Updated: May 12, 2020
The world of marketing is full of different strategies, methods, and channels of distribution. How you utilize these channels is most likely determined by your brand, your goals, and how you provide your services.
A marketing channel is how you make your products or services available to your customers for purchase.
Keep reading to learn about major marketing channels and why you should be implementing them into your marketing mix:
Channel #1: Your Website
Perhaps the most important channel you have at your disposal is your website. According to WebFX, "94% of first impressions relate to your site’s web design."
Think of your website as your digital doorstep. Prospects and customers alike will visit your website long before they decide to do business with you. That is why it's so important to leave a great impression.
Use these tips to make the most out of your website:
Make it simple, and to-the-point
Make sure it's secure
Ensure it is mobile-friendly
Include contact forms or buttons on EVERY page
Take advantage of calls-to-action
Keep the information updated
Additionally, keeping your SEO (search engine optimization) up-to-date is also HUGE when it comes to the success of your business! Having your SEO in order ensures that customers are able to find your website in the first place. I highly recommend hiring a trusted agency to help you develop a strategic plan that includes priority focus on your website and SEO, it will have a massively positive effect on your exposure.
Channel #2: Social Media Advertising
With more than half of the United States working from home, the impact of social media can no longer be ignored when it comes to the success of your business. Social media provides a quick, effective path to communicate with your customers and prospects.
Here are the major social media channels by active users (source: Statista):
Facebook - >2.4 billion users
YouTube - >2 billion users
Instagram - >1 billion users
Tik Tok - >800 million users
Snapchat - > 398 million users
Twitter - > 330 million users
When your brand has an effective social media presence, you directly impact the way customers and prospects view your business. Choosing the right platforms will help you establish trust and drive growth!
Paying for social media advertising...?
Many of the top social media platforms are free to join, which is awesome! However, when you perform effective, paid social media advertising, you'll enjoy a whole new level of success. As a marketing strategist, I've noticed a huge uptick in the interest surrounding social ads, and for good reason. Our team is able to tap into tons of demographics in order to hyper-target our clients' messages to the right people.
With more Americans working from home, there are more eyes on social media now than at any time in history!
Remember, advertising shouldn't be about reaching the MOST people... it should be about reaching the RIGHT people. With social media, it's easier than ever before to tailor specific messages to specific targets.
Channel #3: Google Ads & Google My Business
When you are looking for a new product or service to buy, chances are you do what everyone else does... you go to Google! According to Statista, "90% of searches made on desktops are done via Google."
Why do I need Google in my life?
Plain and simple... it works. The Google Advertising platform is unbelievably powerful, and it allows you to hyper-target your ads (much like social media) to specific subsets of internet users. Couple that with Google Analytics and a marketing team that knows what they're doing and you've just created a marketing monster!
The vast majority of businesses are a great fit for Google Advertising, and with so many businesses moving to a remote work style, there are even more directors, managers, and business leaders searching for services online. Approaching Google Ads with a solid strategy and a great marketing team in your corner will work wonders for your growth.
But what about Google My Business?
Google My Business is Google's hybrid social media platform. It allows you to post updates, videos, and pictures of your business. It is directly connected to your Maps presence as well as your Google Ratings. It is an all in one spot you can use to drive prospects to your website or other calls-to-action.
Showing up at the top of search results is what most companies want. Where a lot of businesses fall short is the execution... there are many digital marketing agencies out there that will sell their service on the premise of getting you more clicks and website visits. However, the true power of Google is unlocked when you have a team that understands your brand identity, goals, specialties, and budget.
Channel #4: E-Mail Marketing
Your e-mail list is full of people who have opted into hearing from your business... don't waste this opportunity! E-mail marketing allows you to directly connect with your followers about new products, services, and company information.
Adding some personalization to your messages also grabs attention, many e-mail platforms allow you to auto-fill certain portions of the email in order to speak directly to the recipient.
From a cost perspective, e-mails also give you a lot of bang for your buck! According to the Direct Marketing Association, "for every $1 spent, email marketing generates $40 in ROI." This makes it one of the most valuable marketing channels around!
Tip: Always aim to teach your recipients something in your message, no matter how small. The goal is to provide value, this puts you in a much better strategic position to sell your product or service from a place of authority.
Channel #5: Print Materials & Direct Mail
Anytime you have the opportunity to let your prospects touch and feel your brand, take it! An effective print campaign gets puts your message directly into the hands of your target market; meaning that design and quality are absolutely critical.
You want your print materials to match your online presence, and ideally, all of your print should aim to educate! The look and feel of your physical marketing materials should create a seamless experience to your digital presence... this helps you increase the probability of earning their trust, and business!
What about targeting?
Much like digital and social media advertising, print methods such as direct mail can also be targeted to various demographics, allowing you to pinpoint your message to the right audience. In fact, "39% of consumers try a business for the first time because of direct mail" (Fundera).
Creating a 360º experience.
Including print marketing in your mix ensures that you have a well-rounded marketing strategy that meets the needs of your audience. Some prospects may react more strongly to print materials than online ads or emails. Additionally, print materials also give your brand an additional dimension from which to spread your message!
Focus on the right channels.
As with all things marketing, establishing an effective strategy should be your #1 priority. Before you go out and create social media accounts or blast out a direct mail campaign you NEED to have established goals. Performing a brand analysis is an extremely important step when it comes to deciding on which marketing channels you should use to distribute your message.
It pays off big time to consult with an agency regarding your marketing channels. Large businesses sometimes have the resources needed to hire and retain a full in-house marketing team, which is great! However, for small and medium-sized businesses, hiring a full in-house marketing team simply requires too many resources!
Our marketing team at NWPC Marketing Solutions specializes in learning about your business and goals and then developing a customized marketing strategy that is focused on conversions and growth. Our experts know the ins-and-outs of all the channels listed above, and we've been able to help our clients achieve a ton of positive results!
Daniel Marr is a Marketing Strategist and Director of Business Development for NWPC Marketing Solutions, a team of marketing experts dedicated to helping you achieve your goals and BOOST your brand! Our awesome team strives to build effective marketing strategies by working side-by-side with businesses as advisors and consultants.