Digital marketing is a key component of marketing, but it must be done intentionally. With continually changing technologies, algorithms, and techniques, it can be hard to identify the most effective methods to maximize your efforts and deliver the results you need. If you haven’t considered the importance of digital marketing, this is a good time to create a digital marketing strategy.
Hubspot defines digital marketing as, “all marketing efforts that occur on the internet. American Marketing Association explains that digital marketing “provides an avenue for two-way communication between a business and its actual or prospective customers.”
Some digital marketing methods include search engine optimization (SEO), search
engine marketing (SEM), social media marketing, email marketing, content marketing (such as blogs, videos, podcasts, etc.) or pay-per-click advertising.
If you haven’t already incorporated these techniques, consider the many benefits of digital marketing:
- Reach customers during everyday activities, such as reading online articles, watching videos, scrolling social media, etc.
- Relatively inexpensive. Websites, social media channels, blogs, and other digital marketing methods can be created without a large financial investment.
- Large reach. Digital marketing is not confined to one geographic area but can reach customers anywhere.
- Measurable. The ROI of digital marketing is more easily measurable than traditional marketing.
- Adaptable. Digital marketing efforts can be quickly and easily adjusted, which makes it easier to adapt when needed
- Easier to target customers. Digital marketing allows specific targeting for potential customers or clients, based on demographics, industries, social channels, and other factors.
- Opportunity to build relationships. Social media marketing allows businesses to interact with customers and build relationships.
- Connection with customers. Digital marketing allows an immediate connection with customers when they research online.
Create a Digital Marketing Strategy
If you don’t have a digital marketing strategy already, here are five steps to get started:
1. Start with business goals. Before creating a digital marketing strategy, consider the overall goals of your business. All marketing strategies should line up with those goals.
2. Research target audiences. Because digital marketing allows you to effectively target specific audiences, you need to know who you are targeting. Research will help you know your audience so you can determine demographic information, where they spend their time, what their pain points are, and the best ways to communicate with them.
3. Develop your digital marketing strategy. Identify your differentiators, marketing positioning and key messages. Determine what stands out about your business and how you can solve your audience’s problems. Decide where you best fit into the market. Use these factors to develop your key messages. Put all that information together to develop your strategy.
4. Choose digital marketing techniques. Once you have a strategy in place, it’s time to choose your techniques. Your techniques will only be as effective as the level of adoption by your target audience. This will change based on your type of business and customer. Some examples of digital techniques include SEO or keyword research, email marketing, blog posts, keyword research, premium content, and webinars.
5. Define success. Determine your specific goals and how you want to measure success. One way to measure is to look at outcomes such as leads, number and type of client, profitability, and revenue growth. You can also look at visibility such as website traffic or clicks on specific pages related to your digital marketing campaigns. Make sure you are effectively implementing and following through with techniques. Finally, be sure to compare benchmarks with current data to determine effectiveness.
Once you have completed these steps, you should be ready to start on your digital marketing strategy. In part two of our digital marketing series, we will discuss trends you can incorporate to make your digital marketing stand out even more.