The Complete Beginners’ Guide to Digital Marketing Strategy

Learn the essential basics of the many aspects and concepts of online marketing. If your goal is to make money, no matter what type of business you’re in, whether you’re a solopreneur or the CEO of a large corporation, marketing is a crucial step you’ll need to take. Whether you sell pairs of socks on an online store or on Etsy, graphic design services on Fiverr/ComeUp, or SaaS (Services as a Software) via your website, this article will give you techniques to propel your business to the stars.

What is digital marketing?

Marketing is a discipline that consists in identifying and understanding the needs of consumers, in order to promote products or services to make sales, but also to increase brand awareness and customer loyalty. That’s for the “academic” definition, but to put it in a more prosaic way, the ultimate goal of marketing is to meet the needs and desires of customers, in order to generate profits for the company.

Digital marketing is much the same but via digital technologies. While “classic” marketing uses channels such as traditional media (TV, radio, and newspapers), sports events, trade shows, etc. to achieve its goals, digital marketing focuses exclusively on online strategies through social networks, websites, emails, etc.

The use of digital marketing has become a crucial part of any modern marketing strategy because of the tremendous potential of the Internet, which offers the huge advantage of reaching a much wider audience. And that’s not all. Companies can also target specific market segments more precisely, communicate with their customers in a more efficient and personalized way, and measure the results of their strategies in real time and thus adapt quickly to market changes.

Before going any further, please note that you will find a small glossary at the end of this article in case the meaning of some terms seems obscure.

What are the objectives of digital marketing?

Digital marketing offers you many opportunities to achieve your business and communication objectives online. By applying it in an optimal way you will be able to:

  • Generate traffic to your website or e-commerce store.
  • Increase the visibility and awareness of your brand or your products.
  • Retain your current customers and attract new ones.
  • Increase your conversion rates and sales.
  • Develop your company’s online presence.

By collecting essential data on your visitors/customers, and by analyzing their online behavior, you will be able to adapt your marketing strategies accordingly and reach these different objectives. Because the goal of digital marketing is first and foremost to use all available online resources to achieve business objectives in a fast, efficient, and cost-effective way.

Implementing an effective strategy is not always easy, especially when you are just starting out, hence the importance of understanding the fundamentals of online marketing before you begin. I will cover here key elements such as understanding your target audience, the different types of digital marketing, and how to choose the best strategy for your business.

Why and how to understand your target audience?

In order to successfully sell your products and services online, it is important to first know who is willing to buy them. And the most effective way to do this is to create a “customer avatar”. So, no, it’s not a customer painted in blue like a Smurf, the avatar I’m talking about here, also called “persona”, is a fictitious representation of your ideal customer, or rather the profile of the ideal prospect, the one most willing to buy what you sell or to subscribe to what you offer.

The more accurate this customer avatar will be, the better you will know your target, and therefore the more you will be able to refine your marketing strategy, which will considerably increase the conversion rates. This will prevent you from trying to sell surfboards to Inuits, for example.

But then, how do you create this avatar accurately? To do this you will need to collect as much information about it as possible. But before we see how to collect this data, let’s first see which data are the most interesting to know.

Some examples of data you can use to create a customer avatar:

  • Demographic data (age, gender, location, profession, etc.)
  • Geographical location
  • Interests and hobbies
  • Buying behavior (what they buy, when and how)
  • Communication preferences (e.g. whether they prefer email, texting, Whatsapp/Messenger…)
  • Challenges or problems they face
  • Values and beliefs

How to collect data?

So how do you collect this data to create your avatar? Rest assured, it won’t be necessary to hire a private investigator or hack into your local government’s servers, as there are much simpler ways to do this, as we will see now.

1The obvious data

First, there is the data that can be deduced with just a little logic because there is a multitude of products and services that are aimed at a very specific category of customers, and from which we can already draw a lot of information. For example, luxury watches attract mostly businessmen between 30 and 50 years old and who drive nice cars. Similarly, children’s clothes are almost exclusively bought by younger women. So, with this method based on analysis, deduction, and common sense, you can already find some information that will be very useful.

Target market and target audience?

The target market and the target audience are two marketing concepts whose difference is important to understand. The target market represents a group of consumers sharing common characteristics and can be defined according to different criteria, such as age, gender, income level, geographical location, etc.

The target audience, on the other hand, represents a group of people who are most likely to be interested in your products or services, even if they are not necessarily part of the defined target market. The example of young women buying children’s clothing cited in the previous paragraph is a perfect illustration. This is a crucial element to take into account in your targeting campaigns.

2Cookies

Yes, they are those little boring messages that keep asking us to click on the “accept” button every time we visit a website. Cookies are actually small files that are downloaded to your computer, tablet, or smartphone, every time you visit a website or use an app, and stay there for a few weeks to a few months.

They can have different functions, such as storing credentials (email address, username, and password) to enable faster login on subsequent visits, or remembering the language you selected. But some cookies analyze your behavior on the site or app and collect a wide range of data. This can include information such as pages visited, length of time spent on a specific page, products or services viewed, ads clicked, browser type, operating system, device type, geographic location, searches performed, or the user’s IP address.

And to use this type of cookie, there are free tools, the most famous of which is undoubtedly Google Analytics. If you have a website, you can start by integrating it. To do so, you will first have to register your domain name with Google Analytics, then implement a small script on your site. How you add this script depends on the platform you built your site with.

Wix, Squarespace, Weebly, and other website builders usually offer a simple way to do this. With WordPress and other CMS (Content Manager System), you will just have to install a plugin such as MonsterInsights, GA Google Analytics, or other. And for the other cases (HTML, PHP, etc.) go to this page where it is explained how to easily install Google Analytics on your website. Finally, you should know that the same tools exist at Bing, Yahoo, and other search engines (SE).

3Online forms

As we’ve seen, cookies are a simple and effective way to collect data about your customers and prospects, but there are ways to get even more accurate data. Companies regularly ask their customers and visitors to fill out various types of online forms such as questionnaires, contests, surveys, or loyalty programs. These forms are extremely effective because they allow you to ask very specific questions and collect all the information you need to better understand your customers’ preferences, needs, and behaviors. Sites such as SurveyMonkey, Woobox, Socialshaker or Rafflecopter allow you to organize this quite easily.

4Social networks

As you probably already know, social networks provide very valuable information about the interests, behaviors and preferences of your targets. Every action they take on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc., whether it’s likes, shares, comments, posts, and even followers, is all personal information that provides insight into their personalities, tastes, and aspirations.

5Other ways to collect data

The Internet is full of valuable information about each of its users, including you and me. Companies have understood this, and that’s why they do everything they can to collect it. But they are not the only ones, and other entities such as survey institutes, marketing consultants, data analysis specialists, etc. spend their time looking for, collecting, and analyzing these terabytes of data that are poured on the Web every day.

