The Lesser-Known Digital Marketing Tools and How They are Used

The Lesser-Known Digital Marketing Tools and How They are Used

Everybody is talking about the digital marketing tools: Search engine optimization (SEO); Content marketing; Social media marketing and PPC (Pay per click); but what about the lesser-known digital marketing tools?

The digital marketing tools which form some of the foundation of your online marketing strategy, but aren’t as exciting. Except, when you hear about their benefits, they turn out to be surprisingly stirring. Today we are going to explore:

  • Affiliate marketing;
  • Native advertising;
  • Email marketing and
  • Online PR and how each can help your business reach its marketing goals.

Affiliate Marketing

What is Affiliate marketing?

Affiliate marketing is a performance-based digital marketing tool that is founded on revenue sharing. It’s the method of spreading product marketing across diverse parties, which results in each party receiving a share of the revenue – according to their contribution, of course.

There are many sources on the subject which state that there are either three or four different parties involved in affiliate marketing: the merchant; the network; publisher and customer; or the advertiser; publisher and consumer. But, in reality, there are two real sides of affiliate marketing: the product creator/seller and the affiliate marketer.

The product creator, also known as the merchant/vendor or retailer, is the party which creates the product. Anyone from entrepreneurs to large companies can become a merchant behind an affiliate marketing program. All they need is a product to sell.

The task for an affiliate marketer is to earn commissions via promoting the products of other companies. Find products that appeal to you, promote that product by attracting and convincing potential customers, then earn a commission for every sale you help make.

Examples of affiliate marketing channels include:

  • Posting affiliate links from social media accounts
  • Running a review blog of a merchant’s products
  • Hosting video through programs such as YouTube partner; or
  • An entire website dedicated to finding the best products related to a certain topic, or many topics (such as Amazon.com)

Benefits of affiliate marketing

For advertisers:

  • Market your products only to interested people for no upfront fee.
  • Engage in risk-free advertising: pay only when you see results.
  • Have multiple (hundreds, even thousands) of websites promoting your product.

For affiliate marketers:

  • The opportunity to effectively sell stock without the costs or responsibilities of manufacturing, buying or storing.
  • When working with networks that pay highly, there is massive profit potential and,
  • If performed correctly, the opportunity to create an almost passive income.
  • There is the ability to work online from anywhere at any time, with the freedom to choose how hard you work.
  • A strong social following can almost guarantee that you, as an influencer, will receive many free incentives from advertisers who are looking to boost their brand awareness.

Native Advertising

What is native advertising?

In simple terms, native advertising is a paid form of advertising that is primarily content-based and is featured beside other non-paid content on digital platforms. Native advertising is a combination of form: matching the visual design of Ads to look and feel like natural content; and function: Ads which function like natural content, behaving consistently with the seamless user experience.

Native advertising morphs advertisements into content which resembles the content online audiences already seek.

Types of Native Advertising

  • Sponsored content
  • Recommended content
  • In-feed Social media Ads

Examples of native advertising

Many posts on social media represent examples of native advertising. These include:

  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Tumblr and
  • BuzzFeed sponsored posts

Benefits of native advertising

  • This type of advertising helps create a seamless experience for the online audience, contributing to the goal of the ultimate user experience.
  • The online audience realizes that native advertising is still advertising, but studies prove that users are up to 25% more likely to engage with native Ads vs. standard banners.
  • Online user bases are also more likely to engage with native advertising than with editorial content.

Email Marketing

What is email marketing?

Businesses use email marketing in order to communicate regularly with their audiences. Email is a great communication platform and is widely used – even more so than social media platforms.

Furthermore, it lacks the clutter associated with social media as it’s generally used for business-orientated purposes and interests.

Types of Email marketing

  • Direct Email – Promotional messages and special offers.
  • Retention Email – Newsletters.

Examples of Email marketing

The types of emails one would create to form an email marketing campaign could include:

  • Welcome emails for new customers.
  • Blog subscription newsletters.
  • Follow-up emails for visitors who have subscribed, downloaded or bought something.
  • Promotions for loyal members.

