SEO, social media marketing, email marketing, PPC advertising. Where do you start and how do you use these to get more traffic to your website? If you’re a beginner to digital marketing and you want to cut through the noise, then keep watching because I’m going to show you how all of these work based on a decade of experience rather than just theory. Stay tuned. [music] What’s up marketers, Sam Oh here with Ahrefs, the SEO tool that helps you grow your search traffic, research your competitors and dominate your niche. Today, I’m going to share 7 digital marketing strategies that I have personally used and gotten results with. And if there’s only one thing that you take away from this video, it’s to not try all of these at once. Instead, pick one of these strategies, experiment and master the channel before moving on to the next. Let’s get to it. So before we dig into these strategies, you need to make sure that you’re adopting today’s mindset of the consumer.
Today, we live in a “content first” world. People are looking for information before they buy. So you need to really put yourself in the buyer’s shoes rather than allowing yourself to get blinded by how great you think your products and services are. The mentality you need to adopt is to help people rather than trying to cold sell them. When you help people solve problems through free and valuable content that is relevant to your business, you reach larger audiences and build trust. The best part is that you get the opportunity to show people how your products and services can help them solve their problems and fulfill their desires and needs.
Alright, so the first internet marketing strategy is blogging with SEO in mind. Now, blogging isn’t writing about what you did today or even something more noble like an epiphany you had. That’s a diary. But don’t get me wrong. This kind of content can work well if you have an existing and loyal audience. But for most of us that just want to get more traffic, leads, and sales we need to intentionally target problems that your target audience wants to solve. In the world of blogging, this whole process can be summed up as a technique called keyword research. Let me show you two clear-cut examples on how keyword research works. In the first example, let’s say you sell physical products like computer parts and accessories.
What do you think future customers might be searching for in Google? Probably questions like: Why is my computer so slow? How to build a computer? How to speed up a computer? These are all very real problems and people are looking for solutions. In fact, Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer tells us that these exact search queries get tens of thousands of searches each month. Now, the best part about these specific queries is that you can help people solve their problems, while integrating products from your store in the content. “Why is my computer so slow” could come down to a hard drive, CPU, or ram problem. So help your readers diagnose the problem and offer product solutions within your post. “How to build a computer” would be a super easy plug for any computer components.
They’re already showing intent to build, so it’s unlikely that they’ve already purchased parts and peripherals.
Alright, second example. Let’s say you’re a real estate agent and you’re compensated when someone buys, sells, or rents a property. Now, the thing that most agents do is boast about how many homes they’ve sold or how they won an award that you nor I have never heard of. My point is that the average buyer or seller doesn’t care. And to prove my point, no one is searching for things like: which realtor won the most awards in New York? But again, potential customers are looking for solutions to their problems. Problems like: How to invest in real estate? How to buy a house? What credit score is needed to buy a house? And again, these all have the potential to attract a massive audience.
By ranking in Google for something like “how to invest in real estate,” you’re now attracting potential buyers with deep pockets and they likely have intent to buy. Content on “how to buy a house” would likely require the work of an agent at some point, which could be you. “What credit score is needed to buy a house” is a great way to show that your knowledge and intentions go beyond making a sale. The best thing about blogging for SEO is that once you rank, you’ll be getting free, consistent and passive traffic from Google. If you’re new to SEO, I highly recommend watching our SEO for beginners video, which will give you a nice overview of what SEO is, how it works, and how you can get it to work for you.
I’ll also link up some additional resources on doing keyword research that grows traffic and revenue, as well as a video on how to write a blog post with SEO in mind. For now, let’s move on to the second strategy, which is to invest in video content, specifically on YouTube. YouTube is the second most visited search engine in existence. To top that off, video carousels nearly doubled in 2017 in Google’s search results. Video isn’t just the future. It’s the present. And the same principle of helping potential customers works for video too.
When people go to video search engines like YouTube, they’re looking to find answers to their questions. For example, if you bought a so-called “new” iPhone X on eBay, you might search for “iPhone X unboxing” and see if all of the contents are in the box. And according to Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer, 108,000 searches are happening each month globally on YouTube alone for this keyword. In fact, this video that you’re watching right now was chosen because I can see that people are specifically looking for digital marketing tutorials for beginners. To come up with topic ideas that people are searching for in your niche, head over to Ahrefs’ Keyword Explorer, switch the search engine to YouTube and search for a broad keyword in your niche. Let’s use “makeup” as an example. Now, “makeup” as a standalone keyword isn’t a problem.
