As a result, you should be well informed before formulating this strategy. Your digital marketing efforts will suffer if you develop your strategy blind to the foundational concepts that drive good digital marketing.
With this in mind, you should be hungry for any information that can set you apart from the rest of the brands trying to imprint their name in the minds of your target market.
That’s what this article is for! If you’re as hungry as we are to master the field of digital marketing, the concepts below should be useful to you.
We will now be looking at the 10 points for building a digital marketing strategy.
Concept 1 for Digital Marketing Strategy: Your Brand is the Face of Your Business
Branding is certainly not a phenomenon exclusive to digital marketing, but it’s certainly one of the fundamental keys to developing a digital marketing presence that sets you apart.
These days, more than ever, customers aren’t looking for products or services – they’re looking for a complete experience. The best brands all offer a unique experience that sets them apart from the competition in the minds of their customers.
Take, for example, Apple. What does Apple do differently from other tech companies that makes them so popular? The answer lies in two areas.
Firstly, they prioritise simplicity. Apple products are actively marketed as the product of choice for anyone who just wants to sit down, turn their device on, and have things work.
This simplicity is consistent throughout their branding efforts. Picture the Apple logo. It’s literally just a 2-D image of an apple. Their marketing imagery tends to revolve around showing the product, and the product alone. They’re far less inclined to use celebrities and other gimmicky advertising techniques – the idea is that people know that Apple is a brand where what you see is what you get.
The second experience that Apple pushes is that their products are fashionable. It is ‘cool’ to have an iPhone, or a Mac. They focus on elegance within the design of both their products, and the marketing around them.
We’ve already spoken about how Apple imagery is usually focused exclusively on the product. The way this happens is through the use of aggressive camera angles. It almost feels like Apple is marketing a fashionable shoe, or an expensive watch – the imagery style resonates with these markets.
This is because they know that people view their Apple products as fashion statements, just like they would a Rolex or expensive heels.
This Apple example should prove to you one thing – the way you brand your products completely shapes the way people view your products or services and positions you within your market. Understanding this is crucial before you start developing a digital marketing strategy because it allows you to develop your strategy in a way that both crafts the brand you want to be, and then supports that brand image across your digital marketing efforts.
Concept 2 for Digital Marketing Strategy: Content is King
Lots of people in the digital marketing world are sick of hearing this phrase, but it’s here to stay because it’s simply true.
We live in an age where people can see through shallower advertising techniques, and so content marketing is increasingly valuable. Providing your audience with information, entertainment, or even resources is a great way to engage with them on a deeper level than just throwing your products in their face and will make them more likely to engage with your offerings.
One of the easiest ways to get content out there is through the implementation of a blog. Write about topics related to your field (not just about your own products) and you’ll have an extra opportunity to generate leads that can potentially become customers down the line. Ensure that this content is SEO-friendly and that you create an optimised blog headline that will capture your audience’s attention. Download our blog headline cheat sheet to create your optimal headline!
Another form of content you should consider is social media marketing. Social media is crammed full of potential customers – you just need to develop a social media presence and you’ll have an opportunity to tap into this valuable resource.
Use social media to share interesting facts, images, videos, sales promotions, and links to your blog content. The versatility of social media is one of its greatest strengths, so don’t be shy when it comes to posting and sharing content!
Video is also king
Finally, you should consider the power of video content within your marketing efforts. Video content is the most attractive and viewed form of content on the internet, so utilising it comes with some of the best potential gains possible.
You don’t have to make complex, fancy videos, either. There has been a relatively recent rise in short video content, and people often appreciate the intimacy of someone simply sitting in front a camera and talking directly to them.
These videos can be around a variety of topics, too – anything from company culture videos to tutorials can be hugely beneficial to your audience and can generate significant numbers of leads in return.
Concept 3 for Digital Marketing Strategy: Don’t Just SEO-Stuff
SEO is very important. You can optimise almost everything in your digital marketing campaign for SEO – from articles, to your social media, to your website.
As a result, it can be tempting to stuff SEO keywords and phrases at every possible opportunity. While you certainly want to include your keywords a lot, you need to beware of falling into the SEO-stuffing trap.
Remember, at the end of the day, that while search engines are indexing your various assets, it is people who will ultimately act upon them. If you focus exclusively on showing up on Google, ignoring the actual reading experience for a human, you could find yourself in a pickle.
