Want growth in 2022? Here are the digital marketing strategies you should be using to grow your website.
Email Marketing (Lead Capturing and Nurturing)
Lead nurturing is one way digital marketers bring people back to their websites, build trust in their potential customers, and ultimately convert them to active customers.
Your website can leverage the marketing power of email newsletters and follow-ups, which has been considered one of the strategies with a very high ROI.
You can ask visitors to your site to input their email addresses together with their names and subscribe to receive more information, promotions, or be the first to receive new posts and articles right in their mailboxes. It’s something users find interesting.
Periodically sending out emails to your customers should come easy if you regularly produce relevant and valuable content.
You can place a subscribe button at the bottom of every content close to the footer and the sidebar and exit signal as a pop-up. This will ensure that the subscription form it’s positioned in the view of users anywhere they turn to.
Also, the comment section of your blog is a strong point of email collection. Write articles that users can engage with.
Social Media Strategy
A digital marketing strategy is incomplete without incorporating social media. In fact, a Full SEO campaign is not complete without it. And this is where social media optimization (SMO) comes in – where SEO overlaps with social media marketing (SMM).
How your website can promote the content (own media) through social media as an earned media, preparing your website to accommodate any social media marketing strategy and campaigns on social media networks, and optimizing for social media visitors are some of the roles SMO plays in digital marketing.
To make the most out of your blog, embed sharable short content using a click-to-tweet plugin within the post content – this will enable the readers to engage their followers by posting what they have found relevant on different social media platforms.
This means more reach for your website as more and more visitors click-to-tweet the content to their followers.
Using gated content
Gated content can be a PDF version of your blog posts, which users can download, keep and read anytime without the need to visit your website. It is called gated content because, before users can access and download it, they’ll have to perform the action you want them to in line with your business. Apart from collecting emails of people that are requesting to download the document, this time, you can include something like “share or like (Facebook likes) or tweet to Twitter to download this file.” Kind of message.
This way, your brand name spreads, the content gets more referrals, and your social business accounts get more followers or connections, as in the case of LinkedIn.
Influencer Marketing Strategy
Mistakes most marketers make are trying to reach their target audience directly, whereas the best marketing strategy is the one that leverages the influencers within the niche to communicate to the target audience. This works wonders in marketing as people often trust who they choose to follow and might have, in one way or the other, influenced them in the past. So, your website can position its brand to the target audience directly by targeting the influencers in your niche.
Influencers can be micro- or macro-influencers. Another group of influencers is the media evangelists. A micro-influencer is someone with less than a million followers. This category of influencers can easily be reached. They often directly impact most of their followers compared to the macro-influencers with millions of followers that never engage or even impact their lives. So, because of the direct engagement a micro-influencer has, companies, especially SMEs, tend to engage them to help promote their products online.
Influencer marketing is most useful when launching a new website, products, or services or an online contest to boost social media awareness campaigns.
Search engine optimization (SEO) might be slow initially, but when done right, it can have a substantial positive impact on your, not just website but overall business. It works for all niches, and your website is not left out.
SEO strategy to outrank your competitors
Note that not all your competitors are SEO competitors. Someone competing with you offline, e.g., someone who has a business where you have your business located and sells the exact product you’re selling, might not be your competitor online (more on this as you read on).
Essential on-page SEO is having great, unique content well interlinked and optimized with relevant, intent-riched keywords.
To start with, many brands have established themselves on the top page of Google, and to join the race and even beat them to the game, you must consider:
- Researching into Keywords and grouping them into topical units.
- Using long-tail keywords to optimize web pages
- Researching competitors’ choice of Keywords and finding gaps in the keywords. Chances are, not every time the top-ranked pages are using the right keywords users are using them to search for what you both offer. Sometimes they might misinterpret the search intents behind those keywords, and if you can dig deep and unravel the users’ intent better than they can, you win.
