This week I’d like to talk a little about online marketing software specifically, what it is, what it does and do you need it
What is Internet Marketing Software?
Online or internet marketing software is a great option for boosting your business and its internet presence by helping you direct more business to your website; providing you with more leads which you can concentrate on turning into revenue.
This type of software helps to automate all of the components of internet marketing and provide reports, statistics, and predictions for future growth all in one place. Doing business over the internet has come to such a head that this type of software has now become a necessity where once, it was a convenience.
Good online marketing software will communicate the value of your brand using the internet to send promotional marketing messages as well as include options such as, inbound marketing, email marketing, social media, CRM, and lead scoring, to name a few.
Inbound marketing includes promoting your brand through blogging, vlogging (video blogging), e-newsletters, podcasts, and other forms of content marketing (Again with the content! Hopefully you’re seeing a trend here!). It is all aimed at engaging your customer, drawing them in, and building a perceived relationship.
Inbound marketing done right should be earning your customer’s attention whereas, conversely, things like mailers, TV and radio ads, flyers, and spam do not do anything to build a relationship with your target consumers and are passive.
The key to long lasting business relationships on the internet is all about producing interest, creating a relationship, and building on that relationship to maintain great customer loyalty.
Email marketing is an efficient way to send a commercial message to a large group of people using email. It can be very effective if done correctly and online marketing software can help your business coordinate and send mailings. By storing customer contact information as well as allowing you to send one message to everyone on your list at a keystroke, email marketing software is a one stop service for all of your email needs.
This type of marketing allows your customer base to keep up to date with events or new content going on in your business or with your blog. It also allows your followers the opportunity to directly click to your blog or web page if you have provided pertinent links in the mailings.
Unfortunately, if it is done incorrectly, it can lead to followers terminating your relationship because you’ve flooded their inbox with spam or too many updates. Email marketing walks a fine line between being informative or intrusive; something to remember if you decide to mount an email marketing campaign.
Have we exhausted the social media angle yet? It really can’t be stressed enough how important social media is in this day and age to the growth and success of your brand.
Internet marketing software can help with social media branding by suggesting relevant content based on statistics, give reports on how your own content is doing on your social media outlets, what’s trending, and help to bring all of your various social media outlets into one central place.
Social media has really become a way for your brand to reach massive amounts of people in one go and all for little to no cost, so it should never be over looked when choosing internet marketing software or drawing up a marketing plan.
CRM or Customer Relation Management
Customer relation management or CRM is defined as a system for managing a company’s interactions with current and future customers but, what does that mean?
CRM software is an extremely useful tool for online businesses. It maintains your customer database by storing information such as, customer contact information, products which the customer has purchased in the past, ones they currently own and even products they’ve expressed interest in via shopping carts, wish lists or shopping habits.
All of this information can be used by a business to follow up on prospective sales and maintain customer service if a customer should call with a complaint. The stored information can also be shared across other departments to influence product development and marketing strategies.
Lead scoring works on a point system where each point is assigned a predetermined value. The values are based on certain criteria which the business is looking for their prospective customers to meet. Criteria such as their website visits, customer contact information through form completions, job title, content downloads etc.
Lead scoring software tracks these criteria and assigns a point for each marker hit. The points add up over time and the sum total of the values make up the lead score.
Lead scores can help a business decide which customer leads to actively pursue and which to discard. This allows for shortened conversion times and helps to narrow down which customer relationships to nurture to effectively increase sales.
A Word about Scams
Now that we’ve delved a bit into how online marketing software works to help grow your business, I’d like to quickly mention that there are a lot of opportunities for scam artists in this market.
Google, in particular, has zero tolerance for content mills, spamming, and other means of generating page clicks and the like. Falling victim to one of these scam software companies could likely land your business on the wrong side of a search engine so vital to the success of your business.
Be sure to do through research on any companies or software you are considering using and keep in mind that marketing takes work and human involvement.
Please remember, online marketing software is a tool to help YOU grow your business, it does not build it for you.