Digital Marketing Basics | Leading Digital Agencies

May 23, 2016

When it comes to digital marketing, the word itself can incite confusion. There are many agencies and companies that have made a living off of intentionally confusing the efforts it takes to be successful in a digital world. But as one of Arizona’s leading digital agencies, I wanted to take a moment to highlight some of the basics that will help alleviate the confusion that has been created over the last decade. We will focus on both the on-page (on your website) and off-page (your listings and social media) components when it comes to clarifying the very basics that will help you to elevate your brand.

Your website is the core of your digital brand

As chief digital officer of one of the state’s leading digital agencies, one of the questions that I often get asked is whether or not a company should focus on their social media first, and then work on developing their website. The easy answer in every case is that you have to focus on building your site before any secondary efforts are made. Google, and all major search engines, are going to index your website as the reference point for all branded (your name) and non-branded (what you do) traffic. Additionally, you have to imagine that your website is your digital storefront. This concept is important because I hear the phrase “most of our business is referral” a lot. While this may be the case, any potential client worth their salt is going to do some initial research before they make the call on that referral. Are they going to see something that represents your brand properly? As you look at your website, be thinking about the entire lifecycle of your clients and whether or not that experience can be had within the confines of your brand on your website.

Focus on your listings

Social media is one way for your user base to interact with your business. When it comes to incorporating efforts that will have the greatest impact on your business, focus on your listings. There are several levels of these listings, with your Google My Business listing being the most valuable. Your Facebook listing (or page) comes in second, with Yelp! being a close third if you have a service-oriented business. There are many more listings that can be had, but many businesses don’t have these basic listings in their possession or branded to show proper capability. These listings are often seen ahead of your website and should be optimized properly.

You cannot cheat the system

The point of all Google’s efforts is to make sure that the most relevant result is shown when someone does a search. No matter what any agency says, know that they cannot guarantee a result for non-branded keywords. Additionally, ask to see their results in search console, as Google offers a way to track how well you are performing when it comes to your branded and non-branded keywords. Most digital providers appear to not know that this service exists or they choose not to show their clients the results. Know that everything you do with your website is tracked and that you can and should ask for a detailed understanding of how your site is performing. The leading digital agencies, like ours, know this and can provide you the information you’re asking for.

Obviously, there is a lot more to talk about when it comes to digital marketing best practices, but these basics will help get your digital marketing efforts set on the right track.