When designing an online marketing strategy, a business is looking to reach people and turn them into customers should be the key point. Since, online marketing is a complex undertaking with a lot of different variables that have to be reviewed and analyzed. Underneath all the social media postings and viral videos, however, online marketing is chiefly about relationship building.
The modern consumer is seeking authenticity from the companies they do business with and have a distaste for companies that come across as dishonest.
This creates an environment where online marketing shares traits with another aspect of online communication, online dating. While on the surface these two things couldn’t be further apart a lot of the tips for dating can be used for marketing.
Remember both are focused on communication and building relationships. Of course, the type of relationship each seeks to build is different, but a lot of the same rules still apply.
What Online Marketing Can Learn From Online Dating
- Appearances Matter: while looks aren’t everything, but the first impression is critical. In marketing, looks matter. When a potential customer visits a company’s social media site, they judge the company based on their user experience. If it is disorganized, has broken links, and generic stock photography they will have a bad first impression.
In their mind, if a company can’t be bothered with the effort to post on social media what makes them worth doing business with? A company that conducts themselves well online and has memorable postings will start the business relationship off in the right direction.
- Build Trust: in the modern business marketplace trust must be built. For a company to build trust between themselves and customers, they must be direct and honest with the content they create. There are several ways to do this. When writing marketing material, it should be useful to readers instead of just trying to make a sale.
Respond to customers directly on social media platforms. A company should also share information about their vision and the people who work there. This humanizes a company building consumer trust.
- Focus On Compatibility: much like dating, business relationships have compatibility therefore, a company should focus its marketing on customers that are likely to do business with them or have a need for their product that’s called finding love. Additionally, there are simply some customers who a company will never reach.
So, money and time are better spent on customers who are interested in a product or services instead of those who are unlikely to purchase them. Every company should have a profile of their customer base, methods for reaching them and focus their efforts in this direction.
- Stand Out From Everyone Else: the modern digital marketplace is highly competitive and standing out from the competition is hard. As with online dating standing out can be a matter of being unique. Many companies do very little to differentiate themselves, and many imitate ideas from larger more successful competitors.
To stand out marketing has to be creative and capture people’s attention. Use of imagery and video leaves a lasting impression on customers as does a company willing to do its own thing or show a bit of humor.
- Winning People Over: turning a visitor into a customer can take effort. Many potential customers research several different companies before making a purchase. All relationships take effort, and a business has to show potential customers why they’re better than all their competitors and what they can do for them.
Different customers want different things, so communication is essential for a business to position themselves to a customer correctly.
- Show Don’t Tell: is a common statement in business, dating, and life in general. A person who owns skis but never goes to the slopes doesn’t get to claim that they’re a skier. For a business, they need to show the quality they offer and not just proclaim it. If customer service is one of their selling points, a collection of positive customer feedbacks and reviews should be easily accessible.
- Make Changes As Needed: a digital marketing plan may need to undergo several reasons to maximize its effectiveness. For example, while a dating profile may be well written, it can still lack that focus on a person’s most defining characteristics.
This lack of focus reduces the profile’s effectiveness. An online marketing campaign could be focused on the wrong thing, not using the right channels for communication, or communicating a good idea badly. Don’t be afraid to make updates to draw in more interested viewers.
- These Things Take Time: lastly, remember building a customer base can take time. Many customers won’t make a purchase or reach out for contact the first time they interact with a business. In fact, it may take multiple visits before they even send an email or make a phone call.
All a business can do is be patient and continue to show the quality and solutions they offer. Over time, an interested customer will have enough trust in the value a company offers to make a purchase.