Small businesses today have more pressure to have digital marketing services than ever before. We all know that we should implement some kind of digital marketing strategy but how exactly do we do it? Today we have started a beginner’s guide to help you with the basic steps to get you thinking in the right direction. Implementing a successful digital marketing strategy takes time, patience and it’s not always a linear process. With a little bit of guidance, we can help you identify, execute, and achieve your goals.
Digital Marketing Strategy Vs Marketing Plan
A digital marketing strategy and marketing plan work hand in hand. Think of your digital marketing strategy as the “what” you wish to achieve with your marketing efforts and your marketing plan as the “how” you will achieve it. A marketing plan should be a plan of action for how you will execute your strategy to accomplish your marketing goals. It’s important to keep in mind that your marketing goals should be an extension of your business and should be based on your brand values, voice, mission, and messaging.
Marketing plans layout real-world steps to create, promote, track, and measure marketing campaigns, programs, and assets. It should define workflows, tactics, and procedures for achieving your main objectives. Before you can start creating your digital marketing plan you’ll need to clearly define your strategy first.
How to Create Your Digital Marketing Strategy
Take the time to answer the following questions to craft a comprehensive strategy:
Identify your objectives
Define your business’ overall mission and or objective first. Your digital marketing strategy must fit into your company’s business mission. Ask yourself: What is the most important thing I want my digital marketing efforts to achieve?
Refine your audience
You should know what customers you're trying to reach, their values, what drives their decision-making process, and the problem they're facing. Ask yourself: What problems are my customers facing and how can I solve them?
Establish your brand guidelines
Think about how you will solve your customers' problems in a way that aligns with their values. Identify what makes you different from competitors and why customers should believe in you. Ask yourself: How do I solve my customer’s problems in a way that is valuable to them and how does that align with my company’s mission?
Assess opportunities and threats
Conduct a situation and SWOT analysis to identify the internal and external factors of your business. This should give you the insight to set proper strategies to ensure your company's success in the future. Ask yourself: What are the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats that are impacting my business?
Once your marketing strategy is complete, you can use it to create a marketing plan that details the steps to achieve your specific goals. When mapping out your marketing strategy into a marketing plan, be specific when deciding what, how, and why you will communicate with your customers. The more specific you are in your planning, the easier it will be to follow through with effective implementation.
Keep in mind that your marketing strategy will change depending on your objectives and it’s more than okay, even suggested, to constantly monitor, update and fine-tune your strategy to keep your marketing efforts in line with your business goals.
If you’re working alone or in a small company, don’t be afraid to hire outside consultants to help you apply this process to your situation or sift through your metrics and redefine your goals if something doesn’t seem to be working the way you planned.
Come back next month when we’ll dig deeper into how to map out your strategy into a digital marketing plan.
All the best,
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