How to Plan the Perfect Digital Marketing Strategy
Posted by Manoj Tiwari
The landscape of digital marketing is continuously emerging and more businesses are acquiring success by concentrating their efforts online. Your digital marketing plan should be an easily readable document that exclusively answers who you are, what you do, and how you plan to draw your customer’s interest. Sometimes the digital campaigners might feel that they do not have sufficient ideas and knowledge for constructing a concrete and effective plan. However, for developing a marketing sketch that meets your business goals, it should be an ideal blend of the planning process and the finished action plan.
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Customer centric digital marketing strategies are crucial for enhancing the opportunities of a profitable and sustainable future. In this highly cutthroat business environment, it is very important to devise an intelligent digital marketing plan for establishing your business values and identity strongly amidst your entrenched competitors. Although there are several ways to create focused digital marketing campaigns but to ensure perfection in your planning process is very important.
Understanding Digital Marketing Process
The digital marketing planning process is the heart of any truly marketing oriented organization for setting up its unique identity over internet. It also guarantees that the customers always remain at the center of its all significant decisions. Nevertheless the most difficult task in the planning process is to evaluate the methods required to sketch the perfect digital marketing plan.
Summarization of marketing planning process is depicted in the diagram given as follows:
Any marketing plan should be able to provide a clear direction to all pertinent members of an organization. I will explain the complete procedure for planning an effectual digital marketing strategy by splitting the marketing plan into three steps that are not only used for setting up a useful marketing tactic but are equally important for both large and small businesses.
- Research and Planning
- Developing Marketing Strategy
- Determining Actions and Controls
Research and planning is the foremost step of devising an effective digital marketing plan for your business as it clearly articulate the mission and goal of your digital initiatives along with a clearance on selecting which channels to choose and how. This step includes the following points:
- Analysis of current business status and scope of plan
- Research for potential customers
- Scrutinizing the marketing environment and digital channels for promotion
- Recognizing opportunities for success and growth
You should perform initial market analysis for your services and products that will include getting an overview of your market, proper assessment of your website performance over internet and competitive analysis as well. After analyzing the current status of your business, you must ensure an in-depth knowledge of your customers because it is significant for triumphant marketing planning. Know your target audience and go through the popular digital marketing channels employed by your well-established competitors for devising the scope of your successful digital marketing plan.
The other technological factors that should be ignored while performing research and planning are:
- Emergence of latest communication channels
- Advances in computing and internet
- Launch of latest updates for search engine algorithms
2. Developing Marketing Strategy
Researching and understanding your target audience is not enough for creating an effective digital marketing plan but building up an appropriate marketing strategy and for doing so, you must remember three essential elements listed as follows:
- Creating a mission statement
- Statement of goals
- Tactics and strategies for accomplishing the goals
Mission Statement: Your mission statement represents your commitment and focus towards your business; therefore, it should be inspirational, motivational, yet achievable and relevant. If clearly defined, the mission statement develops the focus of your business strategy.
Importance of identifying goals: On the other hand, the articulation of clear business goals of your digital marketing program such as increase sales, brand awareness, customer retention, reduced cost per lead and lessened cost per acquisition of customers might does not help you in taking to path way to employ them digitally. But you must have to dig down your business goals profoundly to acquire success in the digital world.
Your short term goal must be short in all terms so that you can corroborate swiftly but not so quickly that you can’t consistently gauge your success. Medium term goals must be far enough to visualize the result. However, when it comes to long term goals, they should be a huge pie in the sky goal that you will be willing to reach.
Select a suitable strategy for successful digital marketing: When you have set up mission and goals of your business, you can start fleshing out a successful digital marketing strategy with clearly defined customer segmentation. You should segment the customers based on their needs, media preferences and their perceptions towards your services and products.
There is a list of actions that you can utilize to acquire information about your customer persona, which are given below:
- Customer surveys
- Web and Exit surveys
- Phone surveys
Once you have defined your customer base as per their preferences and requirements, you can research on their digital behaviors to determine the appropriate and suitable digital channels for targeting them.
This is where you will go into profound detail of your digital channel strategy that includes effective SEO and SMO techniques, PPC, Email marketing, Affiliate marketing etc. Here is a list of tools that is used as an essential part of a digital marketing plan:
- CRM (Contact Management)
- Paid Advertising
Now when you have been aware of your business goals and target audience, you can start developing your proficient digital marketing plan for ensuring better conversion rates and revenue through your website.
Promotion is yet another major aspect that comes under successful marketing strategy but it is much more than advertising. It includes your branding strategy, you chosen set of promotional channels, and your offers and discounts over your site. And finally define the ways by which you will measure all these details since for each of the digital channels, you create a clear measurement framework where you can evaluate the effectiveness of every channel and create a matrix of core metrics to check if you are on the track to meet the goals.
3. Determining Actions and Controls
After researching, planning and devising digital marketing strategies for improving your business brand value on the Internet; it’s time to monitor your actions and controls. How will you monitor your strategy success? How will you adjust the plans?
For answering these questions, it is necessary to develop an action plan, which is a continuously evolving document distributed among the relevant people and scrutinized regularly to keep a check on the progress of your business. Action planning is a stage wise approach which includes the following elements:
- Clarify goals
- Link back your strategies and goals
- Establish criteria for success
- Establish timings
- Determining completion of each action point
- Monitoring progress of the plan and review on daily basis
The final stage of action plan is the execution of controls, measurements and reporting results. Many effective models for measuring the performance of businesses have appeared. Most of these models are developed to cater the needs of website owners and allow them to examine the overall triumph of their websites.
The key performance indicators of digital marketing plan that determine the growth of any online business are:
- Market share analysis
- Social media presence analysis
- Content Quality measurement
- Brand awareness
- Competitor performance
- Linking and benchmarking
Considered as a comprehensive method, the digital marketing planning process is indispensable for evaluating your business progress, your market value, and the environment so that you could devise accurate strategies for exploiting opportunities. Now that your plan is in place, you can execute this plan to monitor the growth of your online business because the key to perfect digital marketing is a tangible plan and its execution on regular basis. This is considered as a very significant process which must be used by all online business owners to ensure their lucrative and sustainable future.
Formulating the best digital marketing campaigns often needs the guidance of experts. Hiring the services of digital marketing experts will ensure that your business message reaches the right people through the right channel and at the right time.