Since the rise of the internet and the explosion of e-commerce, marketing efforts have increasingly migrated into the digital sphere. With consumers wandering the online hinterland in search of the latest products and deals, it makes sense for businesses to effectively market this space to increase sales and drive leads.
But where should your business start? What online marketing channels should your business occupy and how can your digital marketing campaigns meet your company’s goals? Here we outline how you can devise a digital marketing strategy for your business to meet either your, or your client’s, objectives.
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Define Your Objectives
Your objectives will determine your marketing strategy. Before you devise your strategy, you will need to know what you want to achieve. Try to set concrete, realistic figures based on previous marketing campaigns. This will prevent your expectations being set too high but also allow you to improve on previous marketing efforts.
An objective may look like this: We want to increase site traffic by 20% in six months.
It has a clear objective (to increase site traffic), a tangible figure (by 20%) and a realistic timeframe (six months).
Know Your Target Audience
To devise an effective marketing strategy, you need to know your buyer persona or your target audience. If your company sells shoes and your buyers are often the 18-25 demographic, it would be counterproductive, therefore, to waste money in marketing channels dominated by the over 40s.
Use web tools to get a rounded picture of your buyers including their location, age, income level, job, hobbies, interests and priorities. The more detailed the buyer persona, the more effective your marketing strategy will be and the more streamlined your spending can become.
Look at Your Means
Now, you need to look at your established marketing channels and see what has worked in the past. For example, did a paid social media promotion generate a spike in internet traffic? How about a Google ad? Look into your previous marketing efforts and determine which ones generated the most clicks for the least financial outlay.
Carrying out an audit of previous and existing campaigns will provide a clear vision of what channel to pursue moving forward.
Bring Everything Together
In your audit of existing media channels and marketing efforts you should have discovered some gaps in your coverage, perhaps in blog content or missed social media opportunities (e.g. Instagram for the teenage audience). You should also have a clear idea of your audience and well-defined objectives.
All that remains is to bring all of these together. Your digital marketing strategy should be a series of actions that will help you meet your objectives. These actions should be mapped out on a calendar of around twelve months.
For example, your strategy may involve creating new content for your blog in January. This will be an ongoing endeavour resulting in one new blog post a week for the entire year. You may then release an e-book in the Spring, launch a series of paid social media advertisements in early summer to drive traffic in the summer months, then in the fall, you may focus on PR efforts to maintain the momentum of the summer rush.
Your strategy will be unique to your business and should be constantly evolving and streamlining as you collect data on previous marketing campaigns. The objective is to meet your goals with the lowest possible budget. Keep campaigns that offer high sales or click volume for a low financial outlay and slash the budget for campaigns that represent high costs for limited clicks.