In 90s the digital revolution started which lead to the creation of internet, which started changing the whole business scenario. It has redefined the way most traditional modes of communications including telephone, music, film, and television operate.
With the advent of internet, our perception of doing a business has drastically changed. Gone are those days where companies were not able to reach their potential and untapped markets. The World Wide Web has created a new economy.
With a devastating hit from recession in the recent past, our global economy suffered from a rapid downfall in terms of many companies being shut down, thousands of job losses and many other unfortunate events.
Companies, both existing and new ones of all sizes, no matter what industry they operate in, have started putting caps on their budgets under various heads. Despite frugal usage of finances, companies are unsuccessful in attaining their goals. How can a company invest a nominal amount but gain the best possible reach to its target customers and earn more profits? The answer still remains to be “internet”.
So, post-recession many more companies have joined the dot com bandwagon. These days even body shops and even hair salons have their own website. The World Wide Web has created a new economy.
Then again, just having a website does not fetch anything for a business. A company needs to know how its website is performing and also find out how it can promote its website using different marketing channels available online.
First, the company needs to identify its goals – categorized broadly as why, what, who, how and when. The company should first determine “why” it wants to go online (have a website) and “what” does it need to do to get what it wants.
Once the company is clear about what and why of its website, it should now think on “who” its target audience is, “how” to go about reaching them and “when” to use what technique or approach to enhance its brand value or get more acceptance from customers.
As far as who aspect is concerned, companies divide customer pool into various segments based on different parameters such as demography, geography, culture, etc.
When it comes to how, as already said, there are many online marketing tools which help a company get better access to its existing customers and new and potential customers. A lot of different criteria such as season, competition, customer psychology, market trends etc. would determine when a company use should certain approach.
The approach, of course, should be chosen depending on the type of company, the products it manufactures and the industry it operates in.
Social media marketing is creating a lot of buzz these days. It is the marketing tool of choice of any company in any industry to promote its brand and corporate image. Facebook leads the league of social networking. The site boasts thousands profiles of thousands of companies around the world. On the other side, there are professional networking platforms like Linkedin, which have profiles of various companies and also profiles of individual professionals.
There are other online channels which businesses can use to grow their presence and expand into new territories worldwide. Companies are also looking for ways to boost their brand awareness by using various online brand marketing tools. Google maps, on the other hand, allows for locations of companies to be viewed by customers / audience who want to check those.
Companies have also found place in international search directories like Google, Yahoo and Bing, and many local search engines. Companies using certain techniques such as search engine optimization (SEO, among others, strive to have their website on top of search results when a customer tries searching online using some keywords relevant to the company’s market. Other popular online marketing methods are PPC, PTR, etc.
Let’s say a company has registered its profile in many channels. How can it track how its website and its ads are performing online? Are there any tools that allow the companies to gauge the metrics?
Yes. Different companies in this domain have designed and developed different tracking tools that help companies monitor their progress online. Facebook has its proprietary tracking tool (Business Pages) and so does Google (Google Analytics).
Google has pioneered the online ad tracking techniques. The company has created tools called Google Adwords and Google Adsense. These tools, while covering a series of parameters, provide very precise and accurate results for a company do see how its ads are performing.
Thanks to the rapid technological advances, tracking performance of a company’s website (hence its brand and products) online is way easier than in traditional channels.