The 4 Most Effective Marketing Channels For Your E-Commerce Site
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Meet our hosts:
Dave has spent over 12 years in the industry where he has managed an e-commerce supplement shop for 8 years where they grew from 6 figures in yearly revenue to over 8 figures, managed millions in ad spend on Facebook, and founded a 7-figure fitness franchise marketing agency specializing in paid advertising, lead nurturing, and membership growth coaching which currently has over 100 clients.
Alex's specialty lies in psychology, paid advertising, funnel building, technology, and finance. He has managed millions of dollars in ad spend on various social platforms, and solved complex problems with thousands of businesses.
If marketing is the heart and soul of your business, you can consider the different marketing channels of your brand, the different veins that pump blood to your business. And understanding which marketing channel - which vein - is pumping strongest (and which needs some help) is key to any growth marketing strategy.
Businesses have been using this marketing strategy for decades now. Identifying public locations where people usually spend their time, and then put out billboards and banners displaying different products to grab people’s attention.
As the late, great P.T.Barnum once said: "Nothing draws a crowd like a crowd."
These days, businesses use a similar approach, except they promote their products on websites, apps and social media platforms.
Since you’re launching your ecommerce brand —or already running it, it’s safe to assume that most of your customers are spending their time on the internet.
However, nobody is willing to spend an enormous amount of time and money trying to stay relevant on all marketing channels. As much as it pains me to tell you - your product isn't for everyone, and doesn't need to show up everywhere.
That’s why it is more viable to focus your advertising on specific marketing channels better suited to your target audience.
After reading this article, you’ll become an expert in using these 4 different marketing channels, understanding their pros and cons, and choosing the right one to promote your ecommerce site.
Let's Start By Defining What A Marketing Channel Is
Marketing channels are simply a medium or a platform that connects brands with potential customers. It is the method you use to garner exposure to your brands and tell potential customers “hey! You might like this product”.
According to Statista.com, brands around the world have collectively spent over 689 billion dollars on digital advertising in 2021.
With this much capital poured into advertising, It’s only logical that you get more analytical when deciding which medium - aka channel - you spend your dollars on.
Now let’s take a closer look at those 4 marketing channels…
Alternatively known as “inbound marketing”, content marketing is all about supporting your brand with value-based content in the form of blog posts, eBooks, or educational videos.
This particular channel has proved to be reliable in the long term as a method of building communities around brands. Additionally, it serves as a go-to hub for niche knowledge and a post-purchase guide for those of your customers who want to learn how to get the best results out of your product.
For example, if you own a fashion brand, why not create content touching on niche relevant subjects? Like which colors to wear this summer, or how to match an outfit that compliments your body type.
More importantly, content marketing is a battle on two fronts because this is what you’ll be doing:
Posting value-based content that makes your customer’s life easier
Using SEO to organically boost your online visibility and presence
Let’s Also Define What SEO Boils Down To?
SEO, an acronym for search engine optimization, is the process of improving the quality of a website or web page traffic on search engines targeting organic traffic.
As a result, SEO comes in handy when trying to help a piece of content rank higher on search engines pages. This way, it can reach more users, and increase brand recognition.
Remember that a proper content marketing strategy helps increase long-term customer engagement while introducing them to your products.
Pros And Cons Of Content Marketing
Content marketing attracts users who are more likely to be interested in your brand, further increasing your audience.
Content marketing increases your chances of virality when your content piece is shared between users.
Content marketing positions you as a reliable source of information and a dominant figure in your niche. Eg, fashion.
It is not easy and takes time, making it more suitable for long-term plans.
When To Use Content Marketing
Generally speaking, content marketing is an approach better suited if you wish to increase brand awareness and create a long-term community around your eCommerce site.
It certainly doesn’t fit the criteria for a fast and immediate return on your marketing budget. It’s a medium where you achieve results by offering consistent, value-based content to your audience.
Number Two: Paid Advertising
Paid ads is a term that generally serves as an umbrella term covering any method of advertising that consists of paying money to feature your ads on a platform.
Different types of paid ads —eg. PPC, PPI, and display ad, allow marketers to further customize their campaigns and garner more exposure on social media platforms like Facebook, YouTube, and recently Pinterest as well.
If you are curious to learn more about tried-and-true advertising strategies, click here to uncover the most effective PPC strategies for your eCommerce site.
You can also check out our Mission Control episode with Lindsay Shearer, Founder and CEO of Pins For Profit, where she explains how to use Pinterest to actively grow your sales with simple, yet effective strategies.
