However, before learning any of that, it's important that you get a lay of the land, so to speak. If you truly want to understand the field of internet marketing, Sharpe has some very good points. In essence there are four overall steps to really understanding internet marketing and leveraging the industry to make money online. Depending on where you are with your education, you'll be somewhere along the lines of these four steps.
Trying multiple marketing methods and only putting limited input into each will only bring frustration. Instead, focus all your energy on one or two marketing approaches. Master them and make sure you have exhausted their capabilities before moving on or adding a new approach to your armory. Don’t keep dipping your fingers in and out of a bucketful of ideas hoping that one will suddenly come to fruition.
Since stories disappear after a set period of time, this is a great opportunity for marketers to make good use of FOMO (fear of missing out). You can feature your employees in the Stories, show the story behind the making of a product, ask for reviews about your products and services or get creative like BarkBox did when they created an Instagram Story of a “doggie interview”:
A Coursera Specialization is a series of courses that helps you master a skill. To begin, enroll in the Specialization directly, or review its courses and choose the one you'd like to start with. When you subscribe to a course that is part of a Specialization, you’re automatically subscribed to the full Specialization. It’s okay to complete just one course — you can pause your learning or end your subscription at any time. Visit your learner dashboard to track your course enrollments and your progress.
For instance, you might use Facebook’s Lookalike Audiences to get your message in front of an audience similar to your core demographic. Or, you could pay a social media influencer to share images of your products to her already well-established community. Paid social media can attract new customers to your brand or product, but you’ll want to conduct market research and A/B testing before investing too much in one social media channel.
My favorite style in this is article marketing. You create anchor content on your website or blog, then you build authority-content links to that content, effectively driving up the visibility. I've used this single strategy to rank hundreds of keywords in the #1 spot on Google, and I would highly recommend that if you're going to learn any marketing strategy, that you get really good at this one.
Copyblogger is a content marketing company that creates content about content (so meta). Its blog provides a ton of great resources about digital marketing, and this class, "Internet Marketing for Smart People," is made up of ebooks and emailed lessons and other course materials. Copyblogger espouses four pillars of content marketing success, which it delves into over the course of this class.
To become an internet marketer, you must have a solid understanding of current computer technology, not to mention basic promotional skills. Most importantly, you must understand how the two aspects can be joined together to increase customer trust and generate income. Most employers seek candidates who have at least a bachelor‘s degree in marketing, communications, or advertising with experience in web design, media marketing, multimedia, and SEO. Also, a lot of employers seek applicants with at least two years of Internet marketing experience. Since Internet marketing is a relatively new field, however, those determined individuals with an exceptional skill set and an entrepreneurial spirit may become successful internet marketers even without a degree. Many Internet marketers have previous experience working in many different types of marketing or advertising before pursuing technological positions.
Conversion rate optimization is still possibly one of the most underutilized but critical functions of digital marketing. Every element of digital marketing is useless without considering conversion rates. This goes for SEO, SEM, Social Media, Email, and Display. The power of your SEO rankings are only as good as your click through rates and your traffic is only valuable of your website and landing pages foster some type of “action.” Why spend all the time and energy driving traffic through multiple different channels if you are not willing to spend the time and energy on conversion optimization? Yet many brands and agencies still put less emphasis on this crucial piece of the puzzle.
A content marketer, for example, can create a series of blog posts that serve to generate leads from a new ebook the business recently created. The company's social media marketer might then help promote these blog posts through paid and organic posts on the business's social media accounts. Perhaps the email marketer creates an email campaign to send those who download the ebook more information on the company. We'll talk more about these specific digital marketers in a minute.
Online marketing is usually a long-term endeavor. For this reason, it’s critical that you maintain your focus over the long haul. This means setting attainable goals -- both short and long-term -- and not being swayed or distracted by irrelevant trends or fads. It means staying on task and seeing your plans through to completion, even when those around you may be trying new strategies and shifting course. While it’s certainly important to remain flexible and adaptive, changing your focus frequently can significantly eat into your productivity and leave you in a constant state of flux.
Just out of curiosity, how did you first start practicing SEO? Did you just pick some other topic a lot of people where searching for, such as dog training for example, and then create a blog on that topic so you could practice getting that blog ranked higher? I would love to know your story of the initial strategy you used for practicing SEO, social media, etc. when you were first getting started learning it/them.
Traditional classroom marketing training gets a bad rap as being out of touch with the speed of online business dynamics. Certainly there is truth to that, but one does well to understand the fundamentals and build from there with real-world experience. If you think you are going to get a marketing degree and then make a zillion dollars online within two years of graduation, you might consider resetting your expectations. The marketplace rewards applied experience. Real-world experience always trumps academia.
Read blogs – create a list of a few marketing blogs to follow daily. You don’t need to read a lot of blogs. Search Engine Land and Marketing Land will give you general industry news, and Moz and Quick Sprout will teach you the tactics. Each of these blogs also have email subscription options, which means you can have the content delivered to your inbox for free.
Mixergy is a website that publishes interviews and courses with successful entrepreneurs. It’s an amazing resource for anyone who wants to learn more about business and entrepreneurship. Mixergy is the only paid membership website on this list: monthly membership costs 25$/month and it’s a steal considering the quality of information they provide. I’m NOT an affiliate of Mixergy, by the way.
This definition emphasizes the focus of marketing on the customer while at the same time implying a need to link to other business operations to achieve this profitability. Yet, it's a weak definition in relation to digital marketing since it doesn't emphasize communications which are so important to digital marketing. In Digital Marketing Excellence my co-author, PR Smith and I note that digital marketing can be used to support these aims as follows:
Decide on a writing or communication focus for your work. Content marketing is becoming a critical way to market online. If a website can post interesting blogs and articles, they can drive traffic and attract business. You may decide to specialize in writing great content. You can also apply your writing skills to text on a web page and to sales materials.