These days, it seems just about every part of our lives is online.
Not just the kids either, it’s everyone.
Just think about how much sensitive information is stored on the good ol' World Wide Web.
Most people have their banking and credit card information online, medical information, contact information, employment information, everything. And that’s not including the sensitive data needed for their jobs.
This is why, in today’s digital age, it’s more important than ever that companies seek to protect the data of their employees and customers from data breaches and other cybersecurity threats.
And if you’re a cybersecurity company, you know that’s why business is booming.
But, as a cybersecurity company, how do you position your company as the solution to these day-to-day network security fears?
If you’re not quite sure, then we’re here to help.
Today’s blog is a digital marketing checklist for cybersecurity firms just like yours, to ensure that you’re reaching the right people at the right time and making the most of your cybersecurity marketing strategies.
The Challenges of Cybersecurity Marketing
You probably already know that cybersecurity marketing can be a tricky thing to nail down, in large part due to the unique challenges of your industry.
You’ve got to deal with things like:
Constant threats: Cyber threats are constantly evolving. It seems like every time you turn around, there’s a new virus or phishing attempt to deal with. You’ve got to keep yourself ahead just to keep up, leaving little time to plan and execute your marketing campaigns.
It’s complex: Cybersecurity is a technically complex field, to the point where most folks don’t even really understand the risks associated with internet use or just how easily their sensitive data can be hacked.
It can be difficult to convince someone who doesn’t fully understand the threat to protect themselves in a succinct way, which can make marketing communications much more difficult to clarify.
There’s no unemployment in cybersecurity: There just isn’t. More and more companies are reaching out for security services every single day, leading to an overcrowded marketplace of companies seemingly providing the exact same service.
Many cybersecurity firms put off marketing and sales alignment because of this, leading to a high probability of future loss in revenue.
The stakes are high: One data leak can ruin or severely damage the reputation of an organization.
You need to be sure you are marketing carefully to companies, making your customer understand how crucial protecting themselves from cyberattacks is, without resorting to cheap fear tactics.
Your potential customers aren’t the only ones at risk, either. The nature of digital marketing opens you and your prospects up to data insecurity, which turns many cybersecurity firms away from online marketing entirely.
That’s a long list of challenges! Small wonder that building trust in your industry is so difficult to do and why having that trust is the most important factor in acquiring and retaining customers.
So, we understand. But the hope is that, by following these steps in our digital marketing checklist, you’ll be able to stand out from your competitors, position yourself as a trusted and reliable solutions provider, and make the most of your digital marketing efforts.
Let’s get started.
Step 1: Define Your Target Audience
As a cybersecurity firm, you’re probably aware that you need to define multiple target audiences and vary your strategies to be able to attract customers from different industries.
To help make your messaging more effective, consider creating personas for each of those clients that you want to attract, listing out the unique cybersecurity needs of their particular business. Narrow down a persona by asking yourself:
- What makes them who they are?
- What pain points do they encounter in their business and in their personal lives?
- What kind of person do they want to become?
- Where do they want their business to go over the next five years?
- Where do they live?
- What are their hobbies?
- What objections might they have to closing a deal with you?
- Who’s on their buying committee? Who are the decision-makers that you must reach, educate, and inspire in order for a successful deal to happen?
- What kind of feeling do you want your target audience to have when they interact with your brand, with your content, with your team, or with your website?
Once you’ve got an idea of who you’re marketing to, what their unique needs are, and who they need you to be, it will be so much easier to refine your messaging.
Step 2: Create a Killer Content Strategy
It will also be easier to know what kind of material will work best to sway those potential customers and guide them deeper into your marketing funnel.
There are many different types of cybersecurity content to use that can be tailored to each of your target personas.
If you have a copywriter on your team, blog posts and case studies are very effective tools to highlight the value of your services to the industry you’re targeting.
Statistics are your friend here. Make them compelling and convincing, but, again, without trying to stir up panic! Your job is to educate your prospect about their need for cybersecurity and let them come willingly to you, not scare them into a sale. If you’ve got a designer on your team, have them illustrate an infographic with your stats. If you need help, reach out to us — we can design infographics from scratch, or if you prefer, we can log in to your own Canva account and create templates for you.
If you have a full-blown creative team in addition to a copywriter, then graphic ads, explainer videos, and short animations are other engaging and highly effective means to communicate your value and why this certain company would benefit from your services. There are lots of opportunities for short-form video content in cybersecurity, from client testimonials to quick walkthroughs of new software, to footage of recently installed cabling in a facility.
This content can easily be part of your lead generation strategies, offering potential clients a free downloadable white paper, article, or e-book in exchange for some contact information. Build lead forms with HubSpot or website plugins so you can know who’s engaging with your ideas and services before they buy.
Whatever your content might be, it should provide immediately actionable insights for your potential customer, setting you up as an expert in cybersecurity and demonstrating that you have a plan that can help your target persona overcome their pain points and find success.
There should also be an easily understandable way of communicating your plan to the target audience. How do they get on board with you? Is it by setting up a demo call? A free trial? A free security audit or assessment? What’s the first thing you’ll provide for them as a service? What’s the end goal?
Whatever it is, include it with your content and double its value.
Be sure to share all of this engaging and valuable content on your social media platforms, any online communities that you’re a part of, a weekly email newsletter, or through webinars.
