WordPress is the world’s most popular web platform and with good reason. Initially developed as a blog posting tool it has evolved into a sophisticated web development platform, which benefits from a vast array of themes, plug-ins and other development tools that are available completely free of charge!
The open source web development community has embraced WordPress, some would say adopted it as a direct result of that websites ranging from simple brochure style through to comprehensive e-commerce and integrated solutions are effectively yours “out-of-the-box”.
That is not to say that anybody can develop your website, as the sophistication of WordPress is grown so has the need to employ a development team with experience of using it. Ideally your site should be developed using standard components without the need for any detailed customisation which would effectively tie you to one developer in the longer term. Such is the range of plug-ins available that (almost) anything can be achieved using them.
As sophisticated as WordPress has become, simplicity and ease-of-use has remained a key component to the extent that users themselves can continue to make blog posts, change text on simple pages and adjust content themselves if they so require.
“There are three responses to a piece of design – yes, no, and WOW! Wow is the one to aim for.” -Milton Glaser
Any successful online marketing campaign strategy in the modern age must include several strands or pillars, each of those pillars should support your marketing activity in other areas. Social media has become a “must have” component of any marketing campaign and has become the most effective way of directly communicating with your target market.
Google now “aggregates” all of your online activity, including social media when assessing the ranking for your site, so omitting it is simply not an option. An effective social media presence will not only allow you to reach out and connect directly with potential clients but will contribute directly to the effectiveness of any SEO activity you undertake.
“Social media is about connecting with customers in a meaningful way – a way the customer determines is meaningful.”
Search Engine Optimisation
Even the world of search engine optimisation SEO has been demystified by the world of plug-ins. A Dutch company Yoast, from humble beginnings (just one guy) has grown to provide one of the most successful plug-ins around.
A plug-in that will help you optimise your site for those keywords and key phrases that you’d like to be known (and found) for.
Combine this tool with well considered keyword research and a carefully crafted outreach campaign to build links and truly cost-effective SEO results can be obtained, within almost any budget.
Email marketing is a highly effective tool that enables you to keep in touch with your existing customers and, hopefully attract new ones. Simple newsletters containing information about new products, case studies or specific promotional offerings make ideal content that is both readable and adds value to your offering.
Of course, email’s unique selling point is that most email engines incorporate click tracking technology that tells you exactly who clicked on what and when, allowing you to identify exactly which customers are interested in which areas of your business and target further marketing activities accordingly. Indeed, the ability to tailor and refine your offerings to specific sectors or even individuals within your contact base is possibly the most remarkable aspect of an effective online digital marketing strategy.
“Quality over quantity – Emails may be cost efficient but that’s no excuse for producing poor quality content.”
Pay Per Click campaigns are frequently criticised for being expensive and ineffective. For those who are unaware, PPC campaigns are the adverts that you see at the top and the bottom of any Google search results you get. Basically, clients will “bid” to appear at the top of the page, the higher the bid, the higher the position, in an attempt to entice users to click on link through to their own site.
With costs per click sometimes running into the several pounds each category, PPC campaigns can certainly be expensive, but on the other hand, Google allows you to set budgets quickly and easily limiting your spend and allowing you to carefully monitor your payback.
Such criticisms however ignore the key benefits of PPC. An effective PPC campaign can quickly allow you to identify what your clients are searching for and how likely they are to purchase from you as a direct result for searching for a particular phrase. This can allow you to adjust your entire marketing strategy in response to the way your customers actually behave online. A highly effective tool.
“The most import part of planning any campain is clarity of message. Once you have a clear message you can then roll out across all of the mediums”
Effective online marketing campaigns are always built around a cohesive and coordinated strategy. The idea is that each strand of your campaign should aim towards a common goal, each activity forming a pillar supporting your overall objective. Above all, online campaigns need to be measurable, you can quickly identify which of your pillars or strands are performing well and allocate resources accordingly.
A famous industrialist once said “about half of the money I spend on marketing is wasted, the problem is I don’t know which half”.
Online digital marketing allows you to identify exactly what is working and what is not.