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Digital Marketing Road Map for 2018

As we begin the journey of a new year, it’s time to consider how you’ll fine tune your digital marketing strategy to succeed in 2018. Last year, many marketers focused on content marketing, SEO, and paid advertising to create a well-rounded online presence. However, as we all know, the digital marketing landscape is constantly changing, which means that marketers will need to shift with the times to be visible online.
Marketers that revamp their digital marketing strategies to include more organic content, anticipate user needs, and address customer questions will gain the most traction online in 2018. Sharing this value with your online audience will allow your business to become an authority in its industry and strengthen relationships.

To align your digital marketing strategy with the latest trends of 2018, here is a road map to help your business have a successful online presence:

1. Design a website that speaks for itself.
Your website is the foundation of your company’s online presence and is paramount to your branding strategy. With more consumers choosing to shop online than visit brick-and-mortar locations, your website may be the only interaction that your customers have with your business. Therefore, you want to put your best foot forward with your website and ensure that it sends the right message.

When creating a website in 2018, user-friendly design needs to be a top priority. It’s critical that your website is intuitive and easy for users to navigate. Don’t overwhelm visitors by sharing large chunks of text. Instead, keep it simple and use visible calls-to-action to engage your audience. Placing emphasis on a user-friendly design will work in tandem with your SEO strategy and help to improve your search ranking.

Be intentional when selecting colors and images for your website. Today’s consumers have a keen eye for identifying overused stock photos. Keep in mind that the images you choose should draw your audience in and be representative of your business and its branding strategy.

2. Timing is everything.
With so much content to compete with online, you only have a few seconds to capture your audience’s attention. When you can get your message in front of your audience at the exact time that they are contemplating making a purchase (called a micro moment), you’ll be much more successful with earning the sale.

Today’s marketers have access to a variety of tools and apps that provide useful data about buyer behavior, such as the geographical location of customers, the types of products they are searching for, and when they are most likely to be active online. Using this data will help you get the right marketing message in front of your audience at the optimal time.

3. Make quality content development a priority.
Do you have enough writing experience to consistently distribute high-quality content? According to the latest statistics, 62 percent of businesses choose to outsource content creation to professional writers. If you’re writing capability is mediocre, how is your business going to be able to compete? If you’re not outsourcing content creation to a professional writer, will you be sending the right message?

There are a number of advantages to outsourcing content, with quality being the most obvious. You need a creative team that can tell your brand’s story through writing and professional graphic design. Getting your voice right is key to connecting with your audience on a personal level.

Another advantage to outsourcing content creation to a professional agency is that it will free up your time to focus on running your business. Longer, value-added blog posts will be key to positioning your brand as an authority with your audience in 2018, and these longer posts take time to put together. If you don’t have ample time to dedicate to creating quality content, you’re better off outsourcing this critical aspect of marketing to a professional.

As you map out your digital marketing strategy for the new year, the best advice is to make your business as easy to interact with as possible. Keeping your customer front-and-center will help you to develop an online marketing game plan that best resonates with your audience.

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1 Average median salary in Florida for ‘Marketing Director’, based on research by Glassdoor. 2 Retirement calculated at 3% contribution, based on research by nirsonline.org. 3 Health premium average calculated by ranges provided from a 2016 Health Benefits survey. 4 Total employee average calculated at first year and includes the following considerations: $4k onboarding and training, $1k software and subscriptions, and $3.75k outsourcing help. Total agency average based on Florida-located, full-service agency.