marketing with the expectation that it will be enough to grow a brand in perpetuity.
Likewise, key aspects of marketing such as content creation require a consistent schedule of publishing and distribution. Even with social media updates, most brands ensure multiple posts per day are made across each social media platform for optimal reach and saturation.
In short: be ready to sustain a marketing effort in perpetuity and ensure both content and updates are being regularly distributed through organic and paid strategies.
Business managers have clear and meaningful responsibilities. However, they do not always understand the complexities of digital marketing strategies. It’s vital that business managers know what is needed in a modern marketing environment, to ensure that the proper resources and attention are given to such endeavors. The above aspects of marketing will help guide those managers in the right direction for any future advertising plans.