Digital has become one of the key marketing channels required as part of a successful marketing strategy. If you think how often you refer to an app on your phone, "Google" a question, check your Facebook account or look at the images your connections have uploaded to Instagram? How many emails do you send or receive each day? The marketing world has changed, so digital marketing is ignored at a high risk!
Boat owners are no different and many millions of them are digitally active. 37 million Facebook users have "sailing" as a key interest, 62 million are interested in "boats". Are these potential customers to help you grow your business?
Digital marketing is often thought of as Social Media Marketing. This is a very important part of the digital environment, but the scope and potential is much greater. Whether you are sitting at your desktop computer, using your tablet on a train, or using your mobile phone sitting on your yacht, digital marketing is part of life.
Do you need The Knot Agency to help you with your social media marketing? Not really! Can you do it yourself? Of course you can! It is not rocket science, regardless of what others may tell you.
The starting point is to work out what you want to achieve. What are your goals and objectives? Are you looking to get more brand recognition, launch a new product, improve customer loyalty?
What digital platforms/channels should you use? You need to decide which specific platforms will help you achieve your goals best. We believe it is better to pick no more than 3 different platforms and make sure you are really good on each of them, rather than having a poor presence on many. In the yacht market Facebook, Instagram and Youtube provide the best social media audiences for consumer engagement orientated campaigns. Linkedin is best for trade orientated campaigns.
Now comes the more difficult bit. How do you engage the yachting marketplace? The answer is simple, the reality is more complex. The simple answer is to provide interesting content. When we say interesting content, we mean fantastic, captivating and engaging content. This is more difficult. How many businesses are out in the digital environment putting up inspiring quotes, telling you where they will be this weekend, lecturing you on why their products are best? Is this interesting? How much of this can you handle? There is nothing wrong with any of the aforementioned, but it will not make you stand out in an increasingly crowded digital world. You have to think creatively. What do you personally find interesting? What make makes you click the link?
Remember digital marketing is about engagement. It allows you to have conversations with your clients and potential clients. It allows you to gain their loyalty. It is a method of sharing how exciting your business is, how great your products are, how fantastic your team is to deal with and how much you care. It is a tool allowing you to listen to your customers and adapt from what they are telling you.
How often should you post? If you have something interesting to share, then we recommend sharing it as quickly as possible. If you do not have content you think your customers will be interested to find out about then it is better to stay quiet until you do have something! Some people recommend posting onto social media many times per day, but you do not want to annoy your customers. Social spam just means your customers stop listening. Common sense is the best approach.
Having a great social media presence requires a lot of time and planning. Preparation and creativity are key. This is often where we can help you at The Knot Agency. We encourage our clients to have a go themselves to start with. We provide guidance and support/boost their actions to maximise return whilst minimising cost. A collaborative approach often provides the best result. We are yacht market experts, but you will always know your business better than anyone else (however hard we try to get to know you). Membership of our Yacht Marketing Club provides excellent value to have our support for marketing your business.
There are many channels, but you only need to concentrate on the places where your customers are found.
Yammer (company network based)
Social Media is important but not the only digital marketing option available.
Other digital marketing approaches include websites, blogs, email marketing, pay per click, search engine optimisation, display advertising, content marketing, affiliate marketing and online PR.
If you wish to place digital adverts then YBW.com or associated timeinc magazine websites are very good starting points. There are many other choices which we list below.