#digitalmarketing, are you doing it right?

Nowadays, a successful marketing campaign must include a digital marketing component. In fact, the effectiveness of your digital marketing strategy can make or break your entire marketing plan.

In 2014, digital is now a central component of every brand marketer’s job, and digital marketing campaigns can involve anything from email and mobile to webcasts and social media.

With so much to adapt to, marketers might be wondering what to look out for when assessing whether their digital marketing strategies are working. Here are a few keys areas.

Does your website make the cut?

A website is no longer just an option for businesses but rather has become the default first port of call for potential customers. Appearance is everything, and an unattractive or unprofessional looking website can deter potential clients even before they have seen a business’s physical premises, so it goes without saying that all images and videos must be of high quality.

Information is absorbed much faster through images than text, so even with perfectly crafted copy, you will need to pay close attention to the design of your site. Care must also be taken to ensure that your website sends a consistent message about your organization’s goals, and that it always leaves viewers with a positive impression.

The importance of quality input

Digital marketing is a lot harder than it sounds. It’s not just about promoting a company on the web but involves the prolific crafting of high quality content. To get this right, engaging the right people with the right knowledge is key, whether within an organisation or by outsourcing.

Any content created to further your marketing interests must be well crafted. Hence, it is imperative that the people you work with possess fantastic writing skills and are experts at making content engaging. They should also know all the ins and outs of social media, and be savvy enough to confidently adopt new platforms.

Crafting engaging social media content

Organizations are learning the increasing importance of social media, with many implementing it into their marketing efforts and unsurprisingly few have managed to get it right. A survey by Factbrowser confirms that quality engagement is something that eludes the average business, with a meagre 30% response rate being the norm.

Cookie cutter posts rarely spur engagement, and personal, sincere responses are most effective. When it comes to social media, a more conversational tone works best, so leave the overly professional, generic-sounding templates at the door.

Unfortunately, many leaders of organizations don’t realize the importance of digital marketing to their businesses. 36% of the CEOs surveyed by Polaris B professed to “not care” or “care little” about their business’s reputation on social media.

Blogging and content marketing

It is now well-established that blogging and content marketing are proven ways to increase a business’s exposure. Maintaining a blog is a great way to increase the number of indexed pages on your website, as well as gain inbound links. A recent survey even placed the likelihood of a blog to influence purchasing decisions at 63%, which trumps traditional media such as newspapers.

There are several ways to optimise your business’s blog. Longer posts have been shown to garner more shares than shorter ones, while articles with images can receive up to 94% more page views than those without.

Clearly, maintaining a blog isn’t just about churning out a few posts and hoping for the best. But more savvy young web professionals are starting to carve a living out of blogging, and businesses can only benefit from their contributions.

Digital marketing is now par for the course in any marketing strategy, and the various components of a good digital marketing program can be a bit different from what traditional marketers are used to. Building, proficiency in the various areas of digital marketing including blogging and social media, is absolutely essential. Take comfort in knowing that the rewards are great, and with skill and a bit of luck, digital marketing could even lead to a business becoming an Internet sensation.

Natalie is a PR and digital marketing guru, specialising in working with high profile hotels including Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu. When she is not scouring for the newest social media trends you can find her playing with her dog Devito or feeding her online shopping addiction. Get social with her on Twitter @natalieathana or Google+.