3 Content Marketing Strategies to increase e-commerce sales

3 Content Marketing Strategies to increase e-commerce sales

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Author Note:
To help make this learning experience easier and more interactive, I created 4 free activities for you. You can download them via the menu under freebies or within this article. If you love this article & want more content marketing tips, consider grabbing the master content guide I made for you. It has 15 tips, 15 activities, graphics, content examples and more. Learn more HERE.

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You know what I hate about social media? Anyone can create an account, give halfway solid tips, grow a following and somehow they still never tell you the real secrets to growth and building an online community.

Everyone will say:

 “you need to build a community”, okay, but HOW?

“You need to establish emotional connections”, okay, but HOW?

“You need to give people a reason to engage with you”, OKAY, BUT HOW?

“You need to post consistently”, Okay, but what am i posting, why, when, and HOW do i develop a strategy to do it right?

I’m sure you’ve had the same frustrations as me every time you see tip based videos or content online, you ask for the how and they almost always ignore you.

I think it’s very telling when people do this because you can tell that either they have no idea what they’re doing, or they’re penny pinchers so they want to nickel and dime you for everything they can instead of just committing to being a content creator that offers unmatched value.

The good news? Oh yes, of course I have good news to share with you. Since I know exactly how you feel, I'm going to answer your questions & show you the top 3 content marketing strategies that helped me go from 0 to 17K followers between Twitter, Instagram, & Tiktok.

I will also share tips on how I grew my email list to 3,000, scrapped it and got it back to 1500 subs in 6 months. So, if this sounds of interest to you, keep reading - it only gets better from here.

To get started, let’s review the 3 Strategies to master for success in content marketing:

  1. Set your SMART goals, KPIs & Metrics BEFORE you start marketing.
  2. Set your budget for Marketing (advertising, graphic design, influencers, landing pages, copy, photography & new product campaigns) BEFORE you reach out to any professionals for assistance.
  3. Learn to work smarter and use one piece of content in multiple ways. Here we will review how to use one youtube video in 6 different ways to reduce the amount of content you create while maximizing your contents value.

Sidenote: Claim your FREEBIE content list that has over 25 creative ideas you can use to create engaging content for the month.

Marketing SMART goals, KPIs & Metrics

To begin, let’s go over what specifically SMART Goals are.

SMART is an acronym for:

S - Specific

M - Measurable

A - Attainable

R - Realistic / Relevant

T - Timely

It’s important to incorporate this into every single goal you set because without them, it means that you’re creating goals without a real intent to crush them. Since you’re reading this, its safe to assume that you want to not only crush the goals you’re setting, but crush future goals in the process.

Now, if your goals don’t incorporate each of these components, don’t worry,, not only are we going to go over this a bit more, but we created a new freebie to help you get started after you read this article.

Side-note: Download your SMART Goals activity HERE

Setting SMART goals can do wonders for your brand & personal life because it helps you understand what specifically needs to be done, how you will determine if it was successful, the resources you need, and the deadline it all must be done by. As you’ve seen thus far, its easy to set goals. However, it’s harder to crush them when you feel unsure of what to do with those goals once you set them.

Let’s go over good and bad examples of SMART goals for clarity:

Bad: I want to make $1,000

Good: I want to make $1,000 online by December 31st using email marketing & Twitter to push traffic to my website. To accomplish this, I will need to push at a minimum 2,000 visitors with 3,000 views & create a bundle deal with the most popular products that’s virtually 

irresistible. I will track my campaigns success through the shopify marketing and analytics reports, while also compiling weekly data in an excel spreadsheet for 4 weeks. 

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Bad: I want to grow my twitter followers to 5,000.

Good: I want to grow my twitter followers to 5,000 by the end of February 2022. I will accomplish this by following & engaging with 5 new people in my industry everyday, commenting regularly on relevant industry posts, & sharing 3 valuable threads a week. To track my progress, I will take a screenshot of my analytics every Friday for the next 12 weeks & review them every 4 weeks to build repetitive behaviors around what post & comments performed the best.

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Now, keep in mind that your SMART goals do not have to be as long or detailed as my examples to get the job done. They really just need to touch on each area required, but they can still be simple goals. 

Also, I highly recommend timing how long it takes you to complete this activity, you should get faster at it the more you practice. If you aren’t getting faster, maybe you can find more efficient ways to get the ball rolling. Whatever you do, don’t give up - just keep practicing. 

Sidenote: Download your SMART Goals activity HERE

Setting Marketing Budgets


Before you can begin planning marketing and advertising campaigns, you need to understand the difference between marketing and advertising to see why the requirements are different.

Marketing is committing to researching market needs to create products, packages and services your ideal customers need to solve problems they may or may not be aware of.

Typically, marketing leads to organic sales and lead generation through content marketing on typically  free or low cost platforms like blogging, email marketing, and social media sites. During this step, the main goal is to plan, implement and narrate activities to attract ideal customers organically. 

So, instead of paying for advertisements, influencers or PR boxes, you may instead be paying for landing pages, copywriters, websites, market research, sales strategies and building successful sales funnels.