I will stop here for this chapter, otherwise this article will turn into a book. Note again that there are different ways to access all this data. The results of surveys and market research are regularly published in reports or articles in the trade press, but there are also all sorts of online analysis tools, the most interesting of which are listed in the “tools” section at the end of this article.

But whatever method you use, always try to respect the privacy of your users, and above all to comply with the laws and regulations in force regarding data collection and processing in your country (the famous European GDPR, for example).

What are the different types of digital marketing?

Digital marketing includes several types of strategies, each with a different approach or method to achieve certain goals. It is not necessary to know them all, but here are some of the most common and most useful in our case.

1Content marketing

Content marketing consists of creating relevant and quality content such as blog posts, videos, podcasts, webinars, tutorials, infographics, etc., in order to attract and retain a specific and targeted audience. The objectives here are to answer questions that your customers and prospects may have, and to help them solve their problems or inform them about a subject or simply to entertain them.

Content marketing is based on the principle of “inbound marketing”, which consists of attracting customers to you rather than actively seeking them out through intrusive advertising. The most suitable contents are certainly those shared on social networks, whether they are instructive or entertaining. So, I’m not going to give you a course on how to create content here because the subject is extremely vast, but I invite you to read my article “How to Write a Great Blog Post in 4 Easy Steps” if you’re interested in the subject.

2Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Search marketing includes the different ways to attract traffic via search engines such as Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc. These means are mainly SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and SEA (Search Engine Advertising).

aSEO

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a very important marketing element that is almost inseparable from content marketing because it is the one that will optimize these various contents so that they are correctly referenced on search engines. SEO techniques consist in optimizing blog articles, product descriptions, page titles, etc., using carefully selected keywords, in order to appear naturally (without paying, therefore) in the first search results of Google, Bing, etc.

I am schematizing a lot because SEO is not only that; it is also a vast subject that I will unfortunately not be able to develop here but on which I have already written a comprehensive article and that you can read by clicking here.

bSEA

The objective of Search Engine Advertising (SEA) is the same as SEO, but the method is different and even much faster since it consists in paying Google, Bing, or any other search engine to appear in the first results of their SERP (Search Engine Results Page). They are therefore advertisements, and they are easily recognizable since the word “Ad” precedes each of these lines at the top of the page and sometimes at the bottom of the page as well. Note that these ads are also published as banners on partner websites or on other advertising networks.

SEA is an important conversion lever because it allows you to reach a target audience when they are actively looking for information or a product online. And so, if you have the budget, it is a very good method to drive quality traffic to your website. On the other hand, the disadvantage of SEO is that this good positioning in the SERPs only lasts for a limited time, the time during which you are willing to continue paying to keep this good position.

Be careful though because you can easily lose money with paid search. Because you will not pay a fixed price for a certain time of publication, but you will have a cost per click (CPC), which means that each click on one of your ads will be charged to you, and this even if it does not generate any sale or conversion. A poorly prepared SEA-based marketing campaign can therefore quickly become a costly failure in terms of time and money.

Trigger words

The use of “trigger words” is a little but very effective technique widely used in the marketing world. It consists in inserting words that have a powerful attraction on individuals, and thus incite them to act in a specific way (click on a link, subscribe to a newsletter, buy a product, read a text or an article, etc.).

These triggers, inserted in titles and texts in various ways, can create a sense of urgency, curiosity, desire or excitement in the reader, and therefore increase the engagement rate and conversions. Some examples of commonly used trigger words in digital marketing are “new”, “free”, “limited”, “exceptional”, “revelation”, “instant”, “exclusive”, “irresistible”, “ultimate”, “incredible”, “guaranteed”, “now”, “unique”, “proven”, “secret”, “discover”, etc.

Here are some key elements that should help you better understand the SEA and reach your goals.

  • Keyword bidding: There are two important elements here. First, the concept of “keywords” is one you need to understand. When you search for information on a search engine, you rarely type in a single word but rather a string of words or even a phrase. Well, that’s what you’ll need to buy when you publish SEA ads. Secondly, you should know that the cost of each keyword or series of keywords is very variable and can range from a few cents to several dollars. Per click, yes!

    This cost is determined according to a real time bidding system. So, don’t worry; you won’t have to go to an auction room in London and raise your hand every time a bid is proposed on a keyword you covet. All this is done online, of course. Advertisers bid on the keywords they are interested in, and Google (or any other search engine) uses an algorithm to determine the order in which ads are displayed based on the bid and the quality of the ad.

    The cost per click (CPC) is determined by how much each advertiser is willing to pay for each click on their ad. And if several advertisers bid on the same keyword, the advertiser with the highest bid will logically get a better position for his ad.

  • Attractive ads: As you know, you will not be the only one to appear in the paid or organic search results. It is therefore necessary to optimize each word displayed on the ad to increase the chances that someone will click on it. This is far from simple because you will sometimes be competing with large companies that hire online advertising professionals and have years of experience behind them. So, if you are not good at this discipline, I advise you to find help on a freelance platform such as Fiverr or UpWork. This way you will also have the help of real pros, and at least it will not cost you an arm and a leg since you will find some starting at a few dozen dollars.

  • The targeting of your ad: This is another essential element that it is better to set up well if you do not want to throw your money out the window. Because it is a question here of showing your ad to the right people, those who are likely to be interested in the product, service, or anything else you offer. That’s why it’s important to understand what I said at the beginning of this article about targeting your prospects, in order to apply it here because ads can of course be targeted according to different criteria such as geolocation, age, gender, interests, etc.

  • Monitoring and analysis: Once the ad is published, you will have to measure its effectiveness. Analyzing the number of clicks, their cost, and the conversion rate in real time will allow you to adjust the parameters according to the results obtained, and thus optimize the effectiveness of your advertising campaigns. Moreover, SEA platforms such as Google Ads, Bing Ads, and others have all kinds of measurement tools at your disposal to help you in this task, so do not hesitate to use them.

A/B testing

Also known as split testing, A/B testing is a method used to compare two versions of a web page, email, advertisement or other marketing product to determine which performs better. In A/B testing, two variants (A and B) are compared by testing a single variable likely to affect user behaviour (a title, an image, a sale price, etc.). The aim is to identify which variant produces the best results in terms of specific indicators, such as click-through rate, conversion rate or engagement.

In the context of Google or Facebook ads, A/B testing consists of creating two different versions of an ad (Variant A and Variant B) and testing them against each other to see which performs better in terms of specific indicators. For example, let’s imagine an e-commerce site that wants to launch an advertising campaign on Facebook to promote a new product. The marketing team then creates two versions of the ad: variant A with a carousel format showing several images of the product, and variant B with a video highlighting the main features of the product.

They then set up an A/B test in which Facebook randomly presents each variant to different segments of the target audience. By analysing the performance indicators, the team can determine which advertising format is most effective in achieving the campaign objectives.

That’s it for the basics on paid search. Of course, there is so much more to say that I could write a whole article on this subject, and I will probably do it one day soon. In the meantime, I invite you to read my article on SEO if you want to know more about keyword selection as I talk about it at length.