Let’s look at Conversion Advantage as an example. How would you feel if our home page said something like this:
Digital Marketing Agency Conversion Advantage From Cape Town South Africa Wants to Do Your Digital Marketing So That Your Digital Marketing has Good SEO, Branding, and Social Media Power.
Digital marketing is what Conversion Advantage does best because we love digital marketing. Our digital marketing services will build a good digital marketing presence for your brand.
That was tough to read, right? It would be painfully obvious that we’re trying to stuff keywords for SEO purposes, and it would turn off people who visited our home page.
The trick with SEO is to include your keywords without reducing the reader’s experience. It can be a tough balancing act, but it’s crucial you balance readability with SEO if you hope to optimise your copy.
Concept 4 for Digital Marketing Strategy: Balance Your Budget
As you prepare to develop your digital marketing strategy to take over the world (or, at least, your market), you me be wondering about the cost side of things.
First things first – you get what you pay for. Don’t skimp on quality just to save a buck. If you’re wanting to get serious, you need to invest in your digital marketing.
That’s all well and good, but where should you be investing the most? Where can you cut back? What can you ignore completely?
The answer to this question is different for each business. It would be irresponsible to give a sweeping response to such a question. However, there are a few points that hold true across all digital marketing campaigns.
Firstly, you need to invest in your branding. A memorable brand is a long-term investment, and since the concept of branding is based around building trust, you should build a brand that you will maintain for years to come.
Most other aspects of the digital marketing process can be adjusted if they underperform, but since your brand is about creating your brand’s personality and image, it’s a lot harder to rework it.
Secondly, your website is the place you’ll be looking to streamline your leads and audience into visiting, so it’s crucial that you invest in an attractive, effective website. According to Arekibo (via smartinsights), Readers take 0.05 seconds to develop a first impression when visiting your website, and this impression is 94% design based.
Basically, this means that your website needs to appeal to your audience immediately. Ensure that it looks great, and that it loads quickly. You also should ensure that the links all work, and that all processes your audience could attempt on your site are streamlined and fully functional.
Beyond that, it’s best to speak with an agency. They will have extensive experience with a wide variety of clients across various fields and of different brand types, so they will have the knowledge to advise you which areas of your digital marketing strategy you should be funding the most.
Concept 5 for Digital Marketing Strategy: Know Your Product
We’re not talking about just being able to name the products you offer. You need to know what they actually do for the people who buy them.
This is important because your digital marketing efforts will be designed around convincing other people why they should buy your products. If you don’t understand the value of your products down to the very last detail, how are you meant to convince others to buy it?
Knowing your product is about more than just the product itself. You need to understand who your target audience is, and by extension what they want out of your product. Invariably, they’re looking for an experience. If you’re buying a car, you actually seeking the experience of getting from A to B – be it fast, comfortably, with lots of luggage, or something else. To find out exactly who your target audience is, you can use our target audience profile avatar template to create your own.
Not only should you understand what your target market wants; you need to know why they want it. To extend upon the car example, if you buy a car with lots of luggage space, you might want that space because you have a family and want to go on regular vacations. In this case, your marketing efforts will be able to target this and as a result convince your prospect to buy your product.
A good way to get a better understanding of all of the above is talk to people who are currently customers (or who are interested in your new product/service). There is no better source to understand what makes a product worthwhile than someone who is already using it.
The worst thing you can do in digital marketing is be on a different wavelength than your prospects and customers. Your marketing should be as specialised and personal as possible.
Concept 6 for Digital Marketing Strategy: Upskill Yourself
Developing a digital marketing strategy is a big undertaking. There is so much to it that it is imperative for you to at least learn the basics of as many aspects of digital marketing as possible.
You shouldn’t expect to master everything in digital marketing – there’s a reason that digital marketing agencies exist. Each aspect of the digital marketing process is a complex field within its own right.
What is important, however, is that you take the time to understand the basics of digital marketing. Digital marketing is constantly developing and taking the time to upskill yourself can help you to keep afloat with the efforts that the agency or team you are using are busy with.
There are lots of resources out there that can help you to get to grips with the various aspects of digital marketing. We recommend our own courses, which can be found here.
As the world continues to be dominated by digital media, understanding how digital marketing works is more important than ever.
If you’d like to learn more about digital marketing, sign up to our digital marketing training portal here.
Concept 7 for Digital Marketing Strategy: Use an Agency
Digital marketing agencies have one job: implement digital marketing that gets results. If you’re starting out your digital marketing efforts, or looking to strengthen your current implementations, rather employ agencies who do this stuff every day than try do it all yourself.
