Spotting marketing myths and misconceptions can help you make informed decisions in your digital marketing campaign plans! We’ve gathered the most common digital marketing myths to debunk and help you invest in strategies that truly offer value.
- My Device is Listening to Me
- My Website is Enough
- Written Content is Dead
- Customers Will Find and Choose My Business Online Without Digital Marketing
- My Industry Doesn’t Benefit From Social Media
1. My Device is Listening to Me
Smart phones and many laptops are equipped with Siri, Alexa, Cortana or another AI bots designed to recognize your voice and follow certain commands. These bots can search the web, start and stop music from an app, start navigating to any destination and much more just from you talking to your phone.
So, in that sense, yes, your device can listen to, or hear you. But only when you ask it to.
When most people talk about their device listening to them, they mean that their device is always recording, paying attention to their conversations, and influencing their online advertising experience based on things they say. This is simply not true.
Retargeting is a common digital marketing practice. Advertisers can track which websites you visit, what products you browse or search, and what news stories you view using cookies. They then use the data gathered by the cookies to serve you ads based on your online activity or visits to specific websites.
For example, if you’re shopping for shoes online and visit Payless’s online store, Payless’s advertisers can retarget you with ads for different shoes you clicked on or added to your cart. Their competitors can also retarget you with similar products to try to fit your needs as well.
The same retargeting and tracking can’t be applied to voice recognition. Your devices only have access to your microphone through certain apps and are only triggered with certain phrases like “Hey, Siri” or “Hey, Google.” Before your microphone is activated, the apps always ask permission.
So, unless you activate the voice recognition through those triggers or have the apps with microphone permissions open, your device isn’t listening to your conversations and serving you ads based on your conversations.
The reason it’s important for small businesses to optimize their content and websites for voice search, is so the voice activated bots can easily crawl and serve relevant results when a user is actively and intentionally making a query.
For example, I can say, “Hey, Google. Find a pizza place near me that delivers.” The Google AI bot will then bring up local search results the same way it would if you had typed that query into the search bar. But if someone is just talking about wanting pizza for dinner, the bot won’t be activated and won’t serve you those restaurants or ads.
Advertisers are concerned about serving ads to users with a high purchase intent. People have conversations all the time about things they don’t plan to take action on. If advertisers used the general conversations people had to serve ads, they would waste a lot of money.
Don’t forgo optimizing your business’s online content for fear of playing into this myth! Voice search is becoming the more preferred way to search and it’s important that your content can be found and chosen online.
2. My Website is Enough
This used to be true, but it’s not anymore. A website alone is not a sufficient digital marketing strategy.
As the internet has grown and evolved, developers and programmers have created sophisticated ways for users to find relevant and useful information online.
Right now, there are over 1.6 billion websites on the internet. This saturation caused issues for both the website owners and the online users. This saturation is exactly why tools like local search, SEO, webpage indexing, crawling and other digital marketing tools were created: they help match the best content to user’s search queries.
Having a website is a foundational step in establishing your business’s online presence. But, if it’s not optimized and continually refreshed with new, useful content, it will get lost amongst the billions of other websites.
Only the websites, businesses and content that are optimized for online searches will be served in the competitive search market.
Taking advantage of paid ads, review marketing, local search, organic SEO and social media all play a role in increasing your business’s website’s traffic and, ultimately, increasing sales.
So, while your website is important, it will only truly work for your business if it’s easily servable by search engines.
3. Written Content is Dead
With the recent rise of video content, it might be tempting to assume that written content is an outdated practice. However, this isn’t the case.
While learning to produce quality video content, completely tossing your blog, newsletter or other written content strategies will damage your site’s online authority and credibility.
Search engine algorithms value site’s that are continually refreshed with new, optimized content. While video is becoming the preferred method of content consumption (especially among younger generations), video can be harder to produce regularly.
Equipment needs, filming, editing time and knowledge-base can be major hindrances to regularly posting video content. Even though phones have made video content creation more accessible than ever, videos can still be more time consuming than written content.
While starting up in the video space, continue writing content alongside your video content to keep your online presence fresh and credible.
4. Customers Will Find and Choose My Business Online Without Digital Marketing
Advertising is designed to meet consumers where they are at. Consumers want easy answers, convenient shopping and readily accessible information. If another business has invested in digital marketing and yours hasn’t, the other business will most likely be found and chosen by the user.
Today’s consumers don’t take the time to research and pick through each and every search result. They tend to trust the first page of search results and high quality ads over a business with no digital presence.
Customers also take a business’s reviews and social media presence into account when they are searching. These are all critical digital marketing strategies that shouldn’t be overlooked!
Traditional marketing efforts are still impactful, however, having those strategies be supplementary to digital marketing efforts is the better strategy. Consumers’ attention is online, so that’s where your business should be.
5. My Industry Doesn’t Benefit From Social Media
Every industry has a place on social media. Even if your competitors aren’t taking advantage of social media marketing, you should be.
The key here is understanding which social media platforms will work best for your industry and what kind of content will perform.
Industries that can have a difficult time on social media include healthcare, law and HVAC contractors. Healthcare professionals may feel limited by topic and image restrictions in place on certain platforms or not know what kind of content is engaging. Lawyers may be limited by confidentiality. HVAC contractors may find it challenging to know how to showcase their projects on social media in a compelling way.
However, hiring a social media expert can solve this problem. RevLocal offers social media marketing for a variety of industries and can tell you exactly what results to expect from our efforts.
Now that these digital marketing myths have been debunked, it’s up to you to shore up any gaps in your online marketing strategies!
RevLocal handles digital marketing for small businesses and multi-location brands. If you want to learn more, contact us for a free consultation or learn more about What We Do, Who We Serve and Who We Are