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Jan 22

How Can Internet Marketing Make A Business More Effective?

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Today’s business environment is full of scrappy entrepreneurs and large, established corporations battling it out for market share. Increasing globalization, the rise of disruptive technologies and significantly more consumer choice have ramped up competition.

Luckily, the internet provides a wealth of tools to even the playing field for every business. Regardless of the sector or industry, internet marketing is today’s “killer app” that brings efficiencies and opportunities to both brick-and-mortar and digital businesses.

Even though internet marketing isn’t exactly new, we continue to see its sheer power in helping businesses accomplish their goals. Whether you aspire to see more revenue growth, brand awareness or both, it is worth your time to study how internet marketing can make your job easier.

Increased Revenue

Today’s internet marketing tools go a long way in helping all types of businesses increase their revenue. While there are many reasons for this, a primary one is targeting. Whether you are leveraging Facebook Ads, using Google AdWords, or collecting emails for your newsletter, internet marketing can help businesses develop closer connections with their target audiences.

Releasing a television ad or billboard ad may seem promising, but there is no guarantee that interested prospects will see the ad. The targeting capabilities of internet marketing, however, can substantially increase the odds that your ideal customer sees your ad. Naturally, getting your product or service in front of interested prospects can help increase your organization’s top-line growth.

To make targeting more efficient, companies have started to leverage the rising sophistication of artificial intelligence (AI). By analyzing customer behavior, search patterns and engagement with your targeted ads, AI can help businesses better understand customers who are more willing to buy. Less time is spent on those who are least likely to make a purchase, allowing businesses to place more attention on prospects who are likely to convert.

To drive revenue growth, internet marketers like me are also increasingly relying on content personalization. Years ago, marketers simply didn’t have the capabilities to offer personalized content at scale. But times have changed. Internet marketers can leverage many tools that make it easier to deliver personalized, relevant content to all audience members.

One great example of personalized content comes from a video marketing campaign by Cadbury. The company saw an opportunity to use personalized videos to better connect with Australian consumers. As part of the campaign, Cadbury matched one of its 12 flavors to users based on certain variables in their Facebook profiles. Some of those variables included location, interests and age. After obtaining consent from interested users, Cadbury automatically created videos that matched audience members with one of Cadbury’s flavors. These personalized videos not only showed the flavor, but were based on photos and personal information from the user’s Facebook page.

According to media reports, the campaign was successful: 90% of viewers watched their personalized video to completion. The company obtained a 65% click-through rate and had a 33% conversion rate of viewers.

These kinds of results don’t have to come at high costs either. You can get started personalizing your own content, even if you have a low budget, by segmenting your email list or creating simple Facebook posts using the same easily accessible user data.

Building Brand Awareness

Internet marketing isn’t just for driving increased revenue. It can also be a game-changer when it comes to building brand awareness in a sector or niche. Building brand awareness is more of a long-term investment, yet it can pay off in spades when your company is releasing a new product or service.

In my opinion, one of the most exciting uses of internet marketing to build brand awareness today centers on augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). While both of these technologies are still in their early innings, several companies have already used AR and VR ads to build brand awareness in their sector.

Michael Kors actually became the first brand to try AR ads on Facebook’s Newsfeed. In its AR ad, Facebook users were invited to virtually “try on” a pair of Michael Kors sunglasses. After “trying on” the glasses, participating Facebook users were able to quickly purchase the sunglasses while on Facebook.

As AR and VR technology improves, companies of all sizes will be able to get even closer to their audiences. They can offer unique experiences that introduce audience members to the company’s products or services.

Besides AR and VR ads, internet marketers can rely on live video to build brand awareness. While digital video itself can be extremely effective in building closer connections with prospects, companies that leverage live video can give viewers an intimate look into the company, its employees, and its products and services. Through live video, audience members can see that the company is a collection of people trying to create value in customers’ lives.

As an example, Buzzfeed was one of the first publishers to effectively leverage live video to build brand equity. One of its most famous live videos involved two people using rubber bands to crush a watermelon. With this simple premise, Buzzfeed was able to gather approximately 800,000 live viewers at the end of the video.

The exploding watermelon video was quintessentially Buzzfeed. Viewers tuning in quickly discovered that Buzzfeed released content that was fun, entertaining and educational. The brand was able to get closer to its targeted audience, which it could then use to grow its social media following.

Helping Accomplish Your Business Goals

Internet marketing is just one part of an overall marketing strategy. Nevertheless, it continues to be relevant as we enter the new decade. Whether you are just implementing an internet marketing strategy or have been doing so for some time, paying attention to these trends can help take your business to the next level.

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