The digital world is a crowded arena. Competition is more fierce than ever as businesses of all shapes and sizes are competing to have their voice heard.

So how do you give yourself the best chance of standing out? Essentially, this comes down to knowing exactly what your goals are, who your audience is, and what the most effective ways of getting their attention are. To help you out, here are six simple digital marketing tips to consider.

1. Know what you’re marketing for

For SMEs, the decision to invest in brand awareness or lead generation can be a tricky one. Building brand awareness is about increasing the size of your audience over time, while lead generation is about quickly capturing the interest of a select group of potential customers. Ideally, the two should work together to reinforce the overall digital marketing strategy, as both are crucial to moving a business forward.

That said, there are times when focusing more on brand awareness is important – especially when a business is just starting out. Building brand awareness is a great way to lay the groundwork for lead generation. And an increase in quality leads means an increase in sales.

2. Know what your audience wants and the JTBD

For many brands and businesses today, there’s a greater push to be customer-centric and focus on user experience. Naturally, this has lead marketers to think about new ways to put the needs of the customers at the heart of decision-making.

One framework making waves is the Jobs to be Done theory (JTDB). Essentially, the theory is about focusing on the circumstances that happen in customers’ lives, and developing innovative content – such as articles, videos or quizzes – that answer the problems they face. So it’s less about what functionally motivates them, but more about what emotionally motivates them.

When it comes to improving the appeal of your business, it’s worth thinking about the jobs that are causing headaches in your customers’ lives, then creating content that will immediately solve their problem, therein positioning yourself as a thought leader.

3. Use SEO to understand your audience

SEO should be a top priority for your business. It’s a long-term and cost-effective investment that allows you to become more visible on search engines. It helps generate traffic, build revenue, increase brand awareness, and ultimately, drive sales.

By using SEO best practices, you can tap into a search engine’s data to see what desired customers are searching for. When you’re armed with this kind of information, you can create targeted campaigns and maximise your online presence through the three pillars of SEO – onsite optimisation, content marketing, and link acquisition.

4. Test your options and optimise campaigns

Customers are in more places than ever before, often at the same time. So it’s important to understand that no digital marketing strategy is set in stone or will work every time. When it comes to creating a campaign, there are many digital marketing channels to consider, from email marketing and PPC advertising, to organic social media marketing and SEO.

Understanding what your options are will depend on your business’s goals, budget, audience, and area of expertise. But no matter what strategy you decide on, you’ll need to test and measure the results. Doing this will allow you to optimise what works and cut out what doesn’t.

For example, if you’re running Facebook ads targeting two different audiences and one is achieving better engagement than the other, it’s better to allocate more of your budget on the performing ad. You can even use your learnings from the data to create new ads that are similar to the performing ad.

5. Learn how to manage your time effectively

Juggling multiple projects a day? You’re not alone. From SEO to social media, digital marketing often feels like one task after the other. But if you feel like you’re stretching yourself thin, here are few tips to consider:

Plan your marketing strategies out

Split your tasks into urgent vs. important and prioritise accordingly. You could even use a time management tool to make things easier.

Know when to say “no”

It’s a simple yet powerful word. Before committing to tasks, take time to think about what’s important, and only say “yes” if you know you can do it properly.

Know your limits and play to your strengths

It might take a little while to get the balance right, but once you do, make sure you stick to it. Don’t forget there’s no harm in delegating.

6. Use data to monitor the success of the campaign

Content discovery is constantly changing, especially when it comes to mobile. As businesses need to go where their customers are, digital marketing campaigns are often spread across many channels. While the results can be cost effective and engaging, how do you know if your campaign has been successful?

Using data is a simple method. For example, 88% of Australians aged 65 and over using social media are on Facebook. So if your content is targeting this demographic you’re more likely to find success with Facebook advertising compared to email marketing.

The beauty of digital campaigns is that you’ll be able to extract data from your efforts, whether that’s tracking the amount of hits on your website, or the number of shares you get on social media. Before you look at the data, just make sure you’ve identified the right metrics to measure.