When small businesses get started, their focus is often on how to get their first group of customers through the door. They may rely on traditional forms of advertising, such as print ads and coupon mailers or even big signs on the side of the road. They may trust that since they know, they offer a good product or service, it’s only a matter of time until customers will find their way to them. While this strategy may bring in a trickle of business, there is a better and easier way. The method is known as digital marketing. The popularity of digital marketing is on the rise for all businesses irrespective of their niches and industries. This method of marketing and promoting your business is not a phase that will die; it’s a revolution that will remain and become better and better with time. Different small business owners may come up with a variety of reasons to avoid this form of marketing, but in the end, procrastination is still procrastination.
More than the reasons you have to avoid or delay digital marketing for your oil and gas company, we have reasons that prove that this marketing method is highly advantageous for your business. Here are ten out of the countless benefits of digital marketing for oil and gas companies.
Let People Know You Exist
When you set-up your oil and gas company, the first thing you must do is let people know. If you were a gift store, you could’ve printed pamphlets and flyers to hand out to people. Moreover, you could’ve also directed people to your shop by putting up hoardings and banners. But for a business like yours, you can’t do that. Nobody would be interested in reading flyers about the oil fields you have. For your customer base, you need to pick marketing and advertising strategies that actually make sense and grab attention. Digital marketing for your oil and gas company will be the ideal kickstart. Firstly, you must start with creating a perfect website – a website that gives out every information about your business, the services you offer, pricing (optional), contact details, etc. Once you have your website, you must start blogging. Write high-quality blogs on topics relevant to your industry. The topics for blogs can be as easy as “How to ensure safety during oil extraction.” Or you can go in-depth, conduct researches and surveys, create reports, and share that information. And why just blogs, digital marketing lets you put up infographics, podcasts, videos, and a lot more. Once you have enough content, you can share it on social media channels and increase the exposure. The motive is to let people know that you exist. And digital marketing is one of the best ways to do so. A well-developed website, a blog featuring quality and useful articles, a social media channel that is highly interactive are some of the ways by which a business can build its brand.
Be Where Everybody Is
It is necessary to market on the channels where your target audience is there. Spending time to work on your marketing strategies and then actually doing it can all go in vain if you are on the wrong track. Therefore, it is always better to choose channels that your target audience uses. If you see, digital marketing channels is where people tend to spend most of their time. Don’t believe it? Let us give you some real information! We Are Social and Hootsuite’s latest collection of Global Digital 2019 reports reveals that internet users are growing by an average of more than one million new users every day. According to the same report, there are 4.39 billion internet users in 2019. Moreover, worldwide social media user numbers have grown to almost 3.5 billion at the start of 2019. And just like these, the numbers for overall usability of digital channels is too high. This means that people are already using various digital channels. All you have to do is focus on these areas, create marketing and advertising strategies, and get started. You don’t have to wait for people to come and use the platforms as they are already there. Focus on creating distinguishable strategies that will bring you success and let you outperform your competitors. There’s so much you can do using digital marketing opportunities.
Being Present Locally is Simple
When you start a new business, along with marketing it, you also need to be visible for relevant searches. That’s how people will come to know about the services you provide. Gone are the days when businesses could book their slots on online directories like YellowPages. Of course, these services are still popular as a large percentage of the crowd still relies on online directories. But the truth is that online searches, especially the ones conducted via mobile phones, are replacing these online directories and phonebooks year after year. According to Brightlocal’s yearly survey of 2018, 97% of consumers have used the internet to find local businesses in the last year. For the same, you need to work on the local SEO (search engine optimization) of your business. Local search engine marketing, is an incredibly effective way to market your local business online, as it helps businesses promote their products and services to local customers at the exact time they’re looking for them online. Getting ranked high in local online searches is a big deal in today’s marketplace. More than half the customers use the internet to perform local searches to get professional services. No matter how you slice it, residing at the top of local search engine rankings in your niche is what operating a successful business in today’s traffic-driven marketplace is all about. In order to truly succeed in local search marketing, your business will need to make both organic and social media efforts. Claiming Google My Business and other listings, putting the right information, adding pictures and videos, running pay-per-click ads, using the right location-specific keywords, and being in line with Google’s latest SEO algorithms will help you appear higher when people look for oil and gas companies in your city or state.
Targeting Becomes Easier
Another amazing benefit of digital marketing for oil and gas companies is that it helps in targeting different sets of audiences like none other marketing types. Consider traditional marketing; imagine if you had to put up a billboard. The billboard will be exposed to everyone, even the untargeted people. If you wish to target businesses that sell oil products, you may think that advertising in the area with several such companies can be a good idea. But the reality is that people who aren’t your target audience will also look at the billboard. There is no harm if the untargeted view the traditional marketing efforts, but it is always better to target the right masses.