Note that there are also various web tools, such as SEMrush, MOZ or Ahref, that will help you find relevant and popular keyword ideas, check the level of competition and CPC for each of them, analyze and optimize the landing pages of your ads in order to improve their relevance and quality, monitor the competition by providing data on their positioning, and offer other services that will be very useful during this whole process. You will find all these tools in the “tools” section at the end of the article.

To conclude this chapter, remember that SEA is a bit like alchemy. It is mainly about finding the right balance between the choice of the right keywords, the targeting of the right audiences, and the optimization of the ad itself to maximize the click rate and the return on investment (ROI). It can be very effective in generating traffic and sales quickly, but it requires careful management.

Here is a little tutorial that will help you publish your first campaign on Google Ads

3Social networks

Social networks (SN) are an almost unavoidable part of digital marketing. The reason is quite simple: To reach a large audience you have to go where they are, and today they are on social networks. In this chapter, we will explore in more detail the importance of social networks in digital marketing and how to choose the best social networks for your business or your project.

aUnderstanding social networks and their importance in digital marketing

I’m sure there’s no need to explain what social networks are, but for those of you who have just come out of a coma of several years (don’t watch the news on TV!), know that they are online platforms that allow users to share content (texts, images, videos) and communicate with other users. These platforms are very popular with millions of people around the world and have become a place to meet, to share information, to entertain, but most of all, in our case, a powerful communication and marketing tool used by companies, freelancers, solopreneurs, etc.

The strength of social media today is that it allows you to reach a large and diverse audience, to interact directly with your customers and prospects, and to promote your products and services with a high efficiency rate. In addition, they also offer tools for analyzing and tracking the performance of your publications, ads, and pages, which allows you to better understand the needs and expectations of your audience and adapt your strategy accordingly.

Finally, the icing on the cake, social networks are a free source of traffic since users can access your content without you having to pay for each click or impression, unlike search engine ads. However, to maximize the effectiveness of your presence on these networks, it is often necessary to invest time and resources in creating and managing engaging and attractive content. In addition, some platforms offer paid advertising features to increase the reach of your content to a targeted audience, but we’ll come back to that later.

What is the difference between “social networks” and “social media”?

These two terms are often used interchangeably to refer to online platforms where users interact and share various content, but there is a difference between the two:

  • Social networks: These allow users to connect with friends, colleagues, family members, and others they know in real life or online, and interact with each other. Examples of social networks include Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, SnapChat…
  • Social media: This term more broadly encompasses platforms that are more focused on sharing multimedia content (images, audio, and video), such as YouTube, Instagram, and Pinterest and are not specifically based on connections between people.

This subtle distinction, however, is only used in some professional settings. So using the term “social networks” generically is not a mistake. In fact, it’s the one I’m using almost exclusively in this article, but since I was just wondering about this, I wanted to share the answer with you (you’re welcome 😉).

bHow to choose the best social networks for your business?

Before, it was simple: You had a Facebook page, and that was it. Since then, there is a multitude of platforms available, but especially the services they offer have diversified. You can publish almost anything (texts, images, videos…) on any platform (FB, IG, YouTube, Twitter, etc.). But then, if they are all pretty much the same today, how do you choose the best platform to publish your content? Here are some key elements to consider to help you choose.

  • Understand your target audience: Yes! Again. You better understand how this is a key element of marketing, not just online marketing. So you need to start by knowing which social networks your target spends the most time on. Because even if all these platforms offer similar services today, there are significant differences between the users of each social network.

    For example, Facebook has a larger but older user base while Instagram and TikTok are more popular with young adults and teens. Twitter is mostly used by people interested in real-time news and events, while LinkedIn is more focused on professional networking. Pinterest is dominated by women and is often used for DIY, home decor, and kitchen projects.

    As you can see, the choice of these platforms will depend on the gender, age, interests, etc., of your target audience. And to know the trends of these different platforms, you can consult the data published by the platforms themselves or read the articles of the specialized press. Otherwise, here is an infographic that summarizes the current situation.

  • Define your goals: Before choosing which platforms to use, try to have a clear idea of the goals you want to achieve. If you’re looking to drive traffic to your website, you should focus on platforms that allow you to easily share links to your site (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Pinterest for example). If, on the other hand, you’re looking to build brand awareness, you might want to focus on social networks with a large reach and active audience instead, such as Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok.

  • Consider the features of each platform: Each platform has its own unique features and benefits. For example, Instagram is known for its strong potential for influencer marketing while Twitter is a great way to share information in real time. It’s up to you to see which one is best suited for your goals.

  • Analyze the competition: It’s not always easy to know where to start when you’re new to social networks, but there is a very effective technique to avoid making bad choices. This one is simply to look at the competition, especially the ones that are already successful. See which networks they use and how they use it; this can give you ideas on the right strategies to follow and help you identify the opportunities that exist on these platforms.

  • Evaluate your ability to create content: Finally, you should also consider your ability to create content for each platform. Facebook and Twitter are great for just sharing a blog post, but taking a photo to post on Instagram or Pinterest doesn’t require the same skill or talent as a video on YouTube or TikTok. The amount of time you can devote to it is another criterion to consider because creating a video is usually much more time consuming than taking a photo. And if you don’t have the time or the skills to create your content or even manage your social media accounts, you can find professionals ready to help you for cheap on Fiverr or UpWork.

Infographic with some demographic stats of the most famous social networks, as well as some usage tips. Infographic with some demographic stats of the most famous social networks, as well as some usage tips. Source (2020 à 2023) Hootsuite, Kepios, Statusbrew, Bootcampdigital and Demandsage

cHow to advertise on Facebook or Instagram?

Let’s end this chapter on social networks with advertising on Facebook/Instagram since it’s the second most popular advertising platform, after Google Ads, after all. Again, I’m not going to give you a complete course because the subject is so vast, but I’ll still try to give you the basics of what you need to know to get started. I’m going to talk about Facebook as well as Instagram because they both belong to Meta, and therefore the ad campaigns are managed on the same platform: Facebook Ads Manager (FAM).

First of all, you should know that in broad terms, this is done in much the same way as the search engine advertising I mentioned above (SEA). Here, too, it will be a matter of defining a target, proposing attractive content, and monitoring the results in real time. However, there are some specificities for advertising on social networks, and especially on Facebook Ads.

  • Prerequisite: Before you can launch an ad campaign on Facebook or Instagram, you will have to set your account to “Business”. Nothing complicated, since once you have created your Facebook page or your Instagram account, you just have to go to the settings, click on “account”, switch to a business account, choose the category that best describes your business, and you’re ready.

  • Cost: You’ll need to set a budget for your ad campaigns, but there’s no real bidding on keywords here. The cost of advertising on Facebook depends on several factors, such as cost per click (CPC), cost per impression (CPM) or cost per action (CPA), which are determined by supply and demand on the advertising platform. In short, the price of keywords is also variable here, but the algorithm that defines this price works differently.

