A goal without a plan is just a wish.”
― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
According to Wikipedia, digital marketing is an umbrella term for the targeted, measurable, and interactive marketing of products or services. The process uses digital technologies to reach and convert leads into customers and retain them. The definition is a mouthful but is accurate as it suggests that a strategy should be in place.
A digital marketing strategy develops connections with customers. Measurement of the results and using them to optimise future campaigns are vital in the process. Market research should inform the strategy, making it a customer-centric plan. The strategy is a roadmap that informs decision making in light of time and budget constraint.
Many business owners are reluctant to develop a plan. This lack of clarity results in costly stabs in the dark associated with the haphazard and inefficient process. They also tend to lead the way with their agenda rather than those of their customers.
A digital marketing strategy uses digital channels to communicate and achieves marketing objectives.
Here are the 20% of the Digital channels that produces 80% of marketing results
- Conversion optimisation
- Web design
- Social media
- Email Marketing
There are many theories about what to consider for your strategy. Here are some key and recurrent considerations for your digital marketing plan:
Start you digital marketing strategies with clear, measurable goals over a fixed period. Ensure that the platform goals align with the business goals. For instance, instead of just focusing on Retweets or likes- consider the number of leads generated from your social media efforts.
With so many different platforms, you don’t have all the resources to master them all. You need to clarify where your clients are searching for your products and services. This purposeful selection enables you to narrow your focus, time and budget while maximising your results.
You can only do so much as your budget will allow so do consider whether your marketing goals are realistic.
Pay attention to Data
Don’t ignore the data! Digital marketing strategy should be data driven. For each platform, pay attention to the relevant datasets that they provide. With this data, you can optimise future campaigns to achieve superior results. Google Analytics is a popular, powerful and free tool.
Digital marketing is a 2-way communication and so there should be the willingness to communicate with customers. Reputation management and customer service have become paramount across social media platforms.
It takes a Team
Get the help you need to get the job done right! Seek to outsource some elements of the campaign that you lack the time, skill or focus to do. For everyone, time is a limited commodity so do remember that quality of service may reflect the price that you pay.
Although you need a budget to get started, it doesn’t have to be extremely costly to develop and implement a digital marketing strategy. Tools to run campaigns can be inexpensive and often have generous free packages. All plan must start with the customer first- their pain points, interest and emotions. A strategy will help you minimise the guesswork, and any change to the plan will be well-informed ones.