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Updated: Jun 21, 2022

Given that 82% of consumers use websites and examine online reviews in their search for products and services, and 25% use social media and blogs for product discovery, services and brands, it’s no surprise that if your business doesn’t have a solid digital strategy in place, it needs to strongly consider doing so.

The current shift towards a digital landscape and a convergence of digital technologies is our reality. Many companies have traditional forms of marketing in place as well as smatterings of the digital variety in the form of a social media presence, for instance. This is not enough. To stand out from your competitors in an increasingly crowded online space, you’ll need a well-considered and executed strategy to achieve your goals.

Ensuring your business succeeds online requires strategic planning
Ensuring your business succeeds online requires strategic planning

What are the benefits of digital marketing?

“Fine”, you may find yourself thinking, “but surely digital marketing is going to cost an arm and a leg when my business has been doing fine using purely traditional marketing?” The truth is that although you may have initial costs to bear, digital marketing is generally more cost effective than traditional marketing.

Firstly, you get more bang for your buck through digital. When you put up a billboard advertising your services, for instance, you’re paying to reach the eyes of every consumer who drives past. Not all those eyes, however, belong to your intended target audience. Thanks to the sophisticated methods through which we can target consumers online, you can ensure that you pay only for your ads or content to reach your ideal consumer.

Secondly, consider the cost of producing that billboard or running a print ad. Design costs are merely one portion of the total cost, before we get to publishing, printing and distribution. With digital, once the design is done, it’s predominantly a matter of uploading the content to the relevant channels and then targeting the right audience.

Research is requisite

How do digital marketers know where the ideal customer for a specific brand will be? This is where strategic decision-making comes into play. A digital marketing strategy begins with in-depth research into a host of areas, such as where your target audience spends time online (Instagram, Google or Twitter, for example), what forms of communication they like to receive (email, SMS, or WhatsApp), and the manner in which they like to be communicated to (types of imagery, tone of voice, look and feel).

Sometimes digital strategists still have further research to do as they implement campaigns. One of the most critical benefits of the digital space is that it allows us to understand exactly the type of action that consumers have taken on our ads. How many people clicked through to the website? How many viewers stayed tuned for more than 5 seconds of your Facebook video? At what point in the consumer journey did the customer quit making their online purchase? Since digital gives us this exact information, we can identify consumer pain points in order to rectify them.

If we are unsure which artwork or copy our Instagram audience will respond to best, we can put out two versions of an ad, and thanks to A/B split testing, we can see which version performed best. Similarly, if we are not sure which of our target audiences will be most likely to make an online purchase, we can test different audiences and find out.

Crafting customer-centric user journeys

Digital research doesn’t just help us sell products or create awareness; it improves the customer’s experience of the brand. A well-conceived digital strategy takes a customer-centric approach at every stage of the consumer journey. As discussed earlier, online data generated by tools such as Google Analytics shows digital strategists where customers are falling off in their online journey. A winning digital strategy takes these insights into account to ensure that there is value for the customer at every step. This value can be informing the customer about a service that may help them, exciting them about a product that will benefit them, or engaging them with your brand proposition.

Results-driven approach

With the online space being so quantifiable, digital strategy involves measuring the success of a campaign against a host of metrics. Industry benchmarks indicate how well your brand is performing and where there is room for improvement. Digital strategy involves conducting a detailed competitor analysis to help determine the goals that are set for your company. Each tactic of the digital strategy can then be measured in terms of its success relative to the ROI.

A well-conceived digital strategy helps employees work toward a shared vision
A well-conceived digital strategy helps employees work toward a shared vision

Rallying around a vision of success

A digital strategy can play a key role in aligning stakeholders around a core vision. The strategy outlines an image of success that employees can rally around as they play their part in working toward that vision. Being able to refer back to this blueprint results in a consistent brand message and image, which in turn builds consumer trust.

Overwhelmed by digital?

The world of digital evolves so fast, that it can often seem overwhelming with a plethora of opinions and voices vying for your attention.

Cut through the noise with V5 Digital.

As one of the leading digital marketing agencies in Windhoek, we specialise in crafting fine-tuned, clear, agile digital marketing strategies to help your business succeed. Don’t hesitate to contact V5 Digital for a free assessment or to help you decide whether investing in a digital marketing strategy is the right next step.

