A digital marketing strategy is an essential part of any modern business. By devising and implementing a plan, you can make the most of the many opportunities available to reach and engage with your target audience. But with so many digital marketing channels to choose from, how do you know where to start?
And once you’ve started, how can you be sure that your strategy is working?
In this blog post, we’ll answer both of these questions, taking you through the process of creating a digital marketing strategy step-by-step. We’ll also provide some top tips on how to measure your success along the way.
Define Your Goals
The first step in any effective digital marketing strategy is to define your goals. What exactly do you want to achieve? Do you want to increase brand awareness? Drive traffic to your website? Boost sales or leads? Convert prospects into customers?
Here understanding the client customer journey can be super helpful since it gives you insight into the big picture and the context of any specific goals that you create, since you will want your goals to be specific and measurable in some way.
Questions to ask include how do strangers get to hear about your business? Or in marketing speech – how do you generate traffic or build awareness? Do you do this organically through word of mouth or social media? Or do you want to leverage paid methods to supercharge and speed up the process e.g. a paid ads campaign on certain platforms? These goals center around the awareness phase of the customer journey where the aim is to become visible and seen in an ever-crowded world.
Alternatively, you could focus on the consideration phase of the customer journey. Can people search or research you easily? How do you build their interest? Do you offer free value-pieces? How do you nurture potential clients – do you leverage email marketing?
Often, one of the most important goals for any business is to consolidate and scale the conversion phase of the customers journey – where people take action and make a commitment. How can you convert leads and prospects into clients? Do you have a systematic approach that you can easily repeat? What are the roadblocks that cause prospects to stumble or retreat? Have you specific revenue or financial goals that need to be hit? Or are your goals here more impact orientated?
Seasoned entrepreneurs know full well that winning a brand new client is much harder (and more expensive to achieve) than up-levelling a current client onto a higher tired offering. And if this is an area that needs attention, you will want to focus on the loyalty and advocacy phases of the customer journey. Are you able to deliver on your promises in the way you had hoped? Can you deliver a customer experience that goes beyond anything else your clients might have already experienced? How can you nurture clients and how could you encourage them to champion your business?
Is there a part of the customer journey that needs your immediate and urgent attention? Are their aspects that are important but not urgent, that will enable you to future-proof your business? Your goals will inform every other decision you make about your digital marketing strategy, so it’s important to take the time to get them right and go deep. Why is it important? What would be at risk?
Keep in mind that your goals should be SMART: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. Anything that can be measured can be improved – and this will safeguard your goals from being mere fantasies.
Once you’ve defined your goals, move on to step 2.
Research Your Audience
Now that you know what you want to achieve with your digital marketing strategy, it’s time to go deep and fine tune how you can get there. This is where understanding your target audience can help you shortcut pain, overcome obstacles and find extreme focus so you can build fast. Who are you trying to serve through your business? Are they the same audience as the ones you need to reach with your digital marketing efforts?
As all the marketing gurus chant – sell people what they want, but give them what they need. To know they difference, you will need to spend some time getting to know the people you serve: Who are they? What are their pain points? What do they need or want? Where do they hang out online? Doing this research can save you a lot of time and money because it will help you create an irresistible service that is tailored and focused – solving a real problem that is urgent and pervasive.
The Power of Micro-Niching
This is where creating a micro-niche can help you accelerate progress because not everybody suffers from the same issues or problems. Although crafting a unique offer is half the battle, the other half is creating a message that can powerfully connect you with your audience. In high-ticket sales it’s known that efforts into you yourself being understood by your audience, aren’t anywhere as effective as efforts made into you understanding your audience first. To speak directly to your audience in the most powerful way you will need to communicate in a voice that will sound like their own.
Building A Client Avatar
Knowing your audience will also give you practical insights and ideas into where is best to reach them online. By creating buyer personas (aka client avatars), you can get a better understanding of where they hang out and where they don’t, who they cherish and what inspires them. What would resonate with their tribe and how they might differ from others – and create for yourself a blueprint right fit client – your client avatar.
If you get stuck for inspiration, it can be helpful to research your competition too. See what they’re doing well and where they could improve—you might just find some opportunities for yourself! Once you’ve done your research, move on to step 3 and start putting together your plan.
