If you’re a business owner in Houston, you’ve likely had dozens of companies and individuals attempt to court you with offers to perform your digital marketing. It’s a growing field in a city teeming with entrepreneurs, and you’re probably a little overwhelmed with the constant outreach of Digital Marketing Houston.
Maybe you’ve even gone with a digital marketing firm, and been burned.
Either way, your research led you here, to Jweis Marketing – Houston’s premier digital marketing strategists. We know you’ll find Jweis Marketing to be the best digital marketing agency in Houston, but before you can realize that, you need to understand why digital marketing trumps traditional marketing, and how each digital channel works.
Digital Marketing vs Traditional Marketing
When was the last time you looked through a mailer or a door hanger without chucking it in the trash? Other than the menu left by the local Chinese restaurant near the office, you probably see this as an annoyance – no better than the endless spam emails clogging your old Yahoo account.
While traditional marketing channels are reliable for getting your message out to a large amount of people, they falter in three key ways: Cost, Saturation, and Relevance.
Cost – Because publications, billboard companies, and television networks know on average how many subscribers or viewers will see an advertisement, they can charge an exorbitant amount per impression; this is further convoluted by the middlemen in media buying.
Saturation – With the sheer number of companies fighting for visibility in a publication, all that money paid cannot account for how many people might miss your ad due to all the other ads around it; you might be overshadowed by a company in a completely different industry!
Relevance – While knowing for sure how many people will view your ad is valuable, traditional marketing channels have no way of discerning between your target audience and someone who will never be interested in your company. Even specialized television channels or publications can only approximate a general persona who might consume their media.
With digital marketing, you buy directly from the platform – think Facebook and Google – and thus the costs are far more transparent and lower.
Many companies are wise to the prowess of digital marketing, but most small businesses are still keen on traditional marketing strategies – and depending on your industry, your business might be a pioneer in digital marketing in Houston.
And here’s the best part – because digital marketing revolves around communicating directly to your target audience, based on their internet browsing habits, your advertisements only reach audiences who will readily engage with your message.
Sure, traditional marketing may be the tried and true route.
And we’re not saying traditional marketing channels cannot be extremely successful, especially in tandem with an effective digital marketing plan.
What we are saying is that in 2020, your business cannot afford NOT to effectively utilize digital marketing tactics.
So you know what traditional marketing channels look like – Houston freeways are practically carpeted in iconic billboards, and your mailbox is frequently stuffed with coupon mailers from nearby retailers.
Digital Marketing Channels
You always hear about digital marketing, but do you know what it truly looks like?
At Jweis Marketing, we engage in a multitude of digital marketing channels, including Search Engine Optimization, Search Engine Marketing, Content Marketing, Social Media Marketing, Influencer Marketing, Affiliate Marketing, and Email Marketing.
Depending on your business, each of these digital marketing tactics might drive sales on their own – but a versatile digital strategy is a surefire way to drive your business to the forefront of your target consumer’s mind. So you can better understand how each tactic informs a robust digital marketing strategy, we’ve provided a brief overview on how each channel works.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
You may not know it by its full name, but as a Houston business owner, someone in the last ten years has surely preached the value of SEO to you.
And you should listen! Moz reported, in 2017, that 71% of search engine clicks occur on the first page; as little as 6% of browsers even make it to the second page. These first page links get there because of Search Engine Optimization.
Search Engine Optimization is the bread and butter of the digital marketing world, and in general terms, SEO is the science of making your web presence appear as high as possible for relevant search queries. Content aggregators know this, which is why “best burgers in Houston” returns an entire page of lists, rather than Stanton’s City Bites.
The SEO process involves so many moving parts and a little bit of every other tactic on this list; in fact, explaining the entire process will require a whole article on its own.
Search Engine Marketing/Pay Per Click (PPC)
And while you’re busy browsing your chosen search engine for your website’s organic results, you will probably notice a number of top – and bottom – page results clearly noted as an “Ad”.
