15 Aug Five Digital Strategy Myths You Probably Still Believe
Myth #4: It’s possible to get top search results without spending money.
This assumption is death in internet marketing terms, for at least two reasons:
First, it relegates your website to the role of an afterthought, rather than maintaining its priority in your local search marketing strategy. Customers today research everything online before committing to an action, and they research what’s in their area. Most of them research using their phone. If there’s at least one other business in your niche that’s more attentive to this reality, you’ve lost the race to that moment of connection.
Second, and probably more importantly, if anyone in your market niche is paying for advertising, they’ll win. It’s really as simple as that.
Here’s the thing: OK, yes it is possible to get to the top of the SERPs without spending any money. But this process is long, labour intensive, and begins with a content strategy that is light years beyond what your competition is doing. If you’re running a business this isn’t how you want to be spending your time. Can you afford to have someone do all of this for you?
Most small businesses would say no.
In a perfect digital strategy model, there’s actually a balance — one that has to be experimented with and tweaked as results come and go. You have to pay for advertising so people know that your website is there. You have to give away a lot of free information that will establish you as an expert in your field. And you have to pay to promote that free content.
Does this get expensive? Sometimes. But for most local small businesses there are ways of spending comparatively little to gain a lot of exposure. It isn’t simply a matter of throwing $10,000 a month at Google ads (although that will yield pretty spectacular local search results). You could do the same with $150 a month in Facebook ads. It’s a matter of targeting, budget, and strategy.
Think of web ads in the same context as radio or TV ads. People need to know you’re there. But the key difference is this: when you buy broadcast ads, everyone in your area will hear about your business, and some of those people will be looking for what you sell. When you buy web ads, only those people who are looking for what you sell will hear about you, but they’ll come directly to your digital storefront (your website) without interference, without having to battle crowds, traffic and weather, and knowing exactly what they want to buy from you.
That’s the value of advertising online.