If you try to do it yourself, you’ll probably miss out on important aspects of the digital marketing process that will affect your digital marketing efforts negatively. Agencies have the structures in place to ensure that everything is done completely and efficiently.
While we highly recommend delegating your overall digital marketing to an agency, don’t be afraid to get involved with their efforts. For example, you are probably more knowledgeable than they are about your market and products, so help them with information for blog articles and video content – or even write some yourself!
Remember – they know what they’re doing with all of the digital marketing tricks and tactics, but you still know your own brand best. Team up so that you can combine these strengths into one awesome digital marketing strategy.
Concept 8 for Digital Marketing Strategy: Set Goals
Digital marketing success is a pretty subjective thing.
Even growth isn’t necessarily success. For example, if you double your reach, but are spending 4x as much to do it, is that success?
Honestly? It could be. Each situation is unique. For example, if you had 1000 customers before you started your digital marketing efforts, getting them to follow you on your social media platforms and buy from your website would probably require substantially less marketing spending than recruiting another 1000 customers from scratch.
This is why it is imperative that you sit down and work out what you’re hoping to get out of your new digital marketing strategy. Are you hoping to increase your visibility? Perhaps you’re looking for more leads? Or are you looking to increase your sales?
These and other possibilities each come with their own types of goals that you should consider setting. You don’t only have to have on goal – perhaps you want all of the above?
Don’t, however, be too general. For example, it’s hardly likely that you’ll explicitly say no to increase your sales, but is that an actual target you should be aiming for with your digital marketing strategy?
The answer, surprisingly, isn’t always yes. Sometimes your goal should be to increase your brand’s image and reach, with the goal of increasing your sales further down the road. Of course, the ultimate goal of business is sales, but you need to follow the correct processes to get there.
With this in mind, take a deeper look at your business. Are you looking to drive enquiries and communications, with the goal of then meeting the prospect in person? Or are you looking to be involved in the fascinating world of ecommerce, where you sell your product or service on your website?
These and other answers should be dealt with so you know where you stand before you begin planning your digital marketing strategy.
Concept 9 for Digital Marketing Strategy: Know Your Strengths
Provided you’re not starting your business from scratch, you’ve probably already had some business success. That’s why you’re looking to expand to digital!
What got you to this point? Why is your business good at what it does? Why do your customers keep coming back to your brick-and-mortar store, or using your services?
Be honest with yourself. You’re allowed to brag! The answers to questions like those above can be used to inform your digital marketing strategy.
You want to know what you’ve been doing well within your business until this point. For example, if you have a passionate staff that your customers love, consider pushing company culture content. You could also record videos with your most loved staff members where they provide information like tutorials or product feature videos.
You shouldn’t see your digital presence as a separate entity from your brick-and-mortar stores or offices. Rather, it is an extension of your current business, optimized to work well on a different medium.
Concept 10 for Digital Marketing Strategy: Digital Marketing is For the Long Haul
We’ve all witnessed the phenomenon of viral content. Every day you can scroll through your social media feeds and find videos, memes and rants that have hundreds of thousands of views.
Here’s the truth – not only is it very difficult to go viral; it’s also not a good thing to plan your digital marketing strategy around.
Of course, if you can get something to go viral, then that’s a fantastic bonus. But that’s all you should see it as – a bonus. In truth, the way to develop a digital marketing strategy is around techniques that will consistently grow your results in the metrics you’re targeting.
As a bonus, it’s probably more likely that your content will go viral more frequently if you have a large audience of loyal customers and prospects. It’s only logical – if you have 50 loyal audience members, you’re not as likely to be shared as much as someone with 1000 audience members.
Here’s a caveat – while you shouldn’t be actively looking to create content that goes viral, you should be looking to make content that could go viral. What I mean by this is that you should be content that lots of people would find informative, interest or entertaining. Content goes viral when it is being shared with lots of people – you want to be creating content that people would enjoy enough that they’d consider sharing it.
Generally, virality shouldn’t be the goal; rather, it should be a sign that you’re creating content that people find interesting.
Your digital marketing goals should be based on consistent development in whichever metrics you’re targeting. This will ensure that you’re not reliant upon blind luck in achieving your reach, but rather that you create self-sustaining communities that return over and over again.
Once you’ve got all of the points above sorted out, it’s time to embark on the exciting journey that is digital marketing. Develop a strategy that enables you to achieve your goals and reach for the stars!
If you’re ready to begin your digital marketing strategy journey, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us by email or phone.
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