5 Great Digital Marketing Techniques Every Service-based Business Can Benefit From
Digital marketing refers to the implementation of marketing techniques that can help you improve the online presence of your business, as well as connect with prospective customers. As a business that offers services, you need to get your digital marketing right if you want to earn as many clients as possible.
In this guide, we will go through five great digital marketing techniques that can benefit your service-based business.
Focus on boosting your SEO to reach the right people
Search engine optimization is a digital marketing strategy that increases your website’s visibility on search engines. There are three main components to having successful SEO strategies and these are content, link building, and technical SEO.
Content refers to the information that is published on your website to provide value for your audience. It could be in various formats like text, image, video, or audio. As for link building, that is the process of getting hyperlinks from other websites to your own.
And, when it comes to technical SEO, this involves making sure that your website meets some technical requirements that will allow it to be found by search engines. Each of these components plays a very important role in helping you rank higher on search engine result pages (SERPs).
If you want to improve your website’s SEO, you also need to focus on keyword research, which is the act of finding relevant search terms or keywords that your target audience is regularly typing into search engines. And, when you find these keywords, you’ll want to weave them into your copy in a natural but effective way.
Let’s take a look at an example of a service-based website that has been well optimized for search.
Trainer Academy is a company that provides quality study materials to help people pass their personal trainer certifications. As a way to boost their SEO, they make sure to provide quality and informative content for their audience.
For example, they have a post on the best personal trainer certifications that people can get, which they’ve used to target a wide range of keywords. And their efforts are certainly paying off, as the piece ranks on the first page of Google for related queries that have a collective monthly search volume of 3,940.
You shouldn’t underestimate the importance of keyword research when it comes to boosting your site’s SEO. And, to help you with keyword research, make sure you use specialist tools like the ones from Ahrefs or Moz.
Publish content marketing that provides plenty of value
Content marketing involves the creation and distribution of valuable content that can attract and educate your audience, as well as motivate them to buy from your business. By consistently creating quality content, you’ll be able to pull in more website traffic from your target audience.
To create high-quality content marketing that gets results, you need to make sure you’re writing for your audience and not search engines. Think about the pain points that are affecting your ideal customer and try to create engaging content that will be useful to them. To do this, you’ll need to come up with relevant topics that will interest your audience.
One way to find these topics is by joining social media forums like Reddit or Quora and then looking out for conversations about topics in your niche. When you find these discussions, you’ll see areas where people need help, so you can craft topics to fill the gaps and provide helpful information.
Now let’s study how one particular business uses content marketing to provide plenty of value to its audience so you can do the same.
FreshBooks is a company that provides accounting software for small and medium-sized businesses. And, on their website, they publish helpful posts that can provide value for their audience. For example, they have a blog post that talks about how to write a winning invoice letter.
Since they are in the accounting industry, they know that there are people who might not understand the significance of sending an invoice letter along with their invoices. So, they’ve created a post to explain invoicing letters, how to prepare them, and have even included a template to get people started. This can be really helpful to small businesses and it’s a great way for FreshBooks to provide value for their audience. You can also emulate this strategy by researching the valid pain points your customers are facing, and then creating content to answer their questions. This will earn their trust and could lead to plenty of sales.
Write guest posts for websites in your field of work
Guest posting (also known as guest blogging) is the act of writing content to be published on other websites. It’s a very effective link building tactic that can be good for your SEO, and it helps you get the word out about your business.
To find good guest posting opportunities, you can simply search Google using a query like “write for us [your niche]”. So, for instance, if you were in the health industry and wanted to guest post for other sites, you could easily check Google with the term “write for us health” and you would get a list of various blogs and websites that accept guest posting pitches. See the image below for an idea of the results you’d get.
When you have a list of websites that accept pitches, you’ll want to filter out the low-quality sites and you can do this by using a domain authority checker tool. This gives you information on a website’s strength and its ability to help you rank with a link.
After you’ve selected your sites, you can now send personalized pitches to the editors of these blogs. Most websites will have guidelines along with their contact information, so make sure you read and understand their rules. Also, try to follow these editors on social media so you can establish a connection beforehand.
If you’re finding it hard to come up with topics for your guest posts, try conducting keyword research or joining social media forums for ideas on topics. We’ve explained both of these techniques earlier in this article and it’s worth trying them out so you can get engaging topic ideas that will help you write high-quality articles.
Only use the most appropriate social media platforms
Social media is an incredibly powerful tool that all business owners should take advantage of. But too many make the mistake of trying to be on every platform at once, which can have a detrimental impact on the quality of your content.
You need to prioritize quality over quantity, and this means you should focus on using a smaller number of social platforms well. To choose the most suitable platforms for your business, make sure you consider your target audience. Ideally, you want to go for social platforms where your customers are present and active.