Choose Your Strategy, Channels & Tactics
Now it’s time for the fun part: choosing your lead strategy and the channels and tactics you’ll use! There are endless possibilities here—from email marketing and paid social media campaigns, to influencer content marketing and search engine optimization, from virtual conversion events to automated marketing funnels — so take some time exploring which channels and tactics make the most sense for your business and for achieving your goals.
Here it’s important to consider the all important balancing act between time (aka skill) and money – our two most fundamental resources. Typically you will find yourself in a position where you have more of one than the other, and appreciating this can really help you navigate which tactic and tool will actually be do-able. Sadly, not all marketing strategies are created equal and their effectiveness will very much depend on your primary goal and your stage of business – and this inherent trade off with effort needed. There is no escaping the fact that to market well, it will take energy. The big question is whose and for how long. But the happy news is that there is a strategy for every scenario. This is where experience and understanding come in.
Also, it’s important to realise that every strategy works – but for your business you might find that a single strategy gives you the best results, or a combination. Here’s an overview of the main giants in a digital marketers toolkit – the secret is knowing which one to apply when.
Content marketing is a strategy where you create value-first pieces of content to build brand awareness and stimulate interest and intrigue in your offer. It’s a powerful way to position yourself in the marketplace and reach out without any pressure on your audience to act. This makes it’s extremely low risk and creates a low barrier to entry where strangers can begin to experience your brand totally on their own terms. Here, the types of content you create will depend on your campaign goals and your target audience. Despite content creation forming an intrinsic and crucial part of any marketing strategy you adopt or lead with, it forms it’s own category when it’s implemented as a slow burn method for reaching out and sharing your message whether through written content like blog posts, website pages, and eBooks, or through more visual/auditory content such as video content, podcasts and social media posts.
Social Media Marketing
Although closely linked to Content Marketing, Social media marketing (SMM) can incorporate a number of activities such as influencer marketing (where businesses leverage their connection with specialists in specific subjects who have a big audience to promote their brand), video marketing, to paid ad campaigns. Social media is pervasive in our day and age, and can provide a wonderful opportunity to showcase brand values in a much more personable and authentic way. Content can be fun, quirky, serious or controversial – and since life on social media platforms is high paced and often highly engaged – it can provide a powerful arena where raving fans and advocates are born.
However, counterintuitively, social media channels are also hyper sensitive to user experience and this can mean that business content gets intentionally hidden. Organic reach can be severely limited and this is where the power of paid ad campaigns come in. With a huge database of users, most social media platforms are marketing platforms undercover, where for a fee, other external businesses can access highly targeted people groups and leverage a consumer list that often includes millions.
Following on in this arena is Instant Message Marketing – connecting with prospects through a social media platform and then sending direct messages to build connection and engagement. It’s powerful because engagement can be high, highly personal and direct.
Like Social Media Marketing, Email Marketing focuses content marketing but in the realm of email messaging and campaigns. Email marketing enables business to send extremely targeted messages to leads, prospects and clients, where audiences can be segmented and sequences can be automated. It’s powerful because the email list of contacts a business builds is a immensely valuable business asset, and despite sometimes being considered a rather dated form of communication when compared to social media, messages sent direct to an Inbox can feel much more personable and individual, and even though some audiences may have apprehensions regarding social platforms, culture and purpose – most engage in email with their Inbox being one of the first things checked when a new day begins. Interestingly it has been reported that 72% of consumers prefer to receive business and brand communications through email than any other channel.
Within the world of business, the most important qualities to foster are credibility and trust – without which no business can exist. And this is why web-marketing can be so powerful. Web marketing through your website and/or search engine ranking and listing, will provide warm prospects with instant access to structured content that can cover all, and any, aspect of your business – from your global offerings to legal small print. It can be sobering to consider that 94% of consumers will trust or reject your business based on their first impressions of your website, and 85% of business to business (B2B) clients will first carry out research online before making a purchasing decision (sometimes known as the Zero Moment of Truth – ZMOT – in the customer journey).