So let’s go to the Questions report, where you can see popular questions people are searching for on your topic. And right away, you’ll see great topic ideas like “how to clean makeup brushes” and how to cover acne with makeup.
Now, when you’re creating these videos, try and keep the fluff out and pack in as much necessary value as possible. Doing this has helped us grow our YouTube views to over 150,000 views per month and best of all, since all of our videos show how our SEO tools can help, it’s led to thousands of new paying leads and customers, specifically mentioning that they found us through YouTube.
Most of our video growth was done through YouTube SEO, so I’ll leave links to a tutorial to help you rank your videos and get more views. Next up is social media marketing. Rather than covering every social media network, I want to pass on a couple of important tips that will help you grow your social channels. The first is to focus on just one social media channel when you’re just starting out. It takes time to build a following. But numbers aren’t everything. What you want is a loyal following. When you dip your toes into every possible social media network out there, your attention gets divided and the results get diluted. So which social media marketing channel do you choose? That leads us into the second tip, which is to go where your target audience is and cater to the platform. If you have to choose just one social network, it’s not about choosing the one with the most active users. It’s all about understanding the audience that’s there and if you can serve the reason for them being there.
You really need to think about why someone is logging into the specific social media network. For example, people usually go to YouTube to learn how to do something, or to be entertained. But Facebook is different. Think about it. Have you ever logged onto Facebook, hoping that you would see an unboxing tutorial? Or better yet, have you ever opened your Facebook app hoping you would find a limited time offer that’s 97% off, only for the next 37 minutes? Probably not. People don’t check Facebook with credit card in hand. People like and share things that are helpful, interesting, shocking or funny. So if you are going to try and bring people into your world, present your message as a story, video, or something else that will likely stand out from the endless feed of vacation vanity shots. Pinterest on the other hand is primarily a social search engine where people can control what they want to search for.
The primary intent of users on this platform is to get inspired, learn things, and plan to do things. So create content that caters to their intent for being there. So if this is your audience, take advantage of a less competitive landscape from both an ads and organic perspective.
Speaking of ads, that’s the next digital marketing strategy on the list for today. When it comes to paid advertising, please do not throw your money blind into an ad network because you read that it was good. What works for one person won’t necessarily work for the next person. Instead, think about the ABCs of paid advertising. A is for audience, B is for budget and C is for commerciality.
We’ve already covered the audience part. You want to engage on social networks where your target audience hangs out. Budget is the next one. Bloomberg reported that Google and Facebook own a combined 58% of the $111 billion dollar market. Now, the way ads work are usually based on auctions. The more advertisers there are, the more expensive it gets for you and I. So let’s say you’re in the ultra competitive industry of conference calling. If we search for that keyword in Keywords Explorer with Google set as the search engine, you’ll see that the cost per click from Google Ads is $20! If you have an ad budget of let’s say $1,000 per month, then you’d only be able to get 50 clicks before your budget was depleted.
Instead, you can do two things: The first option is to look for keywords that have a lower cost per click. Just go to the Phrase match report to see all keywords in our keyword database that contain your target keyword. Next, set a filter to only show keywords that have a maximum cost per click of something lower like $5. From here, you can filter through the list and see if there are some more lucrative opportunities rather than spending $20 per click. This one for a “conference call app” might be a good one since it’s a quarter of the price.
Another benefit is that the reason behind the searcher’s query is more clear. Someone searching for this is clearly looking for an app that does conference calls, whereas someone searching for just “conference call” could be looking for many different things. The second thing you can do is experiment with less popular ad platforms where your target audience might be. Finally is commerciality. Now, all major ad platforms are able to bring ROI for their advertisers. Otherwise, they wouldn’t exist.
But you have to find a way to bridge the gap between the intent of the platform and how you monetize your products. And the solution is going to be content. For example, let’s say you sell boutique furniture and think that Pinterest will be a good platform to run some ads. In my opinion, it wouldn’t be a good idea to advertise a bunch of links to high-end furniture like couches and dining tables. Instead, blog posts could work really well here since people log on to Pinterest mainly to get inspired, and learn new things. Here’s what that bridge might look like. Pinterest ads would be the discovery tool.
