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6 Fundamentals For Online Marketing Success

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6 Fundamentals For Online Marketing Success

We have gotten incredibly used to- even addicted to, in some cases- buying stuff online. I mean, who bothers to call up fast food joints when you can simply use their website to place your order? It took some time for people to get used to this though, and there are still more than a few people who don’t feel safe paying for anything in the online environment. But as time passes, this number is going down significantly.

Hence, conditions for online sales are optimal and everyone is attempting to make a profit. What the majority of people do not realize is that eCommerce isn’t easy. Quite the contrary, the fact that the conditions for online sales are so good can make it difficult to get spotted in the crowd.

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The vast majority of websites out there are attempting to sell something to the people that land on their pages, whether directly, through an affiliate, or banners. Regardless, the prevalence of these kinds of techniques leaves customers reluctant to pay attention, making marketing an integral component of achieving eCommerce success.

1. Keep in mind that you are marketing to people

A lot of people who are new to online marketing might be confused by this first point- but it’s no joke. After a couple of years of active participation in online marketing endeavors without seeing a single face, you may start to grow detached from reality. People start perceiving their traffic as just stats that need to be improved through taking mechanical, predefined steps. This is a hole you need to get out of since no real eCommerce business success story ever came from disregarding the wishes of the audience. In an era where the strongest online empires, like Google, are doing their best to cater to the needs of users, doing the opposite makes absolutely no sense. This is especially important for eCommerce marketing since the only way you can sell anything effectively online is to truly engage your customers.

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2. Content is a necessity- regardless of what you sell

The phrase “content is king” has been dragged around the web for so long that it has started to losing its impact. This doesn’t make content’s crown shine any less, though. Its role in the online marketing environment has become crucial for businesses of all profiles and sizes. So many good things come from great content if you know how to use it. Here are some of the benefits that great content can provide:

  • SEO visibility
  • Enhanced customer engagement
  • Social media signals
  • Enhanced traffic
  • Referral links

Wondering if you have produced great content? Once you have your final version of the content in front of you, ask yourself if you would read it- or even better, put yourself in your target audiences’ shoes, and ask the same question. If the answer is no, you are still not there yet. Don’t allow yourself to start coming up with excuses for your content’s shortcomings.

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3. Social media presence needs to be more than just a bot

If you want a prime example of this go to Twitter and start adding people who are promoting a commercial interest and have somewhere between 500 and 5,000 followers. The only interaction you will manage to get from them is a bot response: an automated message with a call-to-action twist or a simple introduction message. Since everyone is using this approach the whole interaction boils down to bots communicating with each other, ultimately benefiting no one.

4. Proper targeting is essential for conversion

Regardless of what combination of online advertising approaches you decide to use, in order to be able to sell anything online you have to find the people who have the biggest chance of being interested in what you have to offer. By doing some market research you can easily optimize your marketing budget and increase your sales. It is a good idea to see what others are doing to reach their customers and optimize their targeting, in order to implement the approaches that fit your needs best. Don’t get set in your ways once you’ve done your first round of market research. Test things all the time and continue honing your scope. This is a process that includes continuous testing; it’s not just a matter of applying a mathematical formula.

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5. Pay-per-click is not enough

A lot of people start out their journey into eCommerce by hypothesizing that they can invest in a decent website and boost it through pay-per-click (PPC), in the process earning a profit. Sadly, this almost never works and they subsequently realize that they need to modify their approach or sink completely. The problem is that as an approach PPC doesn’t give you optimal conversion rates on it’s own. To succeed you need natural traffic, people that are really searching for a solution to a problem that you are able to help them address.

6. Product photos sell

Shabby, amateur product photography is OK for selling used products, clothing, and other stuff on eBay or Amazon, but if you want to foster a legit, strong eCommerce presence, you really need to use professional product photography. As a form of content, good photography has a lot of engagement potential and is in second place, right behind video content, when it comes to social media shareability. Furthermore, when deciding to buy a product online the photos mean the world to the customer. He or she don’t get to hold the product in their hands; charts, specifications, and text descriptions are great, but without photos they don’t have enough information to make a final decision. The pricier the product, the better the photos need to be.

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Making yourself visible is a top priority when trying to achieve eCommerce success. But you don’t want to just be another person in the crowd. Taking a step further and actually engaging your customers, instead of hoping that they will randomly decide to click on your advertisement is the difference in attitude you need in order to achieve success.

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Ivan Dimitrijevic

Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

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Last Updated on August 25, 2021

Why Personal Branding Is Important to Your Career

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Why Personal Branding Is Important to Your Career

As a recruiter, I have met and interviewed hundreds of candidates who have no idea who they are.

Without a personal brand, candidates struggle to answer the question: “tell me about yourself—who are you?” They have no idea about who they are, what their strengths are, and how they can add value to the company. They present their CV’s believing that their CV is the key to their career success. In some ways, your CV still has its use. However, in today’s job market, you need more than a CV to stand out in a crowd.

According to Celinne Da Costa:[1]

“Personal brand is essentially your golden ticket to networking with the right people, getting hired for a dream job, or building an influential business.” She believes that “a strong personal brand allows you to stand out in an oversaturated marketplace by exposing desired audiences to your vision, skillset, and personality in a way that is strategically aligned with your career goals.”

A personal brand opens up your world to so many more career opportunities that you would never have been exposed to with just your CV.

What Is Your Personal Brand?

“Personal branding is how you distinctively market your uniqueness.” —Bernard Kelvin Clive

Today, the job market is very competitive and tough. Having a great CV will only let you go so far because everyone has a CV, but no one else has your distinct personal brand! It is your personal brand that differentiates you from everyone else and that is what people buy—you.

