In the modern world, there’s no question about it, a huge part of your brand’s marketing strategy is digital. Both businesses and consumers are constantly connected to the online world and you want to be able to reach them.
Digital marketing, in a nutshell, is marketing using digital tools. Some of the most popular tools are website design, social media marketing, and SEO. Digital marketing is the complete opposite of outbound/interruption marketing which is made up of spam, signage, telemarketing etc.
Malcolm X was once quoted saying “The future belongs to those who prepare for it today.” By setting out a digital marketing strategy, you will be laying out the fundamental future of your brands presence.
In simple terms, a digital marketing strategy is a plan of action to achieve a goal. An example of a goal could be to generate 20% more leads through your social media account this year.
It’s worth mentioning the difference between a marketing strategy and marketing tactics as we find this subject gets brought up alot;
Strategy – What, Why, Where
Tactic – How you are going to achieve the Strategy
A common mistake that companies make is once the tactics have been defined, they feel they don’t need a strategy and vice versa, when in fact that could be a massive flaw in your campaign. The idea is to have the two working hand in hand to achieve the goals that have been set.
You should lay out your strategy before tactics every time as if you create tactics first, you may end up in the wrong place to engage with potential clients. It states in Sun Tau, The Art of War that ‘Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory’.
Another confusion is the difference between a marketing campaign and a marketing strategy. Your Digital strategy is the actions you take to achieve your marketing goals, whereas your marketing campaigns are the building blocks move you towards your goals.
A typical marketing strategy should include the following information;
- Your company details
- Current overview of your business’ marketing efforts
- Your target audience
- List of competitors
- Requirements to fulfill the strategy
- Planned review stages/check-in points to monitor the success of your plan
It is extremely important to remember that copying another business’ tactics could spell disaster for your brand. You may have monitored and found a successful marketing strategy online but that doesn’t mean it will be a success for your brand. Every brand, business and client base is unique. Customers will always have a different expectation of what service/product they will be getting when engaging with your brand to your competitors.
One final thing to keep in mind is the evolution of your marketing strategy. The digital world is ever changing and it is vital that there is an ability to react to changes in the market. Your marketing strategy is there as a guide, if there is a change in your industry, it’s important to accept that your strategy/plan of action will need to change to accommodate the changes. WIthout having the ability to adapt your strategy, it runs the risk of going out of date very quickly.