With digital marketing, there is a constant or near-constant exchange of data between the business and the various online platforms on which they market. For example, an integral part of most digital marketing campaigns is SEO. But SEO is not something you can simply buy or implement with a single transaction. SEO is an ongoing process, and in order to ensure that your score continues to rise and that your competitors don’t end up overtaking you with regards to your most important search terms, you need to be regularly examining data and evaluating your effectiveness.
Sticking to the following steps when you are devising your digital marketing campaign will ensure that you approach your marketing in a logical and efficient fashion, giving you the best possible chance of success.
Define Your Goals
To some people, this advice seems so glaringly obvious that you might wonder why we would include it at all. The reason is that, while for many marketers defining their goals at the very beginning is second nature. However, there are many people who are so eager to get into the nuts and bolts of their campaign that they don’t do the planning beforehand that is necessary for a focused approach.
There are a number of choices you will need to make when putting your marketing campaign together. For example, are you going to be measuring your success by looking at how much your conversion rate improves? Or are you instead aiming for a higher spot in the search results rankings? Of course, you might be pursuing both goals. The exact goals you pursue, and how you measure your success in achieving them, will depend on the specifics of your business.
The exact goals you pursue are entirely up to you. They will be decided, at least in part, by the current circumstances your business is in, but only you know what it is that you want to achieve for your business in the long term. However, the following goals are worth considering, even if they aren’t the primary focus of your campaign.
- Brand awareness: When you want to tell someone to perform an internet search, how often do you tell them to “Google it”? This level of brand awareness, where a business’ name is used as a verb in common parlance, is something that all businesses aspire to, but which is very difficult to achieve. There are a number of ways of measuring brand awareness, but one of the simplest ways is by utilizing Google Trends to see how many people are searching for your business.
- Social media followers: This is another simple, yet very telling, metric for determining the current interest in your business. It is worth tracking the number of followers you have and measuring the rate of increase, rather than just looking at the raw number. Many of us never unfollow the pages that we lose interest in on social media, so not all of your followers will be actively interested in your business.
- SEO: There are a number of different factors that influence a business SEO score. One of these is the number of backlinks that your website receives from other, reputable websites. Improving SEO is a part of most digital marketing campaigns, so you will probably be undertaking a number of tasks with the intention of improving your SEO score. Tracking the growth of your SEO score is, therefore, a solid indicator of how well your campaign is progressing.
Identify Your Target Market
Knowing exactly who it is that you are trying to sell your products to is hugely important if you want to be able to use your resources more efficiently. No matter what your budget is, the more you know about the demographics that you are trying to reach, the more finely you can craft your marketing materials to appeal to them. This is a much more efficient approach than simply throwing everything at the wall and seeing what sticks.
You should begin by establishing exactly who is currently buying your products. Your current customer demographics may not be the same as the demographics that you most want to reach with your marketing. If you are looking to reach new audiences and expand your reach with your latest marketing campaign, you need to make sure that the new direction you are planning on heading in isn’t going to alienate your existing customers.
A persona is a detailed description of your ideal customer. This includes information such as their age, their occupation, their wealth and class status, their family situation, and any other variable that will determine how they are likely to spend their money. Whereas your target demographics are fairly broad, your persona should be defined in as much detail as possible. This often includes information about their hobbies, interests, and personal lives. This kind of information is often omitted when considering broad target demographics.
Realistically Assess Your budget
This is another very important step that is often overlooked or not given the consideration it warrants. Setting yourself a realistic budget is important for a number of reasons. First and foremost, your budget will serve as the primary restriction on what you can do with your marketing campaign and will also dictate how you allocate your resources. The good news is that digital marketing is cheaper than conventional marketing, meaning that the same resources will go further when you are using them in the digital space.
Take Advantage of Social Media
Social media is the most important marketing platform in the world today. The success or failure of your digital campaign may well ultimately hinge on how effectively you are able to utilize social media. Not only is social media a very important marketing platform in its own right, it also serves as a support for many other aspects of digital marketing, creating a powerful synergy. For example, SEO and social media marketing go hand in hand with one another. But how do search engine optimization and social media marketing work together?
There are a number of reasons why these two digital marketing aspects should be considered together, not least of all because social media will provide you with valuable insights and data which can be used to further improve your SEO score. Keeping a consistent message across your various marketing components is essential for ensuring maximum synergy between them. If you utilize your social media profiles to their fullest effect, they can provide you with the kind of data that you would normally have to pay a market research company a hefty sum to produce.
A strong digital marketing strategy is the cornerstone of a successful business. While digital marketing is cheaper than traditional marketing methods, it is also a much more powerful tool. The only caveat is that it requires businesses to take a more considered and thoughtful approach when devising a campaign.