  • Formats: The advantage of social networks is that you can promote different types of content, such as text, images, video, or even an audio file. Google Ads also allows you to promote YouTube videos, but Facebook is more versatile in my opinion.

  • Simplicity: It is very easy to launch an advertising campaign on Facebook Ads because you can do it directly by clicking on the “Boost Post” button located at the bottom right of each of your posts. You will then only have to define your objectives, choose your audience, define the budget and the duration of your ad campaign, and that’s it. Otherwise you can use the ad manager and create a new campaign from scratch. It’s up to you.

  • Les tests A/BA/B testing: A/B testing on Facebook Ads consists of comparing two different versions of an ad to determine which one works better. I talked about it above, but it is in my opinion one of the reasons why Facebook Ads is one of the best online advertising platforms.

  • More accurate data: The strength of RS and especially FB is that they have an absolutely colossal and impressive amount of data about their users. Targeting is therefore done in a very precise way, which is for me another clear advantage compared to other online advertising platforms.

Come on… I can see I’ve piqued your interest in Facebook advertising, and you know me, I’m not going to leave you wanting more. So to close this chapter, here is a video explaining the process of creating an advertising campaign on Facebook.

Facebook Ads Tutorial for Beginners in 2023

4Email marketing

This method of online marketing is very popular because it allows you to reach your customers and prospects in a direct and personal way and is also free and relatively simple to set up. It consists firstly in inciting your visitors to subscribe to a mailing list by giving their email address and secondly in sending them a regular newsletter containing promotions on your products or services, invitations to various events or even just to maintain a relationship with the subscribers to your list.

So, why is it important for a business to set up a mailing list subscription form? There are several reasons for this. First of all, it allows you to collect email addresses of customers or prospects who are really interested in your products or services, and therefore to keep a long-term contact with them. It also encourages their commitment and loyalty thanks to the communication campaigns they receive directly in their mailbox. And above all, it allows you to send them exclusive offers or personalized promotions and thus increase your sales.

aCHow to collect email addresses to feed your mailing list

Emailing, or email marketing, is a very effective way to keep in touch with your customers and prospects, and that’s why companies use all the means at their disposal to collect a maximum of them. Here are the most common methods used for this purpose.

  • Web forms: You have certainly seen this type of registration form when visiting a website. It’s the one that suddenly appears in the middle of the screen after a certain amount of time, after you’ve browsed some of the content, or when you were about to leave the page. This is called a modal window (or pop-up). It’s a bit of a crude way to solicit your visitors’ email, but it works pretty well if your arguments are convincing, as we’ll see later.

    But if, like me, you are not a fan of this kind of “slightly intrusive” method, you should know that this form can be integrated differently. It can for example be placed in the sidebar, in the footer, within or at the end of a blog post or a page of relevant content, at the exit of a purchase on your online store, or even in the form of a floating form, which follows the visitor throughout his navigation on the website.

    There are several ways to implement it on your site. If you are using Wix, Squarespace, Weebly, WordPress, or another platform that allows you to build a website without a line of code, setting up this type of form is usually quite simple since you just have to install an extension (also called “plugin” or “app” depending on the platform) that will take care of it, and then set it up. I won’t be able to explain it all in detail here, but a Google search should help.

    But the easiest way is to use a platform specialized in emailing such as Sendinblue or MailChimp. These platforms, on which you can start for free, offer all kinds of services related to the collection of email addresses, campaign creation, contact management, newsletter sending, etc. In addition, they offer flexible and versatile integration solutions.

A few tips to optimize your newsletter subscription rate:

  • Displaying a newsletter sign-up form doesn’t do much good if your visitor doesn’t see any particular benefit to signing up. That’s why you need to accompany this form with elements that will encourage them to do so. There are different ways to do this, such as offering exclusive content or a promotional offer only to subscribers, offering access to previews or exclusive tips, or offering a free digital book or training.
  • Internet users are naturally quite suspicious and are also quite lazy. On the form you display in front of them, only ask for their email address because the more information you ask for (last name, first name, date of birth, etc.) the more they will hesitate. Only ask for more if you really have convincing arguments (a surprise on his birthday, for example).
  • If you decide to use a pop-up window, avoid having it appear as soon as the page is opened because other windows often appear at the same time (GPDR, notifications…), and this tends to annoy your visitors. So, set it to open when your visitors are about to leave the page (this is usually an option in the plugin settings). This will also give them time to enjoy your content and decide if this signup is worth it.
  • Like any other digital marketing tool, you can measure the effectiveness of your mailing campaigns by tracking the open and click rates of the emails sent. So again, analyze these results and optimize your form and its message accordingly.
  • Surveys, games and contests: Your visitors love interactivity, especially when it involves playing games or giving feedback, and there’s an interesting reward involved. Contests, games, and polls are therefore particularly effective in attracting attention and offer a fun and engaging way to get users to sign up. They can also be adapted to different types of media (mobile, social networks, websites…).

    • · Contests: This can be a draw where participants fill out a registration form with name, first name and email address, and the winner is chosen at random at the end of a predefined period, a photo or video contest, where participants and voters must register or other forms.
    • · Games: The choice here is quite wide as you can offer puzzles, crosswords, riddles, quizzes, casino roulette, etc. People are often quite playful, so don’t hesitate to exploit this little human “flaw”.
    • · Surveys: These are not only perfect for collecting emails but also for getting information about your visitors. Ask questions about their consumption habits, their experience with your products, services or company, their hobbies and passions, and anything else that can help you better target your prospects.

    This type of form can be installed with an plugin/app or by registering on platforms specifically dedicated to this (SurveyMonkey, Woobox, Socialshaker, Rafflecopter…). However, be sure to plan each contest well, define clear rules, and promote your contests on different channels to maximize the number of participations.

  • Social networks: Using social networks to invite your followers to subscribe to your newsletter can also be effective since you already have some credibility with the majority of your followers. Here again you will have to explain what kind of content they will receive in their mailbox—and how they can benefit from it.

    At the same time, you can also promote the publication where this invitation appears via a well-targeted Facebook advertising campaign or call upon an influencer who has a large community that trusts him/her. This works very well if in exchange for each entry you promise exclusive content, special offers or even if it’s about participating in a contest.

    Organizing a live broadcast on YouTube, Twitch, or any other platform offering this type of service can also boost the number of subscribers to your mailing list. If your story is interesting and you have a minimum of charisma, it can even be a success.

But no matter how you collect these emails, do it ethically, respecting the laws in place regarding the protection of personal data, and above all clearly explaining the type of content they will receive in their mailbox, and how often.

bWhat are the techniques for creating effective and engaging email marketing?

Now you have a mailing list full of quality email addresses and subscribers who can’t wait to receive your first newsletters. But be careful, because if there is one field that does not tolerate “mediocrity”, it is the mailing field. I say this because if the content of your emails is not interesting enough for them or if they see that the promises made at the time of registration are not kept, they will quickly get bored and end up unsubscribing, or worse, considering your emails as spam.

