Think you need a digital marketing agency in Hamilton to help your business succeed online?

Want to save money while getting the best digital marketing services Hamilton has to offer?

Hire a freelancer instead.

As a digital marketing expert in Hamilton Ontario, it’s my job to make sure businesses in this area get the internet marketing services they need to succeed in today’s competitive marketplace.

Whether you’re looking for:

Or any other form of online marketing in Hamilton, it’s my job to deliver.


The Best Freelance Digital Marketing Hamilton Has To Offer

Here’s the truth, Hamilton, digital marketing agencies usually deal with hundreds of clients and are rarely happy to meet you or, you know, discuss your project and why it matter so much to you.


I’m different.

I am always happy to chat with new clients, and especially those in Hamilton Ontario, Toronto and other nearby regions.  (Contact me for details).

So if you want digital marketing in Hamilton that actually has a name and a face, you know where to come.

Why Hire A Freelance And Not A Digital Marketing Agency?

When you ditch the digital marketing agency and go with a freelancer like me, you get truly personalised internet marketing that is right for what you want, not just what’s convenient for the agency.

My passion is to help local business to get the internet marketing services they need to succeed online.

That’s why I’ve written this free guide.

In this free guide I will share what those digital marketing agencies will not share: the secrets of the trade.

In this guide I will show you how to do digital marketing for yourself so you can save time and money, and if you would like to chat, I am always here to help.

In this guide I will share with you the main techniques that digital marketing agencies use, and some of the important aspects they miss (if you would like to know my “secret sauce” that I personally use with my clients, send me a message and I’ll be happy to let you in on it).


You can also get more specific advice with my niche-specific tutorials:


You don’t need a digital marketing agency. Here is how you can succeed in internet marketing. [Hamilton-based? Contact me to discuss this further]

1: Create a basic marketing plan

This is one area where your local digital marketing agency will fail you.

Those guys just want to bring in traffic. But you don’t want traffic. You want traffic that converts. And to get that, you need a digital marketing plan.

A marketing plan (see this dentists plan as an example) is a document that outlines the overall marketing strategy that your business will employ both online and offline.

Some businesses require a lengthy document that goes into detail on every step of the marketing strategy. If your marketing budget demands this then I fully recommend creating such a document.

Other businesses, however, require not so much a formal marketing plan as a game strategy—you know, the kind of game strategy the Leafs would kill for.

Let’s create this document right now.  To do so, simply answer these questions

  • What is the overall purpose of your marketing efforts? (write a SMART goal)
  • How will you measure the efficacy of your marketing efforts?
  • What is your marketing budget? (it’s usually around 10% of gross)
  • What different marketing channels will you use (e.g. Facebook ads / SEO). Choose 2 or 3 marketing channels to start with. (I’ll cover marketing channels in more depth in just a moment)
  • Conceptualise the buyer’s journey and how your marketing channels integrate with this

 As a Hamilton digital marketing expert I always discuss the overall marketing plan with my clients so that their digital marketing strategies actually works for their business.

When you answer the questions above, you’ll end up with something like this:

The purpose of my marketing is to increase the number of new patients to my dental practice by 10% over the next month. My budget is $1000. I will measure the efficacy of my marketing by asking new patients where they first heard of our business, and by recording the number of new sign-ups. I will focus on Facebook ads and Adword campaigns. The buyer’s journey for my business is that customers will see our ads on Facebook or on Google, click the ad to visit our website, and either complete a sign-up form or call the office.

This is an intentionally simplified marketing plan. Its aim is to solidify in your mind the purpose and process involved in your marketing efforts. And again, this is something your local digital marketing agency will probably ignore. Big mistake.

Now that you have a good idea of the overall purpose of your online marketing, it’s time to zero-in on some of the marketing channels you will use in your marketing campaigns.



2: Create buyer personas for all digital marketing strategies

The more you know about your customers that better equipped you will be to market to them. That’s why it’s so important to create buyer personas.

Again, this is something your local digital marketing agency in Hamilton (or anywhere else, for that matter) may miss, because they’re too focused on bringing website traffic to actually ask who specifically are we targeting.

Buyer personas let you know who you are marketing to. And you cannot succeed in internet marketing without this information.

The art of buyer-personas can be summed up in one question: who are your customers?