While you would really like your website to reach the top of Google’s search results through merit and quality alone, the most effective digital marketing strategies take into account that you can pay to play – referred to as Pay Per Click, or Search Engine Marketing.
Google Ads (formerly Google Adwords) is a complex platform, free to set up by Google but expensive if used improperly, that enables users to build search engine advertisements and display them on Google’s Search and Display networks – this reach includes the YouTube advertisements always interrupting your favorite podcasts.
Google, Bing, Yahoo, and other search engines (almost all of which are in Google’s affiliate networks) use a virtual auction system based on how much you’re willing to spend per impression, click, or conversion.
However, your ad will perform more favorably in the auction if its content and related landing page are relevant to your target audience.
And relevancy is absolutely key in all aspects of digital marketing – this is where Content Marketing comes into play.
Last year on your commute, you probably noticed dozens of Spec’s billboards, with taglines like “Texans Have More SPEC’S than Anyone Else”, “Our Mascot is a SPEC’S Object”, or the ever-subtle “Your Parents Still Have SPEC’S”. That last one will burn in your brain forever – and SPEC’S as the first adult beverage retailer in your mind as well.
This is because SPEC’S figured out a humorous yet pertinent way to make you think about their brand – the bawdy puns remind you that SPEC’s will help your party have a good time, and the frequency of the billboards remind you of the ubiquity of SPEC’s locations.
While this is an example of Content Marketing used in traditional channels, Content Marketing is all the more important for a focused digital marketing strategy. Content Marketing is the art of developing content (advertisements, blogs, web content, and more) that speaks with your company’s voice and your target audience in mind – clearly informed through Search Engine Optimization. In fact, the two cannot exist without each other in an effective digital marketing strategy.
Social Media Marketing (SMM)
Social Media Marketing is probably the digital marketing channel you are most familiar with.
Are you ever surprised when your Facebook feed features a sponsored advertisement for something that clearly speaks to you? Or perhaps a little offended when you see an advertisement for something you consider only tangentially related to you?
This occurs because Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and other platforms build a buyer persona for you, based on likes, shares, clicks, and other parameters.
Social Media Marketing taps into social media algorithms to get your advertisement to the correct audience, through their buyer persona. This is done through a virtual auction, similar to Search Engine Marketing.
The last three tactics discussed are quite a bit more obvious than the previous four. Similar to the ever-present tactic of a celebrity endorsement, Influencer Marketing uses renowned figures, primarily through social media, to promote your business.
Where it differs from a celebrity endorsement is that social media influencers, much like the buyer personas in PPC and Social Media Marketing, have already carved out their audience niche for their own business.
Thus, when we connect you to the appropriate influencer, we connect you to their tailored audience.
Similar to Influencer Marketing, Affiliate Marketing uses reputed channels to advertise your business. Unlike influencers, however, affiliates are not acting as a spokesperson for your product or service; they are simply discussing whatever topic is at question, and organically referencing your business as a potential solution. Also different from Influencer Marketing is the costs; affiliates only receive payment upon link conversion, unlike the flat rate charged by influencers.
Affiliate Marketing is a viable tactic on its own because affiliates are able to insert your business into natural conversation.
Finally, we have Email Marketing, another obvious digital marketing channel.
Once you already have a list of engaged customers, or perhaps a list of prospective buyers, your business can utilize Email Marketing campaigns to keep the latest news, offerings, and deals at the forefront of the consumers’ mind.
Think of Email Marketing as the digital answer to classic mailers, only less physically invasive.
Choose the Best Digital Marketing Agency in Houston
So now you know what each element of a successful digital marketing strategy looks like. When coupled with well-written content, effective visual creative, and intuitive web assets, your digital marketing strategy will put your business at the front of your potential customers’ minds.
And that’s what makes Jweis Marketing one of the best digital marketing agencies in Houston – we understand that the digital assets we provide you with are only as effective as the channels they’re sent through.