how to create a digital marketing strategy

How To Create a Digital Marketing Strategy That Works 8 Easy Steps

Taking your business online is essential in today’s increasingly digital world. Regardless of how tech-savvy you are, determining how to create a digital marketing strategy that works for your business can be a perplexing task.

The digital marketing industry is evolving faster than ever. 76% of people think marketing has changed more in the past two years than in the previous fifty years combined (source). It’s little wonder why it can feel so overwhelming to stay up to date on the latest trends!

Whether you’re partnering with an agency or attempting to go at it alone, you’ll need to know how to create a digital marketing strategy that sets clear goals and achieves concrete results.

This eight-step plan will teach you what your digital strategy should include and how to create a digital marketing strategy that works.

Set Your Goals

Step 1: Determine Your Problem Area and Desired Outcome

It’s important to ask yourself what problem are you trying to solve? Does your social media struggle with low engagement rates? Is your website content outdated, leading to high bounce rates? Is a poor SEO strategy keeping you from generating new leads?

By understanding where your problem areas are, you can create a clear vision for solving them. Your desired outcomes for your marketing plan should follow the SMART approach of goal setting. They should be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound.

Step 2: Set Realistic Goals For Your Digital Marketing Strategy

Specific KPIs will hold you accountable along the way and ensure your digital marketing strategy stays on target. Avoid setting unattainably high target KPIs— especially if you’re taking your business online for the first time.

Being practical increases your chances of a successful campaign on the first try.

To determine your targets, look at your current marketing efforts and past campaigns to determine what is realistic for your business. KPIs you choose to measure vary depending on what you want to achieve and which channels you are utilizing.

Build the Foundation of Your Campaign

Step 3: Pinpoint Your Target Customer

Before you start throwing your money into a digital campaign, you’ll need to determine precisely who you want to target. Targeting a specific segment of your customer base allows for greater efficiency and increased ROIs.

The more specific you can be, the better. Breaking down your target market into key demographics ensures your marketing efforts reach the right audience through the right channel. Here are a few key demographics to consider:

  • Location
  • Age
  • Income level and career field
  • Interests and hobbies
  • Problems and concerns
  • Motivations behind a purchase

Step 4: Choose Your Channels

If you already have an online presence, evaluate your current channels to see which are performing best, and where you could fill in the gaps by investing in new channels like social media, email marketing, or SEM (Search Engine Marketing) among others.

Each channel should have a specific marketing goal you’d like to achieve, and a handful of KPI’s you will be measuring.

As you’re determining what channels to use, keep revisiting your target audience. Do some research to understand where your desired customer base spends their time online and what methods your competitors are using to reach them.

Step 5: Set a Clear Budget

Knowing how to create a digital marketing strategy also means knowing how to work within your means. It’s essential to establish a clear marketing budget. Start by looking at your current approach to determine what areas online have offered the lowest priced leads in the past.

Set aside a portion of your budget for each channel you’ll be using paid advertising on. Be firm about sticking to your budget, especially if you’ll be working with a new agency or using PPC ads. A campaign isn’t worth it if you overspent and didn’t achieve the ROI you were looking for.

If a strategy isn’t working, don’t keep throwing your money at it. Instead, pivot your marketing plans and reallocate that portion of your budget to another area that achieves better results.

Plan Your Marketing Strategy

Step 6: Create a Schedule

It’s crucial to create a clear timeline for your campaigns. You need to establish a consistent schedule for things like publishing content, running ads, sending emails, and uploading videos. Create a shared calendar with your teammates to ensure everyone is on the same page.

One of the most overwhelming parts of running a successful online strategy is balancing the demands of different channels. If you’re having trouble executing your digital marketing strategy’s day-to-day tasks, it may be worth having a digital marketing agency lighten your load.

Step 7: Monitor Your Campaign

It’s essential to monitor your campaign to ensure it runs smoothly. Double-check that your performance measuring tools like Google Analytics accurately measure your marketing efforts. Revisit your calendar and your budget to ensure your campaign stays on course.

Closely monitoring your campaign also gives you valuable insights into what’s working and what’s not. If you’re playing close attention, it’s easier to pivot a portion of your strategy that doesn’t achieve the results you wanted.

Analyze Your Results

Step 8: Reevaluate Your Goals and Adjust Your Future Strategy

Your work doesn’t stop when your campaign is over. At the end of your campaign, you’ll want to revisit the goals you set and the target KPI’s you aimed to achieve. The valuable insights from your finished campaign can help you improve your digital marketing strategy in the future.

Evaluate both the campaign as a whole and each of its elements. Breaking it down will expose what areas you should increase your efforts and what areas to avoid in the future. Once you’ve established where you’d like to improve, it’s time to go back to the drawing board.

Conclusion

Building a strong digital marketing strategy is key to growing your business in today’s digital world. If you’re ready to establish a strong online presence, but don’t have the time or know-how to do yourself, consult with a digital marketing agency to enhance your future strategy.