When building your website, put the architecture or the structure intact. Build your website into a silo structure. A silo structure means your contents are grouped into topics and are well interlinked to aid PageRank flow.
Silo structure shows the level of expertise of the editor as regards the content posted on the website.
For instance, contents under machine learning can be grouped into one and content about AI grouped into the AI category. If you have content say about digital marketing, they should be in a separate category.
In addition to this, there should be pillar (page) content that links to every page that’s topically related. And build backlinks to the page so that every other page benefits from the link juice that flows from the external page through the pillar page.
Unique, relevant content will always attract links to itself, and this is why content is termed the king; but not just content, but relevant and valuable content.
What makes content great is:
- Users find it useful
- Search engines see it as relevant and informative.
For search engines to see the content on your site, it must be optimized in line with the best practices in Google’s webmaster’s guidelines:
- The choice of Keywords must be relevant and match the content on the page.
- The title tag should be short and optimized with the primary keyword
- Keywords in URLs
- Keywords in the header tags (at least in H1 or H2 tag)
- Keywords or related words (synonyms) close to the beginning of the content ( in the first 100 words or possibly in the first paragraph).
- Keywords close to the beginning of the title tag
- Keywords plus synonyms in the body of the content
- Keywords in Meta description ( even though not a ranking signal but will help by giving users reasons to click through to your site.
Combining keywords with entities
Keywords are great, but entities are becoming greater.
Google has described an entity as a thing that is singular, unique, well-defined, and distinguishable.
This is because there’s a strong association between an entity and a certain piece of content.
For instance, a Google search of “Google search patents” will include the results of Bill Slawski.
And a search for Bill Slawski will often include results for Google search patents.
This happens because the entity Bill Slawski had been mapped to a specific niche and terms that it’s much easier for Google to find relationship and association between the search terms and the entity.
What this means…
- You can come up with a distinguishable brand name and try to establish it as an entity in Google. So that when anyone searches for keywords and related terms that you’re known for, it can come up above others as Google would have been able to map the brand to that keyword in its knowledge base.
- Whenever you write content, you can look for an already known entity in that particular niche that your topic covers, mention the person’s name, and then link to his or her page. An entity can be a great way to outrank competitors.
For instance, if I am writing about Google search patents, mentioning and linking to Bill Slawski at “SEO by the sea” will make Google easily relate to the content on my page. Plus, linking to a relevant source (outbound link) will signal the relevancy and expertness of the content and the writer, respectively.
Other on-page SEO tactics to outrank competitors
Using schema (structured Data markup) for rich snippets and FAQ features in some SEO plugins like RankMath SEO to gain the position zero for difficult search terms.
Off-page SEO strategy
Off-page SEO strategy includes social media tactics discussed earlier – to gain referrals and backlinks.
Optimizing social media accounts by placing website/page links at every possible location such as the about section, Facebook page cover photo, visible when in the lightbox mode, page description, contact us section, Instagram and Twitter Bio, publications on LinkedIn – including a link to already published resources or top content. Everything that can boost the social signal of your website. Social signals may not yet be a ranking signal on Google, but the focus shouldn’t be on Google alone; Bing is a big search engine, and social signals are part of the major ranking factors.
Link Building Tactics
Leveraging on competitors’ broken links is one of the easiest ways to get backlinks. Links get broken every day on the internet, content gets deleted, and some websites’ domains expire. This presents an opportunity to contact the site that’s linking out to them (not found) content, inform him of the broken link and offer your (live) content as a replacement.
Guest posting offers much more than getting a backlink to your website.
It positions your brand to thousands and even millions of users on the authority site.
It also increases traffic to your website; when people read and click through either the anchor text to your site or your short bio at the end of the content, you get referral traffic.
Blog commenting (a mini guest post)
Blog comments should be seen as a mini guest blogging opportunity. When you contribute to a blog post in a meaningful way and then include a link back to your site can act as a link-building strategy. And not as spam.
