How to build a digital presence

Getting online is easy. Becoming well-known and established online is a bit harder. But there are measures you can take to build a good digital presence for your company.

By George Haddon-Hartle

There are certain things that just work when it comes to establishing yourself online.

In the current environment, there are lots of ways to achieve a good online presence. Luckily, they’re easily broken down in to 8 simple activities. Combined, they provide the building blocks for creating a strong presence out there.

 

01

Good content

Content is what makes the internet tick at the moment and if you’re not part of the game, you’re going to suffer from online anonymity for a long time.

Content comes in various different forms: blogs, eBooks, videos, pictures, infographics, podcasts, white papers, guides. The list is long. But you only need to produce the kind of content you think your audience will enjoy.

People love a good blog, or video, or infographic. In fact, they love anything that is vaguely interesting to them, something that will give them some sort of value, be it information or inspiration. If your content aims to benefit your audience, it will benefit you by increasing the traffic to your website.

Good content helps boost your search rankings too. The search engines see you’re uploading regular content that is relevant to your field so they will, over time, move your website up the search rankings.

02

Social media

Like content, social media is a key part of establishing yourself online. The trick is to go where your audience is. There’s absolutely no point having a Twitter account if all of your target audience uses Facebook and Pinterest. If you’re a B2C company, there’s little point sharing content on LinkedIn.

Check out your competition and see where they are getting the most engagement – likes, shared and re-tweets.

The way social media works – it’s all about sharing, interacting and engaging. Share your own content, share other people’s content and share other people’s social media content. A good rule of thumb is about a third of each – but seems to be changing.

Interact with people on social media, get involved in conversations: this increases the amount of people that see you online and boosts your digital presence.

Social media is one of the best ways to share all of that great content you’ll be producing. Your audience numbers automatically go up when you use social media, meaning your digital presence increases. As you’re more active on social media, your digital presence on your platforms will grow, which will extend to your website as more traffic comes your way.

03

Emails

Emails are still one of the best ways to interact with people. They allow you to develop new relationships with people that sign up to your mailing list, strengthen existing bonds you have, and share relevant content with them. Email is all about having a consistent presence online.

04

Consistency

A big factor of building an online presence is being consistent. You need to consistently:

  • Post blogs. At least once a week.
  • Update social media. At least a few times a day.
  • Engage with people on social media: share, like, retweet. On a regular but consistent basis. Don’t share 10 posts one week but nothing the next two. Better to share a small number of posts regularly.
  • Send emails (newsletters, promotions, new products, etc.). At least once a month.

By being consistent you’re showing people that you’re around to stay, that you’re active and vocal, and you have at least one foot in the issues and hot topics of your industry. People are much more likely to interact with a company that has these traits, meaning your digital presence will grow.

05

Design

It’s all well and good having excellent content, but if it’s ugly content people won’t like it or share it, and you’re efforts to build a strong digital presence will be in vain. If you have a good design across your website, emails, social media, and other ways you choose to promote yourself online, people will be drawn to the content you are producing. The customer experience is one of the most important things online and by employing good design you can ensure all of your customers are indeed having the best experience.

06

Optimise

What works today may not necessarily work tomorrow. The web is always changing. This is why optimising everything you do is key, and making sure you regularly update your content. Google changes how its search algorithm works on a regular basis. A small tweak can sometimes mean your website rank changes. Find out what changed and optimise your content so that it reflects that change and takes you back to where you were!

Another good example is social media. Sometimes, people move away from social media channels or new ones pop up and you’re audience goes there. By being aware of these changes you can optimise where you operate, making sure you’re still working towards a strong digital presence.

07

Analyse

Building a digital presence is not a quick and easy process. It takes time and dedication, consistency and analysis. These steps can help you to put the foundations in place for creating a digital presence you’re happy with but it is an ongoing process.

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About the Author

George is a CSS Ninja. This means he can build anything to be pixel perfect to the design. George is in the records books for having the longest name in known history and also likes Pi. It takes approximately 3.142 years to type his email address.

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