What is Internet Marketing?
Simply put, Internet Marketing, also known as Online Marketing, or Digital Marketing as it is most commonly referred to, is the use of online marketing tools for product sales and services. Getting its start in 1990, companies have embraced the tools of Internet marketing for establishing their brand, selling products and delivering services online.
Google processes over 3.5 Billion Searches Per Day.
Source: Internetlivestats, 2019
The Internet Marketing tools used to drive website traffic and gain qualified leads frequently include:
- A Company Website
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- *Content Marketing
- Social Media Marketing (use of platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and LinkedIn)
- Email Marketing (also known as a DRIP Campaign)
- Video Marketing (Facebook Videos, YouTube and website videos)
- ORM (Online Reputation Management)
- Paid Search/Contextual Advertising (Google Ads, Facebook Ads, YouTube Ads, etc.)
*This is also known as targeted advertising or keyword-targeted ads.
A Word About Content Marketing…
Content Marketing is a critical element of any Internet Marketing. While predominantly text content, visual-audio content such as images, video and webinars also play important roles. They key to good content is finding content that not only is readable BUT inspires sharing. Great content not only catches attention of users but frequently is a determining factor in SEO leading to higher Google search rankings. Content Marketing should be created with both a goal AND user in mind including qualified lead generation, brand enhancement, web traffic generation and sales promotion. Simply put, good content marketing drives an audience to a Call to Action (CTA).
A few examples of Content Marketing are:
- Case Studies
- Explainer Videos
How long does Internet Marketing take to see results?
For most businesses it takes between six months to one year for an Internet Marketing Program to show results. At The Mauldin Group, we have been very successful in decreasing these result times with a proprietary SEO process. Some of our clients have seen results in as little as one month, increasing qualified leads dramatically.
The key for any good Internet Marketing program is being dedicated to allowing the process to grow and take hold. In addition, having a reasonable-adequate budget. Often, clients will want to “hold back and see how it goes.” Viewing your budget as a legitimate investment and trusting your expert marketing team can greatly increase your positive results.
How do I know what types of Internet Marketing is right for my company?
The types of Internet Marketing that are best for your business can vary greatly from what is best for others. Essentially a well-performing digital marketing campaign should be customized to you and your business based on several factors.
- Your Company
- Your Services
- Your Industry
- Your Customers or Clients
- Your Budget
- Your Goals
- Your Timeline
The key to establishing the best performing types of Internet Marketing for a business requires research of the industry, competitors, and customers. Many small to medium businesses will attempt to “try out” different business marketing strategies on their own, almost like throwing things against the wall to see if they stick. This marketing practice typically can lead to a waste of valuable funds and time, as well as frustration at the lack of results.
Having an experienced online business marketing strategy team to perform a competitive analysis and assess the right marketing tools to use for your business’s unique needs will save time, money and deliver greater results. One note to this however is that simply put, the one Internet Marketing tool EVERY business SHOULD have is a company website with good SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
How do I know my Internet Marketing plan is working?
While it can take time (six months to one year) to experience dramatic results from an Internet Marketing plan, there are several ways to measure its progress. There are a few questions to ask yourself about your Internet Marketing that can help you gauge its performance.
- Am I seeing an increase in QUALIFIED leads?
- Am I receiving more calls at my business?
- Has my website experienced an increase in visitors?
- Are more people signing up for my newsletter?
- Am I gaining more followers on my company’s social media pages?
- Am I getting more LinkedIn Connect requests?
- Are my social posts receiving more likes and/or comments?
- Am I closing more sales?
- Is my company gaining positive reviews?
A YES to any of these questions can mean your Internet Marketing Plan is working. However, the best way to measure performance is to receive a monthly marketing report.
A monthly Internet Marketing Report pulling from Google Analytics, an ORM platform and your social media marketing sources will provide you with a good snapshot of how your digital marketing efforts are paying off.
How do I choose the right Internet Marketing Agency?
Choosing an Internet Marketing Agency is an important decision. Marketing fees alone should not be your deciding factor. When seeking a marketing agency for your business to business digital marketing or business to consumer marketing, it is important to weigh several factors.
- Do they have a “One Stop Shop” or “Full-Service” offering or will you be forced to retain several different agencies for your overall digital marketing?
- Do they offer exclusivity for my area?
- What is their success record?
- How much training and experience does their team have?
- Do they offer digital marketing packages, or do they charge more “ala carte” pricing for each item?
- What do their clients say-does their website have testimonials available?
- What do their Online Reviews look like?
- Have they worked with others in your industry?
- Are they active in their community chamber of commerce and business organizations?
- Do they sponsor or volunteer with any charities?
- Do they offer monthly reporting of program performance?
- How much experience do they have marketing to your particular targeted market- B2B, B2C or both?
- What does their online presence look like-are they active on social media?
- Do they have a LinkedIn Company Page?
- Do they offer “out of the box” or future-focused, dynamic service offerings?
- Do they offer a customized program or is theirs a cookie-cutter marketing plan?
- Are they being honest with you or just telling you what you want to hear?
- Do they offer you a realistic vision of what your digital marketing can deliver OR are they promising the “moon and stars”?
- Do they provide a logical timeline for results?
- *Last, and MOST IMPORTANT, what does their own website look like?
You want to make sure that the Internet Marketing agency you choose will listen and address not just your present needs but your future business goals.
On the first page of a Google search result, the first five organic results account for 67% of all clicks. Source: Zero Limit Web, 2019
How much does Internet Marketing cost?
Typically, a good digital marketing or online marketing program will run between $2,000 to $10,000 a month. Most often this will include some form of Paid Search Ad Management and the Ad Spend itself.
Before deciding on Internet Marketing expenditure, you should ask yourself some crucial questions?
- Is my budget realistic for my marketing goals?
- Can I afford a monthly marketing program?
- Am I at a point where not having digital marketing is costing me profitability?
- Can I recognize this as a legitimate business investment?
- Am I willing to hand the reigns over AND trust my marketing to the experts?
How do I get started with Internet Marketing?
The very first step any business should take towards an Internet Marketing plan is to have a solid Corporate Identity established. This is the cornerstone of your company and SHOULD guide all elements of your marketing, both digital and any print collateral. Having an established brand style will guide your marketing experts on everything from your brand’s messaging to its visual-graphic appearance.
Next, is a website with SEO (search engine optimization). EVERY BUSINESS in operation today should have a website! Every target market, no matter age, industry, gender…is driven by some sort of device-technology.
Realistically to assure success, marketing should be guided by a knowledgeable Internet Marketing agency. They are the ones that will look at your business, industry, competition, target market and goals to create a digital marketing plan that meets your needs.
Why The Mauldin Group For Internet Marketing?
At The Mauldin Group we strive to deliver concrete, measurable Internet Marketing results. We feel it is important to meet with every potential client on a Discovery Call or meeting. We not only want you to feel comfortable that our services can meet your unique needs and budget but, that we can realistically help you meet the marketing goals your business is aiming for.
You will not find a cookie cutter marketing approach with us. Each of our clients are unique. Their businesses all have very different marketing needs and goals.
Our approach is customized to deliver results that make your brand instantly recognizable, increase your qualified leads, and improve profitability. We do our homework and scout out your competitors, your industry, and target market to see the best digital marketing services for your company.
Finally, we offer an honest view of what your Internet Marketing expectations should be, what your future growth can look like and how we can get your there. We take your business “from the Bottom to the Top!”
How much should I spend on marketing?
The general rules of thumb for calculating your company’s ideal marketing budget is as follows: 5% of Gross Revenue to maintain current awareness and visibility, or 10% of Gross Revenue to grow and gain market share.