Digital marketing makes this happen. Whether it is PPC ads or social media marketing, digital marketing lets you divide your target audience into the right segments and talk to them directly. With digital marketing, you can ensure that the right consumers are viewing your content. SEO allows you to reach those consumers who are searching the web for content and topics that are relevant to your business. PPC, display, and social media advertising enables you to target those who are most likely to be interested in your products or services based on demographic information and general characteristics. Marketing your services and products online gives you the ability to target your audience based on demography. This allows you to concentrate your efforts on the audience that you truly want to offer your products or services to. And the benefits of digital marketing for oil and gas companies aren’t limited to the location you are located at. You can target global audiences with the right digital marketing tactics. Within several months of following aggressive SEO techniques, you can expect a huge number of hits your website, secure millions of viewers and reach audiences from across the world.
Capture Mobile Users
With the increasing number of smartphone users, the pattern of accessing information online is also changing. Previously, people used to access digital marketing channels like the internet, websites, social media, online forums, and a lot more through their desktops. The trend changed to laptops, then tablets, and then to smartphones. As you can see, year after year, mobile usability is increasing. The popularity of internet access through mobile devices is at the rise. As of February 2019, mobile devices accounted for 48% of web page views worldwide. Not only this, the popularity of mobile-based social media platforms like Snapchat and Instagram is increasing every minute. And not to forget, the rise of mobile applications and games that facilitate mobile ads and in-app ads. This means that businesses have an immense chance of capturing people’s attention and converting them into leads. People who use the internet and other channels via their smartphones are the ones looking to take immediate action. You can make the most of this and target a lot of potential clients. Digital marketing can help you reach people on mobile devices, tablets, and desktop computers. Digital marketing lets you make the most of mobile marketing so that you can market and promote your oil and gas business. Starting with the website, you can make your website mobile-friendly and inculcate responsive website design so that your mobile users don’t miss out on any content or functionality as that of web users. When you claim Google My Business, you also work on mobile SEO. The listings will appear to your mobile users when they look for a similar business. Look at the images below:
The first image is from the search results found on desktop and the second image is from a smartphone. As you see, claiming Google My Business helped these oil and gas companies in Calgary to appear in the top Google searches.
You also have to help mobile users discover you, using mobile SEO and delivering convenience so that users can easily access your products and services and get what they need. Apart from the website, you can create social media profiles that your target audience can use via mobile applications to be in touch with you.
Meet Your Secondary Goals
As a new business or small business owner, your primary goal may be to establish brand awareness, create brand awareness, and get more leads. For the same, you invest in different types of marketing and advertising. But when you choose to go digital, you may get success slightly quicker than traditional marketing. It takes weeks and months for your clients to identify your brand whenever an advertisement comes up or recall your oil and gas company whenever they need oil and gas-related services and products. But when it comes to digital marketing for oil and gas company, meeting the primary goals. Now, you already know that the basics of digital marketing are website creation, creating social media profiles, running ads, and much more. But is that where your struggle stops? Not at all! Getting more website traffic, readability on your blogs, popularity on your social media profiles, and more clicks on social media and PPC ads is what you expect when you take your first step in the digital sphere. Thus, these expectations become your secondary goals. When you carry out the digital marketing efforts in the right direction, you can achieve these secondary goals as well. Various marketing practices including local SEO, social media marketing, and paid advertising involve targeting. When you create content that is very targeted, you can expect quality traffic in abundance. Likewise, when you create relevant and engaging content and use the right hashtags for your Facebook and Twitter profiles regularly, more and more people will know about your presence. This increases the chances of gaining more popularity and clicks on your social media profiles.
Multitasking is Possible
Taking the same example of traditional marketing using billboards – the traditional form of marketing limits your ability to market on different platforms. Yes, you can surely market and advertise your new oil and gas business on various channels such as outdoor signs, electronic mediums, and print options. But doing so requires a lot of time, efforts and a big budget. Digital marketing for oil and gas company can let you do this without burning a big hole in your pocket. When you opt for online marketing, you aren’t limited to only one channel or means of marketing. You can create a marketing mix with strategies that spread across different channels and types of marketing and advertising. And all this can be done simultaneously. For instance, if you are creating a website and uploading blogs on it, you can simultaneously create an outstanding email marketing strategy as well. Or even better, you can send the links or snippets of every blog as an email newsletter. And social media marketing and PPC advertisements can be on-going efforts. Moreover, you can combine all your digital marketing efforts so that in the end, you have a complete web of digital marketing tactics. When targeting your audience, diversification plays an important role in your marketing and advertising campaigns. Diversification means that you can use a variety of tactics and strategies in order to reach your prospects. With online marketing, diversification becomes a lot easier. At the same time, you can run varying marketing techniques simultaneously to implement your marketing campaign better.
Nothing’s More Cost-effective
Marketing and advertising cost is one of the biggest financial burdens that businesses have to bear. While big businesses may not have so much trouble spending millions for marketing and advertising, for small businesses, this may be impossible or an unbearable nightmare. When it comes to traditional marketing, it’s very difficult for small businesses with limited budgets to compete with larger businesses for ad space. However, with affordable digital marketing tactics, small businesses can get more for their marketing investments. Marketing via digital platforms offers a more affordable alternative to the traditional method. They create as much impact yet costing way less.
