Let’s be honest, everything is related to marketing now. With the invasion of social media and digital tools, companies compete for attention like a tiger hunting his prey. The “Mad Men” era of wine, whisky and women feels like it never happened.

Now it’s about using technology to create a memorable digital personality to represent your brand. Think drones and selfies over cold cuts and cold calling.

With all the newest gadgets, tools, and slang, it’s difficult to keep up. Memorable and congruent branding, quality content, and understanding your target audience are still the most important marketing basics, but the tools have changed significantly.

To help you out, we thought we’d give you the ultimate guide to digital marketing success in 2016. Pop the bubbly because this top ten list will help you convert and conquer.

TOP 10 DIGITAL MARKETING TOOLS 2016

1. Mobile First

It’s official: Google says more searches take place on mobile versus desktop. By far.

Is your website mobile friendly? Do you have an easy way for site visitors to get in contact with your business when they visit your site on mobile? For instance, including your phone number at the very top of your mobile site is crucial for B2B businesses to increase their conversion count. It should not take longer than 2 seconds for your site to load on mobile, nor should it have text or images that are too small or large for the screen.

BONUS: Are you tracking conversions that take place on mobile versus desktop?

2. Video Content

This is the ultimate 2016 prediction every digital marketer is echoing. Online video advertising is on the verge of explosion. It seems that right  now, only larger businesses with a substantial advertising budget are investing in video advertising, but this doesn’t have to be the case.

Facebook revealed that the number of videos posted to the platform per person has increased by 94 percent over the last year.

Homepage videos are shown to increase conversion rates by 20 per cent. You can implement video-remarketing ads to tell your brand’s story for you when visitors drop off your site.

Digital marketing is about reaching people on a personal level and video is the most effective medium to do so. It’s proven that 1 minute of  video equates 1.8 million words. Instead of telling people about your company, show them. This will instill trust, which results in a high conversion rate.

3. Google AdWords

Have you started to bid on keywords related to the product you are selling or the service you are offering? Google now processes more than 40,000 search queries every second on average, which translates to more than 3.5 billion searches per day.

People are clearly looking up information on the search engine behemoth before making a purchasing decision. Bidding on the proper keywords targeted towards your demographic and region can drive instant new business, if executed properly. It is essential that every business bids on several keywords, some broad and some specific to direct traffic.

Remember: the first search result in Google secures 33 per cent of traffic. The second receives 17.6% followed by 11% for the third result. If you are on the second page you aren’t being seen, which further solidifies the argument for bidding for the key terms people are using to find your product.

4. Moz

Are you curious why your competitor outranks you on Google and they are sitting on top of the first page while you are buried on page three?

Moz allows you to compare competitive metrics, such as domain authority. Domain Authority is a score (on a 100-point scale) developed by Moz that predicts  how well a website will rank on search engines.

Once you start to learn the reasons why your competition performs well on the major search engines, you can formulate a strategy for your business.

Moz also shows you the crawl rate of your website. This exposes the speed that search engines can literally crawl the pages on your site. Broken links and  pages can dramatically decrease your crawl speed, which means Google gets a bit sassy with your site and ranks it lower on the Google search results. Bad news.

5. BuzzSumo

In the world of content, one of the most valuable things is collecting data to analyze what content is emotionally resonating with people.

Industry research, competitive analysis, and influencer discovery are just a few things that you can do with the information that BuzzSumo provides. 

Although Google can be useful, this tool will allow you to search different keywords or view categories and see how many times that website  has been shared on social media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google+).

This can give you guidance on what viral trends to  jump on to boost your social media game. It’s near impossible for a small company to get new Facebook “Likes” so use all the help you can  get.

6. Outreach

Become an expert within your industry by contributing content on well-known websites. This is a great way to drive referral traffic back to  your site from readers, who are interested to learn about your insight.

Create a “dream list” of 10 websites you want to write content for. Make sure to send each of these 10 publications a compelling pitch that  conveys what you will bring to the table by sharing your insight on their site.

 Another way to do this is through the website Help A Reporter Out. You spend 15 minutes a day answering questions and then get exposure  through different journalistic articles that use your quotes and link to your site.

7. Canva

This is a huge digital marketer secret I am sharing with you!

So shh. Don’t tell anyone that this is the secret to expert designs. Instead, tell them it took hours of blood, sweat, and tears to make those brilliant designs with Photoshop.

Canva is the simpliest and most unbelievable design tool. It’s a drag and drop interface filled with a library of more than 1 million stock photographs, graphic elements and fonts.

It makes professional designs in less than half the time. This is every marketers little secret to help  them create enticing visual content to accompany blogs and social media posts.

8. Email Marketing

Are you sending out at least two marketing emails per month?

Why not?

According to Marketing Sherpa, 60 percent of marketers believe email marketing produces positive ROI.

Make an effort to collect more email addresses in 2016. Start off by sending an opt-in email to every contact you have ever interacted with via email. From obtaining the email addresses from customers on your website to grabbing business cards at trade shows, the larger your email list and the more effort you make in sending out memorable messages, the more business you’ll get for very absolutely no cost.

9. Sidekick

Let’s say you follow our audience and create wildly original marketing emails. Now, how can you view who you are reaching?

Sidekick, which is powered by HubSpot, tracks whether or not a recipient opens up your emails and clicks on any links inside.

Is this somewhat stalker-ish? Sure. But the bottom line is if you see a prospect open your proposal 10 times, you know they are interested! Sidekick can be a game changer for your business strategy, and they have a free package.

10. Google Analytics

We have a handy guide to help you master Google Analytics.

Using this tool effectively will show you:

  • Where your visitors are coming from – very important if you’re targeting a specific audience.
     
  • How your visitors found your website – this is very important for determining which of your efforts are paying off. It shows if visitors found your site directly, through a referral from another website (ex: Twitter, Facebook), or from search engines.
     
  • Web browsers used by your visitors – knowing which web browsers your visitors use allows you to know which browsers you should be focusing on.
     
  • What keywords were used by visitors in the search engines to get to your website – this is very crucial for SEO. Knowing which keywords people are searching for to get to your site determines if you are on the right track.

Good luck in 2016! Let’s aim for ingenious marketing through creative approaches.

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