Digital never stands still. You may already be investing in PPC, SEO and display, but thanks to recent innovations there are more ways than ever to promote your business digitally. Let’s take a look at some of the key new marketing channels and how they can be integrated into one great marketing strategy.
While video marketing has been around since the first TV commercial, online it’s still evolving. Where an about page would have once sufficed, users are increasingly expecting a video to introduce a brand or service. If video is new territory for your business, you could simply commission a 30 second animated video to embed in your homepage. This asset can then be shared on your social media platforms and seeded out to publishers too.
Video is a great way to demonstrate your product or service and works well embedded in product and hub pages. A good example of this is AO.com where their product pages include a video of an assistant walking through a product’s features. It’s low-tech, simple and a highly effective sales tool, especially for more complex products where a visual demonstration can be more convincing than copy. For further marketing this content can be hosted on YouTube, then easily used across other platforms.
When it comes to video, be strategic. Rather than just creating the odd one when you have the inclination, create a content plan that covers how many videos you’re going to make, how regularly and where they’ll be hosted. If you’re looking to create quite a few videos, such as for a video blog, commission a content hub to host them. This way the videos can be seeded out individually while simultaneously building a branded video destination. A great example of this is Jamie Oliver’s Food Tube. While you can Google a recipe and watch any of his videos on YouTube, by also hosting them on his Food Tube page he’s increasing the visibility of Jamieoliver.com and his brand’s standing as a content producer.
Another highly effective way to use video for marketing is live streaming. Before you jump to visions of major concerts or championship matches, it can be done, and done well, on a much smaller scale.
Does your company, for example, put on training seminars, either internally or for external delegates? If so, you can widen your audience and brand reach by live streaming these sessions. Just add a dedicated training page to your website and create a teaser graphic for your next training feed. Then host the video on this same page and you’ll be sending extra traffic to your site while demonstrating your brand’s know-how.
Similarly, if your business holds a launch event, consider live streaming it online. As part of an overarching content plan this live stream can tie in with your other marketing for the event, helping to create further anticipation of the launch. Even if you consider your launch event to be relatively small scale, you may be surprised at the interest a live stream generates.
While no longer new platforms in themselves, the marketing power of Instagram and Pinterest is still pretty new territory. These platforms are all about the visual and offer a great opportunity for storytelling, candid behind-the-scenes shots and inventive videos.
Instagram is ideal for showing the fun, human side of your business. You’ll find lots of marketing agency Instagram accounts that sell the agency lifestyle as much as their consulting services. While the ROI of this sort of approach may not be immediately obvious, it builds up a sense of desirability that’s likely to influence prospective clients as much as prospective employees. So don’t be afraid to use your business’s Instagram account to show a 360 view, from a beautiful visual of your latest product to the antics at your office.
Think of Pinterest as a visual wish list, full of inspiring images that can be saved in moments. Its marketing power is both in its image shareability and its shopping list like functionality, often literally when it comes to recipes. When you put your products on Pinterest never take your eye off the inspiration factor. Instead of just a shot of your crockery products, for example, include some stunning images of them in a kitchen to sell the lifestyle. Use Pinterest to show off your business with aspirational, shareable imagery.
While you may already be investing in digital display advertising, how about extending your strategy to apps? With so many apps designed around a particular lifestyle, in-app advertising is a great opportunity to focus on certain customers. Say, for example, your business sells walking shoes, you could advertise on a walking site; however, your target customer may never leave their armchair.
If you advertise in a map app your prospective customer is showing even more intention towards your product as the app has been deliberately downloaded and they’re ready to get walking using their phone. As apps demonstrate a real desire for the activity they serve, you can target customers with an established interest in your products.
If you’ve been keeping an eye on marketing news, you’ll have seen coverage of some of the ingenious ways companies are now using digital out of home. Apotek showcased their new line of hair products with a digital board on the Stockholm subway. So far so conventional, except Apotek used digital technology to blow the models hair when a train pulled into a platform. Another memorable example is British Airways’ digital out of home in Piccadilly Circus. Their #lookup campaign showed a little boy watching the flight of airplanes as they passed over the billboard, with captions like: ‘Look, it’s flight BA475 from Barcelona’. As both of these examples show, one of the most exciting possibilities of digital out of home is the potential for your business to standout with innovative interactions.
Digital out of home can work as a one-off stunt, but is even better if approached as part of an integrated marketing strategy. This way any attention you glean out of home can be directed towards an overarching digital and above the line campaign, with consistent assets and branding. Then, prospective customers impressed with what they’ve seen outside, can easily follow-up online or in store.
So go explore these new marketing channels to see how they can ramp up your marketing strategy.
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