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The ways to market your business digitally have multiplied in an extremely short amount of time. Here are 12 secrets to help you navigate your way to successful digital marketing:

1. Content – Provide timely and useful content utilising different media: blogging, videos, photos, even memes. Quality matters, not just to SEO results but also to your customers. People want to be entertained and to learn something they didn’t previously know.

2. Influential web users – Identify them and target them, engage them in a way that gives them a feeling of ownership in your product or service. You can even pay them and/or provide complementary products so they will promote your product using their channels. Also consider alternative methods to earn payment. Implement a “Pay with a Tweet” campaign. If a person tweets about your business, you give them access to your product. This can extend your brand to thousands who would otherwise not be exposed to it.

3. Mobile computing – more people are using tablets and smartphones than desktop and laptop computers. The website you created for computer use may not translate well on a tablet or smartphone. Consider creating a unique app for your business. Alternatively, invest in a mobile version of your website that is easy to use for the customer on the go.

4. Facebook – A Facebook business page adds legitimacy to a business. It also is a place where it is socially acceptable to promote your business on a regular basis. Facebook allows you to attract both loyal and new customers as well as promote your product on a regular basis.

5. Video – 82% of people prefer visual content, according to a recent study. Provide compelling video content and you increase the possibility for your video to go viral on platforms such as YouTube, Pinterest, or Instagram.

6. Personalisation – Understanding who your customers are and what they are interested in, and targeting these interests in a personal way, causes your customer to feel more positively about the brand and more likely to make return purchases.

7. Consistency – when customers rely and expect daily or weekly update with new information, a connection is made that will lead to better sales. If you provide fresh, compelling content on a consistent basis, you are showing your customers that you are interested in them, and therefore they become more interested in you.

8. Social Media – Focus on the key channels that make sense for your business. Different social media outlets focus on different things. Learn the differences between Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, YouTube, and determine which ones are best to promote your product or service. Invest in these by seeking out experts who are fluent in each site and determine a schedule in which to update the particular site.

9. Usability – Think about the websites you use regularly. What do you like about them? What don’t you like? Do you like being confronted by a wall of text, or do you want your content to be visually pleasing, which short text articles, videos and pictures to convey the information in several different ways? Put yourself in the shoes of the user.

10. Don’t forget about the power of e-mail – Invest in making your email marketing smarter. Focus on effective subject lines. Keep content concise and readable.

11. Know the rules of the search engines – Each search engine has different rules for search engine result page (SERP) rankings. To complicate matters and to keep you on your toes, these engines are constantly redefining and changing these rules. It is imperative to keep ahead of these changes and to modify your sites accordingly to get a high placement on a search engine.

12. Make sure to measure results – see what works, and what doesn’t. Then keep doing what works, and stop investing time in what doesn’t!

Keep these 12 secrets in mind when developing a digital marketing plan. Your business and your customers will benefit.