Ranking Singapore’s Top 10 Digital Marketing Choices
First of all, some of you will be wondering what the SAF army ranks photo has to do with Singapore digital marketing.
Simple. Absolutely nothing.
So now that that’s out of the way, let’s begin the article properly.
Now, we’re going to actually break down and rank the different digital marketing channels one by one.
#1 Remarketing (Google + Facebook)
Remarketing lets you reach people who’ve already visited your website. If you didn’t spam your own site with junk traffic, plus you’ve set up the correct remarketing filters, this is usually by far the most effective place to park your marketing budget. In my opinion, remarketing should be a part of EVERY digital marketing plan. Unfortunately, because it’s the most effective, you’d also expect it to have the lowest capacity (not sure what capacity is? Read my previous article here).
Rating: 9/10 (10/10 if you leveraged external sites. Think outside the box.)
#2 Niche Site Marketing
If you operate in a very niche industry, you can look for small content sites, directories or communities which your target segment loves. These are usually the most likely group to turn into customers. However, once again, this has very limited capacity. It might also bring very few sales for the amount of work required, so time-efficiency as well and be smart about it.
Be VERY careful of overpaying on niche sites. Many niche sites in Singapore sell banner placements, email blasts and advertorials at cutthroat prices. Avoid them like the plague.
Rating: 9/10 if the cost is reasonable.
#3 Facebook Advertising
I used to have this 4th on my list. But as Google AdWords becomes more mainstream (and thus, expensive), and FB targeting gets better, I tend to find that you get much better returns from here. This includes your page post boost, website clicks, Instagram ads, custom audiences etc. Of course, it also generally works better on businesses that can influence people to buy, instead of businesses that people seek only when they have problems.
Beware of click farms spoiling your campaigns on Facebook. This is where you run a campaign in Singapore, then start to notice all the funny foreign names liking your posts. You still pay for that reach. And it’s bad. For best results, work hard to build your own custom audience, lookalikes and heavily use the “exclude interest” feature.
Rating: 8/10 if your target market segment is on Facebook.
#4 Google AdWords
Go directly after people already looking to buy your product or service. It used to be great, but now that it’s so mainstream, prices have shot up. You’d seldom get big profit margins off AdWords today.
However, not every product can use this method. There are some businesses whose customers don’t even know what to search for to find them.
Rating: 8/10 for less competitive industries, 5/10 for more competitive ones (and most in Singapore are). 1/10 if it’s for things that nobody is searching for yet.
#5 Google SEO
The number of marketers in Singapore who go straight into SEO for suboptimal keywords and wasting time is just staggering. Find the best performing keywords with AdWords, AND THEN start your SEO. Check the keyword search volumes too to ensure your SEO work will be worthwhile. The downside to SEO is that it takes around 6-12 months to get to page 1 of Google.
Rating: 8/10 for competitive industries.
#6 Google Sponsored Promotions
Send an email straight to a Gmail account inbox. Targeting can be done by keyword. Not too shabby if you’ve got budget to spare, but nothing spectacular either. A decent option if you get creative about it (once again, think outside the box).
#7 Google Display Network
Works only if you’re selling exactly what the Google targeting option offers and you’ve done your research on placements. The professional marketer’s favorite choice for “branding and awareness”, which is something I don’t encourage smaller businesses and SMEs to do unless you have a huge budget to burn.
GDN does have its uses though. It has huge reach which can help with your Remarketing, which is the #1 item on this list.
#8 Instagram Ads
A rather new marketing channel. Instagram ads are great for reaching the younger generation. Usually males aged 18-25 and women aged 18 to 35. The thing about Instagram ads is that they work best for building followers on Instagram itself. Combine it with a powerful Instagram page to reap the best rewards. If you treat them like just another PPC channel, you’re going to be quite disappointed.
Rating: 3/10 (for anyone without a proper Instagram page and strategy)
#9 YouTube Marketing
Video marketing is the new trend. Experts are saying videos get more views than pictures and text ever did. Newspapers report that consumers want to watch videos.
All that is true, but it’s not really the video marketing channel that determines if your marketing works. It’s the video itself. Share an incredible video for free on Facebook, you get thousands of views. Set up a whole campaign to market a less interesting video on Facebook, GSP, YouTube combined and you’d still get no traction.
Good video marketing isn’t easy. Even the best scriptwriters and directors cannot guarantee viral videos.
Rating: Unrated cause it really depends on the video more than the marketing channels
#10 Email Blasts
The only email blasts useful are to users who have a warm relationship with the owner. And that’s like 0.1% of all email lists online. And it definitely won’t be from someone who easily sells his list for you to market to.
You’re better off handing out flyers at Orchard Road.
The one major item missing from this list is “content marketing”. The reason why it’s not there is because the above are all digital marketing channels. They are ways through which you spread your content, whereas the content itself is a tactic.
Nonetheless, the list should help business owners and managers get a clearer idea of where to spend the budget and how to structure your next marketing campaign.
Author BioA leading digital marketer in Singapore, Nate has beaten professional benchmarks for Google SEM by 400%. Previously a Vice-President of Marketing in his corporate career, he's worked with American Express, Yahoo, Starhub, Genting. Trained people at Facebook, Google, Starcom. Approached for strategic insights by IDC. Helped a bank save 98% on marketing. Increased user revenue for Deloitte's fastest growing tech startup in Singapore by 4,400%.
Currently offering free consulting for charities, social causes and start-ups with shoestring budgets. Also works with private clientele at That Web Consultant.