Putting your valuable content out there for the world to see is the way you build up your brand awareness and start funneling in those potential customers.
Don’t want to use social media? Totally understandable.
All of the above applies to your email list as well and other secured platforms. Use DuckDuckGo to run ad campaigns pointing to your self-hosted website. Heard of Brave Ads? If not, do a DDG search about them. As with all of the above items, you can take it one step at a time or scale up with Designity’s platform.
Step 3: Use Your Content Together with a PPC Campaign
If you’ve tried the above and are still struggling to get your content in front of the right decision-makers, you may have better luck combining your content strategy with a PPC ad campaign.
A PPC (pay-per-click) campaign can be a very effective way to amplify your content marketing efforts and get more prospects into your marketing funnel because it goes straight for the potential customers who are already sold on the prospect of hiring a cybersecurity firm and are now Googling for cybersecurity solutions. This is the best time to have your ads or content in front of them to assist them in making their decision.
Another plus is that you can use information from these campaigns to form a pre-targeting analysis, looking at what kinds of people and businesses are clicking your ads and therefore interested in your offerings.
All you have to do is customize the rest of the following steps according to the information you discover here.
Digital Marketing Without Data Tracking
As a cybersecurity firm, your marketing has to keep your prospects’ data safe. This should go without saying, but in the world of marketing, many marketers want all the data, and the more invasive the tracking code, the better.
We’re here to tell you that’s not necessarily the best plan, and companies have been successfully selling goods for centuries before tracking codes existed. In your industry, you’ll want to use the least amount of tracking possible to demonstrate that you value privacy and security. You don’t need individualized/personal information from users to refine your campaign. You can learn a lot simply from aggregate information about demographics, without ever requesting or tracking individual people’s activity.
In addition, if you want to fully eliminate tracking from your digital marketing, here’s an old-school method that will always work:
- First step is to change nothing. Don’t run any marketing campaigns for three weeks.
- After three weeks, implement one marketing campaign. Doesn’t matter what, just whatever the lowest-hanging fruit campaign is. Do that one. If you’re not sure where to start, then start by updating the copywriting on your website, pulling in refreshed graphics from a professional designer, and updating the meta title tags and on-page headings of every page from an organic SEO perspective.
- Run the campaign for four weeks, then pause any spending.
- Wait three weeks and then look at the past ten weeks of client analytics. Did you see a spike in demo calls, purchases, or emails since you started the campaign? If yes, then it worked. If not, then it didn’t, and you can cross that marketing idea off the list for now.
Step 4: Optimize Your Landing Page/Website
If you’re starting to see some results with your content strategy and/or your PPC campaign, your leads need to have somewhere to go to see what you’re all about.
An optimized website or landing page is the first thing that your potential customers should see and be sure it works for both a computer screen and a smaller device, because you never know where your customers are coming from.
Here are some tips for an optimized landing page or website:
- Have a clear, concise headline: Your potential customers need to know exactly what your services and company are just by reading your headline. Be sure to use relevant images, keep it short and neat, have a clear call to action, and make it very easy to fill out if you’re requesting information.
- Trust signals: Consider putting testimonials on your landing page as a trust signal and it’s always a good idea to offer some free downloadable content like a case study, a weekly newsletter, or other educational content in exchange for their information.
- Keep security at the forefront!: If you’re hosting your own website, be sure you’re using either a private server or a virtual private server from a reputable host. Employ SSL certificates and double-check that all URLs are secure and pointing to relative destinations.
One easy way to accomplish this is by building your landing pages in HubSpot but be sure to have your web developer keep an eye out for any invasive tracking code or cross-site scripts.
Step 5: Establish Trust
Now that your potential customer is further along in your marketing funnel, all that’s left to do before closing the deal is to convince them to trust in you and your services.
No easy feat, we know.
Trust is an extremely crucial thing in the cybersecurity industry. Your customers must feel safe and secure in the fact that your services are protecting them from cyberattacks.
Educate your clients to be sure that they understand the risks and don’t stop educating them once you get their business. You are the cybersecurity expert and must position yourself as such at all times. Update your clients on the latest news via emails or newsletters. Keep them in the loop and secure in the fact that you’re still there when they need you.
Also, be sure to let them know that you are customizing your services to their exact industry.
Your clients (and your potential clients!) need to be reassured that you understand the unique risks that go along with their industry in order for them to see you as their solution.
Depending on your target clientele, you may need to remove all tracking entirely and rely on old-school methods to determine if your advertising and content marketing efforts are successful. See the numbered list above for tips on how to run a digital marketing campaign without any tracking code involved.
This will give you a rough estimate of whether or not your campaign worked, all without any tracking code. In the cybersecurity industry, this could be the kind of thing that causes a savvy prospect to become a paying client.
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Rise Above the Competition!
As the world becomes more and more digital, the need for cybersecurity will only continue to grow.
That’s good news for cybersecurity companies like you! By following this checklist, you can help yourself stand out in a crowded market, attract new clients, and earn both their trust and their business.
Once you’ve got your winning strategy, be sure to keep yourself up to date and be open to experimenting with the strategies that work best for you.
By continuously refining your approach, you can keep your cybersecurity company positioned for success for years to come.