Digital Communications Tips For Small Business Growth and Conversions

If you’re a digital marketer, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to you that most recipients of your unsolicited messages, whether by email, text, social media or websites, ignore your message within the blink of an eye.  They tap or click the X, and boom! It’s gone.

The problem isn’t that your product or service isn’t worthy of consideration; it’s that you’re invading the recipients’ personal digital space. You’re the close talker at a party where the drinks and hors d’oeuvres are more compelling attractions.

 This doesn’t necessarily have to be an “it comes with the territory” scenario for digital marketers.  Clearly, some are enjoying much better response rates than others, and much of their success can be attributed to better marketing practices within the various avenues.

Below is a list of practices that have proven to gain better results in each medium. How do they compare with yours?

Best email practices

E-mail is the No. 1 activity on the internet, and consumers prefer email as their main method of communication with the firms they do business with three to one.  Yet consumers are highly protective of their email space, and are quick to go junkyard Doberman on intruders. Therefore, market carefully, and stealthily.  

1.  Don’t get in their face.

Don’t act as if you’re long-time pals with the recipient.  Skepticism is ramped up when someone gets an email that says “Hi Bill,” when Bill doesn’t know you.  Use whatever data you may have about Bill to present the most appealing message to him, but don’t address him by name.

2. Come bearing gifts.

Everyone likes giveaways, and you don’t have to give away the whole store just for a few clicks.  But do give away something of value, and you could also offer different choices. You don’t even have to give everyone a gift.  Some companies have greatly improved their click rates with contests, where only a select few actually got the goodies..

3. Goin’ mobile

Beginning in 2014, e-mail clicks from mobile devices outnumbered those from desktop computers, and the trend will only increase.  Make sure your message is designed for mobile traffic, and that the consumer can easily determine where to press if he or she is interested.

Your design team should update themselves regularly on trending e-mail formats and landing pages that cater to mobile devices.

4. Don’t write a novel on the subject line.

Did you get an e-mail from Barack Obama when he was running for president?  On the subject line, it probably said “Wow!” or “Hey!” and nothing else. Did you click to see what that was all about?  Uh-huh. See?

What you write on the subject line can determine whether or not the recipient will click to open the email. Don’t overwhelm him.  Don’t mislead either, but don’t overwhelm the recipient with a subject line of junk.

5. What time you got?

Mass-send your emails to arrive in their respective time zones between 8:00 pm. and 12:00 am.  Data shows the response rate to be much better during this time. Also, weekends out-perform weekdays.

Best practices for social media

1. Facebook

Facebook is not going the way of Myspace, but it is morphing into something much different than what it was in the beginning.  Millennials and Generation Xers are stepping back from Facebook in favor of Instagram, Snapchat and other networks where they are harder to find.

If young consumers represent your target audience, you need to adjust your aim. Find out where they congregate digitally.  Your clever billboard may be overlooking a grassy field rather than the interstate highway.

Still, Facebook is a supremely powerful tool.  Billions of people worldwide are on there. Make sure your message is Facebook-friendly and the landing page users end up on looks, acts and feels like an extension of Facebook.

2. All the others.  Oh, and we’re still talking about Facebook too.

As great as social media is, it still can’t compete with e-mail for direct marketing techniques.  Part of your social media strategy should be to connect interested parties to your email list.

Facebook is probably still the best platform for live video feeds, but the other outlets are catching up.  Host well-publicized live video events on a regular basis, and give viewers a good reason for tuning in. They won’t stay in the room if all they’re going to see is an extended TV commercial.

Your posted messages should be brief, because you want them to go to your landing page and not spend a lot of time reading information they can get on your website.

Learn – and relearn, because they change constantly – the photo and ad sizes on the various social media platforms.  An ad that is truncated because it doesn’t fit the space is wasted space. Make sure all subject lines and headlines are one line – two, at the absolute most. The attention span of most social media users is phenomenally short.

Run test ads that have a trackable element (like an email address specific to that ad) on social media platforms you haven’t previously used to see what kind of results you get.

Best practices for website copy and blogs

1. KISS

You know what that means: Keep it simple, stupid.  It was a good practice for print media and its doubly good for online media.  Otherwise, consumers will dart their eyes toward something shiny on another website.

Simple means short.  Short sentences, short paragraphs, short articles or blogs.

2. Keywords

Keywords are quite possibly what drove the consumer to your website, and keywords will keep him there longer.  There are dozens of apps that will identify and rank the words you use against the most-used search terms on Google and Yahoo, etc.  If your word is out-ranked by another, use the higher-ranked word, if it fits in context.

3. Every picture tells a story

Your website should be a gallery of compelling, aesthetically pleasing images that one, draw attention and two, help tell your story.  Using a photo of an attractive young person may gain the attention of a website visitor temporarily, but imagery that really describes your business and what it does creates a rapport between you and a potential customer, and that is what you should want, ultimately.

4. Good design is essential

Talented graphic artists, specially trained for the online environment, are golden. Find the best one you can afford, and let them work some magic for you.
Corey Tyner is the owner of We Buy Land Arizona and Austin Fast Home Buyers. He is one of the top real estate investors in Arizona with over a