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Closely linked to Web Marketing is Search Engine Optimization (SEO). SEO is the process of optimizing your web presence to bring in more organic traffic from search engines like Google. This process typically involves what is known as on-page SEO (where individual web pages are optimised so they become more visible), off-page SEO (where the value of your content is assess through how it impacts others, and this is where links and backlinks shine), as well as technical SEO (where website performance is optimised so that content is accessible to all). However, SEO isn’t only about improving the quantity of organic search traffic you bring back to your site but also about the quality of that traffic, and this is where it can compliment other strategies including content marketing.
Linked to web marketing and SEO, it’s possible to leverage Google itself to promote your business, and this is where pay-per-click (PPC) advertising or Search Engine Marketing (SEM) comes in. Since search engine users tend to be problem aware and are in active search for a solution, Google ads (Adwords and PPC), can be extremely impactful though management can be quite complex.
Virtual & Conversion Event Marketing
Stepping outside the bounds of what is typically considered typical digital marketing, is the realm of virtual event marketing. It’s in this place that we find strategies like the webinars, online challenges, mini-group frameworks, as well as more bespoke intimate conversion events. Although on the surface, many might pose as masterclasses, workshops and courses – beneath the hood is a carefully crafted framework that has been fine-tune to encourage conversion. Due to the huge breadth of event types and the vastly different levels of technology they encompass, many non-techie businesses may prematurely dismiss such approaches out of fear or ignorance – but for businesses that tend to lead with teaching and empowering others through education, this can be the place where they scale and impact more lives in an extremely dynamic and exhilarated way.
A Word of Warning
Don’t jump into a strategy or tactic without first thinking through your overall plan of action and stage of business. A mistake many coaches and consultants make, is falling into the content marketing tactic without a clear idea of how it will achieve the result they are after. Creating content can be easy, if hard work – and it can comes in so many different forms from blog posts, infographics, videos, eBooks, that it can become a never ending treadmill no matter how virtuous it may feel. Likewise, choosing a strategy that doesn’t align with your stage of business can become a sink hole that leaves you worst off than when you first began. This is where paid campaigns can go hugely wrong. Doing what everybody else seems to be doing can be a fatal mistake – especially as the deeper levels of strategy are often unseen until you dig below the surface. So think it through!
If you’re not sure where to start or what would work best for your business, reach out to a digital marketing agency or consultant for help! They’ll be able to assess your situation and make recommendations based on experience and expertise. Without a doubt some industries will lend themselves better to certain strategies than others and there is always more than one way of achieving a certain goals, and once you’ve chosen your strategy, channels and tactics, it’s time for…
Now comes the hard part: actually putting your plan into action! This is where most businesses struggle because executing a successful digital marketing campaign takes a lot of hard work, dedication, and resources (time, money and skill). But don’t let that stop you—start small if necessary but just start! And as you implement each element of your plan, keep an eye on those all-important Key Performance Indicators (aka KPIs) so that you can track progress and adjust course as necessary. Remember: a good digital marketing strategy is never finished—it’s always evolving as new technologies emerge and as new trends take hold. So even after launch day comes and goes, keep working on fine-tuning and improving until you have a campaign that really works for your business!
The important thing to remember is that marketing is both a science and an art – and no matter what the result, the process remains the same: test, test, test. This can give such a great sense of freedom and creativity, but also of risk and uncertainty. Despite the overarching strategies that can fast track your progress, there are nuances too which sometimes are best determined through trial and error. Create space to experiment in and remember how modern-day culture can also play an unseen, but important part. After all, business is all about people, working with people – and expectations can shift depending on the era and world we are in.
Measure Your Results
Last but not least, don’t forget to measure the results of your digital marketing efforts! This step is critical for understanding what tactics are working well and which ones need improvement. There are a number of different metrics you can track depending on your goals, such as website traffic, leads generated, sales made, or even social media engagement levels. By tracking these metrics over time, you can get a better understanding of what’s working and adjust your strategy accordingly.
If executed correctly, a digital marketing strategy can help businesses of all sizes achieve their desired goals—be it increased brand awareness or boost sales or leads (or all three!). Creating an effective digital marketing strategy doesn’t have to be complicated or time-consuming—if you know what steps to take.
