It seems that each year, a new way to communicate in the digital world becomes available. We’ve looked at all the different social media platforms and discussed how to find the right platform for your business. But digital communication goes beyond social media and looks at the content you create for your website and eNewsletter as well.
Most business owners that we talk to understand the value, but they simply don’t have the time to maintain a consistent digital communication strategy. So today we are going to look at its importance, and offer a solution for those who have trouble finding the time to communicate in the digital world.
Why Should You Communicate?
We start with the “why” because if you don’t connect with the reason or purpose behind a recommendation, you’re unlikely to engage in the practice – and we believe communication is one of your most important practices. Communication is ultimately what connects you to leads and what keeps you connected to current clients. As you begin to communicate, it’s important to recognize how that shifts consumers’ decision-making processes.
In 2018, Bazaarvoice published a report entitled “The ROBO Economy” (Research Online, Buy Offline) stating that “82% of smartphone users consult their phones on purchases they are about to make in-store and 45% read reviews before making a purchase.”*
Two of the most important platforms for your communication, as we’ll see later, are your website and social media. In your efforts to stay in front of potential leads, these platforms must not be overlooked or undervalued.
The two most important words in your business communication dictionary should be retention and referral. Your clients are your most valuable assets in both sustaining and growing your business, and you want to stay on their mind as much as possible. Here are 4 reasons effective communication matters:
- Adds value to the service you provide
- Creates resources for the client
- Establishes you as an authority within your industry
- Has immeasurable value for your online presence (think SEO)
How Should You Communicate?
Now that we’ve briefly touched on the “why,” the next question is “how” – if you’re ready to get started, where do you begin? This step actually poses another question – “who.” Before you can begin communicating, you first have to know who you are as a company; otherwise your message will fail to make an impact. So, the how starts with the who. Take some time to evaluate your current messaging – what is your vision or mission statement? What are your competitive advantages (what makes you unique)? Who is your target market and ideal client?
If you feel confident in your understanding of who your clients are, the how will be a lot easier. Two important aspects of digital communication are:
- Remain true to your company’s vision and purpose
- Be consistent (in your message and in your frequency)
As with most efforts in the life of your business, those that you plan are the most likely to succeed, and communication is no different.
Earlier we mentioned that two of the best ways to gain retention through communication is to be true to your brand and to be consistent. Remaining true to your company’s vision, purpose, and brand is vital in your communication. It allows the market to become familiar with who you are, which allows them to better understand how you can fit into their life and how you can fit into the lives of their friends or colleagues (think referrals). You should also be consistent. Your impact will be diluted if you continually start and stop – commit to your strategy, set a schedule, and don’t sway from it. One of the most important aspects of client retention is consistency – in your customer service, in the value of your product, and in your communication.
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When Should You Communicate?
The simple answer is as much as possible. We just explained the value of being consistent, and we can’t emphasize that enough. You should place your company in front of your market every chance you get, but only if you can provide a superior message – think quality and quantity, not one or the other. You should work to find a balance that is effective for your business, where you provide a quality message as often as possible. This can seem daunting, but creating and maintaining a strategy will help keep you on track.
Where Should You Communicate?
Now that we’ve determined why communication is important and how and when it should be done, the final item, and likely the one you are most interested in, is where you should communicate. Here are a few digital platforms to get you started:
According to Google, content is king, which means having fresh content on your blog pays huge dividends for your website ranking. Writing monthly articles also helps to create online resources and establish you as an authority to those who are visiting your website. But, take a step back, and also evaluate your overall website – is it conveying your message? Is it accurately representing your brand and properly communicating to your target market?
When preparing to enter the world of social media, it’s important to determine the right platform for your company. Though Facebook is a great fit for most businesses, there are outliers that are more effective for key industries, such as Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Houzz, Instagram, and more.
Once a month, it’s important to gather your thoughts together and be a bit more formal in your communication strategy by sending out an eNewsletter. This allows you to discuss a variety of topics, such as a new resource or product, an informative article, or even company news. It also provides something in email format that can be easily shared with others.
No Time? Try M&R’s Marketing Management Services
We’ve made quite a few recommendations here, and it’s not always easy to find the time to work on your marketing, especially if you’re the main person tasked with working in your business. However, digital communication is a foundational component of your company’s growth strategy.
If you’re ready to establish a communication strategy but can’t find the time in your schedule to create or maintain it, we would love to help you out.
Our on-staff copywriters specialize in developing communication strategies for clients and maintaining an active schedule on social media platforms, eNewsletters, blog articles, and more on their behalf through ghost writing. Our marketing management services ensure someone is consistently and accurately communicating your brand to your target market.
If you would like assistance in your communication strategy, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.