There are a few techniques to write captivating newsletters, and I’ll give you some of them here, but be aware that if you are a beginner and you have never written any marketing related text, it might be complicated. That’s why I recommend that you start by learning these techniques from experienced professionals. To do this, subscribe to newsletters of successful companies whose business is similar to yours, to see how they do it. Also subscribe to newsletters from email marketing experts.

And if you want to launch your newsletter campaign quickly, there are specialized agencies that can help you. Also think about Fiverr or UpWork if your budget is tight because you will also find experts who can write professional newsletters for a reasonable price.

11 tips on how to write and create effective marketing emails

  • Soignez l’objet du mailMake sure the subject line is well written: Let’s start with the subject line since it is the first thing your subscriber will read. It should be short and catchy, and encourage them to open the email. Insert trigger words such as “new”, “free”, “exclusive”, “limited”, “proven”, “secret”…
  • Personalize your message: Use your recipient’s first name to personalize the message. People are more likely to open and read emails that are addressed directly to them. To do this, you’ll need to display a “first name” field on the sign-up form, of course.
  • Adopt an appropriate tone: Your tone should match your target audience and reflect your brand. For example, adopt a cool, casual tone if you sell young adult clothing, and a more serious, professional tone if you rent luxury apartments in Miami.
  • Structure your email: use a clear and structured layout to facilitate reading. Use headings, sub-headings, paragraphs, bulleted lists to organize your content.
  • Aerate your text: Avoid monolithic blocks of text because your readers don’t like that. Instead, write short paragraphs and add comfortable space between each one, as well as between each line.
  • Add visuals: Add relevant images, explanatory graphics, a humorous GIF, or any other visual element that can support your point (don’t overdo it, though).
  • Include a call to action: Guide your reader to the action you want them to take, whether it’s clicking on a link, registering for an event, or making a purchase. Do it in a natural way, and try not to be too insistent.
  • Test your email: Make tests to check that your email is easy to read, that the links work well, and that the images are displayed correctly on different screens (mobile, tablet, computer…).
  • Avoid spelling and grammatical errors: Many of your readers, especially older ones, are very attentive to spelling and grammar. Be sure to read your email several times and have someone else proofread it. Avoid mistakes as much as possible as this could give an unprofessional image of your company.
  • Be regular: In this field as in others, consistency is the way to success (yes, I know; it’s perseverance, but it’s the same!). People really appreciate regularity. Try to send your newsletter at regular intervals, between 2 and 4 times a month, and always on the same day at the same time. And if you want to know the best time to send it, read this.
  • Respect the rules of email marketing: Respect the laws on the collection and use of your subscribers’ personal data, and always include a clear and easy to find unsubscribe option.
Examples of free templates on Canva Take care of the design of your newsletters! You will find free and customizable templates on Canva

Storytelling

Storytelling is another technique widely used in all forms of marketing. It consists in using narrative elements in some communications around your company, product, or service to establish an emotional connection with your target audience, and thus gain their trust or increase their loyalty. It can be anecdotes, testimonies, personal stories, or inspirational narratives, but the important thing is that this story triggers a strong and positive emotion in the reader (joy, empathy, enthusiasm, confidence, inspiration, hope…).

You can use storytelling for any form of marketing content, such as newsletters, product descriptions, the “About” page of your website, or any other form of communication. In the case of a newsletter, for example, you might start by writing a catchy introduction that grabs the reader’s attention, then incorporate storytelling elements to bring the content to life and make it more interesting, and possibly include images or videos to accompany the story and reinforce its emotional impact.

The goal is to make the story as captivating as possible in order to keep the reader’s attention during the time it takes to convince them to take action. There are several ways to do this:

  • Use simple language that the reader can understand.
  • Create a character with whom they can identify.
  • Introduce conflict or challenge to maintain interest and tension.
  • Avoid stories that are too long or complicated.
  • Introduce elements of surprise or plot twists.

You can let your imagination run wild, but be careful that the story is relevant to the audience for which the communication is intended. Your readers should be able to relate to the stories you tell them and understand how they relate to your brand or the product/service you offer.

Storytelling is a very effective persuasion technique that deserves your close attention because when well implemented, it can have a positive impact on the results of your marketing communication campaigns. To learn how to master it, you can follow a short training on Udemy or SkillShare, read a book on the subject, or follow storytelling accounts on social networks.

5Affiliate marketing

This one should be particularly appealing to you, especially if you’re a content creator and the idea of having to run ad campaigns on Google and social networks already makes you sigh with despair.

aWhat is affiliate marketing and how does it work?

This technique, which is as old as selling itself, consists of finding intermediaries who will promote your products or services for you, in exchange for a commission. These intermediaries, called affiliates, have multiple media at their disposal such as websites, blogs, social networks or emails. They are often bloggers/influencers who use the marketing methods described in this article.

Infographic explaining how affiliate marketing works The 3 actors of affiliate marketing: the seller – the affiliate – the customer.

If you don’t have the time to do your own marketing, because you are alone and already too busy running your business or simply too lazy, this is a great option to sell what you offer without getting too tired. That said, it can be a strategy to apply in parallel with others as well, which would allow you to reach an even wider audience.

The big advantage here is that you will be able to benefit from the credibility, the expertise and especially the visibility of your affiliates to boost your sales. Moreover, these commissions are usually a significant part of their income, so if your products are popular with buyers and this commission is interesting enough for them, you can be sure that your affiliates will be more motivated to actively promote your products or services, and thus lead to a significant increase in your turnover.

In most cases your affiliates will direct customers straight to your website. However, there are some cases where affiliates take care of the sale themselves by creating their own sales page. This is especially true for downloadable digital products (documents, videos, audio, etc.), but also for physical products. ClickBank, for example, offers a funnel sales process, where affiliates can create sales pages and incentives without having to send customers to the company’s site. So maybe that’s something to explore.

What is a funnel?

A funnel is a graphical representation model used by marketers to describe the different steps a visitor must go through to become a potential customer. These steps are generally:

  • Awareness: This first stage consists of making the visitor aware of your company and your offer through various marketing channels such as ads, social media, search engines, etc.
  • Interest: After the awareness stage, if the visitor is interested in what you offer they can explore your offer further and any other content that encourages them to take the next step.
  • Desire: In this stage, the visitor makes the decision to buy or commit to what you offer. They can read reviews, case studies, comparisons with your competitors and other information to make an informed decision.
  • Action: This is the last step in the conversion funnel where the visitor takes a concrete action such as buying a product, signing up for a newsletter, requesting a quote, etc. This step is crucial because it allows you to measure the effectiveness of your digital marketing strategy and to optimize the previous steps of the funnel to increase the conversion rate.

The different stages of the funnel are often represented as a funnel because the number of visitors decreases as they progress through the stages.

