Once upon a time, marketing dollars were mostly spent on paper. Business owners purchased ads in the Yellow Pages, ran advertisements in newspapers and/or magazines, printed and mailed postcards or flyers, sent out press releases to local media, etc. Today, though, the marketing landscape has shifted heavily to digital marketing–websites and Internet marketing activities like SEO and social media. But business owners are having a difficult time catching up to this trend and can’t seem to make the logical jump from spending their marketing dollars in print to spending them online where their customers currently spend most of their time. This is a conundrum we see often with clients, so we want to help guide you in thinking about your marketing budget.
First, let’s tackle some myths of online marketing:
- It’s Cheaper to Market Online: A key myth we see is that people seem to think that marketing their business online will be a big money-saver. And while you may be able to find some “cheap deals” on the Internet, they will almost always be just that: cheap; meaning these so-called “deals” won’t have the strategy behind them to get you the ROI you’re looking for. It’s understandable that businesses want to save money, but spending money on a solid, well-strategized Internet marketing plan is meant to make your business money in the long run. And think of it this way, in the days before Internet marketing, businesses spent a lot more money on print material than they do today. Now, a website is their online, living brochure. It can be edited as the business grows or changes, and that saves money, as businesses are not sitting on an inventory of brochures that are out of date or frequently having to print new materials. It’s all about rethinking where your marketing budget should be spent, and today, it should be spent where your customers are – online!
- Once I Have a Website, I’m Done: A website is no longer a static marketing device. Updating a site on a regular basis helps keep visitors interested and increases your site’s Search Engine Optimization, helping you to be found by search engines. Because the rules of SEO change constantly, your site’s content, keywords, other back-end data and SEO strategy should be monitored, evaluated and adjusted as needed on an ongoing basis in order to remain competitive and compliant with Google’s SEO best practices.
- Maintaining a Website is Easy; I Don’t Need to Spend Money to Have Someone Else Do It for Me: It’s true, many content management systems have made website upkeep much easier on those of us who don’t have html and web development skills, and we love creating websites that allow our clients to update content easily themselves. However, maintaining a site requires much more than just content updates. Website security is all over the news lately, thanks to more and more high-profile businesses being hacked and causing their clients’ information to be compromised. Small businesses are at an even bigger risk, as many do not have a dedicated IT staff or the know-how to keep their sites secure. A large part of maintaining a website is keeping its program software up to date. Just as you would any other software you use on a regular basis, you need to keep your CMS up to date in order to keep security features up to date to prevent viruses and hacks. Our web team knows what to look for and can do a number of things to help you avoid such an encounter or help repair it if you do.
Marketing has changed dramatically in recent years, but a simple change in how you view your marketing budget can help you make the right decisions about how best to spend your marketing dollars. At corecubed, we’re happy to work with you to create an online marketing strategy that suits your business needs. Contact us today to get started.