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  • Writer's pictureAina Ilunga

Updated: Jun 21, 2022

E-commerce is growing at an exponential rate, in fact, it is predicted that 2019 will see global e-commerce sales of 3,453 billion US dollars, a 21% increase from 2018. As a sales platform, e-commerce offers you a wealth of opportunities to grow your brand, reach wider audiences and hike up sales. We recently attended the E-commerce Africa Conference, which discussed the potential and challenges for e-commerce on the continent, and our takeaway is that e-commerce is poised to take off in Africa like never before. To show why you should take charge of this opportunity to best your competitors, we share with you 4 ways e-commerce can massively grow your business in 2019.

4 Ways E-commerce Can Grow Your Business in 2019
4 Ways E-commerce Can Grow Your Business in 2019

1) Increase Sales

Whether you are planning to start an e-commerce business or if you want to take your existing brick and mortar business digital, the potential for increased sales is boundless. First off, an e-commerce business lives on the net meaning it has the potential to reach thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of clients that would never have entered your physical store. Your e-commerce platform not only has the potential to spread your business across Namibia, but you can easily take your venture global, tapping into a fresh market you have yet to explore.

Your online store also creates the ability for you to design unique, fresh and innovative sales promotions that can spur a passive consumer into an active one. For instance, you can make timed sales events discounting products for a limited time, creating a sense of urgency for customers to make purchases quickly. E-commerce also gives you access to digital strategies like email marketing. It is really easy to build up an email database which you can use to increase sales by getting previous customers to return to your site through sales events.

E-commerce opens up your business to numerous other digital marketing strategies that can hike up sales, for example, an effective SEO strategy has the potential to increase web traffic to your e-commerce platform by more than 60% if you are ranked on the first search engine results page of Google. You can also implement pay per click strategies to run alongside your site and you can utilize social media platforms to further your brand’s reach for more sales.

Lastly, your e-commerce business never sleeps. Your sales are not dependent on the usual eight hour working day nor the potentially overbearing salesperson. Customers can enter your online store at their convenience any time of the day, which can add a passive income to your business while its physical doors are closed.

2) Lower Costs

Running an e-commerce business is significantly more cost effective. For starters, you will be eliminating the cost of renting a physical premises. You can also have a smaller team. No sales staff are needed and customer interaction can even be handled with an innovative Artificially Intelligent Chatbot (which Gartner predicts will handle 85% of all customer interactions by 2020) that can assist customers with their purchases once they visit your website

E-commerce businesses carry less financial burden. With lower start up fees and the ability to control supply more effectively, you can find your feet easily during the initial, potentially rocky start-up phase. Seeing as digital advertising strategies tend to be cheaper than the more traditional route, if you have a great online digital marketing strategy in place, you can create a buzz about your business without investing too much money.

3) Scale-able

As your business grows, you will want to develop your product and shape it towards the needs and wants of your customers. There is no simpler way to do this than with an e-commerce business. Every action made on your site creates data. With this information, you can easily track customers’ interest in products by the way they interact with your site. Businesses that adopt data driven marketing are six times more likely to be profitable year-over-year, because once you are able to analyse customer behavior more accurately, you can adapt your product range to match their wants. You can, for instance, start shipping to other countries, stock a greater range of sizes, adapt your availability according to seasons, and add preferred payment options.

4) Ease of Use

For many it is much easier to do their shopping online than it is to visit a physical store. If you think about it, a customer needs to leave their house, drive their car, park their car, enter the store, get hassled by potentially pushy sales staff, all before they can make a purchase. Given Namibia’s dispersed population, it is even more of a hassle for some to visit your brick and mortar store. These cumbersome steps can be eliminated and streamlined by your online premises.

Though we might not all be as trusting of technology, millennials and generation Xers are increasingly making their purchases online for the simple reason of convenience. If your e-commerce site is well designed with user experience in mind, many customers will forget about the nominal extra fees, like shipping, because of the ease with which they are able to make purchases.

Businesses that adopt data driven marketing are six times more likely to be profitable year-over-year
Businesses that adopt data driven marketing are six times more likely to be profitable year-over-year.

It is predicted that e-commerce in Africa will generate $29 billion US dollars by 2022. We are here to help you get your fair share of this growing market. At V5 Digital, one of Windhoek, Namibia’s leading digital marketing agencies, we can take your business online and build the ideal e-commerce site for your business venture. Your journey with us doesn’t stop there, V5 Digital is your one-stop-shop for all things digital.

We will design your e-commerce site according to SEO best principles ensuring the right online traffic gets directed to your company and, with our comprehensive digital marketing strategies, we’ll make sure this traffic converts to sales. From artificially intelligent chatbots to pay per click ads, we’ll take your business to the power of digital. Contact us today to start your e-commerce journey.