Infographic explaining the 4 steps of a sales tunnel The 4 stages of a sales tunnel

Finally, note that there is a somewhat similar sales system, but mostly focused on physical products, called “dropshipping“. In this case, the intermediary is a dropshipper (not an affiliate) who runs his own online store and promotes your products through his own channels. If a customer buys one of your products on his online store, the dropshipper will order the product on your website and will provide the delivery information of the final customer while taking a profit margin in the process. This is a bit out of the scope of this article, but I just wanted you to have the info.

Now let’s find out how you can integrate this marketing strategy into your business. You will see that, as with other forms of marketing, there is a whole ecosystem (“eco” in the economic sense) that has developed around affiliate marketing.

bHow do you find affiliate programs that are relevant to your business?

Affiliate marketing is first and foremost a quest because finding the most appropriate programs for your type of content is as important and delicate as finding the right partner in a relationship. It’s about avoiding a situation where you are constantly looking for commitment from your partner or, even worse, where you are cheated and disappointed. So, it’s a matter of trust and mutual commitment.

It’s a bit the same for affiliate marketing since in exchange for this commission you expect your partner to do everything possible to promote your products or services in the most effective and honest way possible but also to grant you a certain exclusivity or at least not to favor the competition.

Well, that was for the little metaphor, but concretely how do we do it? Objectively, the best way is to use a platform specialized in this type of marketing. Obviously, it will cost you some money, but in exchange you will be able to take advantage of all the tools at your disposal to find targeted partners, manage your partners, analyze the performance of your programs, and adjust the commissions according to the results obtained. And the other advantage of these affiliate program platforms is that you will have direct access to thousands of potential affiliates, which will save you hours of research trying to find a reliable partner.

Using these platforms is also quite simple: You just have to sign up, create, and set up an affiliate program, indicate the conditions and in particular the percentage of commission offered on each sale generated, then wait for affiliates to be interested in your offer. You can also provide promotional content such as banner ads, product images, demo videos, etc., which will greatly assist your affiliates in their various marketing communications.

There are many affiliate marketing platforms out there, and here is a short list of some of the most popular ones:

  • Awin: Previously known as Affiliate Window, this platform is one of the largest in the market. It offers a wide variety of affiliate programs for all types of products and services.
  • CJ Affiliate: Formerly known as Commission Junction, this platform also offers a wide range of affiliate programs for businesses in different industries.
  • ShareASale: This platform is known for its affiliate programs in the fashion, beauty, and lifestyle industries although it also offers programs in other areas.
  • Rakuten Advertising: This one offers a wide selection of affiliate programs for businesses in different sectors.
  • Amazon Associates: This affiliate platform is specific to Amazon and allows businesses to promote products sold on the Amazon platform.

Now, if for some reason you don’t want to go through one of these platforms, you can create an affiliate page on your site yourself too. It’s even pretty easy if you’re using WordPress since there are plugins such as SliceWP SliceWP Affiliate or AffiliateWP, which will allow you to integrate this pretty quickly.

There are also solutions for Wix, Squarespace, Weebly, as well as other website builders, but for those, I invite you to do a little Google search (because this article is already long enough, and I’m lazy too (it’s 2 a.m.) 😭).

cWhat are the techniques to succeed in affiliate marketing?

If you want to get into affiliate marketing successfully, here are some tips that should help you do so. First of all, take the time to choose the right affiliates to work with. Try to find partners you can trust, who have a relevant audience for your business, and who have a positive and solid reputation.

Also consider setting clear and fair terms for the commission you offer to affiliates. Too high a commission will attract partners but will impact the sale price, which if too high can drive buyers away, while too low a commission will attract few affiliates. Again, it’s all about balance.

Next, provide your affiliates with the tools and resources they need to effectively promote your products or services. This can include banner ads, affiliate links, promo codes, product images, sales guides, etc. The easier you make it for your affiliates, the more motivated they will be to promote your offers.

Also, make sure you regularly monitor your affiliates’ performance and optimize your affiliate program accordingly. Identify the best performing affiliates and reward them appropriately, for example by offering them higher commissions or by creating a special offer exclusively for its readers/subscribers.

Finally, be open to communication and ready to answer their questions and concerns. By working together in a transparent manner, you can develop a successful and mutually beneficial relationship.

6Influencer marketing

With the era of social networks, and blogs before them, companies have very quickly identified the enormous potential of influencers, and especially the power they have over their community. And so, very quickly, these companies set up partnership systems that are still very effective today.

aWhat is influencer marketing and how does it work?

Influencer marketing is a marketing technique that allows companies to collaborate with influential individuals on the Internet, such as bloggers, vloggers, Instagram/TikTok influencers, etc., in order to promote a product, brand, or service. These influencers create a community that is generally loyal and trustworthy, especially when they make commercial recommendations. This allows brands to reach a large, qualitative, and committed audience in a more authentic and credible way.

So, how does influencer marketing work in practice? In fact, brands can collaborate with influencers in different ways, ranging from simply mentioning their product to making sponsored videos or other types of posts on social networks. Influencers can also organize contests or online events to promote them. The goal is to create a buzz around the brand’s products or services by using the engagement and credibility of influencers to reach their audience.

And how do they find these influencers? We’ll see about that in a moment, but before we close this question, it’s important to note that influencer marketing can be used by companies of all sizes, from small online stores to startups and multinationals. Micro-influence is even an emerging trend in influencer marketing.

Micro-influencers, unlike traditional influencers with a large number of followers, have less followers (often between 1,000 and 10,000), but their audience is often very targeted and engaged, which is ideal for reaching very specific niches. It is therefore an option to consider no matter how big your business, project, or company is.

bHow to find influencers to promote your products?

A bit like affiliate marketing, you have two options here: Either you search yourself or you go through a specialized platform. Finding an influencer yourself is not very complicated, but it can be quite time consuming though since it consists in searching the Internet (blogs, podcasts, TikTok, Instagram, YouTube accounts, etc.) and analyzing the “compatibility” with what you are looking for exactly.

Among the essential information to take into account are:

  • The niche: Each influencer addresses an audience that is interested in one or more specific topics. So it’s all about finding the one that is closest to your market. For example, if you sell sportswear, you should look for influencers in the field of fitness, sports, and everything that revolves around it.
  • Engagement: Checking the engagement of your audience, i.e. the interaction rate of followers with the influencer’s posts is also important. Comments and shares are key indicators of this engagement.
  • The size of the audience: Don’t look for the one with the biggest audience because a smaller and more targeted audience can sometimes be more effective. And above all, it will cost you less.
  • Values: The influencer must be in agreement with the values of your brand, which means that his or her image and activities must be coherent with the image that your company wishes to convey.
  • Content: Remember to check the content published by each influencer because even if their values are in perfect symbiosis with yours, you may find content that you do not endorse. Stances on topics such as politics, religion, or any other divisive subject should be avoided.