Benefits of Email marketing

  • An incredible source – There are more Email accounts than Twitter and Facebook accounts combined.
  • Measurability – Track your ROI (return on investment) precisely and make necessary modifications to your campaign.
  • Success – Target your audience to find the ideal customers and keep constant contact to enrich business communications.
  • Cost – Email is one of the cheapest ways to communicate to a broad target audience which can also be specifically targeted.

Online Public Relations

What is online PR?

Dissimilar to traditional PR; online PR is the process of attaining earned exposure with digital publications; blogs and other content-based websites, only through digital marketing channels.

However, the content is not focused on the product or service, but rather topics of interest which surround the product. The channels one could use to maximize online PR include:

  • Engaging online views for your business.
  • Reporter outreach through social media channels.
  • Engaging comments on a personal blog or website.

Examples of online PR

Online PR is a digital marketing tool which influences:

  • Columnists and traditional writers;
  • Websites and brand-sites;
  • Personal and professional bloggers;
  • Social Media users

Via distribution sources such as:

  • Blogs;
  • Social media platforms and
  • Websites

Benefits of online PR

  • It is great for online reputation management. Good reviews bring in more traffic to your website, while bad reviews offer insight into the business’ shortcomings and can be counter-acted with press releases or articles.
  • Online PR does not have to be expensive; many will review your product for no cost if a sample is offered.
  • It can improve your SEO ranking by submitting keyword optimized articles or press releases to blogs, you can increase your back-link profiling.

Digital Marketing South Africa

The world of digital and social media marketing is incredibly complex. Not using digital marketing tools, especially inbound marketing tools, to market your business is guaranteed to be a loss of incredible benefits.

Digital Marketing South Africa offers you the opportunity to take your business to the next level. Our team of digital and social media marketing wizards are equipped with all the tools necessary to help you grow your business.

We handle all aspects of online marketing, including:

  • Native Advertising,
  • Content Creation,
  • Content Strategy,
  • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
  • Social Media Marketing (managing and sharing across all social networks)
  • Email Marketing
  • Pay Per Click
  • Marketing Automation

Feel free to contact us for more information about our online marketing services.

ITM – Website Design Cape Town

Not only that, it is critical that your web design be modern and use current technology.

In addition to this your website should support your marketing efforts by including elements such as a blog engine and Social Media marketing.

Digital Marketing South Africa utilises the superior professional web design services of ITM Website Design.

Is Pay-Per-Click Advertising a Good Idea for your Business?

Is Pay-Per-Click Advertising a Good Idea for your Business?

If you have all the right elements to get on to the top of the SERPs (search engine results page) but just can’t seem to get there; pay-per-click advertising could supplement your digital marketing strategy just enough to get you ranking.

What is Pay-Per-Click Advertising?

PPC is a prevalent form of paid Search Engine advertising that is based on an auction system. As the business owner, you bid on specific ad positions, keywords and phrases which are relevant to your business. Your ad is rated according to a specific system and placed accordingly.

Pay-per-click advertising includes the following vital elements, among others:

  • Identifying and targeting demographics;
  • Keyword research and selection;
  • Ad writing;
  • Configuring group Ad settings;
  • SEO copywriting to create content for landing pages;
  • Creating call-to-actions (CTAs) and
  • Measuring conversions.

If your advert wins first place on the bid; it will be located at the top of the SERP, above even the highest ranking SEO pages. Pay-per-click is a form of supplementary advertising; it cannot be used as a replacement of other marketing tools such as SEO (search engine optimization), but is rather as support for other digital marketing tools.

What is cost-per-click (CPC)?

CPC (cost per click) is used to refer to the actual price one would pay for each click in a pay-per-click (PPC) marketing campaigns.

How is cost-per-click calculated?

The cost-per-click is an average of bids against a series of competitors over a period of time. Therefore, the cost-per-click will always be equal-to or less than your maximum bid.

As a result of Google AdWords’ functioning, your actual cost-per-click is heavily influenced by you and your closest competitor’s ad rank, maximum bid and quality score.

The AdWords cost-per-click formula

Competitor Ad Rank + .01 = Actual CPC (cost-per-click)

Your Quality Score

What is the average cost per click?

