This post is a guest post by Nan Gibbons
The prevalence of cloud computing is changing the way businesses operate. Services that were once only available to large businesses with expansive budgets can now be utilized by smaller companies without the resources to hire outside agencies or hire a specialized team. Microsoft Office 365 gives subscribers all the benefits of a Microsoft Exchange server, plus collaboration software and the ability to view and edit documents from mobile devices without requiring business owners to hire an administrator to oversee the software. Likewise, there are several marketing tools offered through the cloud that can give small and medium businesses more control over their campaigns and will simplify the process enough that even smallest companies can start a marketing initiative and see results.
Every business, large and small, that wants to connect with current and potential customers should have a social media presence. Making simple videos advertising the business or a new product and posting them on YouTube will remove the need to host video files in-house and make it easier for customers to find the video. Facebook and Twitter give companies ready-made platforms through which they can connect with millions of users. Because social media sites are owned and supported by other companies, people seeking to market via these platforms only have to concern themselves about the content of their message, not how to get it out in front of an audience without the appearance of being overly salesy.
Without collecting and arranging customer usage data, like conversion rates, click through rates and page views, it’s nearly impossible to determine the success of a marketing campaign. Services, such as Google Analytics, will collect website and visitor data, and then use that data to generate reports that allow the website owner to follow the progress of their marketing efforts. Analytics services make it easy to track campaigns separately from one another without requiring users to find a host for their data or perform the calculations themselves. Many also provide tracking of mobile data and allow for the exporting of analytics data for use with other systems.
Email Marketing Services
Email marketing is an effective method of connecting with customers and maintaining their brand awareness. It can be difficult to create and manage an email marketing campaign as part of a multi-faceted advertising strategy. Setting up a mail server and accounts, creating a template and managing subscriber lists can eat up a lot of time that could be spent focusing on content and developing new marketing initiatives. Fortunately there are numerous services that handle the technical aspects of setting up email marketing lists and assist users in generating templates that will meet their needs. When using these services, the advertiser can easily manage multiple email campaigns from one simple interface and spend the majority of their time creating content for their emails.
Cloud computing is altering the businesses conduct marketing campaigns and has opened up previously unavailable advertising methods to small and medium businesses. Making use of social media networks can help businesses leverage networks and resources they don’t have to pay for to create relationships with consumers. Companies offering Software as a Service can provide detailed data collection and analysis as well as streamlining email marketing campaigns.