Alternatively, the other option is to use an affiliate marketing platform that connects brands with influencers. The way they work is quite simple: Companies register on the platform and propose collaborations; influencers also register and make themselves available for paid collaborations. Once a connection is established between the two parties, the platform usually acts as an intermediary and facilitates the communication between them.

The advantages of using such a platform are multiple. First of all, you won’t have to spend hours looking for an influencer since these platforms are full of them. Moreover, each profile comes with a detailed description sheet containing all the information you need to make your selection easier.

Then, like any good marketing platform, you will have access to various services whose objective is to simplify the whole collaboration process. These include the ability to manage payments, contracts, campaign performance and provide detailed statistics on the results obtained.

Finally, here are some examples of the most popular affiliate marketing platforms:

  • Grin is a very comprehensive platform that allows you to manage influencer marketing campaigns on several social networks such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitch, Twitter, and YouTube. It offers a choice of more than 100 million influencers and allows you to manage micro-influencers as well as others with a large number of followers, without commissions or hidden fees.
  • Upfluence finds influencers who are already interested in your products or services by evaluating organic content on social networks in addition to its database of over 3 million influencers. It provides reports and analytics to help brands effectively manage their influencer efforts and monitor their return on investment (ROI).
  • AspireIQ is another comprehensive influencer marketing platform that makes it easy to find influencers and allows direct payments through the platform. It aims to create a community around your brand, including employees, influencers, and fans, and also allows the organization of events and the collection of customer reviews.
  • HypeAuditor is a complete solution for influencer marketing focused on fraud detection based on tens of behaviors and offers tools for influencer discovery, account analysis, campaign management and market research. In addition, it has a database of nearly 25 million influencers across all continents.
  • CreatorIQ is cloud-based and focuses on analytics to eliminate influencer marketing issues, content quality for influencer discovery, and enables payment, collaboration, and CRM integration with a multitude of platforms, such as YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Twitch, Pinterest, and blogs.

7Other forms of digital marketing

So, we have seen the main points to know about the most common and interesting digital marketing methods. However, there are still other methods that I can’t develop here but that are still worth knowing. More than methods, some are just specific techniques used in some of the methods I’ve already mentioned or sometimes just concepts.

aVideo marketing

Videos are particularly effective in digital marketing, first of all because they allow you to transmit information in a visual and auditory way, which makes the message you want to convey more easily understandable, and above all, it stays in your memory much longer. In addition, videos tend to generate more engagement and emotion than text or static image formats and achieve a much higher share rate on social networks, which helps to increase the reach of your communication.

You can use them in many forms such as advertisements, tutorials, product demonstration videos, explanatory videos, testimonials, etc. Use this tool as much as possible and not only on social networks (YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, or Twitter) but also on your website.

bMobile marketing

Mobile marketing is basically reaching consumers on mobile devices such as smartphones or tablets. This can be done via advertising specifically optimized for these devices, text messages, mobile applications, push notifications, etc.

It is crucial to use mobile strategy today as consumers are spending more and more time on their mobile devices (over 60% by 2023) and often use their smartphones as their primary online search, browsing, and purchasing tool. Whatever marketing method you use, be sure to take this factor into account and check the adaptability of your communication visuals (images and videos especially) on smartphones and tablets.

cViral marketing

As the name suggests, viral marketing is a technique that aims to create content or a campaign that spreads quickly and exponentially thanks to users’ sharing on social networks, blogs, emails, etc. Viral content is often humorous, provocative, or emotionally charged, which makes people more likely to share it with their friends and family. The goal here is to increase brand awareness, build customer loyalty, and attract new customers by using the power of social networks and online communication.

Creating viral content is a difficult process to master, as audience reactions are usually quite unpredictable. However, there are certain elements, which when combined, can trigger some virality on a content. Some examples:

  • Finding an original, unusual, or out of the ordinary angle.
  • Create content that is entertaining, educational or useful.
  • Generate intense emotions such as surprise, excitement, joy or even anger.
  • Use popular content formats such as videos, and to a lesser extent images and infographics.
  • Use social networks to spread the content.

But the main thing, again, is to know and understand your target audience in order to create content that speaks to them in an authentic and relevant way. And when in doubt, try to aim wide and not to shock too many people because even if a good “shitstorm” can make the number of views of a content explode, bad buzz is never good for business.

dLanding page

Landing page marketing consists of creating web pages for specific advertising campaigns and are designed to be simple, clear and convincing, in order to encourage visitors to perform a specific action, such as filling out a form, buying a product or subscribing to a newsletter. This technique maximizes the conversion rate and optimizes the return on investment of advertising campaigns.

e Display ads

Display ads are graphic banner ads that appear on websites or mobile applications. They are often placed on the side, top or bottom of the page. Display ads can be static or animated, and include text, images, videos and calls to action. Google and Bing specialize in this type of advertising, but they are not the only ones. Other advertising companies such as Outbrain, Taboola, etc. do this very well too.

f“Native” ads

Native ads are ads that are integrated into the editorial content of the website or application. They are designed to look like natural content and be less intrusive than display ads. Native ads can take the form of a sponsored article, a product recommendation, or any other sponsored content.

How to choose the best digital marketing strategy for your business?

Now that you know about all these marketing methods, you will have to choose which one(s) are the most suitable for you. This choice will depend on many factors such as your budget, your target audience, your business objectives, and your industry. Here are the main elements that will help you choose the best marketing strategy:

  • Determine your business goals: Before you start thinking about digital marketing strategies, you need to know exactly what you want to achieve. Do you want to increase your sales, your visibility, your brand awareness?…
  • Know your target audience: You have now understood that this is a key element in any strategy to promote a company, a brand, a product, or a service. That’s why I took the time to explain it to you at the beginning of this article.
  • Evaluate your budget: The cost of certain digital marketing strategies can sometimes vary considerably. For example, advertising on Google Ads can cost much more than advertising on social networks. So, first of all, try to determine how much you are willing to spend on each advertising campaign or marketing strategy.
  • Evaluate previous results: If you have already carried out digital marketing campaigns, evaluate the results obtained. Identify which campaigns were the most effective and which were a failure. This type of analysis will help you make the right choice.
  • Spy on the competition: It is often useful to know what your competitors are doing in terms of digital marketing. What marketing channels are they using and what are their results? There are tools to help you do this as we’ll see below.

Why is it essential to have a professional website?

The simple answer to this question is because it is the foundation of all your online marketing activities. Your website is your online “showcase” where potential customers will be directed most of the time. They will then be able to find out all the information about your company, products, services, etc., but that is not its only purpose.

Because a website (preferably well designed and optimized) can also generate organic traffic from search engines (SEO), increase the conversion rate by displaying content that encourages your visitors to take action, collect various information (behavior, demographics, etc.) through Google Analytics and other tools, facilitate communication between you and your customers, give a positive impression of your brand, your products, or your services…

In short, having a professional website is an essential component of your digital marketing strategy as it serves as a focal point for all your online marketing activities and can help establish your company’s credibility and visibility.