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Updated: May 26, 2020

Are you unsure whether you need marketing automation software for your business? It can be a tough decision to make, so we’ve removed the guesswork for you by narrowing it down to seven key questions. If your business or marketing department faces any of these pain points or challenges, introducing marketing automation might be the solution.

1. Do you wish you had more foolproof ways to make your marketing decisions?

The most critical pain point we often face is how we can best make marketing decisions. Do we base our decisions on what has been tried and tested? On best practice principles? On what is working for our competitors? While there is merit to each of these approaches, they might not be ideal for your business.

The ideal way to make marketing decisions is working from a data-driven approach. Marketing automation software helps mine the data for you in order to refine your customer analysis, channel optimisation and spend. Clearly defined metrics enable you to use marketing automation software to unequivocally demonstrate the ROI of your marketing efforts.

Do you ever battle with working your way through all the analytics produced by your campaigns in order to generate valuable insights and clearly show ROI? Marketing automation software like SharpSpring can dissect metrics in any way you require to produce customised reports for your clients, customers or team.

2. Do you need to turn subscribers or followers into customers?

You might have numerous followers on social media and tons of subscribers to your newsletter, but somehow this is not translating into sales. Marketing automation software is geared toward understanding your users’ behaviour in order to turn them into customers.

As discussed, one of the biggest advantages of marketing automation is that it can collect vast amounts of data. According to Forbes, companies who adopt a data-driven approach are six times more likely to be profitable year-on-year, and 23 times more likely to acquire customers.

Marketing automation software tracks user behaviour, scoring your leads automatically to help you understand where they are in the sales funnel. On top of this, the software measures the engagement of your leads across your channel palette to provide a 360-degree view of your customers and potential customers.

3. Do you wish you could use advanced segmentation to personalise your messaging to customers?

Once we have a birds-eye-view of our where our leads are in the sales funnel, we need to deliver them personalised messaging that takes this into account. Marketing automation not only provides this vantage point but is also able to conduct A/B testing to determine the most effective messages to be sending leads, so that we can refine our marketing communications.

But it’s not just the what that matters in terms of messaging, it’s also the when as we know that the timing of communication to leads is vitally important. Marketing automation software removes the guesswork delivering messages when customers are most receptive.

4. Are you concerned that your customer data is old or inaccurate?

Over time your customers undergo lifestyle changes – like marriage or relocation - that renders the data you have on them obsolete. Finding ways to manually obtain and update your data can be tedious, especially when you consider that data is likely to become inaccurate after just two years.

Fortunately, marketing automation software can be implemented to constantly refresh your data by collating and updating customer data 24/7.

5. Would a closer connection between your sales and marketing teams be beneficial?

In an ideal world sales and marketing teams would dovetail their efforts seamlessly. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, and many leads and potential sales are lost due to human error, miscommunication or the disconnect between siloed departments.

Marketing automation bridges the gap by automatically pushing critical information from one department to the other. When a lead takes certain actions in relation to your marketing materials, like opening a newsletter for example, marketing automation software can trigger an alert to your sales team to follow up with the lead who has shown high intent.

6. Would it increase your efficiencies if certain tasks could be automated?

Save time and labour by automating your content delivery. When a lead fills out a specific form, for example, marketing automation software is triggered to ensure that the right communication reaches this potential customer at the perfect time. SharpSpring’s dynamic forms are built for exactly this purpose, significantly increasing conversion rates.

7. Do you use a host of tools that you’d like to integrate?

Marketing requires us to use numerous tools from CRM packages, to social media management tools and campaign tracking software. Bringing together our analytics from across these tools can be a cumbersome, messy process that makes generating valuable insights an overly time-consuming process.

Marketing automation software is able to integrate these tools, enabling you to efficiently glean insights. SharpSpring, for example, has its own built-in CRM software or it can integrate third-party products, allowing you the flexibility to keep working with your existing tools and get more out of them.

Still wondering if marketing automation is for you?

It’s likely that your business or marketing team is experiencing more than one of these pain points. You might be eager to implement marketing automation but are tentative to invest in the software. As one of the leading digital marketing agencies in Windhoek, Namibia, V5 Digital can help you determine whether marketing automation would benefit you and advise you on the best software solutions for your needs. To discover how you can harness the power of marketing automation, contact V5 Digital for a free assessment.

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