Creating social media profiles costs you nothing. By hiring a great website designing professional, you can design the right website that’s excellent from SEO and mobile usability point of views. The fees of this professional and the cost of website development and designing is less compared to other expensive ways to market. Email marketing or running advertising campaigns on social media platforms cost little when compared to traditional marketing techniques. Also, you can subscribe to an email marketing provider and send transactional or direct emails to thousands of customers on your mailing list, all this at affordable costs. Moreover, digital marketing offers a substantial return on small investments. While traditional marketing tactics also often come with various hidden costs, the only cost to digital marketing is time. SEO, content marketing, and social media engagement take time to work their magic. However, there are still digital marketing tactics such as pay-per-click, display, and social media advertising that can produce quicker results.
Study Competitors’ Strategies For Real
Business is all about being one step ahead of your competitors. The oil and gas companies that do not care about competition ultimately vanish in the long run. Competitor analysis lets you keep your finger on the pulse of your industry so that you know which strategies will give you maximum benefit. Moreover, you can quickly identify industry trends and plan your strategies accordingly. It gives you a better understanding of the things that your potential customers love or hate so that you can develop better products or services. The analysis will also let you see what tactics aren’t working well for your competitors. Based on the analysis, you can assume that the same tactics won’t work for you either. It is a critical part of your entire marketing plan. Imagine if you had to see how your competitors are moving ahead in your niche. You would look at how they publicize and see their outdoor marketing strategies. But is that it? What if some outdoor signs are beyond your reach? You won’t be able to keep track of all of their strategies. But when you try to look at their digital marketing strategies, the task is much simpler. The simplest way of doing this is by keeping an eye on their blogs, social media profiles, online ads, and much more if you know who your direct competitors are. Every digital marketing tactic is out there that you can take a look at.
Talking about how digital marketing can help you – firstly, it will help you in identifying your SEO competitors. To perform well on the internet, you don’t just have to beat your direct competitors located in your city. You need to outperform the ones that rank high on the internet. So when you look for “gas suppliers in Edmonton” on Google, every search result that appears is your competitor. And this isn’t just the end.
Once you know how digital marketing strategies and competitor analysis go hand-in-hand, you can use comparison use various competitor analysis tools to keep track of all of their efforts.
Establish Long-term Relations
In traditional marketing, the only way to create relationships is by handing out marketing materials of your business. Businesses often give their business cards or pamphlets to their customers after or during a sale. However, what happens is often on such occasions, customers lose the cards or misplace them. The only time the buyer would remember about the card is when they had the intention of visiting the seller again. In the end, most customers do not remember the seller, forget the card; hence, this marketing method does not work to convince buyers to return. Apart from all these benefits, digital marketing for oil and gas companies helps in creating and maintaining long-term relations with existing and potential clients. Digital marketing boosts sales which keep your small business afloat. However, digital marketing also does something more, which has a greater long-term impact. It enables you to build relationships. Building relationships with clients earn you repeat business. Your clients will be loyal to your business. As a result, they will be happy to refer your business to others, which, as you probably guessed, leads to more sales and loyal customers. It’s a never-ending cycle of goodness, which many businesses are now seeing for themselves. You can easily collect email addresses of their prospects, which you can use in reaching out and forming a relationship with the customer. You can provide customers with valuable information such as information about the availed service, available coupons on their products and services, special discounts and new products through a short and crisp email. Aside from email addresses, they can also use social media for consistent interaction with customers.
Acknowledging all the benefits that internet marketing can offer your business, developing a professional internet marketing campaign can help you retain your existing customer base and attract new customers to your product or brand. This, in turn, will help you grow your business and increase your return on investment (ROI) over the long term. So, all that you need now is see which digital marketing opportunities work the best for your oil and gas business. If you can’t decide the right channels or the basic digital marketing strategies to start with, hire a digital marketing firm. A well-known all-service marketing firm will understand what you plan to achieve by marketing and advertising, know how much time and money you are ready to invest, and suggest the right path to digital success.
Ali Salman is an online marketing strategist who have worked with Coca-Cola, Extreme Pita, Mucho Burrito, KIA, Honda and other Fortune 500 companies. Ali Salman now heads Rapid Boost Marketing - Canada's fastest growing search marketing agency. RBM clients include Fortune 500's and medium size businesses across North America. Ali as RBM CMO leads his team in building and managing quality, high-performing and cost-effective interactive campaigns and programs for our company's customers and partners. In his career, he has significantly improved campaign performance for large brands such as Government of Alberta, Liberal Party, Workopolis, Cathay Pacific, as well as medium to large retailers and high-tech B2B-enterprise niches.
Ali and his team develop online promotional concepts that spark viral growth through search and social media for RBM clients, devising strategies that use search engines and more to reach key demographic segments in the ways they're most likely to be receptive. Ali Salman also oversees corporate marketing initiatives for Rapid Boost Marketing, including strategic communications counsel, public and analyst relations and client education programming.