The levels of CPC vary depending on the type of business and industry; however, the average CPC across industries is around $2.

Google AdWords has some remarkable data concerning the average cost-per-click across 20 common industries. It’s always a great idea to cross-reference this average with your average cost-per-click.

If your cost-per-click is much higher than these set-out benchmarks, it is likely that you are paying too much.

Why is CPC important in Search Engine Advertising?

CPC is the value that determines the financial success of your paid search campaigns (as well as how much AdWords will cost you). CPC is determined by several factors which include:

  • Your maximum bid;
  • Your Quality Score; and
  • The Ad rank of the other advertisers who are in competition (bidding) for the same keyword.

Your ROI (return on investment), whether over- or under-paid for each click is determined by how much you pay for each click; and by the kind of quality traffic you receive for such an investment.

It’s important to think of cost-per-click in terms of cost and value; as the overall ROI (return on investment) of the campaign is determined by the amount paid for clicks and the quality of traffic they attract.

The goal is to identify, target and attract clicks that are both inexpensive and valuable.

Pay-per-click Keyword Research

A PPC campaign is built around keyword research. The most successful PPC campaigns have continuously evolving PPC keyword lists which are frequently redefined.

Keyword research must be performed many times so that your business doesn’t miss out on hundreds, even thousands of low-cost, long-tail, highly valuable and relevant keywords and phrases that could drive traffic to your website.

A successful PPC keywords list should be:

Relevant

The keywords you bid on should be closely related to the services and products you offer. You want to find keywords that will lead to a higher PPC click-through rate (CTR), low cost per click and increased profits.

Expansive

Pay-per-click is repetitive, the campaign must constantly be refined and expanded to create an environment that your keyword list can constantly grow with and adapt to.

Exhaustive

Keyword research for PPC should include both the most popular and frequently searched terms in a niche category as well as the long-tailed keywords, better known as phrases.

Long-tailed keywords are less common; less expensive due to being less competitive and more specific keywords, which account for the majority of search driven traffic.

How Does Pay-per-click Advertising Work?

In order to explain this, let’s take a look at the most popular PPC platform: Google AdWords.

What is Google AdWords?

All search engines have their own PPC models in order to assist businesses in advertising and, in turn, generate profits of their own.

Google AdWords is the number one PPC advertising system on Earth. It works on the PPC model, where users bid on Ad placement and keywords.

Every time a search is activated, Google checks if there are numerous bids on the same keyword and determines whether there will be an auction. If there are a few, Google triggers an auction.

An Ad auction is an automated process used to determine the validity and relevance of Ads that appear in SERPs.  Google determines the winners of the bid by observing two key factors:

  1. Your Maximum CPC (cost-per-click) bid : the maximum bid you are willing to pay per click and
  2. Your Quality Score: This metric is used to determine how useful and relevant your Ad will be to users.

AdWords advertisers are placed into pools created from parties competing for the same keywords. Then Google chooses a set of winners that will appear in the prime Ad space at the top of the SERP.

The higher your quality score, the better your chances of placing. The ideal would be a combination of highest cost-per-click (CPC) bid and quality score; this type of Ad would achieve the best position.

Types of pay-per-click advertising

There are numerous ways to create PPC advertisements, including:

  • Banner Ads
  • Text Ads
  • Mobile Ads
  • Video and YouTube marketing

The goal of all types of PPC campaigns would be to increase click-through rate (CTR) – the number of times your Ad is clicked on vs. the number of times your Ad was displayed – by optimizing your campaign.

Measuring and managing PPC campaigns

PPC advertising offers immense control over the volume of leads you generate. Campaigns require attention on a daily basis to monitor performance and make necessary adjustments according to statistical results.

This ultimately leads to Conversion Rate Management (CRM) and adds benefit as regular activity is one of the best predictors of account success.

