The new opportunities in the digital marketing space are reserved for the nimblest entrants.

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As leader of a business that relies on generating leads and sales online, your role is to understand the dynamics of the digital space, to generate the maximum possible ROI for your advertising efforts.

Related: How to Calculate ROI for Your Content Marketing Campaign

In 2018, marketing trends like the increased dominance of video ads, social media lead-generation and interactive content are playing a major role for online businesses like yours.

Similarly, the dynamism of the search algorithm and conversion-rate optimization are impacting how customers find and interact with your brand.

With these factors in mind, you’ll see new opportunities created for the nimblest entrants into the digital marketing space. In the legal space, those ahead of the curve and willing to leverage new trends will also have a natural advantage.

How can an online business survive the trend?

Think about it: There are a lot of businesses online striving for relevance and dominance. Each one of them wants to capture the interests of a growing online audience, making the overall ad environment more and more competitive.

Globally, we now have more than a billion websites and blogs. In fact, this Statista report shows that we have about 400 million blogs on Tumblr alone.

Related: Call Conversions: the Blind Spot Threatening Digital Marketing ROI

So, how do you keep your brand on top of the game, making it the choice of visitors who’ll not only visit but also come back for more? Here are the strategies to try:

Explore remarketing.

One remarkable way to benefit from the growing interest in online commerce is through online remarketing. The premise is simple: Past visitors to your website will continue seeing your ads repeatedly on the web, on social media platforms and elsewhere. Not only that but remarketing improves your conversion rates and ROI. According to marketing expert Jeffrey Lant, “You have to contact the prospect a minimum of seven times within an 18-month period.”

Similarly, remarketing increases ad relevancy and lowers your cost per click (CPC) budget. And that leads to click-through and conversion rates that are higher than those from a typical ad. This is why major ad platforms offer remarketing pretty much across the board.

Foster customer online reviews.

Another way to survive in the increasingly ompetitive digital space is through the use of reviews for your online business.

Search Engine Land reported that 88 percent of online consumers surveyed said they trusted online reviews as much as personal recommendations. Online reviews, then, are the new social proof, helping increase sales, online significance and conversions.

Similarly, reviews help businesses better understand their customers, which presents additional marketing opportunities. Here at Diamond and Diamond, we actively encourage clients to leave reviews on Yelp, Yellow Pages and other unbiased review sites. This helps potential customers decide, within minutes, whether to consult the company or look elsewhere.

And, now, those 3 important metrics for measuring 2018 ad ROI

Digital marketing takes on a different dimension compared to traditional ad mediums like radio, television and newspapers. And here, the advent of digital marketing gives you an advantage, because it allows for greater insights and reach than what you’ve probably seen in traditional marketing models.

Here are those three important metrics you should be measuring in 2018.

1. Measure CPM for lead-generation campaigns. CPM, or “cost per 1,000 impressions,” is an important advertising metric you should be measuring in order to track your online business’s ROI. According to Facebook, this metric is commonly used in the online advertising industry to gauge the cost-effectiveness of an ad campaign. In most cases, it’s used to compare performance among a company’s different ad publishers and campaigns.

To measure CPM, you’ll need to divide the impressions gained from a campaign by the total amount spent, then multiply the result by 1,000. Depending on your campaign goals, such as brand awareness vs. lead generation, the raw CPM will differ.

For businesses looking to expand their brand and overall online awareness, lowering their overall CPM will help them scale up overall reach.

2. Measure the aquisition costs of your brand awareness campaigns. Another metric that can be used to understand and measure a business’s ROI is acquisition costs, which should be compared against revenue generation.

By implementing conversion tracking, you can track the cost of each consumer touchpoint, including: new user signups, phone calls, customer inquiries and ecommerce sales. By assigning a value to each, and understanding the revenue implications, you can scale those areas of your marketing campaign that are maximizing your targeted objectives.

3. Measure your traffic and engagement costs. Depending on your ultimate business goals, which could entail selling a product or signing on a new client, it’s important to understand how much you’re paying to drive a user to, or interact with, your brand.

With the numbers that result, you can measure the impact of your spending on your ads, and also determine the areas you need to focus more on. Measuring your website traffic is an important step in this regard.

Tools such as Alexa can help you measure the number of visitors to your website. They can help you determine how those visitors discovered your site and the specific actions they took before and after their visit.

Similarly, your cost per click (CPC) and click-through rate (CTR) can greatly help in measuring how much you spend online, too.

With CPC ads, you’ll be able to know the exact amount you pay for each click in your advertising campaign. While many businesses focus on CPC, understanding this number in the context of overall conversions or acquisitions is an advantage.

Also, the CTR helps you to measure the number of clicks you’ll receive on your ads per number of impressions. A low CTR may require additional tweaking to your advertising creative.

With these, you can gauge how well your keywords and ads are performing.

Related: TV or Digital Ads? The Case for Investing in Both

A final note

As a business, one of the most important activities you can pursue is the measurement of your ROI. With it, you’ll know what areas require more spending for your ad dollars and have a competitive advantage over your competition.

Similarly, you’ll be able to measure how clients engage with your business and use that information to implement new marketing and operational strategies.

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