So, study your target audience, their demographics, interests, and other relevant factors so you can pick the best platforms to engage with them on. If you need more help, check out this guide from Forge and Smith on how to pick the best social media platform for your business.
For inspiration, let’s study an example of a business that has done a good job in choosing an ideal social media platform to post on.
Most people know Starbucks for their tasty coffees, but what you might not know is how well they use social media to engage with their customers. Take, for instance, their Instagram account. It’s filled with aesthetically pleasing photos and videos of drinks which they use to connect with customers and engage in conversations. These types of visual content work very well on Instagram, along with interesting captions or questions they use to get their followers talking in the comment section.
They also repost some of their customers’ posts and this helps to improve brand loyalty because it makes people feel like they are a part of the brand. As a service-based business, you should also ensure you select social media platforms that are appropriate for your type of audience. And, when you do, make sure you use high-quality photos and posts to attract your followers’ attention and make it easier for them to engage with your brand.
Pay attention to your marketing performance and adapt
You shouldn’t just put together a digital marketing plan and then follow it blindly — it’s important that you monitor the results closely and adapt your strategy as you go.
To assess the performance of your campaigns, you should be monitoring KPIs like the number of impressions your campaigns are getting, or the click-through rates that tell you how many people actually clicked on your campaign when they saw it. You should also keep an eye out for the number of conversions you’re getting on your website, or high bounce rates that tell you people are leaving your site without interacting.
If you notice that your strategy isn’t quite delivering the results you want, this doesn’t mean you should give up. Just like RMIT Online discusses in their guide to the top marketing skills, you need to learn and master adaptability so you can stay flexible and keep listening to the data that will help you develop new strategies.
If you run a service-based business, there are some digital marketing techniques you should definitely be using.
You can begin by publishing valuable content for your audience, writing guest posts for reputable sites, or using the most appropriate social media platforms for your business. Once you get started with these, it won’t be long until you can implement the rest of the tips and begin to see results from your digital marketing efforts.
The age-old saying, “if you’ve got the money, honey, then I’ve got the time,” will forever hold a grain amount of truth. If you are able to put up the funds then pretty much everything is possible. Let’s face it, money opens doors, and in many cases, business success can be behind that lock and key.
But acquiring money to launch the business of your dreams or take your business to the next level can often be tough. Sometimes, it’s not even about the money, but about stepping outside of the box, getting creative and even bartering to get the tools you need. After all, your business becomes your baby and you will do anything to see it thrive.
Sometimes, you gotta work where you sleep.
“For the first year of nicepipes, I was working out of my apartment. Anyone who lives in New York or has ever seen NY apartments knows we are not quite blessed with space for extracurricular activities, let alone room for a small business with inventory. I had to get super creative so that I had room for a small desk space, storage, packing and shipping supplies, and more. This involved some major Marie Kondo-ing of my personal things as well as a very supportive and understanding husband. I don’t think we saw tabletops for months!” revealed Lisa Binderow, founder of nicepipes.
Other times, you gotta move home.
“I moved home to live with my parents when I first decided I wanted to start Red Velvet NYC. At the time, I was working at Harry Winston, running Global Marketing Partnerships & Events. I knew I wanted to find a way to save money to invest in the company, so I moved home for a year and a half before deciding I had enough of a base to get started. I saved a ton of money in doing so, so it was definitely the right move for me. Additionally, years ago I started a side business where I would sell my friend’s purses, scarves, clothing, or electronics. I still do this on the side today to help pay the rent, “ said Agathe Assouline-Lichten, founder of Red Velvet.
Put the glamour aside
“When we were finally able to focus on running our business full-time, we first worked out of our apartments as well as the Reebok Sports Club on the Upper West Side for a few weeks. Then, we called Courtney’s family friend who owns a printing company in Midtown and convinced him to give us office space in exchange for us advising him on his social media strategy. After all, print companies needed to evolve with the times as well! We then moved into a tiny back corner of the printing company’s office, and we were officially in business. It wasn’t glamorous, and yes, we would often see mice run right around our feet, but we finally had an office space and a place to call home,” said Stephanie Abrams Cartin and Courtney Spritzer of Socialfly.
And you must always, always put yourself out there.
“At first, I would just wear my pieces into my favorite stores and that’s how they started getting picked up. I started really small with just a few stores and would make things to order for musicians I knew or liked. That got the word out and my business has steadily grown since then,” explained Samantha Pleet, founder of Samantha Pleet.
Though the road to achieving your dreams can often be a rocky one, the look from atop makes it worth it. You will always look back and wonder how you managed to get through all the sacrifices. The answer lies in the stamina that sets you apart from the rest.