A crucial part of business development is establishing a digital strategy. However, some business owners are scared to utilise new digital platforms as it can be largely unknown territory and measuring the success can sometimes prove difficult.  That being said, there are still plenty of ‘niche’ alternatives that have survived for years, and when paired with more ‘established’ platforms, could really assist in driving traffic to your business. Here are some platforms that you may not have considered before:

Go beyond traditional methods

Most businesses use their website and traditional social media methods as their sole marketing strategy, however there are other mediums you should integrate to reach your target audience. Video content has advanced rapidly in the digital age and now harbours huge business advantages. Even the most basic form of content such as a ‘live video’, a new wave of video content gaining popularity on Facebook and Instagram which allows followers to see what you’re doing instantaneously, can assist in your audience’s familiarisation of your brand. One of the biggest perks of live videos is that all of your followers are notified when you are creating one.

Integrate content sharing platforms

YouTube, with more than 1 billion users and 300 hours of video being uploaded every 60 seconds[1], has a profound potential to reach new audience members. A large majority of those videos are either ‘product reviews’ or ‘how to’ videos, which both carry significant weight in the business world. Perhaps one of the greatest benefits you’ll see is that YouTube videos are highly valued by Google which will assist in your SEO ranking and acts as free advertising. As an alternative, Vimeo is also a fantastic video sharing platform that thrives in a more niche community. Still with a significant audience of 280 million[2]; it presents an opportunity to have your voice heard in a more close knit community.

Portion some of your budget to influencer marketing

Influencer marketing is making a large statement in the business environment as it has been shown to fuel business growth. Iconic Australian brand, Frank Body, began as a $5000 start-up, but “they now make nearly $20 million a year in revenue”[3] thanks to successful endorsement, mostly from Instagram influencers. Influencers are certainly becoming more aware of their power and leverage they command in the digital marketing sphere. Subsequently businesses are allocating larger parts of their budget into influencer marketing, as it allows you to receive a near immediate response from audience members and a new opportunity to stimulate business growth.

Consider the prospects of paid media

Promoting your brand organically can feel relentless and sometimes it doesn’t offer the results you had hoped for. However, through employing paid media into your digital pr strategy, you can ensure that your content is reaching your audience. Paid media is in essence just advertising, which may seem expensive, but there are a multitude of paid media tools that can work within your budget. Google AdWords is a service where you can pay for keywords to ensure that your website appears when those words are searched. The best part, however, is that you are in control of your budget and only invest as much as you want.

Assess your target audience

As you continue to take new avenues to drive your brand’s exposure, you will need tools to assist in measuring your business success. Google Analytics is a free online tool that allows you to track website traffic. Probably one of the most exciting and useful features of Google Analytics, is that you are able to monitor where a large sum of your audience comes from on a world map. You may find it surprising to see how well your business is being received on both a national and international scale.

Acknowledge your audience

Third party platforms such as Yelp or Tripadvisor are extremely useful for analysing individual feedback from your audience. These services allow your customers to praise or suggest feedback for your business. There are also tools available for you to respond to them, as acknowledging your audience is extremely important in the online environment.

Digital integration might seem daunting as many of these platforms offer different services that could be useful to your business. However, if you can spare the time, researching the perks of each platform could serve a multitude of advantages to your business. That said, if it is proving to be too difficult then I would not rule out consulting a professional about the digital options you should employ. 

[1] http://www.adweek.com/digital/rich-raddon-zefr-youtube-global-everything-network/

[2] https://expandedramblings.com/index.php/vimeo-statistics/

[3] Sullivan, R. 2017, ‘How two women turned a $5000 coffee scrub start-up into a $20 million dollar beauty brand’, News.com.au, accessed < http://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/beauty/face-body/how-two-women-turned-a-5000-coffee-scrub-startup-into-a-20-million-beauty-brand/news-story/4c883c122eb172a66132ae3fe4351ac3>