  • How old are your customers?
  • How highly educated are they
  • What are their beliefs?
  • What are their fears?
  • What other brands to they like?
  • (Important for online marketing) what websites do they use most?
  • What is the typical sales funnel like?
  • What forms of entertainment do they like?
  • What are their interests?
  • What type of online content do they engage with the most?

The more you are able to analyse and understand your customers the better your marketing will be. By creating buyer personas you are able to understand your customers and then deliver precisely what they need.

Plus, when creating buyer personas for online marketing, it’s essential to determine what types of content they engage with, and which websites / Youtube channels / Facebook pages they most enjoy. This way you know what type of content to create, and which advertising channels to leverage.


3: Choose the right internet marketing campaigns

There are many different types of online marketing campaigns. Each type of campaign is applicable to many different business endeavours.

Now here is another problem with most local digital marketing agencies: they like to focus on their speciality advertising platforms even if the platform they usually work on is not the right one for your specific business.

As a freelance internet marketing expert in Hamilton I like to discuss with my clients in Hamilton internet marketing campaigns available to them, so we can determine which is best for them.

Let’s take a look at the most important types of online marketing campaign so that you can determine which is best for your business.

Social media marketing:

Social media marketing includes marketing on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google My Business, SnapChat, LinkedIN and all other social media networks.

Social media marketing is so diverse these days that there is almost always one or two ways a business can successfully employ it. However, it can be challenging to determine which social media network to use (Facebook or Twitter?) and which type of marketing to do on that platform (paid ads / videos / image posts etc.)

It is almost definite that your business will require some sort of social media presence, but the scale of that presence, and the amount of budget to allocate to social media, will require careful deliberation with an online marketing professional such as myself.

Search Engine Marketing (Adwords & Bing Ads etc.):

Search Engine Marketing in the form of Adwords, Bing Ads and other search and display advertising options are multifaceted and incredibly versatile.

With Search Engine Marketing you can advertise on Google Bing, Youtube and millions of websites. You also have the option to use Call ads (so people can call your business direct from the store), Display ads (shown on other websites for people to click through to your site), search ads display around the search engines results page (SERP), retargeting ads (ads shown to people who have previously visited your site) and numerous other options.

This is a powerful but often expensive form of online marketing. Successful execution requires both knowledge and skill, and most businesses to prefer to work with a certified online advertising professional such as myself, in order to save money in the long-run.

Blogging & SEO:

Having a self-hosted blog gives business a way to engage in content marketing by producing high quality blog posts and using SEO (search engine optimisation) to bring traffic to their site, thereby generating leads.

If a business is employing the use of a blog, SEO is a must. With SEO, business owners can take use Google and other search engines to bring highly targeted traffic to their site, which can lead to staggering growth.


Affiliate Marketing & Youtube Partnerships:

Affiliate marketing and Youtube partnerships offer businesses a way of working with other people and companies in the online space, including Youtube creators and bloggers. With affiliate marketing, businesses pay a commission each time a third-party creates a conversion. For instance, if a blogger sends a visitor to their site to your online store, and that visitor buy your tee, you will pay a commission to the blogger.

Affiliate marketing requires more effort to setup than most other online marketing channels. However, should you find a lucrative partnership (for instance, you find the perfect Youtube Creator to enter a partnership deal with), the benefits can be astounding, and not just because of the bottom line, but because the Youtube Creator / blogger also has clout—their endorsement can do wonders for your brand reputation.

Many local digital marketing agencies ignore the possibility of working with Youtube creators and other individuals because this tends to take a little time to nurture the relationship. But it’s time well-invested.

Email Marketing:

Email marketing is regarded as one of the most important online marketing channels because it’s the one you have the most control over. Where Facebook, Twitter, Google etc. may change their algorithm overnight (leading to a potentially huge loss), when you have a customer’s email you can engage in direct online marketing.

Email is also a more advanced online marketing solution than many realise. The ability to segment audiences and automate workflows means there’s a lot of versatility in email marketing. As a certified email marketing expert in Hamilton Ontario, I’ve been able to employ many creative email marketing campaigns that massively increased leads.

It’s weird how often this is not used for business’s in Hamilton’s digital marketing plans.

Email marketing is almost always a must for business that have their own blog.


