The US Business Formation Statistics show that around 420,000 business applications were submitted in the US alone in Feb 2022. With so many businesses starting, you have to stay ahead of your competitors, and this is why you need a digital marketing strategy.
Digital marketing can help you build your brand online, get discovered by your target audience, and generate more sales. Keep reading this blog to find eight best digital marketing strategies for startups that are proven to work regardless of your target industry!
1. Search Engine Optimization
Finding new leads is a continuous struggle for all businesses. The question is, how do you plan on getting customers amidst the fierce competition of today’s online marketplace? “Search engine optimization” is one of the custom digital marketing strategies that can make you discoverable by your target audience.
In terms of inbound marketing, SEO allows you to get discovered by people through search engines. Instead of visiting all websites, users can get help from a search engine to get the relevant information they want.
SEO comprises the set of practices that you can adopt to rank higher on SERPs. If you are skeptical about the importance of SEO, you should know that even the US government has set up an online guide about SEO – the reason why SEO must be a part of your digital marketing planning and strategy.
Below are three major branches of SEO.
On-Page SEO is all about optimizing the website pages for SEO purposes. With proper On-Page SEO, the search engine crawlers can easily identify what a page is all about and how a page is relevant to a search query. Basic On-Page SEO practices include keyword optimization, the addition of H1, H2, etc.
Off-Page SEO makes a webpage more valuable than many other websites that provide information on the same topic. Building backlinks is an essential part of any Off-Page SEO campaign as backlinks prove the worth of a page. Businesses usually hire SEO agencies to improve their Off-Page SEO.
Technical SEO refers to the “Technical” side of SEO that is better handled by webmasters. Without proper adoption of Technical SEO practices, a website can never rank higher on SERPs.
You will have to enroll in digital marketing strategy classes to learn technical SEO yourself. Some of the Technical SEO practices include optimization of URLs for SEO and setting hierarchy of website content etc.
Before you get started with SEO
SEO strategies take some time to adapt and implement. You cannot claim higher SERP rankings overnight by applying SEO best practices. Though you don’t have to spend a ton of money on SEO and adopt it yourself step by step, hiring an SEO agency is still recommended if you want faster results.
2. Email marketing
Emails can be placed under “Direct marketing” as you don’t need an intermediary channel when sending emails to your prospects. Contrary to popular belief, Email is not a “thing from the past,” as 17% of Americans check their email inbox first when they wake up.
Email marketing, one of the best digital marketing strategies, has become a lot easier thanks to the SaaS products that enable businesses to run and manage email campaigns. This marketing keeps your customers in the loop by staying in touch through emails. Emails can be divided into three main types:
Email newsletters must be a part of your brand digital marketing strategy. You can pack all the important details about what new products and services you will launch and what changes you’ve made to your existing offerings.
A promotional email is sent to your repeat customers and prospects with the intent of persuading them to buy your products and services. Compared to social media ads, promotional emails are more direct and targeted and can potentially bring better results when sent properly.
In this digital world of “Abandoned carts,” you have to do something to keep your previous customers interested in your offerings. Re-engagement emails allow you to convince your old customers to buy from you again. Many businesses rely on Re-engagement emails to revive dormant customers.
Before you get started with email marketing
Email marketing is more challenging to implement than other of the best digital marketing strategies. You have to build your base of subscribers, develop your unique voice, increase your open rates, optimize your frequency of sending emails, etc. But it’s truly worth investing your energy in email marketing!
3. Social media marketing
An average person spends this much time on social media. For example, only LinkedIn accounts for around 50% of traffic to B2B websites. With numbers like these, it’s not hard to understand why every business should focus on social media marketing – which is one of the best digital marketing strategies.
Getting started with social media marketing is super easy. All you have to do is create accounts on different social platforms and start sharing content, but doing so will never guarantee you to get any results – and this is where proper planning kicks in!
You have to identify the audience persona of your target audience and define your prospects in different segments. Proper audience segmentation will help you create converting content for different people.
For example, if you are a fashion startup offering unique clothes to millennials, you will have little to no progress if you spend all your time promoting your items on LinkedIn. It’s important to decide where your prospects are most active to get the results you want.
Here are SMM digital marketing strategy best practices you should adopt:
- Create a list of realistic goals.
- Gather information about your target audience.
- Automate your social media marketing campaigns.
- Choose the primary social platform for your marketing carefully.
- Create a proper calendar for sharing content on social channels.
- Create content using proper storytelling strategies to humanize your brand.
Creating content yourself and posting it online according to a calendar can get hectic. Influencer marketing, one of the new digital marketing strategies, can speed up your online branding efforts. The statistics mentioned below show that influencer marketing is essential for businesses worldwide.
Influencer marketing requires you to identify the top influencers in your target audience. Once you settle the details, the influencers will create persuasive content for your prospects and customers, and you will have more free time to focus on important business tasks.
