If you plan to promote your website, products or services on the web, then you need a digital marketing plan to guide your activities and plan and to ensure that you are as efficient and effective as possible.
Competition between businesses on the web is now at an all time high, across all industries and greater competition continues to emerge from businesses that are realising the huge potential in digital marketing.
For example, since the launch of the Google Adwords program over 13 years ago, average CPC (cost per click) rates have risen by over 40% and they continue to rise across the board. So to survive, and even create a winning digital marketing strategy, you need a plan to make it all happen and here are some things you should consider:
Start with your objectives
Every plan should have objectives or goals that will guide all tactics and activities. Objectives also help to identify who you are targeting and what budget you should set to meet their needs. So it all starts with your marketing objectives and you should create them from the perspective of your target markets, to make them relevant and achievable.
Types of marketing objectives include seeing a percentage increase in customer retention or an improvement in positive reviews for your products or services.
Who are you targeting?
It’s important to identify your target audiences before running any digital marketing campaign. Of course tools like Google Adwords make it possible to create ads that target keywords that people use to search without you knowing who they are. So you can run campaigns and drive high volumes of traffic and even sales as a test without researching the demographics of these people are, but you will find it difficult to understand what benefits and features they respond to, without researching them first.
In fact, doing research into your potential customers first, means you have greater insight into who they are and what they want – and you can then build this into your ads – for maximum effectiveness.
Some tools you can use to research your target markets include Survey Monkey and Google Consumer Surveys which cost next to nothing to implement.
What do they need or want?
Are you targeting baby boomers, millennials, 18-24 year olds or 35–44 year olds? Knowing this will help you to identify what their needs or wants are and your digital marketing campaigns will be more effective.
You can then highlight the main benefits that are of interest to your target markets in your ads
Who are your competitors?
Your competitors will occupy the same online space that you need to make your products or services available to your target market. So it’s important that you create unique benefits that are desired by your customers and that differentiate you from your competitors.
It’s also crucial that you study the digital marketing strategies of your competitors and compare their performance on key metrics like traffic volumes, keywords targeted etc that are important to your business.
What resources do you need to succeed?
From all the information you’ve collected from the above about your objectives, target market and competitors, you can then create a budget that sets out the cost for each tactic.
So you will have a budget that covers online promotional tools such as Search Engine Optimisation, Social Media Management, Pay Per Click Advertising, Online PR, Website creation or redesign and so on.
And you should create a timeline that lists what actions need to be done by when and who will be doing what.
Need help creating a digital marketing campaign? Contact me for a chat and to find out how I can help you create a plan that will result in more sales or leads for your business by using the various promotional channels such as SEO, PPC, Social Media, Online PR, Affiliate Marketing and others.
Or download the free digital marketing strategy template to plan your digital marketing campaigns.