By following the steps outline above—defining goals, researching your audiences and conducting a SWOT analysis , choosing our strategy, channels & tactics ,and implementing & measuring success —you can develop a plan that works for YOUR business . So what are YOU waiting for?! Start planning today!
A digital marketing strategy is a comprehensive plan marking out how you can reach and engage with, your ideal clients online. It includes everything from SEO and PPC ads, social media campaigns to content creation and publication.
Marketing is a crucial activity that all companies must do. Without reaching out and connecting with prospects, leads and clients, there is no business. A successful digital marketing strategy will have a positive effect on all aspects of business, including revenue growth as well as client retention through increased engagement and brand development.
When you’re creating a marketing campaign, audience research is essential. After all, you can’t effectively market to someone if you don’t know who they are and what they’re interested in. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to research your audience. Social media is a great place to start – take a look at who’s interacting with your brand and what kinds of things they’re saying. You can also use surveys and customer data to get a better idea of who your audience is and what they want. By taking the time to do your audience research, you’ll be able to create campaigns that are more targeted and more likely to be successful.
When it comes to digital marketing, one of the most important things you can do is set the right goals. Without a clear idea of what you want to achieve, it will be difficult to create an effective strategy and measure your progress. So how do you choose the right goals for your digital marketing strategy?
Here are a few tips:
Start by thinking about your overall business objectives. What are you trying to achieve? Your digital marketing goals should be aligned with these objectives.
Think about your audience. Who are you trying to reach? What needs do they have? What kind of content would they find useful or engaging? Your goals should be focused on reaching and connecting with your target audience.
Be specific. Vague goals like “increase brand awareness” are difficult to measure and won’t give you much direction. Instead, focus on specific objectives like ” increase website traffic from organic search by 20% over the next 3 months.” These types of goals are much easier to track and will help you assess your progress.
Choose achievable goals. It’s important to set goals that are challenging but achievable. If your goals are too ambitious, you’ll likely become discouraged; if they’re too easy, you won’t see any real results. Strike a balance and set realistic expectations for what you can achieve.
Finally, review your goals regularly and adjust as needed. As your business grows and changes, your digital marketing goals should evolve as well. Periodically revisit your strategy to make sure your goals are still relevant and attainable.
Creating a client avatar can be extremely helpful. By understanding who your target customers are and what motivates them, you can create targeted content that speaks directly to their needs. But how do you go about creating a generic avatar that will help you keep focused? The first step is to gather data about your existing customers. This can be done through surveys, interviews, and other research methods. Once you have this information, you can start to identify patterns and build profiles of your ideal clients. These profiles should include basic information like age, gender, and location (demographics), as well as more detailed insights into their values and preferences (psychographics). With a well-developed set of client avatars, you’ll be able to create a digital marketing strategy that resonates with your target audience and drives results.
There are a lot of marketing channels out there, and it can be tough to figure out which ones to use. The good news is that there’s no one-size-fits-all answer – the best marketing mix will vary depending on your business, your products or services, and your target market. To figure out which channels are right for you, start by thinking about your goals. What do you want to achieve with your marketing? Once you know what you’re trying to accomplish, you can start evaluating different marketing channels to see which ones will help you reach your goals. For example, if you’re looking to increase brand awareness, channels like social media and PR may be a good fit. If you’re looking to drive sales, channels like paid advertising and email marketing may be more effective. And if you’re looking to build relationships with customers, channels like events and customer service can be key. The bottom line is that there’s no wrong answer – it all comes down to figuring out which channels will help you achieve your specific marketing goals.
Creating content for your digital marketing strategy can seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. There are a few key things to keep in mind that will help you create content that is engaging and effective. First, consider what your audience wants to see. What kinds of information are they looking for? What would be helpful or interesting to them? This will help you create content that is relevant and valuable. Secondly, make sure your content is clear and concise. No one has time to read long, rambling articles or posts. Keep your language simple and to the point. Lastly, don’t forget to include a call to action. Whether you want your readers to subscribe to your newsletter or follow you on social media, make sure they know what you want them to do. By following these simple tips, you can create content that will help you reach your digital marketing goals.