If you don’t have a website and don’t have any knowledge in the field of website creation, there are broadly two options available to you. Either you create it yourself using a “website builder” or you ask someone to do it for you.

  • Website builder: There are all sorts of platforms and tools that make it fairly easy to create your own professional website. No need to write a single line of code here since all the work is done via a visual interface where you will have to drag and drop the various elements of each page one after the other, customize them, and insert any texts and images. Wix, Squarespace and Weebly are some examples among others.

    In the same genre, but perhaps a little more technical, there are also CMS (content management systems), the most famous of which is WordPress. Almost a third of all websites published on the Internet have been built with WordPress, and the reason is simple: It is free. If you are interested, I have written an article that should tell you more about it. Also note that I’ve written another more general article on website creation, right here.

  • Fiverr and UpWork: In case you want to hire a professional to create your website but you don’t know anyone around you who can do it, freelance platforms are a solution to consider. You will find all kinds of services, including website creation, offered by qualified professionals, and most of the time for a very reasonable amount. If you are in a hurry and a bit limited in budget, you should find there a solution adapted to your needs.

Tips for successful digital marketing campaigns

We’re nearing the end of this article, but before we leave, I wanted to review the various elements that will help you achieve your goals. Sorry if I’m repeating myself a bit here, but the following points are crucial to the success of any form of digital marketing.

  • Stay in touch with your audience: Use the right tools to track trends and behaviors of your audience, so you can adjust your marketing strategy accordingly. This will also help you identify potential opportunities for your business and respond quickly to new needs of your target audience.
  • Be creative: Digital marketing is an extremely competitive world, so to stand out, you need to be both responsive and innovative. Following influencers’ and brands’ accounts on social networks is a great way to find inspiration and develop your creativity on this specific topic.
  • Be patient: It can take time to see significant results, so be patient and persistent. And if nothing really happens, find out what the problem is and find a solution to fix it.
  • Analyze the data: Use analytics tools to track the performance of your digital marketing campaigns to improve them over time. This is a crucial element that will allow you to identify and understand what works and what doesn’t.
  • Stay up to date: Digital marketing trends and technologies are constantly evolving and sometimes rapidly. So make sure you stay up to date with the latest practices and tools. And the best way to do this is to regularly read blog posts dedicated to Digital Marketing and subscribe to marketers’ accounts on social networks (Twitter, YouTube and FB).

Online tools

Now let’s see what online tools you can use. I have already presented some of them in the article, but you will discover others as well. Note that some of these tools are free, and that those that are paid also sometimes offer a “freemium” version (free access but where some features are restricted) or a trial version.

  • Google Analytics: This is the essential analysis tool that I strongly advise you to install on your website/blog/online store. This will give you access to all kinds of data (demographic, behavioral, geographic, etc.) that will allow you to better understand the behavior of your visitors on your site.
  • Google Search Console: Another free tool from Google that allows you to track your website’s performance in Google search results. You can find information about impressions, clicks, click-through rate and search positions of your website.
  • SEMrush, MOZ et Ahref: These are platforms entirely dedicated to SEO. They propose in particular the research of relevant keywords, the analysis of the competition, monitoring of backlinks and social networks, etc.
  • Fiverr / : These are microservices platforms where you can find help at a very reasonable price to perform all kinds of tasks related to digital marketing but also other areas such as writing texts, editing images, creating videos, etc.
  • Hootsuite et Buffer: All the tools you need to manage your social networks and content planning. Plus, you’ll be able to manage all your social accounts in one place, which will save you time.
  • GetResponse, Sendinblue et MailChimp: For managing email marketing and sending newsletters. You can collect email addresses, create campaigns, manage your contacts, send your newsletters…
  • Canva: For creating images, illustrations, graphics but also videos for your social media and website content. Canva is easy to use and will allow you to create all your visuals very quickly. Moreover, it is free.
  • Hotjar: A powerful tool to track and analyze user behavior on your website.
  • Google Ads, Bing Ads, Facebook Ads Manager, Outbrain, Taboola: To create and publish your online ads.
  • Leadpages et Unbounce: to create landing pages.
  • , Clickfunnels, systeme.io, Groovefunnels: to create funnels easily and quickly.

Of course, there are many other very efficient tools to assist you during all the creation process related to digital marketing, but this list is already a very good starting point. And don’t hesitate to do a Google search if you’re looking for other specific tools or if any of the ones listed here don’t suit you.

Glossary

Here I propose you to see the definitions of some terms used in this article:

  • B2B: This is an acronym meaning “business to business”, which refers to services exclusively designed for businesses. Conversely, B2C is for individual customers.
  • Backlink: In SEO, a backlink is a hyperlink that points to a page on another website, which is considered by Google and other search engines as an indicator of a website’s credibility and authority. My article on SEO talks about it more extensively.
  • Domain name: The domain name is the address of a website, the one that is displayed in the address bar of your browser. It consists of the name chosen by the owner of the website, followed by an extension (.com, .be, .org…). The domain name of Sweekr, for example, is sweekr.com.
  • Prospect: A prospect is a potential customer, an individual or even a company that shows interest in the products or services offered by a company but has not yet made a purchase.
  • Solopreneur: This is a neologism designating a person who manages all aspects of his or her company or business alone, without employees or partners.
  • Conversion rate: It is the percentage of visitors of a website or an online store who perform a desired action. This can be the purchase of a product, the subscription to a newsletter or the submission of a form.

Conclusion

Here we are at the end of this long article for beginner entrepreneurs who want to learn the basics of digital marketing. I’ve tried to bring you all the important information you need to start your own marketing campaigns, and I hope I’ve achieved that goal.

I’ll probably add more in the coming months because the world of marketing is extremely vast, and I’ve only touched on a small part of it here. But if you think I’ve missed something important, please let me know in the comments.

So, to summarize, we have seen that digital marketing is essential for companies or solopreneurs who want to promote themselves, develop their activity and reach their commercial objectives online. This requires the implementation of a well thought-out and optimized digital marketing strategy, such as the development of advertising campaigns, the use of social networks, the optimization of content for search engines and the measurement of the results obtained.

Digital marketing is a highly competitive and ever-changing field. Whatever strategy you want to adopt and whatever goal you have set for yourself, it is essential to go through a learning phase during which you will first have to discover what tools and methods are available and how to use them (that’s the purpose of this article). Then, get into the swing of things, learn the best practices, and above all, stay informed of the latest trends.

Your first steps may be a little laborious, but through trial and error, learning, optimization and tenacity, you should get the positive results you’ve been waiting for. But if you start to accumulate failures, end up spending more money than you make, or have trouble mastering a particular aspect of digital marketing, remember that you can always find answers to your questions on Google and YouTube, or professional and affordable help on microservices platforms like Fiverr or UpWork.

This article could be completed or improved with your help. Feel free to leave a comment below if you have any question, a relevant remark, a feedback, additional information or spotted any error.Go to comments

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