Marketing can be a scary word that derives nightmarish thoughts of traffic numbers, followers, clickthroughs, return on investment… the list goes on. But it doesn’t have to be overcomplicated and it doesn’t have to be scary. Marketing is simply the way you entice your customers to learn about the value your product or service could bring them. Typically the best way to do that is through honest, clean, simple online marketing strategies you can employ in moments. Try these four and build your own marketing strategy.

1. Invest in GOOD Content

This can’t be stressed enough. The quickest way to gain the loyalty and continued business of a customer is by showing them how valuable your product or service is. The best way to do that is through simple, clean, concise content that allows a reader to fully understand what their purchasing and how it will benefit them. Content isn’t cheap. Copywriters spend years perfecting their skills, navigating keywords and studying the psychology behind branding. But it’s worth every penny.

Invest not only in good content, but also different types of content. With the plethora of information available in our technology age, you have to find a way to stand out. Use infographics, interactive flowcharts, videos, personalized content, etc. Find and research which social media platform works best for your brand and your target audience. Don’t waste time trying new things simply because their new. Find what works for you and become the best at it.

2. Be Personable

It’s impossible to scroll through Facebook or Twitter without a sleazy ad obnoxiously daring you to buy whatever their selling. What do you do in those moments: click or continue scrolling? The digital store shelf is packed with off-brand goods that, while not lasting long or being very valuable, tend to diminish the value of your product by simply existing.

By creating personal, honest, clear social media content, you interact in a way that people truly want. The marketplace doesn’t want another product; it has enough of those. It wants a familiar face that it trusts that speaks for a brand it can stand behind. The first step in achieving that is by being open and honest, telling people about yourself and your company, what motivates you and why you’re bringing this product at this time.

3. Make Your Website Mobile Friendly

This point can’t be stressed enough. It’s 2016 and websites that aren’t responsive and not mobile friendly are simply going to be left behind. Take time to invest in how your brand looks online. A 2014 study revealed that 80 percent of local searches made on a mobile phone ended in a sale. Think about what that could do for your business. The world is becoming mobile and we need to be a part of it if we want our businesses to thrive.

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William Lipovsky owns the personal finance website First Quarter Finance. His most embarrassing moment was telling a Microsoft executive, "I'll just Google it."

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