On the other hand, advertising is a market communications process used to raise awareness for a brands marketing efforts, products, and services. To successfully advertise also typically requires running advertisements, hiring influencers, sending out PR boxes, radio ads for local 

awareness etc. You cannot have a successful advertising campaign without first handling all requirements of marketing because advertising is one small component of marketing. 

Now that we’ve established the difference between marketing and advertising, let’s go over how to set a campaign budget.

Before you look at anyone’s prices, look at your pockets. It doesn’t matter how much someone charges if you don’t have a budget in mind and expected ROI (return on investment). If you do not have an operating budget for your business, now is the time to create one. 

When creating your budget, keep in mind that advertising and marketing cannot be the last things you plan to budget for. Without adequate advertising and marketing efforts, how do you plan to stay in business? How do you plan to raise awareness for what you’re doing? How do you plan to keep the clients you do have?

The truth is, without proper planning you will not be able to successfully do any of these things. Which is why it's important to note that to have successful content marketing efforts, you need to understand your budget, the quality of labor you can afford and what those results will produce for your ROI.

So, let’s go over how I like to plan campaign budgets + I created a FREE  campaign budgets worksheet for you, you can grab that HERE.

How to set a Marketing budget


Step 1:
Ask yourself financial questions that will require self reflection, promote research, and financial considerations for your available resources.

Consider asking these questions:

  • What (if any) is our company's gross revenue
    • If the company is not producing revenue, how much money do I have monthly to invest into the company?
  • Of this money, how much is left after all fixed expenses? 
  • Where do I usually spend most of the money? Why? 
  • What expenses can I reduce?

Step 2: Review the average marketing and advertising expenses for your industry & business model.

Whatever you do, don’t skip over this step. If you do, you will find that you’re either spending too little to compete effectively or that you’re overspending compared to those who are already successful at what they offer.

For example, The Bank For Canadian Entrepreneurs recently shared the average marketing budget for a small business. On average, it cost less to plan a marketing campaign for B2B sales models, with the average being 2% - 5% of the company's monthly revenue. In comparison, with a B2C business model, the recommended marketing budget would be 5% - 10% of the company's monthly revenue. 

Depending on the industry you’re in, it could vary significantly. I did a little research for you to show what different industries marketing budgets are, check out the table below.

Sidenote: If you love this article & want more content marketing tips, consider grabbing the master content guide I made for you. It has 15 tips, 15 activities, graphics, content examples and more. Learn more HERE.

Recommended marketing budget revenue percentage for 7 industries

Industry / Business Type

Recommended % of revenue

Consumer Services

15%

Technology + Software

15%

Education

11%

Retail + Wholesale

10%

Transportation

8%

Construction

13%

Consumer packaged goods

25%

 

Source: Creative Online - What is a good marketing budget? How much should you spend on marketing? 

Once you do the research, ask yourself these questions: 

  • What is the specific number you can dedicate to marketing? Why? 
  • What percentage of your monthly revenue will you dedicate to marketing? Why? 
  • What are the results you want from your campaigns?
  • What results can you realistically expect with your budget?
  • If you aren’t on track to meet your goals with your current marketing budget, what can you do to improve your ROI & increase your budget?

Sidenote: Download your FREE campaign & advertising budget activity HERE. 

Step 3: Take your monthly marketing budget and divide it by 30. This will give you the amount you can spend daily to accomplish your goals.

Although this is pretty simple to calculate, I did create a table for you so you can see how much you can spend daily on marketing with the budget you have.

Monthly Marketing Budget
Daily Marketing Budget
$250
$ 8.30
$350
$ 11.66
$500
$ 16.66
$700
$ 23.33
$1,000
$ 33.33
$1,500
$ 50
$2,000
$ 66.66
$3,000
$ 100.00

 

The ROI you generate from your marketing budget depends on several factors including but not limited to:

  • Your industry
  • Your business model
  • The types of advertising channels you use
  • The type of marketing campaigns you have
  • The length of your campaigns
  • The professionals you hire 
  • Your keywords CPC
  • The website / landing pages imagery and copywriting
  • Your content marketing strategy

It’s important to note that having a larger marketing budget doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll be a huge success. Plenty of large corporations with million dollar budgets have gone under, so don’t let having a smaller budget discourage you. Start where you are with what you have, whether your daily budget is $10 or $300, start with what you have & go from there. 

Sidenote: I created a FREE campaign budgets worksheet for you, you can grab that HERE


Step 4: Review your current marketing strategies before you decide on any new marketing task

  • Reviewing marketing strategies you’re currently using will help you understand what your brand lacks, what it’s great at and what small improvements can be made within reason.
  • This can also point out weaknesses that absolutely must change with your digital marketing and branding to produce more ideal results from your advertisements.
  • Taking a step back to review what you’re currently doing can also show what professionals you should consider hiring or atleast having consultations with.

Step 5: Determine your KPIs

A KPI is a type of metric for business, but not all metrics are KPIs, which is the small difference between the two. KPIs specifically help you track the performance of your campaigns and if they’re on track to make your campaign successful.

