As each new year-end approaches, marketing teams globally start planning for the next, calculating their budgets, and developing strategies that will increase their reach the most.
Because of the pandemic, customer behavior has shifted, and marketing has to adapt to keep up, despite not having much time to adapt. To add more complexity, the business’s revenue is down which means that marketing budgets are down.
Despite this, marketing is now more important than ever for businesses that, not only want to survive but thrive. With this in mind, what are some digital marketing trends and strategies for the year ahead? Here we’ll highlight some of the trends and strategies businesses are employing in a severely restrained market.
So today we’re going to give you the 7 steps to create a successful digital marketing strategy for your business.
Determine your objectives
Build your marketing funnel
Define your target audience
Outline your messaging
Select your marketing channels
Define your content
Execute and analyze
Alright, now let’s start building your digital marketing strategy.
A digital marketing strategy is an outline that describes how you will accomplish your marketing goals through the Internet.
It should include your marketing objectives, who you will be marketing to, in what manner, and a clear depiction of how you will accomplish said marketing objectives.
Having a clear understanding of your digital marketing strategy will help you make the most out of your investment and maintain consistency across your marketing efforts.
How Do You Build A Digital Marketing Strategy?
Here are the 7 steps to building your digital marketing strategy.
Step 1: Determine your objectives
Is your marketing objective right now to increase awareness, leads, or sales?
Naturally, most people we talk to will say sales.
How many sales can you actually make if no one knows you exist?
A good digital marketing strategy should be carefully crafted based on facts. Like, how many people are actually aware that your business exists?
Do a careful analysis of your prior marketing efforts, determine what worked best and what didn’t, and consider what your business needs to be successful.
Anyway, really think about your business marketing and set SMART goals.
A lot of business owners call us and say, “Hey STYLE AVATAR, I need to reach 1,000,000 within the next 30-days. I have a $500 budget and I want to know if your firm is good enough to do that or not.”
So when you’re building your digital marketing strategy, make sure to analyze your prior efforts and set realistic marketing objectives.
Step 2: Build Your Marketing Funnel
When we’re building a digital marketing strategy for someone, we always ask, “What does your marketing funnel look like?”
Most times, people look at us like…
“I don’t know…”
So let us explain.
Remember those sales we talked about in Step 1? And how you’re not going to get them unless people actually know you exist?
Well a marketing funnel helps you lay out the steps to generating awareness to ultimately converting people into a sale.
Now there are 4 basic steps inside of any marketing funnel – Awareness, Consideration, Conversion, and Advocacy.
We won’t fully explain this now because we’ve already published another post on this topic, so be sure to check it out in this link.
But when building your marketing strategy, your marketing funnel will help you answer questions like:
How are we going to make complete strangers aware of our business?
Once they are aware that we actually exist, how are we going to connect with them?
And once we connect and they fall in love with us, how are we going to convert them into a buying customer?
You can literally take the entire marketing funnel, piece out each stage, and use that to explain every single component of your digital marketing strategy.
Alright, let’s move on to the next point.
Step 3: Define Your Audience
Who exactly will you be picking up and dropping into your digital marketing funnel?
You need to be very specific here.
You need to build your Buyer Persona.
A Buyer Persona is an outline of the characteristics that you identify as someone who might buy your products.
Having this is incredibly important because for you to be successful at digital marketing, you are going to have to talk to people who are likely to buy from you.
You must be able to speak directly to your audience’s specific goals and challenges, and help them obtain success.
Step 4: Outline Your Messaging
here are the specific things you need to have in your messaging.
a. A Hook
If your customer is standing right in front of you, or on Facebook, you need something that is going to make them stop scrolling and look at your business.
Use your buyer persona outline and use one of their primary goals or biggest challenges.
Then, create a hook talking directly to the person you’re targeting.
A hook will make them stop and look at you.
But if you’re not interesting, they are going to scroll on to the next thing.
So you need to make the next few seconds count.
In our example, we listed a statistic that we helped over 35,000 people, just like THEM, and that we were featured in a major publication.
This might peak someone’s curiosity a little more. Now, you’ve got their attention.
Once you have their attention, you need them to act. You need a call-to-action
But don’t be basic and just tell people to go buy your stuff.
Think about your funnel.
Invite them to learn more about you. This might be checking out a video, blog post, eBook, etc.
Messaging to generate awareness will be different from messaging to increase your sales. Messaging to a stranger should be different from messaging to a hot lead.
There are many different messaging techniques out there, so be sure to subscribe to our email list so you don’t miss out on future content that breaks this down.
But regardless of the techniques you use, your messaging should be consistent – whether it’s on your website, social media, or in your email newsletters.
Step 5: Select Your Marketing Channels
Here’s an easy one that many people overcomplicate – marketing channels.
People call us every day, asking us what marketing channels they should be on.
The answer is very simple.
Basically, in a perfect world, you need to be marketing to your customers wherever they might be.
If they are searching companies like yours on Google, then add Google to your strategy.
If they are on Instagram, then add Instagram to your strategy.
Or if they’re watching videos on YouTube, then maybe you’ll need to start a YouTube channel.
Regardless, pick the channels where your audience is located and incorporate it into your strategy.
Though, there is one problem with this.
Each marketing channel will require a certain amount of effort (and money) to use it effectively.
So once you have listed out all of the marketing channels that your customers use, start prioritizing them in order of effectiveness.
a. Only choose marketing channels that contain your audience
b. Prioritize your marketing channels based on effectiveness
c. To figure out what is most effective, consider your business services and most importantly, your buyer persona.
Step 6: Define Your Content
Now you need to bring people into your marketing funnel and pull them down until they convert.
There’s only one way you can do this – by offering value.
You need to offer some type of value to your customers in order to make them aware of your business, engaged, and eventually buy something from you.
If there is no value you can offer them, then you shouldn’t expect them to exchange their hard-earned money with your business.
Content is one of the most effective ways to exchange value to your audience.
Content comes in many different forms.
…and so much more.
But like we stated in the last step, you can simplify this by better understanding your audience.
Once you do, you can use content types that they prefer to engage with.
So decide on your content strategy and put all of your efforts into generating that content.
Step 7: Execute and Analyze
The final step is to stop thinking and start doing.
You’ve defined your objectives, funnel, audience, messaging, channels, and content.
Now it’s time to launch your marketing campaign on the channels you selected, with the messaging approach you’ve defined, using the content you’ve created.
The work doesn’t stop once you’ve built your marketing strategy and launched your campaign.
Your digital marketing strategy is not something you set-up once.
It’s continually evolving.
You launch a campaign, measure the results, and tweak it.
If you do this, you will have the best shot at success with your digital marketing strategy.
2020 has probably caused the biggest shake-up in the marketing industry ever. Marketers need to work with lower budgets and must still deliver on conversion targets. This requires innovation and it remains to be seen what trends emerge in 2021.
That notwithstanding, the trends and strategies we mentioned here are shaping the industry as we move into the next year, and we expect them to continue for some time to come.
If you need more help with your digital marketing strategy that is specific for your business, we have consultants and specialists who can work with you. Get in touch with us today to get started!