In the last 15 years we have seen the world change to become heavily reliant on digital means of communication and change. This has reshaped all aspects of life for every business. In general, it has made conducting business easier, cheaper and more efficient. It looks as if this is going to push even further as new AI (artifical intelligence) technologies are becoming more and more prominent in the market.
Google itself is already jumping on this market in the property sector, investing in a company called Proportunity, which uses it’s AI to help first time buyers purchase a house and only benefits if the customer does. It could also know enough about you that when you find an estate agent online automatically filters the properties on its list to fit the preferences of the user. It could also help automate the emergency procedure for incidents that arise ‘out of hours’. In this context, and many others, the technology will be able to take a lot of strain off individuals that spend time on non-essential tasks and will enable them to instead spend time on the essential tasks for growing the business.
When it comes to marketing the digital revolution has made large changes to the knowledge and decision-making abilities of customers. Now it only takes a single Google search for a potential customer to find out everything they need to know about you, your business, your products, reviews and much more. While this can be a scary idea for businesses, if your business is genuine and you tread the line correctly, the benefits of such a system far outweigh the possible negative effects.
When looking at modifying your traditional marketing methods (media buying, flyering, radio advertisement etc.) be sure to understand your target audience and the mediums by which they are most influence. For example, if you are selling retirement homes, you may want to not waste your time on Snapchat!
Social Media – A great place for referrals and being tagged in relevant conversations. If you are a trades company, your customers won’t be looking for you to share hard hitting stories, edgy memes or your political opinion on a business account. They do want to find somewhere where they can contact the business, see that it is ‘ticking over’ and that there is a person/personality behind it. Don’t worry about ‘trending’, use this advice article to make sure you are in the conversation.
Blogging / Thought leadership – A wonderful way for smaller businesses to show their expertise through providing insightful research and opinions on the biggest industry issues. For example, an independent London estate agent has become a ‘go to’ for UK journalists when looking for information on the luxury property market thanks to the specific and specialised content they upload to their blog.
Events Attendance – In support of those who believe that no matter how digital the world becomes there is so much power in face to face business, marketing CEO Arjun Arora, provides a great quote for the power of personal interaction. “Attending conferences is an important part of any marketing strategy. Attending dinners and events in different cities provide an opportunity to meet with clients or partners and get to know them better. No matter how effective your advertising and email marketing are, or how skilled you are on the phones, an in-person meeting is always more memorable.”
SEO – Simply put – this is ‘how Google finds you, then displays you to searchers’. It is complicated, time consuming and needs a better knowledge of the digital world than most people have, but it is near essential for B2C businesses. If you want to know more about it read this from the industry leaders.
By no means should you completely stop the strategy you have been using previously if it has provided you with success up to now. Instead use these areas to enhance your strategy and produce a more rounded and targeted approach.