Q&A on Forums
Answering questions on platforms such as Reddit and Quora and including a link back to your site will increase exposure and drive referral traffic to your site. And when people discover your content and find it helpful, they link to it, and in return for your efforts, you gain backlinks.
Other link-building tactics
- Crowdfunding link building
- Testimonial link building
Competition analysis: keywords, backlink strategy, digital marketing, social media strategies
1. Identifying the main SEO competitors
As I said earlier, many times, your business competitors are not always your SEO competitors. SEO competitors are those in the same niche as you—offering the same products or services ranking above you on search engines. So, your first task is to analyze who your competitors are and then uncover their strategy to know why they are ranking above you.
Many SEO tools can fetch a list of top domains in your niche on Google, reveal their strategies, and even suggest a way to outrank them.
For instance, tools like Ahref, SEMrush, SEOpowersuite’s Rank Tracker can lookup keywords. And then select top domains when the list of competing domains is returned.
2. Look through their SEO profile strength
This is important when you want to figure out their strengths and weaknesses. And estimate how much work is required to beat them to the top of SERP.
3. Determine where to put more effort
This can be done easily by checking the domain Strength value, comparing the domain age, PageRank, Alexa rank, indexation stats, backlinks details, and social media signals.
Understanding the areas where some competitors are outperforming you— will give an insight into where and what to focus on.
4. Look into their backlinks profiles
Backlinks represent the strongest signal of a site’s authority to search engines. And it’s a crucial step in the competitive analysis for anyone looking to outrank his competitors.
Backlink research helps develop a solid link strategy, estimating the time required to build a strong backlink profile, and locating valuable link-building opportunities in competitors’ profiles.
This can easily be carried out by comparing your site to that of the competitors using SEO tools such as Ahrefs, SEOpowersuite, SEMrush e.t.c.
Link intersection tools such as Ahrefs, and Link Assistant can reveal domains linking to the competitors that do not link to you. And turn it into a link-building opportunity by pitching the in-linking domains because chances are high for a domain that links to your competitors to also link to you.
In addition, one can leverage their broken links and pitch the domain linking to them, informing them of the broken link and suggesting better and similar content to link to.
5. Run an audit of the competitors to reveal their on-page optimization tactics
This is important to gain insight and understand what’s working for them to earn the coveted top spot on search engines. Once you know this, you can optimize the web pages and watch the ranking soaring.
Finally, set an alert system for yourself and your competitors so that you could get an alert when the competitors get new links. When a link on their site is broken due to maybe content deletion, you could leverage it and turn it to an advantage.
6. Social media competitors’ strategy
SEO competitive analysis will be incomplete without a glimpse, at least on the competitors’ social media handles or pages.
What digital marketing strategy are they currently employing?
What’s giving them the most boost in terms of online presence?
Is it earned media they get from sharings through the engagement of their followers?
Who are their followers (audience)?
Is it paid media? Maybe they’ve run promotions in the past or contests.
What strategy are they using to ensure that there’s flow in earned, paid, and owned media?
Are they using Influencers to market their products or services?
What type of content do they post, and what time do they post on social media?
What type of content (post) tends to drive the most engagement on their website?
These are questions and things to analyze when carrying out a social media analysis of your competitors.
When you know what works for your competitors, you can “steal” their strategies, modify them and build on them.
Wrapping it up…
SEO is fundamental to your digital marketing strategy, and this is why I spend time discussing it. Whatever your competitors are doing on social media, doesn’t end there! social engagement strengthens the brand, and the search engines pick them up and use them as part of authority signals, which in turn gives them a better chance of ranking on the top page of Google, Bing, and other major search engines. Social media engagement is vital to your digital marketing and SEO.
Your business competitors are not always people competing with you on Google, and you should know this when planning to launch a product or a new website.
Depending on where you’re in your online business, these strategies will work for you.
I wish you success.