The 3 wheels of digital marketing is a concept that I came up with while watching “Lots of really big trains” with my 2 and 3-year-old boys. Many mornings we watch this awesome show where it’s literally what it says, “lots of big trains” backed by some generic country and folk music.
If you’ve ever been a nerd like me and looked closely at a train engine, there are usually three wheels on the big steam engine trains, and they are tied together with a gigantic bar. The bar pivots, and it makes the 3 wheels of digital marketing work together at the same time.
I was recently at a mastermind conference, and it hit me, our online presence works precisely like the wheels of the train, also known as the 3 wheels of digital marketing. If you can get all three working together, even slowly, your business can move. Miss or impede even one of those wheels, and you’ve got a big problem.
Presence – Wheel 1
Many pieces round out the digital presence wheel of your business. If you’re a quick thinker, you may have already guessed that your website is a HUGE part of this wheel. Yes, I said “part of this wheel.”
While your website is crucial, it is not the only part of your digital presence. This wheel is the medium by which you communicate your brand to the world. Here are some things that might live within this wheel.
- Digital eBlast Communication
- Automated Email Sequences
- Social Media Presence
- Video and Podcasts
- Visual Media (Images and Explainer Graphics)
- Business Cards
- Physical Location (Storefront)
- Zoom Conference Calls
- Business Listings
These are many of the ways in which someone could come in contact with your business. They are crucial to communicating your message to the world. It’s not that you have to have every single one of these things in place and working at the same time, very few businesses (even the big corporations) do. Realizing that they are there is the first step, and understanding that your website is only one piece of the puzzle here is a very very important thing to recognize.
Identity – Wheel 2
In your three wheels, identity comes either right before or right after your presence. They are somewhat interchangeable wheels in the order that they come in. If you’re working with a branding agency, they will surely put this first.
If you’re working with a website agency, they’ll tell you it comes during the web process. Both are true, and both ways work. Trust me; I’ve done and seen it done in many different ways.
Identity is truly – your brand. It’s what you’re trying to communicate with the presence wheel.
- Why you are in business.
- Who are you trying to help?
- Why do you want to help them?
- How people feel when they interact with your business.
- The overall appearance of your business.
All of that ties up inside of your identity.
Here are some things you’d find inside the identity wheel:
- Color Palette
- Brand Guide
- Verbal Language
More things fall under branding and identity, but it’s a great start. So when you think what you really need is a fresh logo and a new website, you might start to ask yourself: Do I know my audience? Do I know who I am talking to? Do I have any branding guidelines in place?
These things don’t have to cost $20k (they might), but you should address them. If you’re in business and you want to compete and put your best foot forward in the marketplace, you can’t skimp on any of these. If you don’t have a solid identity – you lock up this wheel – and the train (your business) will slow down and all but stop.
Growth – Wheel 3
Growing your business is often the mission behind wanting a new website or logo. It’s rare in my experience of vanity. It’s always about moving up the ladder, competing hard with your competitors, or going after new clients or new leads.
Nobody wakes up and says, “I really want a logo so that my business will have a logo.” Am I right here? What do you want? You want growth. You want to take your business somewhere where it currently isn’t. And that place – is almost always – UP!
Even though it’s arguably the most crucial part of the wheelset – it’s the most forgotten. Why might you ask? It’s almost always the most expensive and the riskiest part of the entire digital spectrum.
Many clients come to us after being ripped off by some SEO agency that promised to rank them for terms there is NO WAY they could have gotten. So many have been taken for a ride, and so search engine optimization (SEO) has become a bad three-letter word.
The truth is though, without Organic Traffic and/or Paid Traffic, the wheels on your train are locked up. They are locked up hard, and you’re not going anywhere.
Every day we audit websites where critical components of the growth wheel have been ignored. Honestly, we even have past clients, where the value was placed on the visual design, and traffic is ignored. As you can probably guess, they’re not growing their business as they could be.
The best analogy I’ve ever heard for growth is that it resembles a tree. What we see in the branches and leaves are the pretty parts (presence). The trunk holds it all together (identity). But it’s the roots underground, the big ugly things that pop out of the ground (growth) that drive the growth of the tree. Without watering those roots, your beautiful tree will die.
Don’t forget to grow your business! Growth typically involves these types of Digital Marketing services:
- Organic Traffic and Online Visibility (Onsite and Offsite)
- Paid Traffic (PPC, Google AdWords, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn)
- Local Service Areas (Google My Business)
- Website Speed Optimization
Why is your web presence is failing?
Chances are good that if you’ve made it this far, you’ve realized that your website is likely failing. Don’t be sad; most people’s sites are failing. Most people don’t know of all 3 wheels of digital marketing.
Maybe you’re here because you’ve got a killer brand, and a terrible website, and no traffic. Perhaps you have tons of traffic to your site, but nobody is buying from you. Possibly you have an awesome website, excellent traffic, but nobody can connect with your brand?
Whatever problems you have, we can help you solve them. Sometimes clients need a huge overall involving a new custom or small business website. Some clients need a Lead Machine. Some clients just need growth.
Muletown Digital can help you get all 3 wheels of digital marketing working together so that your train (and business) will run more smoothly.
If you’re not sure where to start, we offer a couple of excellent starting places:
- Free Website Audit – get a baseline understanding of what’s working and not working with your existing site.
- Deep Dive Website Audit – get a much deeper understanding of what’s working and not working.
- Muletown Digital Track Maker – figure out exactly what your presence, identity, and growth wheels need, and get an accurate estimate for us to fix it.