When determining KPIs always remember they are usually:

  • Actionable: Can it change as needed?
  • Directional: Is it improving the company's results?
  • Practical: Does it work well with current processes?
  • Quantitative: Can it be numerically measured?

The most popular KPIs are:

  • Counting new customers retained
  • Customer Lifetime value / how long the customer shops with you
  • ROI for Ads
  • Social media growth
  • Brand awareness rates
  • Increasing email signups
  • Increasing email CTR (Click-thru rate)
  • Increase return customer rates
  • Improving conversion rates
  • Increasing content shares
  • Increasing website traffic from a specific source
  • Increasing customer referrals received
  • Improving profit by a %

Questions to ask to determine KPIs:

  • What are your quarterly goals?
  • What will happen if you reach these goals?
  • How will you measure your KPI progress?
  • What role do you play in meeting these KPIs?
  • What types of professionals will you need to meet your KPIs?
  • What deadlines will you set?
  • What campaigns will potentially help you achieve these KPIs?

For more information, check out this short resource - Exact Drive: What are key performance indicators in marketing?

Step 6: Create your strategy

Now that we’ve discussed SMART goals, finances, marketing / advertising and KPIs, let’s start building a simple 5 step marketing strategy. Pull together your work from all the activities and fill in what's missing from the list.

Step 1: Review your current metrics & business standing

Step 2: Set SMART goals for how you want to improve based on your current situation

Step 3: Create actionable steps to take to work towards your goals + the budget 

Step 4: Complete the steps, create content, launch campaign & monitor as needed

Step 5: Document campaign & prepare to review data

Please note, executing this may require you to hire professionals for guidance and assistance. Which will be especially true if you need to revamp parts of your business that you do not know how to do. 

For example, if you need to create a new landing page, website, logo, branding concept, or graphics & you do not have the skill set to do these things - prepare to outsource them. These need to be calculated into your marketing budget. If you do not have the budget for this, consider saving up for it or looking into business grants and loans.

Step 7:Review, Revise, Repeat

Your job is never done as a marketing professional or someone who is marketing a business. This requires consistent efforts in revising, editing and repeated processes to get it right. Even when you get it right, it will still be work, it will just get a little easier each time you do this.

Keep in mind, you should do this for every campaign because it's the only real way to track campaign success and determine if it's worth continuing investing in. If you’re not ready to 

commit to marketing, are you truly ready to run a business or campaigns to any extent? That’s something we all have to ask ourselves because the commitment required to run a successful campaign can be very tiring. But if done correctly, it’ll be well worth the reward.

Sidenote: If you love this article & want more content marketing tips, consider grabbing the master content guide I made for you. It has 15 tips, 15 activities, graphics, content examples and more. Learn more HERE.

Learn to use one piece of content in multiple ways.

You may think making the most content possible is the answer to your solution. But the truth is, you probably have enough content, you just aren't maximizing it in the best way possible. I suggest that you not make more content until you learn how to get multiple uses out of the content you have.

For example, here’s how you can use one piece of content multiple times:

  • Write & publish a Blog, if you write a super long blog post like this article (2500 words+)  then publish a master post and break it down into 3 smaller blog post (700 words each) so now you have one to post each week for the month
  • Make a YouTube video touching all the points of the blog + three shorter videos to go with the shorter blog post
  • Turn all of the audios into podcast episodes, now you’ll have 4 episodes complete
  • Edit all 4 videos down to tiktoks, this could easily produce 10-15 tip, hack and advice based videos
  • Turn these tiktoks into 10-15 Pinterest idea pins
  • Turn the blog post into 4-6 twitter threads
  • Create a weekly email newsletter for each blog post + with additional exclusive tips.
  • Create an IG feed slideshow for each blog post, so that will be 4 feed post
  • Create 2 story post to promote each new feed post before and after they drop, for a total of 8 story post
  • Share the youtube videos to IG TV, this will give you 4-8 new IG TV post for a new series.

Now you’re using 1 piece of content 68 ways that are all interconnected & made to promote 1-2 offers. Instead of creating 68 pieces of new content that may not flow together as well as the strategy just outlined for you.

Be sure to grab the content utility checklist, it can help you see all of the ways you can use your content across multiple platforms so that you can spend less time creating and more time perfecting other aspects of your business.

Doing this allows you to spend less time brainstorming content ideas and more time publishing content you know for a fact that your audience needs. With this method, you will also have so much valuable content to share for the month that you can better map out strategies and collect enough data to determine if what you’re discussing is of interest to your audience.

Side-note: If you love this article & want more content marketing tips, consider grabbing the master content guide I made for you. It has 15 tips, 15 activities, graphics, content examples and more. Learn more HERE.

If you enjoyed this blog post, please share it on twitter @Touchedbyty, tag us and tell everyone what you learned. Feel free to share the graphics, screenshots of the best tips & give us feedback so we can make the best content for you possible.

P.S. If you want to do all of these things, but need more guidance, consider checking out our content marketing services.

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