There is no doubting that digital marketing is becoming ever more important to the success of your business, but actually knowing what to do and where to begin can be rather confusing and overwhelming. Before you even think about any kind of implementation, you should put together a simple digital marketing action plan.
Sounds easy? Let's start right at the beginning.
Why create a digital marketing action plan?
Many businesses approach digital marketing without giving much thought to what they are actually doing, in fact, it's often an afterthought or an ‘i suppose I should really do something' It’s all too easy to throw up a website or a Facebook page and simply hope for the best! But guess what, when you do this you achieve what you thought you probably would and that's disappointment and no tangible results
Before you begin, it is important to get clear on exactly what you want to achieve from your digital marketing efforts and then set out a realistic plan for achieving your goals. By putting together a simple strategy, you will be able to take focused action and therefore be much more likely to be successful. Remember it's not about creating the war and peace of digital marketing plans, It's about keeping it simple, and keeping it achievable, let's start at the beginning and get you going.
1. Do your research
The first stage is to gather as much information about your customers as you possibly can. Who is your target audience? What do they do and what motivates them? Most importantly, where do they hang out online? you may have created customer avatars before in more depth and that will really help you with your research, if you haven't and don't have the time right now to do this properly look at your most treasured clients, you know the ones you love working with and base some of this research on them, maybe even set up a quick survey for them to fill in the blanks in your research
2. Set an overall digital marketing objective/goal
The next step is to decide on exactly what you want to achieve from your digital marketing efforts. Your overall goal might be something like:
“Generate 50 new leads each month and convert at least 20 of those leads into new customers.”
” To add £1000 turnover into your business each month”
“To build your email list by 100 subscribers each month”
You get the idea, you have to keep it realistic but make it slightly uncomfortable for you when you put it out there as that means it's triggering something exciting for you.
3. Decide on your digital marketing channels
Based on the information you now have, you can then decide on what digital marketing channels you will use to achieve your goal. For example:
* Your website
* Social media – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.
* Email marketing
* Content marketing
For each channel/campaign, you should set a specific objective and key performance indicator. For example:
* “Increase website traffic by 20% before the end of December 2021” You can use tracking links and landing pages to monitor this
* “Add 500 new subscribers to our email newsletter each month and convert at least 20 of them into paying customers” – Set up list for different channels or tags
* “Generate 200 new leads from Facebook advertising in the next 30 days” – Track on the FB ads system to know what your ad conversions are
4. Plan your actions
You should set out exactly what you are going to do – each day, each week, and each month. Make sure that these actions are realistic and manageable so that you don’t get overwhelmed.
Too many times I see people go for it for a few days maybe even a week or 2 because they are excited or have time on their hands until they suddenly get a big job in and their digital marketing suffers. Keep it very realistic, if you are going to write 3 blog posts per week then make sure you have time in your week to achieve this or outsource it to a company that can help you.
5. Closely monitor results
It is important to closely monitor and measure your results, so you need to decide exactly how you’re going to do that. As an example, website traffic can be tracked through Google Analytics, or your email marketing might be tracked through your autoresponder service (e.g. Active Campaign).
If you don't know how you are going to track your digital marketing activities then you will have no idea what's working for you. You should be checking at a very minimum once per week what's actually happening for you. If you cant answer the questions about how your digital marketing is working or improving your business then there is something not right.
Having a digital marketing plan doesn't have to be difficult, of course, it takes some thought, and you have to set goals and implement things however without a plan you will most likely hop around all of the new things online and never really know what's working or not for you.