Online Marketing 101: A Simple (But Complete) Guide

There are a little more than 30 million small businesses right now, and many tap into the potential of the global market via the internet. And you’d like to join in on the action!

However, while going online has its perks, it also has its challenges.

But don’t worry! Here is a guide to help you access the full potential of online marketing:

1. Know Your Target Audience

Before you launch advertisements to everyone, first, narrow down who your target market is (who your product or service will be most useful too).

Questions to help you determine your target market:

  • Can my product be especially helpful to a certain age group?
  • How could my product help improve their lives?
  • Who needs my product the most?

Also, consider the location you’re marketing to. While the internet is great for going worldwide, if you’re new to online marketing, it may be best to stick to your home country at first.

This way, you can focus on and master the internet marketing basics before tackling accurate localization, translation, and international shipping policies.

2. Connect With Your Target Audience

Now that you’ve determined your target audience; you need to make a connection with them. Advertising is one way, but not all types of marketing will work with every target market.

Millennials, for example, dislike most traditional methods of advertising. Such as ads and pop-ups. Rather, they prefer inbound marketing.

Make sure you advertise in a way that will truly connect with and cause a positive response among your potential customers.

Things to consider:

  • What kind of ads do they prefer?
  • What social media platform do they use?
  • What kinds of posts do they like and share?

If you’re wanting to know exactly what your audience is asking, consider hosting a webinar or setting up a poll so you can learn more about your target market’s interests.

Then, tailor your ads to be relevant to those interests to make a connection.

3. Inspire Your Target Audience

You know who your target market is and the internet marketing basics to connect with them on the internet. Now it’s time to inspire them.

The best way to do this is to help your customers accomplish their goals, solve their problems, and answer their questions.

This is inbound marketing 101 and by using it, you’re setting your business up for success in the online market.

Inbound marketing can be a great supplement or potential alternative to traditional advertising because you are helping and inspiring your target market, rather than only interrupting them with a pop up on the screen.

Ways to help and inspire:

  • Post consistently
  • Post quality
  • Start an email list
  • Set up a giveaway
  • Ask for reviews

Another awesome way you can help your content reach the people it needs to is to use SEO keywords, which make content more findable. The best keywords to choose are the ones with the most search traffic and the least competition.

Don’t overstuff keywords, but implement them into your content in a way that naturally fits within your webpages. This way, you can reach and inspire your target audience.

4. Upgrade Your Website

You’re posting great content that would totally inspire your target market. However, in order for them to stay on your site and for you to get leads, it needs to be as user-friendly as possible.

Website characteristics to consider:

  • Is the font easily readable?
  • Are posts easy to find?
  • Does the site load quickly?
  • Is the color scheme appealing?

If you answered “no” to any of these questions, it may be time to redesign.

Not sure where to start? No problem! Check out our design services.

5. Learn From Others Mistakes

Often times, the best things you can learn in internet marketing come from your own experience as a customer.

Think about the websites you click off of or types of ads you ignore or get annoyed by. Then, make your online marketing strategy the best it can be by avoiding these common mistakes.

Also, consider asking a fellow small business owner (outside of your niche) to look over your site and give you constructive feedback. You can do the same for them in return.

6. Be Your Best

You already have competition offline, and you might encounter even more as you learn internet marketing. This makes it very important for you to stand out in your niche.

However, there is a very important tip to help you gain the most success: be your best.

Customers love it when you go above and beyond to help them, are reliable, and true to your word. In fact, some customers are willing to pay more simply for a great experience.

Being your best for customers is not something all businesses do, but it is one of the best business strategies that can be done because customers value quality.

Tips on making customers come back:

  • Establish positive interactions
  • Reply to emails in a timely manner
  • Always be honest
  • Have a happy attitude

No matter your product or service, applying these tips can help you stand out in any niche both on and offline.

Final Thoughts on Online Marketing

Online marketing, when done well, is one of the best things that can happen to your business. And it is definitely not an impossible feat.

If you need any help, feel free to contact us!

From SEO to web design, we offer a wide range of services to help you make your business site the best it can be.

Searching for more advice? Then read this post to learn how to keep your website safe and secure.