Planning your digital marketing strategy
In any business you need to plan for what you want to achieve. These days, it can be difficult to map out your future if you don’t have an effective digital marketing strategy. Here’s part 1 of how to ensure your digital marketing strategy drives results that meet your business objectives
1. Situation Analysis
The first step for your digital marketing strategy is to think about where your business is now. Who are your customers and what are they looking for? Identify your customers and think about what they are after – what needs they have – then compare what you are actually offering. Is there anything you are missing? Do you have an upsell product or service?
You may want to do some research on your competitors and see what would make someone choose them over you. There might be something you can implement into your own business to boost sales. Whilst researching other companies you may notice a few trends appearing in the market that you’d like to capitalise on. Trends might last a couple of months, or a couple of years. Either way, it could be worth your time to try and take advantage of them whilst they are happening. Worried that your industry is too dull to market around current trends? You may benefit from some brilliant marketing ideas for boring businesses.
Another good thing for you to do is to analyse your internal resources and capabilities. Is there anything that needs improving? Perhaps you are using software that is struggling to cope with the load, or a workforce that is being stretched to their limits. Think about whether your business is in all round good shape and if you would like to upgrade anything to help cope with the growth of your business as you find more business.
2. Digital Marketing Objectives
The digital marketing strategy in your business plan is all about ambition. Where do you want to be? Although it’s nice to think about your maximum potential, it’s important to keep a level head. Be realistic about what your future goals are, but also push them a little – there’s no point in planning for something that will be near impossible to achieve, but you should also challenge yourself. Don’t just make a goal that you know will be easy to reach. Also, you should take into account what new approaches you could take to marketing, for example video brochures or social media. Make sure you consider:
– how much you are looking to sell
– how you aim to please your customers
– your wow factor, or what adds value to your business
– how you will engage and interact with customers
– how you will become more efficient
3. Digital Marketing Strategy
Take a look at the objectives you’ve set and start to plan the steps you will take in order to reach them. In this step you should look at the different paths you could go down to reach your goal – looking at alternatives. You may also want to start thinking about how you will get yourself seen by your online prospects. Visibility is key and you will need to ensure your SEO elements are all in place and working for you. Paid-for advertising might work for you – for example, PPC marketing is a fantastic, cost-effective way of getting leads if you set it up right.
In your first draft marketing strategy you should be thinking about:
– your target market and how you will appeal to them (your client personas)
– the angle you will be marketing from (the benefits you can offer)
– what your selling points will be (the message)
– the tools you will use to help reach your business objective and maintain a steady course (the digital marketing tools at your disposal)
Thanks for reading part 1 of our digital marketing strategy, stay tuned for part 2!