Before you get started with social media marketing
Social media marketing is a standalone marketing approach, meaning that you don’t have to combine it with the other best digital marketing strategies. It’s recommended to harmonize social media marketing with other strategies and take the right steps to create digital marketing strategy to get better results.
4. Native advertising
Native advertising is one of the best digital marketing strategies. It is paid content that all of us have already seen so many times. One thing to understand about native advertising is that it’s not your “normal ad” that pops out of nowhere on a channel or publication.
Native ads are ads that are created in the tone and style of the publisher. For example, if some famous chef who publishes videos about cooking foods uploads a video of enjoying the food of a specific brand, then this uploaded video can be considered an example of native advertising.
It can get hard to identify if an ad falls under the umbrella of native advertising or not. There are no hard and fast rules about creating native ads, and both brands and publishers twist things according to their liking.
Before you get started with native advertising
Native advertising can bring negative results if your target audience dislikes your ad, and this is why you should learn how to analyze digital marketing strategy. Take a look at your competitors and try to adopt strategies that have worked for them. Try not to go to the extremes, as it will only hurt your brand.
5. Content marketing
Content marketing outlines the thoughtful creation of content to engage, inform, entertain, and convert your target audience. Instead of creating content you find great for yourself, content marketing enables you to produce valuable content for your target audience, making it one of the best digital marketing strategies.
Online content creation can be divided into four categories:
- Writing content like blog posts
- Publishing audio content like podcasts
- Uploading video content like explainer videos
- Sharing images like infographics
Content marketing doesn’t only help you get liked by your prospects. Proper content marketing allows you to create a solid brand online. For example, guest posting is a content marketing strategy that helps you generate backlinks for your website, so your website can rank higher on SERPs.
Before you get started with content marketing
Content marketing is a long-term digital marketing strategy for your business, and you cannot expect to get amazing results from it overnight. Content creation is a tedious task that takes time and effort. Be sure not to do things haphazardly and hire a content writing agency to save your time and effort.
6. PPC advertising
Most of us think of TV, Radio, and magazines when we hear the word “advertising.” However, the widespread use of the internet has changed advertising for good. Out of the best digital marketing strategies, the one that is the most favorite of digital marketers is PPC advertising.
PPC stands for “Pay per click.” In this advertising model, you don’t have to invest a ton of money in running ads, and you are only charged when someone clicks on your ad.
The simplicity of the PPC model makes it more attractive than other advertising models. Compared to running your ad on a TV channel for “Brand awareness” purposes, PPC allows you to track how much progress you are making from your ads.
PPC advertising also helps you build a strong brand online, and you should run PPC ads for online branding if you are willing to spend some money.
Before you get started with PPC advertising
The PPC online digital marketing strategy is fit for those business owners who can’t wait to claim higher SERP rankings through SEO strategies. Make sure you study your target audience and your competitors first to optimize your ads and decrease your cost per click. Optimize your landing pages to convert more prospects into customers.
7. Video marketing
Improved web technologies have enabled people worldwide to stream video content. With the decreasing attention span and people willing to get bite-sized information, you should focus on video marketing to get closer to your target audience.
Video marketing, one of the best digital marketing strategies, is all about creating videos that your target audience will love to watch. Online videos can be divided into the following categories
- Video ads
- Video sales letters
- Explainer videos
- Behind the scenes videos
- Explainer videos
- Documentary videos
- Testimonial videos
- Employee portrait video
and the list goes on.
The question is, why should you make an extra effort to create videos when you can simply churn out a ton of blog posts? The reason behind this is quite simple: video is more digestible and convenient for online audiences.
Before you get started with video marketing
Video marketing is a proven digital marketing strategy to increase sales. You will have to invest a lot of money in video creation gear if you have never created videos for marketing efforts in the past. Instead, a better option is working with a video production agency to save your costs.
8. Affiliate marketing
As a startup, it can get hard for you to focus on all the strategies mentioned above simultaneously to drive sales. Introducing an affiliate program, one of the advanced digital marketing strategies, can make things easier for you in the initial stages of your business development.
In an affiliate program, you agree to pay a fixed commission to your partner every time they bring a sale. As mentioned below in the IAB report, small and large-scale businesses rely on affiliate marketing to increase their sales, proving it’s not new for leading businesses.
To get started with affiliate marketing as a startup owner, you first have to choose the product or service you want to promote. Study your target audience and pick the item expected to sell more. The next step is creating a detail of your affiliate program and deciding how much commission you will pay.
After that, you have to choose an affiliate management platform to handle your affiliate campaigns. You will have to promote your affiliate program through social and email channels.
Before you get started with affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing is a data driven digital marketing strategy, and It takes a lot of effort to choose the right affiliates and ensure that there are no discrepancies in the process. Therefore, you should only get started with this strategy after getting proper information.
All the eight best digital marketing strategies mentioned above are proven to work for startups across all industries. Implement any of the strategies first to identify if it’s generating results for you. Keep learning from your competitors, so you don’t miss out on anything important – Happy marketing!