Your personal brand is your mark on the world. It is how people you interact with and the world see you. It is your legacy—it is more important than a business brand because your personal brand lasts forever.

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I have coached people who have very successful careers, and they come to me because they have suddenly found that they are not getting the opportunities or having the conversations that would them to their next role. They are having what I call a “career meltdown,” all because they have no personal brand.

A personal brand helps you become conscious of your differences and your uniqueness. It allows you to position yourself in a way that makes you stand out from the pack, especially among other potential job applicants.

Don’t get me wrong, having a great CV and a great LinkedIn profile is important. However, there are a few steps that you have to take to have a CV and LinkedIn profile that is aligned to who you are, the value you offer to the market, and the personal guarantee that you deliver results.

Building your personal brand is about strategically, creatively, and professionally presenting what makes you, you. Knowing who you are and the value you bring to the table enables you to be more informed, agile, and adaptable to the changing dynamic world of work. This is how you can avoid having a series of career meltdowns.

Your Personal Brand Is Essential for Your Career Success

In her article, Why Personal Branding Is More Important Than Ever, Caroline Castrillon outlines key reasons why a personal brand is essential for career success.

According to Castrillon,[2]

“One reason is that it is more popular for recruiters to use social media during the interview process. According to a 2018 CareerBuilder survey, 70% of employers use social media to screen candidates during the hiring process, and 43% of employers use social media to check on current employees.”

The first thing I do as a recruiter when I want to check out a candidate or coaching client is to look them up on LinkedIn or other social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Your digital footprint is the window that highlights to the world who you are. When you have no control over how you want to be seen, you are making a big mistake because you are leaving it up to someone else to make a judgment for you as to who you are.

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As Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, once said, “Your brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room.”

In her book, Becoming, Michelle Obama writes about the importance of having a personal brand and her journey to defining her personal brand. She wrote that:

“if you don’t get out there and define yourself, you’ll be quickly and inaccurately defined by others.”

When you have a personal brand, you are in control. You know exactly what people will say about you when you leave the room.

The magic of a personal brand is that gives you control over how you want to be seen in the world. Your confidence and self-belief enable you to leverage opportunities and make informed decisions about your career and your future. You no longer experience the frustrations of a career meltdown or being at a crossroads not knowing what to do next with your career or your life. With a personal brand, you have focus, clarity, and a strategy to move forward toward future success.

Creating your personal brand does not happen overnight. It takes a lot of work and self-reflection. You will be expected to step outside of your comfort zone not once, but many times.

The good news is that the more time you spend outside of your comfort zone, the more you will like being there. Being outside of your comfort zone is where you can test the viability of and fine-tune your personal brand.

5 Key Steps to Creating Your Personal Brand

These five steps will help you create a personal brand that will deliver you the results you desire with your career and in life.

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1. Set Your Personal Goals

What is it that you want to do in the next five years? What will your future self be doing in the next five to ten years? What is important to you? If you can answer these questions, then you are on the right path. If not, then you have to start thinking about them.

2. Create Your Unique Value Proposition

Create your unique value proposition by asking yourself these four questions:

  1. What are your personality features? What benefit do you offer people?
  2. Who are you and why do people enjoy working with you?
  3. What do you do and what do people want you to do for them? How do you solve their problems?
  4. What makes you different from others like you?

The answers to these questions will give you the information you need to create your professional story, which is the key step to creating your personal brand.

3. Write Your Professional Story

Knowing who you are, what you want, and the unique value you offer is essential to you creating your professional story. People remember stories. Your personal story incorporates your value proposition and tells people who you are and what makes you unique. This is what people will remember about you.

4. Determine Which Platforms Will Support Your Personal Brand

Decide which social media accounts and online platforms will best represent your brand and allow you to share your voice. In a professional capacity, having a LinkedIn profile and a CV that reflects your brand is key to your positioning in relation to role opportunities. People will be connecting with you because they will like the story you are telling.

5. Become Recognized for Sharing Your Knowledge and Expertise

A great way for you to promote yourself is by sharing knowledge and helping others. This is where you prove you know your stuff and you gain exposure for doing so. You can do this through social media, writing, commenting, video, joining professional groups, networking, etc. Find your own style and uniqueness and use it to attract clients, the opportunities, or the jobs you desire.

The importance of having a personal brand is not going to go away. In fact, it is the only way where you can stand out and be unique in a complex changing world of work. If you don’t have a personal brand, someone will do it for you. If you let this happen, you have no control and you may not like the story they create.

Standing out from others takes time and investment. Most people cannot make the change by themselves, and this is where engaging a personal brand coach is a viable option to consider.

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As a personal brand coach, working with my clients to create their personal brand is my passion. I love the fact that we can work together to create a personal story that defines exactly what people will say when you leave the room.

Other People’s Stories

Listening to other people’s stories is a great way to learn. In his article, 7 TED Talks About Personal Branding, Rafael Dos Santos presents the best Ted Talks where speakers share their stories about the “why,” “what,” and “how” of personal branding.((GuidedPR: 7 TED Talks About Personal Branding))

Take some time out to listen to these speakers sharing their stories and thoughts about personal branding. You will definitely learn so much about how you can start your journey of defining yourself and taking control of your professional and personal life.

Your personal brand, without a doubt, is your secret weapon to your career success. As Michelle Obama said,

“your story is what you have, what you will always have. It is something to own.”

So, go own your story. Go on the journey to create your personal brand that defines who you are, highlights your uniqueness, and the value you offer to the world.

Featured photo credit: Austin Distel via unsplash.com

Reference

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