You pay them money and they’ll show your pin. The bridge would then be a helpful blog post on let’s say, “11 Interior Design Tips For Your Living Room That Won’t Break the Bank.” And within that content, you could showcase your products where it supports the tip you’re speaking of.
Nail the ABCs of paid ads, and increase your chances of actually converting your hard earned dollars into ROI. Next up is one of my favorites and that’s podcasts.
Now, there are two ways to look at podcasts. First is to create your own and the second is to be interviewed on someone else’s podcast. Creating your own podcast can be great for brand and building an audience. But if you’re just starting out, it can take quite a bit of time to get any sort of traction. Getting interviewed on podcasts is a different story. Podcasters are always looking for interesting people to interview. Even if you don’t have a ton of experience in the online world, your offline experiences and expertise could be a great way to land yourself a position on a popular podcast.
Now, if you don’t know which podcasts you should approach, an easy way to find opportunities is to look at your favorite podcasts and find someone in your industry that has been interviewed.
Looking at the podcast page for Entrepreneur on Fire, you’ll see this episode with Jim Kwik. Now, if we click through to the interview, you’ll notice two things. The first is that the guest’s name is in the title. This is very common for podcast interviews. Second is the link on the page.
The host will almost always link to the guest’s home page in the show notes. Knowing this, we can use a tool like Ahrefs’ Site Explorer to find all podcasts they’ve been interviewed on. So I’ll enter in jimkwik.com and I’ll also set the search mode to a URL search so we can find pages that are linking specifically to the homepage.
Once the overview page loads, go to the backlinks report, which will show you all of the pages that are linking to this URL. Finally, let’s use the Include search and type in Jim Kwik. And to keep our results super relevant, I’m going to set the filter to search for his name only in the titles of the referring pages. And we now have around 120 podcasts we can pitch to get interviewed. So filter through relevant podcasts, and pitch the host as to why they should interview you and the value you can give to their audience. Next on the list is email marketing. If you’ve ever looked into email marketing, then you’ve probably heard people claiming that “email is king.” But I promise you that once you get into it, you’ll quickly discover that it’s not as turnkey as online gurus make it sound. And don’t get me wrong.
Email marketing is great. But first, you need traffic to get email subscribers. It also requires opt-in forms to turn a visitor into a subscriber. In my opinion, email is a great long play to build connection with your audience and and even sell high ticket items. So my tip for you on email marketing is quite simple: First, focus on building your email list from day one. It’s important and you might as well collect emails from interested people from the start, even if it’s not a substantial list. But be realistic with your goals and as you build your audience, put more time into your email list and see how it can serve your business.
The final strategy is to use forums and community boards. Community forums like Quora, Reddit, and Facebook are great promotion channels. But before you go off and start posting links to your product pages, there are a few things you need to understand. And these are all based around the unspoken rules of spam. First: don’t promote your products or services pages within these groups. The intent of users on these platforms is to learn.
Not to be sold to directly. Instead, think of these networks as a place to share your expertise, build relationships and help others. Second: use links to your content sparingly. If you’re constantly posting links to your blog and have justified in your head that that this is non-promotional, then you’re most likely wrong. Links can be more appropriate based on the network you’re posting on. For example, Quora generally has longer answers, and linking to your content where it supports your point is a good idea. Facebook groups on the other hand are a different story. Let’s say you’re a real estate agent and you join a “first time homebuyers” group on Facebook.
If someone asks a question like: “I’m looking to buy my first home and was wondering if I can even get a mortgage? ” Now, if every agent on that group posts links to their website, can you see how spammy that could get? Instead, it would make sense to post a link to someone else’s affordability calculators or offer introductions to b-lenders.
The point is that helping first will go a lot farther than self-promotional content that can taint your reputation. Now, I’d love to hear from you. Which digital marketing strategy do you think is most effective in online marketing? Let me know in the comments and if you enjoyed this video, then make sure to like, share and subscribe for more actionable SEO and marketing tutorials. So keep grinding away, focus on one marketing channel before trying the next, and I’ll see you in the next tutorial..