For this week’s podcast, I want to give a simple overview framework for thinking about your website and how to use it for digital marketing success. This is one of those subjects that can be as simple or complicated as you want to make it.

To me, it often gets overcomplicated, which is honestly understandable. Given that there are so many different ways to approach your marketing strategy, it is extremely hard to know what you should focus on in the short term to get you to where you want to go long term.

In my view, there are three key areas most small business owners and entrepreneurs should focus on regarding their website and online marketing strategy. Focusing in these areas and doing the tasks within each will help you grow your company faster. It will also create a marketing flywheel effect, where as you start to generate results from your marketing it becomes easier and more efficient to generate those same results over time.

So without further ado, here are the 3 key areas you need to focus on to create an effective digital marketing strategy in 2021.

Invest in a Killer Website That Does Your Brand a Justice

Having a modern looking website with clean design is essential for succeeding with digital marketing this year. First impressions matter and people will form ideas about your business, the quality of service/products offered, and whether or not they can trust you based on just a few seconds of browsing your website. If you have been putting off focusing on your website, this is the year to finally make it a priority.

But design isn’t the only thing that is important regarding your website.

Your website is not a static piece of marketing material – but rather a living breathing digital asset that is always being updated and improved upon.

For that reason, your website needs to be on a modern platform that is easy to update, fast, secure, and gives you all the options you need for managing SEO and data/conversion tracking so that the website can serve as the centerpiece of your marketing strategy.

Consistently Produce Great Content to Attract and Convert Prospects Online

Once you have a proper website in place that looks good and is easy to manage/update, then you need to start creating content.

Why?

Without content (such as videos, blog posts, case studies, podcasts, etc.) you’re not going to be able to generate a large volume of visitors to your website. And if you can’t do that, it doesn’t matter how great your website is if no one is ever on it.

There are two basic categories your website content should fall under when first starting out.

Attraction Content – This is content such as blogs, social posts (instagram or LinkedIn), videos, podcasts and anything else that can help you get discovered by your target audience online. This content should be helpful, informative, and be aimed at addressing your core customers problems. As I discussed in the Inbound Marketing episode of the podcast, helping is the new form of selling when it comes to digital marketing.

Lead Generation Content – Creating content is great, but don’t get caught in the trap of constantly giving away free advice without ever asking for the sale. Your content should be generating leads for your business. If it isn’t, something isn’t working and needs to be corrected. What type of content is good for generating leads? In my view, lead magnets, webinars, gated videos, and even chatbots (when used correctly) are going to be the best ways for you to generate leads with your website. I discuss this more in-depth in the podcast.

Build an Email List and Start Automating Your Follow Up Strategy

Once you have a great website in place and are producing content at a steady clip (and hopefully generating leads) it’s time to take things to the next level and scale your efforts. To do this, I recommend putting in place an email marketing strategy so you can build a list of qualified prospects and start automating your follow-up sales strategy.

Email Marketing is as relevant as ever and has an extremely high ROI. Being able to reach your prospects directly in their inbox will give you more legitimacy, help you make a personal connection, and allow you to escape the noise and distractions of social media.

Plus, the list you are building will give you independence from the big tech platforms and allow you to have a fully owned marketing asset that you can rely on.

Bailey Canning

Bailey Canning

Bailey Canning is a digital marketing consultant & web designer based in Northern New Jersey. Right out of college, he founded Inbound Web Development - a marketing-focused web development firm that helps small businesses generate leads and grow online. Feel free to reach out at bailey@inboundwebdevelopment.com to discuss a project, or be featured as a guest on the podcast Business Talks.

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