Pros And Cons Of Paid Advertising
Paid ads are more targeted. You can be sure your ads will be shown to prospects who are more likely to be interested in what you offer.
Paid ads are generally faster to see results for. —relatively speaking.
Paid ads cost more since pricing varies depending on the competition in your niche or specific search query.
When To Use Paid Advertising
You can use paid ads if you wish to increase traffic to your eCommerce site faster than what content marketing offers.
You can use it to showcase new products or your best-sellers that are guaranteed to hook your first-time visitors.
Listen to Lindsey Shearer explaining how to use Pinterest to generate leads.
Number Three: Email Marketing
According to FinacesOnline.com, the total number of active users on email is around 3.9 Billion —that's a billion with a "B".
This is a tremendous volume of users pooled in one place. This is why email marketing can prove to be a huge kick up to your eCommerce site.
Email marketing can feel like it's a waste of time because of your own experience, sifting through, archiving emails, marking as spam, etc. But think about those companies whose emails you look forward to.
Those are the emails that never get lost in your inbox and are the emails you actually open and engage with.
Email marketing is a huge opportunity for you to add a touch of personalization to your brand. —This is why it’s called “a relationship-building channel”.
While content is created for the masses, users who are virtually passing by. In contrast, email marketing is the channel where you have people that are actually interested in what you do.
Why not email them personalized content that is specifically designed to help them in their unique journey with your ecommerce brand?
At this point, we hope you see emails for the influential to it really is.
Do you want to learn more about using emails to engage customers? Then check out our Mission Control episode with Bryan Starck, Founder, and CEO of 100 celsius, an agency that specializes in using email marketing to consistently increase sales.
In this episode, Bryan tells us exactly how he was able to achieve massive success with brands like Dollar Shave Club and Mack Weldon. Using strategies such as “dynamic moments” and “relationship-first marketing”.
Pros And Cons Of Email Marketing
The cost of email marketing is much lower than many other forms of marketing.
Your email list will be made up of people who have actively chosen to receive emails from you.
Using email marketing, you can personalize your emails and segment your list to make sure every email is delivered to the right prospect.
If your emails aren't targeted to the right prospects, you run the risk of your emails getting deleted or prospects unsubscribing from your list.
To lead a successful email campaign, you need to make sure you have the right copy, design, and segmentation that fits your specific customer avatar.
When To Use Email Marketing
When done right, email marketing can be used to:
Generate leads by nurturing users and engaging them with your brand, then introducing them to your products as you go.
Sell directly by sending offers and product releases to your VIP customers who are more likely to purchase that particular item.
Increase brand relevancy by regularly sending your customers valuable content touching on topics they might find intriguing.
Listen to Bryan Starck talk in-depth about game-changing email marketing campaigns.
Number Four: Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing can be described as a partnership between any organization and a platform. This partnership aims to promote a specific product or service in exchange for a percentage of the profit.
Affiliate marketing is a viable strategy that brands use to grow sales. Eg. Amazon.
Occasionally, it’s used alongside other marketing strategies like content and/or email marketing.
For eCommerce sites, the affiliate uses a unique link that’s created to track traffic directed through them. On that account, the affiliate gets a percentage of every sale made using that link.
According to Impactmybiz.com, Since 2015, eCommerce brands profits from affiliate marketing have grown by 10% annually. Analysts expect this trend to continue on.
Pros And Cons Of Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is a safe channel. You pay a set fee only when a sale is closed.
Affiliate marketing allows you to reach consumers all around the world with minimal effort on your part.
At its root, affiliate marketing is built on trust, allowing you to build meaningful partnerships with leaders within your field.
Affiliate marketing requires you to be selective about who represents your brand.
Affiliate marketing will need you to continuously assess the quality of your partnerships and the volume of conversions each partnership drives.
When To Use Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing can be a great fit for your eCommerce business if you are planning to scale or expand your operations globally.
In addition, Affiliate marketing can be a logical solution to drive leads if you don’t yet have enough budget for paid advertising.
There are a lot of different marketing channels proven to be effective, so it helps if you map out what your marketing goals are.
If you are looking for brand recognition, then you might want to invest in valuable, evergreen content or a paid ads campaign.
Uncover 3 tested-and-proven paid ads strategies guaranteed to grow sales.
If you wish to develop a more personalized campaign, then email marketing is your answer.
You can also use the affiliate marketing model to only spend money when you close a sale.
And remember, marketing strategies are not set in stone, you can always experiment with different methods and test which is more suitable for your unique business.
Helping businesses navigate their growth to the upper echelons of eCommerce domination.