It is an odd time to be a marketer. Most of you in the SEO, (even I, for that matter) aren’t traditionally trained as a marketer. If truth be told, I studied computer science, and initially worked as a web and software developer.
My career in marketing was a fortunate accident, a rare case of being in the right place at the right time. I worked on developing e-commerce sites, and when that was done, the question that popped up was, “How to get more traffic as well as more customers?” This is what led me to this exciting world of SEO.
Of course, there’s more to marketing than merely getting high ranks on search engines, and it will for sure take you some time to figure this out. However, over the years, working in SEO, you’ll learn the value of more conventional marketing processes, and how they actually relate to SEO.
Search engines would like to connect individuals with some of the best possible results, which is why user engagement and contentment is probably a SEO ranking factor.
Undoubtedly, links and on-page signals are still super important, but they won’t really help if your users aren’t engaging with your website. SEO is now firmly a part of the entire marketing process, and better marketing would only assist in enhancing your rankings and driving in more traffic.
It is popularly known that most of the SEO managers are highly savvy marketers. It isn’t sufficient to focus on delivering more traffic; in fact, to incorporate SEO in your business successfully, you need to be an amazing marketer.
Here in this article, we will now take a look at the marketing mix, and a typical marketing tool, known as “The 4 Ps of Marketing”. The article would also discuss how you can make use of this tool to enhance your SEO and marketing skills
The 4 Ps of Marketing
The standard definition of marketing is, “simply putting the right product in the right place, at the right price, and at the right time”. Stripping away the intricacy could be powerful, but the 4 Ps of marketing could help you here, by focusing on the 4 key areas:
As this happens, SEO actually does a lot right by default. So, when the user searches, it’s certainly the right time, and search engine is generally the right place. But still, you ought to make sure that the product and price is right as well.
After all, there is going to be loads of competition on that search engine results page. And definitely, there’s more to digital marketing than just search engines, no matter how crucial they might be.
So, let’s take a look at each of these four key areas:
Who are your customers? What is their aim? What actions do they’ve to perform, so that you could do better? What are their pains? Ultimately, how would your product/service help them?
Comprehending your customers, and how the product/service offered by you relates to their needs and requirements, is fundamental to the pricing and promotion of your product/service.
For instance, an agency offers digital marketing services. They would thus, assist their customers in attaining their business goals and in turn, take away all the work and pain that’s involved in trying to stay up to date with the digital marketing landscape.
Not to mention, the time and money of the customers is saved, and there’s an improvement in their results. In this manner, they can focus on things that they do best.
As the product or service offered by you is the base of your marketing approach, you ought to have absolute clarity here, since the price and promotion is influenced by the product.
People finding your product is just winning half the battle. But if you wish to win the other half, you need to convince your potential customers that your product can deliver and stand up to their expectations.
Price is inherently tied to the value of your product. But the price should also consider the already established price points in the industry. If your product is extremely expensive, it will not sell, no matter how desirable it seems. Likewise, if it’s too cheap, your profit margins would suffer.
There’s a pendulum like quality to the price of a product, wherein a lower price would normally generate more sales, but higher prices would generate more profits. You need to find out the perfect balance, which basically depends upon your lead generation strategies and the marketplace.
SEO would be an amazing example as to how tricky pricing can be. Typical wisdom suggests that SEO costs nearly around £100 an hour. However, when you’ll analyse the SEO packages and SEO prices, you’ll be surprised to find out how much people are actually willing to pay, especially when it comes to small business SEO services.
Pricing is essential and you have to cautiously think of price points to make sure you’re able to deliver the service, and also make profit.
Of course, brand and online reputation would play into this, yet most of you aren’t Apple, which is why you may be able to pull off being 10% more costly than the competitor, if your service/product is right. But, if you try pushing too hard on the price, you’ll eventually lose customers.
Where would your customers look for your product? Will they look out for you? Will you be able to generate business through offline channels or in person? Does the marketing mix comprise of an amalgamation of offline and online marketing channels?
For instance, if you’re an emergency plumber, then people will for sure grab their phones and go straightaway to Google, so this one is quite obvious. But for several other services, different people would search for them in different ways; maybe through networking, search engines, referrals, and so forth.
Therefore, you need to determine where your potential customers are, and where you have to be, in order to sell them your product.
How would you get your marketing messages, to your potential customers?
Would it be search engines? Would it be search ads? Would it be social network? Would it be online banner advertisements? Or would it be press?
Will you be using ads or top of the funnel strategies, like content marketing? Will you try to sell your product, or make use of nurturing and lead generation strategies?
Is time of the day a factor? Do you have any seasonality in your marketplace? Are there any external factors, which could be leveraged to enhance your marketing?
What are your competitors doing? Are certain channels highly competitive? Where are the chances?
Whilst you’re thinking of promoting your product, you must ask yourself all these questions. Maybe a SWOT analysis would help you out. However, all this completely depends on your customers, and often, best approaches can strategically integrate the marketing channels in order to maximise the end result.
For example, some businesses might find that higher funnel activities like content marketing, work wonders for them, as compared to ads. So, having a good piece of content, might generate good exposure and leads; whereas, if they used search ads, it’s possible that they might get leads, but would be in competition with others.
So, you must figure out how your lead generation, marketing, and sales, would work together in order to fine-tune your approach. If you’re able to find a way to offer comparable quality, whilst being one of the affordable services, you’re likely to be aggressive in every channel.
Putting the P(ieces) Together
So, there are several dynamic parts here. You can embark upon product, price, place, and promotion, in whichever order you wish to. But, you should consider the marketplace that you operate in as well as your competition.
Scalable marketing success would very much be based on getting all these aspects aligned. For example, if you’re measuring the success of your SEO by how many conversions you’ve generated through organic traffic, then you’ll be able to enhance your SEO by tweaking the product price.
The point here is, that great SEO doesn’t exist in a bubble. It’s a part of a wider marketing framework. So, as a marketer and SEO manager, you need to consider these aspects to make sure you can keep on improving the work that you do.
If you’ve got a product that’s not selling, you can try reconsidering each of the aspects individually. Is it the product? Is it the price? Or is it the promotion that’s not up to the mark?
However, by using the simple 4 Ps framework, to cross-examine your marketing strategies, you’ll certainly end up improving your results.
Abour Author: Lewis Donnelly is a digital marketing specialist working at DAPA in Northampton. SEO manager by day and writer by night, he is always enthusiastic about describing himself in the third person!