Marketing Strategies are Ecosystems
Just as in nature, marketing requires an interconnected network to thrive.
A singular tactic will not support your business: it takes multiple tactics to create a strong strategy.
I've noticed that many marketing efforts focus solely on social media marketing.
It's accessible and an incredible aspect of your authenticity framework. It helps people discover you and connect to your business.
- It's an awesome way to share educational information and snippets of your daily life as a business owner.
But marketing is far more than social media.
The reality is it's incredibly difficult to sell solely through social media. You need multiple platforms and tactics to develop a full customer journey, driving to a sale.
Social is a singular aspect of a strong marketing strategy. However, it must be connected to other tactics to bolster its effectiveness.
What is a digital marketing ecosystem?
Even if you are focusing on a core platform to grow your business, there are many more important tactics to infuse into your strategy.
Think of your marketing strategy as an ecosystem.
Multiple tactics across various platforms work together toward a singular goal: growth.
Each aspect of your marketing strategy relies on other concurrent tactics to work effectively.
Essentially, it’s a symbiotic relationship. This is also known as holistic marketing.
That’s because a strong marketing strategy considers the full breadth of a customer experience with your business.
This is also known as the marketing funnel; however, I think an ecosystem is a better term, as strategy evolves much like a living thing.
A customer journey experience typically follows this structure:
DISCOVERY / AWARENESS: an introduction to your business, usually through ads, social media, or SEO-driven blogs. This is the moment your business captures an audience member’s attention. (secret: content marketing is an ideal way to do this.)
RESEARCH: folks rarely buy something immediately after discovering a new brand. Especially now, people want to ensure that the brands they support share similar values and goals. The research phase is fueled by curiosity and comparison. The potential customer is reading reviews, googling questions about your brand (awesome blog content opportunities for this!), and exploring user testimonials and social content.
CONVERSION: it takes several touchpoints between discovery and the purchase point. This is why having an email capture and nurture series set up is so crucial for your brand. Landing in someone’s inbox is an incredible opportunity to share your brand values, stories, and educational content to nudge folks toward a purchase. Another option (although I recommend them in tandem) is SEO-driven blog posts and social content targeting those further in their journeys.
- ADVOCACY: If folks have a positive customer journey with your brand, and their purchase meets or exceeds their expectations, you have a brand advocate on your hands. You can prime customers to become advocates through referral programs, discount bonuses for referrals, and a solid post-purchase nurture series. Customer service and experience determine whether someone will be a positive advocate.
Feel free to save & print this reference sheet! The customer journey experience is critical to the success of your business.
So, how does the marketing ecosystem relate to the customer journey experience?
Your audience is comprised of people at different stages of their customer journeys:
Newly discovered your brand
Is considering your offering
Researching your reported customer experiences
Identifying your brand values
Current and re-current customers
Folks at different stages of their customer journey experience require different methods and styles of communication. This is where a marketing ecosystem helps your brand connect with each audience member based on their current journey stage.
Social media is especially great for building awareness
Blog posts aid in building awareness and offer research materials for your soon-to-be customers
UGC (user-generated content) on social media is incredible for those in the research phase
Emails help nurture new leads through the conversion point and help turn them into brand advocates
Your landing page and checkout experience determine if someone will follow through with their purchase
THESE AUDIENCE EXPERIENCES ALL HAVE ONE THING IN COMMON:
>>> They’re interconnected and dependent on one another, like an ecosystem
>>> They are prime channels for content marketing
Every touchpoint with a customer is an opportunity to educate, entertain, and engage them with your brand.
Content marketing is how you accomplish a seamless journey experience, benefitting your customers every step of the way.
This is by no means an exhaustive list, but here are the tactics I've seen work incredibly well together to grow a business:
✔ Email marketing (especially newsletters)
✔ Blog posts incorporated into your website
✔ Freebies for lead capture
✔ An easy-to-navigate website
✔ Online Events
✔ Downloadable resources
✔ Remarketing ads (a smart way to break into ad spend)
I write content and copy for each of these… and much more!
Every aspect of your marketing ecosystem is essential. Social media is incredible for quickly sharing ideas and entertainment with your audience.
But without other touchpoints in your marketing strategy, it is hard to grow your business solely via social. So, don’t neglect your marketing ecosystem!
Develop a strategy for your marketing ecosystem
Remember! Even if organic social content is your primary marketing tactic, you must utilize an ecosystem of organic platforms to plan for growth effectively.
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