These continuous adjustments in management should include:

  • Adding PPC Keywords– Expand your reach by adding relevant keywords to your PPC campaigns.
  • Adding Negative Keywords – Reduce wasted spending and improve campaign relevancy by adding non-converting terms as negative keywords.
  • Splitting Ad Groups – Improve quality score and click-through rate (CTR) by splitting Ad groups into smaller, more relevant and easy to manage groups. This in turn helps you to create more targeted Ad text and landing pages.
  • Review and Discard irrelevant and costly PPC keywords – review under-performing and expensive keywords, and then disable them if necessary.

Improving your pay-per-click campaign

Lower your CPC while maintaining value

How does one lower the price you pay for each click while sustaining or improving the value of visits?  There are two parts to this plan-of-action:

  • Raise your quality score

An automated system was created by Google that offers discounts to well-managed PPC campaigns with high quality scores.

The average score being 5, if your quality score is over 6 then your PPC campaign could be granted a discount between 16% and 50% in CPC. Conversely, a quality score of 4 or lower results in a 25% to 400% increase in CPC.

Tips to boost your Ads Quality Score:

  • Create compelling, relevant Ads to increase click-through rates (CTR).
  • Build out Ad groups that are closely related.
  • Optimize all Ad text and landing pages that refer to individual search intent.
  •  Expand your reach

Improve the distribution of your budget considerably by discovering new, relevant and valuable keywords. In order to do this, one must constantly go though the process of finding new PPC keywords and searching for advertising opportunities, while simultaneously eliminating irrelevant and overpriced keywords from your campaign.

  • Refine your search

It may sound strange, but designating negative keywords in your AdWords account can help control your average CPC. How? By filtering out traffic from searchers which are likely to convert.

Also, once you start to add new keywords to your account, remember to eliminate the losers (ineffective and expensive keywords). When you only target keywords which are relevant to your business and perform well, it confirms that:

  • Your spending is protected – it’s no use lowering your CPC if you still end up paying (albeit low prices) for irrelevant clicks. Negative keywords tell your PPC campaigns which terms they are NOT to target, therefore only allowing your budget to be spent on relevant terms.
  • Your Quality Score is improved – when your keywords are clearly related to your Ad text, offering and landing pages; your click-through rate (CTR) and other quality score factors are positively affected. This results in you acquiring more cost-efficient clicks on search terms which are more likely to convert.

A low cost-per-click (CPC) is the key to a successful pay-per-click PPC campaign as it ultimately translates into cost per conversion.

The benefits of pay-per-click advertising

Pay-per-Click is a very effective form of paid digital advertising that allows you to:

  • Pay only when you see results- such as when your Ads are clicked.
  • Pay-per-click is the only short-term solution to getting to the top of the SERP (search engine results page) with a low page ranking.
  • It allows your business to market products and services to the very people who are searching for them.
  • It provides a platform for businesses of all types and sizes to compete semi-equally.

Digital Marketing South Africa

The world of digital and social media marketing is complex and diverse. Furthermore, if you are not using email marketing as a tool to market your business then it is guaranteed that you are missing out on incredible benefits.

Digital Marketing South Africa offers you the opportunity to take your business to the next level. We have a team of digital and social media marketing wizards equipped with all the tools necessary to help you grow your business.

We handle all aspects of online marketing, including:

  • Pay Per Click
  • Content Creation,
  • Content Strategy,
  • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
  • Social Media Marketing (managing and sharing across all social networks)
  • Email Marketing
  • Marketing Automation

Feel free to contact us for more information about our online marketing services.

ITM – Website Design Cape Town

It is critical that your web design be modern and use current technology.

In addition your website should support your marketing efforts and include elements such as a blog and Social Media.

Digital Marketing South Africa utilises the professional web design services of ITM Website Design.

Adding Mobile Marketing to your Digital Marketing Strategy

Adding Mobile Marketing to your Digital Marketing Strategy

Mobile marketing is a digital marketing strategy which aims to reach target audience all over the world, at any time on whatever device they are using.

The incredible advances in mobile technology are the driving force behind the digital age we are currently living in, encouraging anyone with a mobile device to be online at any time, from anywhere in the world. From smartphones and laptops to tablets and even smart watches, access to the web is far from limited.

