As you may know, data driven marketing is highly important but there are also many practical ways in which you can get ahead of the market. Also, it’s not always a matter of SEO vs SEM and sometimes a very pragmatic approach to marketing can prove more beneficial.
But what do I mean exactly?
I simply mean that true value is not always a case of trying to master the algorithms.
In this article, we take a look at five ways that you can significantly improve your marketing strategy:
5 Ways to Become the MacGyver of Marketing
- Using Transparency to Market Your Business
Try to take a more transparent approach to social media and your business in general.
For most businesses, this can seem like quite a scary idea and even risky. After all, what if people don’t like what they see beyond the curtain? What if they find out the truth about x, y and z?
Believe it or not, people want to see the human side of your business, flaws and everything. What’s more, this act of vulnerability is the perfect way to establish a better connection with your customers.
At the same time, what have you got to lose? The truth is, you don’t need and should not want any followers who do not like what they see or hear. You want authenticity and genuine support.
In case you might be asking yourself, McDonalds recently launched a very successful campaign that was powered by transparency. As part of “Our food, your questions”, the company enabled customers to ask deep and even dirty questions about the ingredients and operations at McDonalds.
As a result, McDonalds was able to lay rest to many false claims and debunk certain rumors that had been plaguing the business for decades.
Needless to say, this tactic could prove highly effective for industries such as healthcare marketing (great, in-depth guide here).
Takeaway – Invite your customers to ask questions about the business or consider producing content based on the most frequently asked questions in your business.
- Reaching Out to Forum Members and Q&A Websites
Quora continues to experience a truly prolific rate of growth this year. It’s true, experts were already talking about the Q&A site in this way almost ten years ago and yet the site continues to grow and grow.
But why should this matter so much from a marketing perspective?
If you want answers to important questions, Quora is now one of the best places to visit. More specifically, if your potential customers need answers to questions about your industry, you can communicate with these customers and thousands of other customers who will find your answer.
In other words, build a presence on Quora to gain traction with potential customers.
Now, that’s not to say Quora is the only place to build this kind of presence but rather an example in terms of the rise of Q&A sites and forums.
With this in mind, you can target popular forums in your niche and look for questions that need answers. Needless to say, while you provide this valuable information, you are also promoting the business.
Takeaway – Use Q&A websites and forums to promote your business for free.
- Reddit AMA
It seems as thought Reddit is largely ignored by businesses and yet still just as effective as ever. In other words, Reddit is still one of the largest platforms on the web but rarely mentioned or used as part of marketing strategy. At the same time, you must have a good story ready for Reddit and something interesting to say.
Here’s how you can use Reddit to gain traction:
Story – As mentioned, have a good story and one that people will find interesting or exciting.
When/Where to Post – Post in the right place and at the right time. That is to say, find your niche on Reddit and questions associated with your business/industry.
Dropping Links – Know the difference between leaving random links on a useless post and offering insightful information with a credible link for better context.
Measure the Results – Reddit is honest and straightforward. If you post interesting content, you will receive upvotes in return. Needless to say, this is how you can judge the standard or relevance of your content and it’s important to pay attention in this regard to create a winning formula.
Finally, deploy patience. You might not gain traction for one, two or even twenty posts. However, it only takes one winner on Reddit to turn your product or business into a viral hit.
Takeaway – Make use of Reddit but make sure you use it right.
- Giving Back to Your Customers can Increase Publicity and Profitability
Without your customers, there would be no business. What’s more, you need this fan base to purchase your products or services and share their customer journey with other people.
With this in mind, the customer is not only “king” but also the key foundation of your success.
For instance, Sephora has a “Beauty Insider” program in which customers are rewarded heavily for every purchase. As a result, these customers can use their loyalty points to get discounts and free items, while purchasing the very best products as opposed to being confined to a specific range.
Best of all?
Sephora has over 17 million loyalty members and this program allows them to give their customers deals without lessening the perceived value of the actual products.
However, most businesses don’t take the opportunity to give back to their customers. When you think of it, “giving back” is the perfect opportunity to turn customers into evangelists. That is to say, you can create true fans and repeat customers simply by giving back to the community.
Takeaway – Generosity is most often rewarded in return. In other words, giving back to your customer will generate cheap publicity at the least and repeat customers in the long term.
- Giving Back to Charitable Causes that Your Customers Care About
Did you know that millennials are behind the social responsibility trends in recent times?
In fact, recent studies show that more than 70% of millennials will spend money on brands that support causes which they care about.
Did you also know that millennials account for one third of the spending power in the world?
It’s true, and coming up with a creative way to be social responsible can help attract this crowd.
But how might your business use this as a marketing tactic?
Well, you might sponsor a local youth team or offer free services to the under-privileged. Maybe you can get involved with local homeless issues or donate food/money to the local food bank.
In the case of companies, Booking.com have a social responsibility program in which they donate money to destinations with important causes or natural disasters.
Meanwhile, Tiesta tea provide assistance to people with disabilities, those facing hardship and villages in need of clean water. Need more examples?
Takeaway – Giving back is one of the most effective marketing ploys in the past decade.
While the internet continues to grow, the prospect of getting noticed is increasingly difficult.
At the same time, according to DAP, online users are now faced with a lot of spam and lame content which makes it even harder to gain traction in the first place. For this reason, an alternative approach is needed and this is true for body B2B marketing and every other form of marketing.
What’s more, using the same strategy as everyone else might get your attention but only so much. After all, we know that content marketing works but unconventional tactics help you stand out. Not sure where to start? Here’s an awesome list of pro marketing companies that can help you out.