If you’re a part of Generation Z, then you would know that the world of business and marketing has evolved exponentially over time thanks to the power of technology and social media. Gone are the days when advertising and marketing was done mainly through radio and television advertisements. Today, the two terms, which were once used interchangeably, have grown to mean two totally different things. It might be safe to say that Marketing has become the superior word between the two, since businesses today have come to realize that advertising without having the right marketing strategy is not as effective.
There are a lot of ways businesses today are seeking to market their products, especially in these times of social media popularity. There is so much noise on social media about different businesses that it is difficult to get your content or product in the face of prospects.
As a result, marketers today are finding innovative ways to showcase their products to the world. Its no longer the traditional advertising we know; it is now part industry-driven and part creative thinking, to draw the customer’s attention by appealing to their emotions and hitting on key aspects of their needs.
If you’re active on any of the social media platforms, you might have probably come across a lot of marketers using different techniques to sell their products. The most popular ones you might have come across are Network, Referral, Affiliate and Content marketing. Other popular ones that are getting trendy include Google Ads and SEO optimization.
Most people who are not familiar with marketing trends might be confused as to what all these marketing techniques may actually mean. Business owners may also be wondering which of them might actually work for their business. People have figured out how important marketing techniques are to businesses and are now making it a money-making venture by specialize in one or more of the techniques mentioned above and selling their services to businesses in need of them.
This article will take you through four of these techniques i.e. Network marketing, Content marketing, Referral marketing and Affiliate marketing, what they mean, what they entail and give you a chance to choose the perfect technique for your business if you’re looking at using any of these channels.
This type of marketing has been in existence for over 50 years! It owes its origin to the California Vitamin Company, a food supplement company that started by direct selling their products to their sales personnel. They were encouraged to first use the product and then sell it to their friends and family in return for an extra income of $50. With time, their sales personnel began to introduce their friends and family to the system of buying the company’s products at a wholesale price and selling it to others. C.V.C, realizing where the trend was going, decided to turn it into a Multi-Level marketing company, where distributors earned cash by selling products and by introducing others to join the distribution stream.
Today, network marketing has become very popular and has proven to give companies the needed growth and sales profit they desire while giving customers a chance to also earn money by selling the products and introducing people to sell with them. Some of the popular Network marketing companies in Ghana are Max International and SuperLife.
So how exactly does network marketing work?
Network marketing is basically a business model that depends on a team of distributors in growing a business. This model has 3 main strategies in making money:
- lead generation
- recruiting and
- building and management.
More often than not, network marketing channels come in tiers or level, hence the other name for it is “Multi-Level Marketing”.
As a network marketer, you earn money by either selling products directly to people or introducing other people to the network. With each member you are able to introduce to the network, you get paid and go up higher on the level ladder. This increases your payment for the next member you introduce. This makes it a win-win situation for everyone at stake as the company gets to increase sales and get distributors for their products without having to struggle to get employees, and employees are encouraged to make more sales and generate leads for the company because they will get paid for it.
A business thinking of using multi-level marketing must be sure to have a solid marketing team at the core of the business. This way, your marketing will have a chance for long term success because it has a strong base of marketers. To achieve this base of strong marketers, hire people who are excited about your company and its products to be your marketers. A salesforce that is excited will lead to more sales and recruits because they share their excitement with other people and ultimately make them a part of your team.
You must have seen ads like “make money while you sleep” on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram, and you’ve probably wondered how that is even possible. Well, affiliate marketing makes it possible.
Affiliate marketing is a performance-based marketing approach that works by promoting the products of companies you like and earning a commission on each sale that is made through you. It usually has 3 sides;
- the company/merchant,
- the publisher/affiliate and
- the consumer.
The merchant is the one who has the product or service that needs to be promoted. He lists the product on an affiliate network site to be reviewed and picked up by affiliates to be marketed. The affiliates then advertise the products to prospective clients and earn a commission if someone makes a sale through them.
Affiliates can also be given payments based on PPC. PPC simply means pay per click, and so if anyone visits a site through a link they share anywhere at any time, they get paid for it.
Being a successful affiliate marketer means being able to put a company’s product or service in the face of customers as many times as possible. It requires patience, skill and persistence. However, once you get the hang of the game, you can make some good profit from it. Some of the popular affiliate networks are ClickBank, Blue Host, Amazon Affiliates and Snap Deal.
For businesses, Affiliate marketing offers a flexible, cost effective approach to advertising their business. It is easy to manage and has a positive impact on your business and brand as a whole.
Unlike other marketing methods, you choose who you want on your affiliate program and assess their suitability to your brand. By working with affiliates, you get a chance to advertise your products to a targeted traffic as your affiliates will know who exactly you want to advertise to because they understand your industry. It also gives your brand access to international markets.
If you want to set your business up for affiliate marketing, you can visit any of the affiliate networks listed above as a merchant and get the right affiliates to promote your products at a small fee.
One of the most popular marketing models being used by top brands is Referral marketing. Not only is it cost efficient, but has a quick costumer conversion rate and guarantees solid leads.
Referral marketing works by getting your existing customers to tell their friends about your products or services. It is different from affiliate marketing because here, the marketers are people who have tried and tested your product or services and are excited about them. This system is the most exciting because everyone involved benefits from it.
Take Uber Bolt for instance. By referring someone to download and sign up to their app, they get a new customer on their system. You get a discount on your next few rides and the new client also gets a discount on his rides. In the end, everyone is happy! With this system, Uber permanently increased sign ups by 60% and got 14 million users within 15 months!
Referral marketing has proven to be one of the most efficient marketing methods because it is done by people who have actually experienced a particular brand and can attest to it. Rewards also don’t necessarily need to be in cash and this makes it very convenient for companies and clients alike.
To run a successful referral campaign, you need to be able to entice your existing customers to spread the word by giving them attractive rewards. This can be in the form of discounts, points or freebies on their net purchase. You also need to make the prospective client more attracted to your products by giving them incentives as well. Your referral program must also be easy to use and systems around it must be clear.
You can list your business’s products and services on a third-party referral site as well and set your terms and incentives at a small fee. You can visit www.acme.bloopglobal.com if you want your business to be on a referral system or call/ WhatsApp (+233)245600275 or (+233)503442777 for more information.
From all indication, traditional marketing is becoming less and less effective. In today’s world, it is important to catch the attention of your customer base in the midst of all the noise from competitors. One way of doing this, is by making useful content the core of your marketing message. How? By entering content marketing.
Content marketing is the present and future of marketing. It is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing relevant, valuable and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience and drive profitable customer action. In simple words, it is appealing to the conscience and emotion of your customer base through the content you create and share with them. Instead of advertising your products and services directly, you give your customers relevant information that appeals to them and helps them solve their issues.
No matter what type of marketing tactics you use, content marketing should be a part of your process because quality content is part of all forms of marketing.
For your social media strategy to work, a content marketing strategy must come first. Posting about your business on social media without a clear, powerful message makes it irrelevant to customers. Most often than not, prospects and customers do not know how much they need your product till you show them exactly why they need it. That is the purpose of content marketing.
Content marketing is key to driving inbound traffic and leads for inbound marketing. It helps with SEO because business that publish high quality content consistently are more likely to pop up first and frequently in search engines.
Companies that engage in content marketing have increased sales. They also save cost because they spend less on advertising but are able to reach more people. And, they get better customers who are more loyal to them because they believe in their message.
If you want more insights on which marketing models to use for your business, you can take our free business audit to determine which one will best suit your business. You can also contact the Bloop Global team on (+233)245600275 or (+234)070040006610 for more business tips and support.