Take your time to read-through these online marketing channels and determine the right ones for your business. Or contact me and I will consult with you know the best online marketing solution for you.


4. To succeed in internet marketing, don’t just start a blog, start the right blog

For most online business, the blog serves as the central hub through which all other marketing channels flow.

This is something lots of local business are getting into. We’re seeing the rise of lots of blogs for business in Hamilton’s digital marketing plans.

Your blog gives you a central place to showcase yourself and your business, and a target-location to send leads to.

Plus, if you’re new to online marketing you will learn so much by running a blog. You will learn about basic web design, SEO, and basic online marketing, all of which is valuable to know.

Plus, your customers will develop more of a relationship with you when they start reading your blog posts. This can help with all stages of the sales funnel.

Most digital marketing agencies are well-versed in setting up blogs. But they often have partnerships with hosting companies and they will recommend that you work with that company even if the company is not necessarily the right one for you.


5. Setup your social media profiles

Regardless of the type of business you run, the time will come when you require a social media profile on most of the largest social media networks. There are many benefits of hiring a social media marketer. But you can also achieve great things the DIY-route.

The key is knowing which social media platform to use (here’s a guide) and how to get the most out of that platform.

I recommend beginning with Facebook for the obvious reason that it is the biggest and that most businesses do have a Facebook profile. This is the platform your customers are most likely to search for you on.

Once on Facebook, here is an extensive guide of ways to get Likes on Facebook so your Facebook page grows and you can start to use it as a lead-generation platform.

Once you become accustomed to Facebook, you may wish to branch out into other social media platforms. But remember: each platform is its own investment in both time and money, so be selective in choosing and limited the number of platforms you use.


6. Learn the basics of SEO

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is one of the cornerstones of digital marketing. Hamilton and other cities are getting hugely into SEO for digital marketing in 2018. Thank goodness. It’s imperative that any business owner who wants to succeed online learn the basics of SEO.

As an SEO expert in Hamilton, I am always happy to discuss with clients ways they can leverage SEO to boost their digital marketing. To learn more, get in touch today.


7. Analyse, analyse, analyse

There is one secret that every experienced digital marketing agency knows all too well: data is everything.

Online marketing is an incredibly complex field with hundreds of platforms, thousands of tools, and billions of users. And here’s the truth: no matter how well you plan digital marketing, it always has the capacity to surprise you. That’s why data is key.

The more adept you become at analysing data, the more insight you will gain into your customers and into the best ways to use digital marketing.

  • As someone who is certified in Google Analytics, I always advocate learning the basics of GA to begin within.
  • Another valuable tool is SEMRush, through which you can conduct competitive analysis.
  • And of course, Facebook audience Insights is essential.

There are an incredible number of tools that professional digital marketing companies and agencies use online marketing, the above being the most important. With these tools you can analyse your online marketing efforts for improvement. If you’re not analysing, you’re just throwing darts in the dark.


8. Digital marketing is nothing without professional copywriting 

When you hire a digital marketing agency in Hamilton (or elsewhere), they will know how to i  prove technical aspects like SEO, but many will not have a clue about the subtler arts, such as copywriting.

No matter how you approach online marketing, you will always require copy (even videos are usually scripted).

Copywriting is one of the cornerstones of all marketing, online and off. Whether you’re writing blog posts, Adwords ads or video scripts, the backbone of your marketing efforts is words. That’s why it’s essential to know the rules of copywriting.

As a professional digital marketer in Hamilton ON, I find that copywriting accounts for easily 40% of my work. And if your online marketing is mostly focused on blogging, copywriting will be even more important.

When you know how to produce effective copy, you are able to excite and inspire customers, to create positive relationships with them, and ultimately to led them through the sales funnel.


And those are the 8 steps for effective digital marketing, agency or no

As a professional online marketing expert in Hamilton ON, I’m always excited by how fast this industry develops. There are constantly new developments. And then there are the fundamentals of digital marketing, the points we have looked at above.

When you make the most of those 8 points above, you set yourself up for effective online marketing that generates leads and conversions.

If you’re in Hamilton or Toronto, or you would like help with your online marketing, contact me today.


Paul Harrison is a marketing copywriter in the Toronto / Hamilton area, ready to deliver all your copywriting and marketing needs. Visit the front page for details.