As basic as it may seem, a thorough digital strategy is truly essential for a successful digital campaign. Surprisingly, many companies don’t have a digital strategy in place, much less know the KPIs to best measure success online or prove ROI. In order to develop your digital strategy, these steps are key:
1) Define business objectives
What do you want your marketing to accomplish? When outlining your digital strategy, it’s important to remember your overall business goals. Do you want to increase awareness around your brand? Increase sales by a certain amount? Improve customer advocacy? Identifying these big goals helps you better define what digital marketing tactics to use and what KPIs you’ll use to measure them.
2) Determine which digital tactics will help you meet these objectives
The good news for your business – you don’t need a presence on every social channel, and you don’t need to use every digital tactic in order to be successful. Strategically decide which tools make the most sense for your business, and invest your time there. If you are a very visual brand with a younger audience, Instagram is a great platform on which to focus. If your goal is to raise awareness, Facebook has a large audience and granular segmentation options that will help you reach your exact target. Each tactic comes with its own pros and cons, but focusing on quality over quantity when it comes to your tactics will help you succeed in the long run.
3) Decide how you’ll measure success
This is where your KPIs come into play. Identify the KPIs for each tactic you’ll use – for example, you might want to measure conversation or engagement on social media content and clicks and conversions on social and paid search ads. Think about how these KPIs translate to your larger business goals as well. Can they illustrate an increase in awareness or sales? If not, you should see which KPIs could measure your goals more effectively.
4) Execute your strategy
Now that your strategy and KPIs are in place, it’s time to execute. It’s useful to have an overall marketing calendar that shows key times and events for your business throughout the year, as well as individual calendars per medium to keep your communications on track.
5) Monitor and adjust
There’s no “set it and forget it” when it comes to your digital strategy’s success. Digital tactics are probably some of the most data-rich, and the ever-changing nature of the online world makes monitoring important. Based upon the data you’re receiving, make adjustments to your efforts as needed. However, before you adjust anything, give your campaign a month or two to collect enough data upon which to make decisions. If you are basing adjustments on anything less than a month’s-worth of data, it’s difficult to tell whether something you’re seeing is a true trend or just a momentary blip.
Following these steps when creating your digital marketing strategy will help you more easily tie your efforts to overall business objectives and make ROI easier to measure.