A recent study by Smart Insights on digital marketing management revealed some impressive numbers – 46% of brands have no defined strategy for digital marketing while another 16% are yet to put their strategy into practice. It’s worth asking these brands – if you are without any definite plan for the future, how do you expect to innovate and grow?
Have you wondered how you will measure meaningful results and learn from the mistakes you had made in the past?
“Don’t worry about the future,” experts say. Stop panicking about what will happen in the next month or year and focus on coming up with a plan that can work wonders for your brand. As a decision-maker, here is a look at the important steps that you need to take so that your digital marketing efforts can translate into a strong impact on your bottom line.
Figure out what you want and define clear objectives
Define your mission:
- What is the objective/mission you want your business to achieve? Your mission of digital marketing should be aligned with the grand plan.
- Have you decided on an overriding objective that your digital marketing efforts should achieve? This should be the definition for your mission.
Set measurable KPIs and measure them:
- Be specific while defining your KPIs and identify the figures that you want to achieve. For example, if you own winery business and looking forward to receiving exposure through the digital domain, you need to consult digital marketing experts and create a winery marketing plan with measurable KPIs applicable for the business.
- Have realistic goals for your KPIs. Analyze the digital marketing efforts you had put in previously. This way you can aim for a positive increase on the ongoing results while not setting the bar too high.
- Figure a method with which you can measure every KPI that you have defined – BuzzSumo, Google Analytics, what will it be?
- Before putting in place a plan for your KPIs, find out which metrics your CEO looks upon as most important.
Analyze what you did in the past and figure the key takeaways from your mistakes.
It is not a good idea to start planning while in the dark. Analyze how your strategies measured up in the past – successes, and failures – and focus on setting only those KPIs that work best for your business. Which period do you want to take up for analysis? Decide the same one during which you intend to implement your next digital marketing strategy to understand the outcomes best.
Doing the analysis:
- Figure out the time period you intend to analyze and match this timeframe to your Google Analytics calendar.
- Remember to analyze the digital marketing strategies adopted by your competitors as well to figure out how you measure up against them.
- Is there anything else you feel you should analyze that you had not thought of before? If yes, go ahead and pick it up for analysis.
Understand your target audience and speak in a language they understand
Your digital marketing strategy planning should not make you lose focus from your target audience. While it is expected that you know who your target audience is, there is a high probability that you will lose sight of them in the maze of channel selections, budget concerned, and KPI settings.
If you had made this mistake before, make sure you don’t repeat the same thing. Put your target audience at the heart of everything that goes on for your digital marketing strategy, give satisfaction to their deepest desires, and cater to the gamut of their emotional needs. This is a simple thing to achieve as long as you know how to create well thought out personas.
Developing useful personas
- Set up with the basics and note down all the demographic details you know about the target consumer group such as their location, age, and gender.
- Do a little bit of deep digging to identify their problems that your target persona can resolve.
- What are their fears, aspirations, goals, and emotional desires? Document the factors that could help in keeping them ticking along. Your Google Analytics reports can be of assistance.
- Identify those who can be influencers for your target audience. Ensure your marketing strategy is targeted towards these influencers
Determine your means and stick to the budget
Three things will help identify your means – your budget, digital channels, and the team of people you are working with. Take stock of all resources at your disposal before deciding what you may require for the subsequent period.
Identifying your means:
- Determine the overall marketing budget.
- Check your historical data. What had worked before?
- Do you want paid promotions?
- Allocate a portion of the budget for every digital channel that will help in your paid promotion.
- If an element of your strategy is not giving you the desired results, divert the funds to one that is giving you good output.
- What can your current team achieve?
- Do you need more people for the job? Do you have the means for it?
- Will you do all of your digital marketing work in-house or outsource some of it to an agency?
- Do you need any other digital marketing channel?
- What is every channel trying to achieve?
- Does every digital channel have at least one KPI attached to it?
Plan, though you know very well you are not going to stick to it
- Create a plan to measure and monitor every KPI.
- Check if the individual strategy elements are giving you continuous results.
- If something is not holding up, set it apart from the rest and try to determine the reasons behind its failure.
- Revisit what you had analyzed previously, your budgets and personas and come up with something new.
- Create a new and well-defined KPI for the next venture.
Not every assumption you make while formulating your marketing strategy will yield dividends. You would have taken care of every craft for constructing a careful plan, relying on insights, assumptions, and a great deal of analysis but there is no KPI that gives a measure of your customers’ behavior. Hence, it is very important that you regularly monitor and measure how your digital marketing strategy is performing and make changes to the elements wherever necessary.…