These days the world of digital marketing seems to be paved in gold. And it’s true that pay-per-click advertising is stronger than ever. Even popular social media sites like Facebook and Instagram are beginning to adopt the pay-to-play model.
Despite the changes in marketing, at least one thing remains true; time is the most valuable resource. Whether you’re operating on a small budget or just looking for ways to maximize your current efforts, we’re covering five marketing strategies that won’t make you reach for your credit card.
1. Know Your Market
Whatever marketing strategy you choose, having a clear, narrowly defined market will drastically improve your ROI (return-on-investment). Whether the investment you make is in terms of time or money, knowing exactly who you’re marketing to is key. It’ll keep you from spending valuable resources in areas that won’t help you reach your goals.
After you’ve decided who your market is, it’s time to dig into the details.
These tools are free to use and can provide data on everything from age and gender to location and device.
For example, a simple analytics check might reveal that 70% of your web traffic is between the ages of 18-35. Use this to drive your marketing strategy towards that age group by advertising on Instagram or optimizing your checkout flow for mobile.
2. Create awesome content
Writing your own content costs nothing but time. Which is great, because it also happens to be one of the most effective ways to organically drive traffic to your site.
Build an audience by writing relevant and original blog posts, and then sharing that content on social media. The goal is to both drive potential customers to your website, and to re-engage past ones.
Try writing about a topic that’s both important to your industry and that you know well. It’ll help drive clicks through to your website and build your reputation as a knowledgeable source.
And we haven’t even got to the best part. Content marketing plays an essential role when it comes to your website’s SEO. Google relies largely on keywords to decide how to rank your website.
Blog posts provide exactly the material that Google needs – keywords to indicate what your site is about, opportunities for users to visit and interact with your site and of course, strong link building as people share your content.
3. Put your social media sites to work
Social media marketing is all about building a genuine connection with your customers. Go beyond that single intent of making a sale and use your social sites to create a community around your brand. Share images from your day-to-day, highlight customer stories, show gratitude for reviews and engage with customers over comments, likes and photos.
It’s your opportunity to really get to know your customers and to give them a chance to get to know you. Remember – especially in the tour and activity industry – customers aren’t buying a product, they’re buying an experience. Create a social media strategy that plays into that. Here’s a few basic tips to get you started:
Add a few, relevant hashtags to help get your content in front of a new audience.
Be consistent in terms of brand voice, scheduling and interaction.
Respond quickly to customers, answer questions and offer basic support when appropriate.
Deliver valuable content. Keep your audience engaged by offering a mix of photos, videos, infographics, blog posts and promotions.
4. Build out an email marketing campaign
There’s dozens of free email marketing services that make reaching out to new customers and retargeting past ones as simple as a few clicks.
For generating new customers, try adding a newsletter sign-up form to your website. Offer something of value, like special email-only promotions or a company newsletter with recent updates, schedule changes or interesting content from your blog.
If your goal is to recapture past customers, try inviting them to follow you on social media, write reviews or to join you again with a return customer discount.
No matter what your goal, keep these general guidelines to keep in mind – write for a specific goal, keep the copy casual and always give people an easy option to unsubscribe.
5. Focus on building lifetime customers
Did you know that it costs about 5 times as much to attract a new customer than it does to keep an existing one? Yet most marketers admit to focusing on customer acquisition over retention. Creating lifetime customers not only helps generate revenue, it helps build up your brand.
Of course, the easiest way to encourage customers to buy from your business again is to pair an awesome experience with amazing customer service. If you can manage that, you’re already off to a great start. After the experience ends, the key is to stay engaged. Rely on the strategies reviewed above and you’ll have no trouble keeping your customers active and interested in your business.