Mobile Device Usage

Smartphone and other mobile devices make up a large portion of digital media consumption, compared to desktop-based digital media consumption. This is because, in general, small, mobile devices are accessible in terms of affordability.

With a much larger percentage of the population having access to mobile devices, you are presented countless online marketing opportunities, allowing you to reach a variety of population groups over a larger geographical area.

Research has shown that the vast majority of adults and adolescents use mobile devices. And the uses for mobile devices are endless: from banking to blogging, downloading and research, you can use the internet and mobile devices to find most of the useful information you need from wherever you are in the world. More importantly, over 80% of mobile users use mobile devices to search for information regarding products and services.

In 2015 Google started to penalize websites that were not ‘mobile-friendly’, that is; websites which do not have a responsive website design (that alters the view of your website to suit different mobile formats).

Therefore it is critical to optimize your digital Ads; web pages; social media images and other digital media assets for mobile devices. You need to encourage the best and most engaging user experience you can. That translates into providing your online audience with the same seamless positive user experience as they would have on a desktop.

Responsive website design

This means incorporating a responsive website design (or a mobile-friendly web design) to create a seamless user experience.

Lead generation forms

It may be a good idea to reduce the length of your lead generation forms in order to create an easier experience for those users who download your content when on the move.

Multi-media

As for videos and images, keep the mobile user in mind as the image dimensions on their devices will be smaller; therefore you could risk having some of your image or text cut-off.

Adding Mobile marketing to your Digital marketing strategy

There are many ways to implement mobile marketing into your digital marketing strategy. Types of mobile marketing include:

  • App-based Marketing
  • In-game Mobile Marketing
  • QR Codes – scanned by users to transport them to a specific webpage.
  • Location-based Marketing – advertisements which appear on mobile devices when a user enters a specific location.
  • Mobile Search Ads
  • Mobile Image Ads
  • SMS and MMS marketing

Benefits of mobile marketing

Customize

Every social media platform and other online platforms have various designs which allow you to choose from different Ad formats. This allows you to customize your adverts in order to present your business in a unique and creative way.

Broaden, share and stay connected

Mobile Ads are highly beneficial especially when it comes to sharing. They allow you to broaden your audience and market due to the ability to share instantly. This may include mobile Ads, promotions or content they may find interesting and exciting. Sharing will increase the amount of people who your Ad will reach as well as your traffic when compared to traditional marketing methods.

Build customer relationships

Mobile marketing enables your business to create personal relationships that are not possible in other conventional marketing strategies. Mobile marketing campaigns are secure; therefore they allow you to relay messages directly to the consumer in a personalized way. That way you can receive instant advertisement feedback, making for valuable two-way conversations with customers.

Interact and relate

Mobile campaigns assist your business to be more aware of your target market’s needs. They provide information such as time of response; location; or helping your business to contextualize and capitalize on their current interests.

There are many ways to optimize digital marketing assets for mobile users. The most important part of implementing mobile marketing into your digital marketing strategy is to always consider how the user experience will translate onto mobile devices. Always keep the mobile user experience in mind to create a digital journey that delights your online audience and achieves your desired digital marketing results.

Digital Marketing South Africa

Your website is a tool to market your business that offers you limitless opportunities in the form of potential customers, sales and conversions. The vast majority of this audience uses mobile devices to access the internet for a variety of needs; therefore it is wise to use this opportunity to the fullest.

Digital Marketing South Africa can help you take full advantage of digital and mobile your business to the next level. We have a team of digital wizards equipped with all the tools necessary to help you grow your business online. We handle all aspects of online marketing, including:

  • Content Creation,
  • Content Strategy,
  • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
  • Social Media Marketing (managing and sharing across all social networks)
  • Email Marketing
  • Pay Per Click
  • Marketing Automation

Feel free to contact us for more information about our online marketing services.

Website Design Cape Town

A fully functional website is critical to your online marketing. It must be mobile responsive; modern and it must be designed with SEO and the user experience in mind.

Your website should form the basis of your marketing efforts and include elements such as a blog engine and social media sharing.

Digital Marketing South Africa utilises the superior professional web design services of ITM Website Design. Please see their website design pricing and packages here.