Digital marketing is absolutely the key to success for pretty much every single business. With close to all new customers today first finding a business online, it’s safe to say that if you don’t nail the specifics of digital marketing, you’re just not going to be successful, particularly if you are a new business.
Even if you are an existing business, you’re just not going to get the new customers, it will be increasingly difficult to keep your existing customers, and you’re not going to increase your order value.
However, it can be a frustrating nightmare for small business owners because there is just no common repository of knowledge of help and advice. While it’s critically important to devote a good chunk of your efforts to online promotion, it’s ridiculously frustrating and hard to get right.
This has always been true for any business in history. Things are exceptional today, as never before has there been so much power available in the hands of a small business owner.
Just 25 years ago, the marketing platform of choice would have been the Yellow Pages. Sure, you had radio ads, television, mail and the newspaper, but for the Google of search 25 years ago, everybody went to The Yellow Pages! End of story.
Unfortunately, all this power and choice causes all sorts of problems due to the incredible complexity and the inability to really focus. As a small business owner, what do you choose?
With so many options, you may suffer from “paralysis by analysis” because since you have so many things you could be doing, nothing gets done.
Worse, you may be constantly worried that your competition is doing so much better than you are and understands everything they need to know about digital marketing. They seem to show up when people search for the services you also provide.
How do you even know where to start?
So, what is the solution to this dilemma and complexity of choice?
You could spend all your time trying to learn how to be an expert Facebook marketer, how to be an expert with reputation management, how to build the best customer relationship management software you can possibly can, how to do search engine optimization within Google, etc.
You could conceivably become an expert in all those things but is it not easy to do. Where do you have the time, when are you able to focus on it? After all, you have your own business to run!
It’s not that it’s impossible to learn it all, but it takes time and an investment that most small business owners don’t have. After all, they are busy trying to grow their own business services!
The other annoying thing is about digital marketing is that it changes regularly and is often hard to keep up with.
You shouldn’t have to take the time and effort to learn the complexity of digital marketing, especially if it detracts from your own business.
Since digital marketing can be complex, a lot of small business owners don’t really know what questions to ask. This makes it more difficult to evaluate people and what kind of a job they say they are going to do.
As there really is no certification or definition of who constitutes a “digital marketer,” there are a lot of really bad actors out there. You’re probably getting bombarded by calls and emails by people vowing to do your “SEO” for you and “rank you #1 on Google.”
You don’t know these people, and you don’t know exactly what techniques they are going to do to market your business online. On top of that, they could charge you $5,000 or more for their services, and you won’t exactly know how well that $5,000 is spent.
The final solution is a hybrid solution. That is, figure out what to focus on, and apply the 80/20 rule (aka the “Pareto Principle”).
The concept of this is that 20% of what you need to focus on will give you 80% of the reward.
Let’s learn a little bit about what this 20% is. With this quick foundation of knowledge, you can then be more informed when you approach a digital marketing expert to help you. You’ll know the questions to ask and you’ll know exactly what you need and what you’ll receive for your budget.