More people are leaving the corporate world to work at home. Regardless of the type or location of the business, it almost invariably will require an online presence to fully serve its customer base. A thorough understanding of current online marketing trends will help businesses meet their maximum potential.
To maximize the effect of advertising dollars, modern marketers are appealing to a narrow segment of the overall market. Nobody will make a living selling horse shoes to soccer players or ballet slippers to firemen Online marketers are carrying this concept of a targeted demographic into the cyberworld. There is no point in wasting precious dollars sending a message out to a hundred thousand disinterested parties. This focuses marketing time and dollars into a consumer segment that will offer the highest returns.
Once a niche is established, the company must strive to always be alert to the needs of the people within that demographic. A successful business will adjust its focus to coincide with popular issues in both their specific;y defined niche or in society as a whole. Some issues include a failing or reviving economy, political topics, or educational considerations. A company selling clothing would follow the current trends of the industry by keeping an ear open for what their segment of the public wants. If they hear an outcry against the seductive nature of clothing for teenage girls, they could offer modest, but trendy options. Focusing on the needs of the people will eventually cause the people to meet the needs of the business by making it profitable.
Current online consumers are not as naive as consumers were as little as a few years ago. They want legitimate, relevant, well-researched content. The best sites offer clean, user-friendly interfaces. Information should be structured well and highly organized.
The majority of people avoid pages filled with vague information and hypey sales tactics. Any business not willing to present the honest details about their company’s products and services will not last long online. Most people who buy from hypey sites that promise the moon, but only deliver a moon rock, will return the product and share their negative experience with others. There is no room for deception online.
Online video technology is a great way to share a message without resorting to hype. A video is a great tool for a business to use to increase the amount of time a visitor spends on the site, increasing the likelihood of that person becoming a customer. It can also show the marketer as a real person, allowing the customer to feel connected to and comfortable with the organization or product. Today’s advancements in technology make video production simple and inexpensive. At the same time, the upper level of production can be expensive and produce phenomenal results that will definitely draw in customers.
Just as important as drawing customers to a site is taking care of them once they get there with a top-notch customer service department. Every great organization needs an excellent customer service department to handle problems and questions and to build customer loyalty. Customer service contact information should be in plain view so people feel that the company is interested in hearing from them. A page with commonly asked questions is a great way to quickly answer questions. Every email that is received should be addressed with urgency and politeness. Even in the cyber age, the customer should always be right.
Marketers used to spend a lot of money building or buying an enormous list of names to be used in a vast email campaign. Establishing a legitimate subscriber list is still vital to a company, but simply having a list is not the key. The reason for building a list in the modern marketing mindset is to connect with people, build a rapport, and gain their trust. Social media is integral in strengthening customer relationships. The giants of the social media world are currently Twitter and Facebook, but it is an ever-changing dynamic, and others clamber into the public eye as well, such as LinkedIn. Forums, discussion boards, and listserve groups can all be used to strengthen customer ties. A business may even choose to build its own on-site forum.
Marketers today need to be focused, but flexible. Yesterday’s methods are not effective in a world that changes almost overnight. By focusing on the customer and bending to meet them, the savvy marketer can thrive in a competitive online market.