How to Keep Your Digital Marketing Continually Optimized
Digital Marketing Optimization
gnooko has just released a new white paper, The Anatomy of an Effective Digital Marketing Strategy. It covers a variety of different tips and ideas for implementing digital marketing effectively in your company, from audits to analytics and more. Below is a preview of some of the ideas explored in the white paper. To download the full white paper for free, click the link at the end of this blog.
Your company has decided to delve into digital marketing. It’s a great way to generate leads and increase sales. But how do you go about it? You’ve got your marketing strategy mapped out, but how do you achieve it? Digital marketing is a very broad term, with a number of different facets. How do you find what tactics work for you, and make them work in the long term?
One approach you can take is PDCA: Plan, Do, Check, Adjust (also known as the Deming Cycle). It allows you not just to improve your digital marketing strategy, but to continue optimizing it over time, fixing problems and improving your approach in order to see better results. Here’s how you can utilize this tactic to help you implement your digital marketing strategy effectively.
Create a plan. This shouldn’t be confused with a digital marketing strategy. What’s the difference? A strategy lays out the goals you want to achieve using digital marketing. It covers the What, Why, and Where: what you want to do, why this would be beneficial to your company, and where you want to focus your efforts. For instance, generating more leads, converting them to sales in order to increase revenue, using digital content, e-mail, and social media, would all be important aspects of a digital marketing strategy.
Your digital marketing strategy goes hand in hand with your overall business strategy, but it evolves over time, based on what’s working and what’s not, as well as things like evolving technology and new ideas. This allows you to optimize your digital marketing and continually improve what you’re doing.
A plan covers how you intend to achieve those goals. What tactics do you plan to use, and how will they help you? Unlike a strategy, plans don’t change over time. If a plan isn’t working, you get a new plan.
So how do you create a digital marketing plan? First, you may want to identify what your customers are looking for. Next, you may want to understand who they are and how you can best reach them? For example, what problems are they looking to solve, which your company can help them with? Use this information to create buyer personas, to reach them on a personal level and address their needs and concerns at each stage of the buying cycle.
Then, determine content that will help you reach them at each stage. This may include blogs, white papers, videos, social media, customer reviews/testimonials, and a host of other types. What are they most likely to respond to? How can you best get through to them and nurture them towards a purchase?
You’ll want to try several different approaches, to get a feel for what’s most effective. One way to do this is using A/B testing. Choose two small groups from your target audience (group A and group B), and give them two different but similar options, to see which one gets a better response. For instance, on your website, will you get a better response from a call to action button that’s big and flashy, or smaller and more muted? Give Group A the bigger, flashier button, and give Group B the smaller button. Then see which group has a higher lead generation rate.
You can perform A/B testing for just about any aspect of any plan you implement, from e-mail blasts to blog structure to social media, and much more. You can even test several different variables at a time (multivariate analysis). And it can be applied to the Do, Check, and Adjust sections as well.
Once you’ve got your plans in place, it’s time to implement them. This means creating the content that you’ve outlined in the previous step, but there’s more to it than that. The point is to use that content to achieve your goals. You’ve published a blog post and people are taking notice of it on social media. But how do you turn the people reading it into qualified leads, and ultimately sales?
For one thing, your content needs a call to action. Now that your target audience has read your blog post, what’s the next step? How do they get more information? Include links to landing pages. Invite them to contact you if they have any questions or concerns. Invite them to join your e-mail list and receive regular updates about your company, your industry, etc. Invite them to download additional, premium content, in exchange for their name, e-mail address, and other contact information.
Once you’ve obtained their contact info and a basic idea of what they’re interested in with regards to your company and the products/services that you offer, you can start to nurture them. Send them additional content. Reach out to them and ask if there’s anything you can help them with. Use your buyer personas to target them with content and guide them through the buying cycle. Show them how your company is best positioned to help them meet their particular needs. Implement your plan and use it to turn viewers into leads and leads into sales.
How effective is your strategy? Are people actually being driven to your site by the content you release? Are you generating more leads? Are those leads being converted to sales? It’s time to check and see what’s working and what can be improved.
For this, you need some good analytics tools. These tools can tell you how many people are opening the e-mails you’re sending, and how many are clicking through to your site. They can tell you how many followers you have on social media and how many of those are actually interacting with each piece of content you put up. They can tell you how many people are viewing your blogs and other content, and how many of those are actually following the call to action and becoming leads.
Furthermore, analytics can help you determine if one piece of content—or one type of content—is more popular than another. It can show you what search terms people are using to get to your site. Through analytics, you can monitor every aspect of your digital marketing strategy and receive concrete data on how successful it is, at every stage in the buying cycle.
Once you have your analytics information, it’s time to use it to improve your digital strategy going forward. If some tactic isn’t working the way you had hoped, determine why not, and fix the problem. If one type of blog is getting less traffic and another type is getting more, focus your efforts on more of the latter type. If your social media followers seem to be migrating from Facebook to Twitter, then put more effort and resources into Twitter. Your digital marketing strategy should be constantly evolving, based on the data at hand, in order to optimize your results and help you better achieve your overall strategy.
PDCA is a great guide for implementing digital marketing in your company. The step by step approach allows you to continue to improve and optimize over time, to help you towards your goals. How will you use PDCA in your company?
This is just a small part of what you can do to develop your digital marketing strategy. Learn more about how to implement PDCA and other digital marketing tactics, by downloading our new white paper, The Anatomy of an Effective Digital Marketing Strategy!
Robert (Rob) Burns is a digital business development specialist in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). Rob prefers to discuss a business strategy with his clients before talking about any technology, marketing or digital tactics. Once Rob understands a client’s business objectives, he will then advise them about gnooko services and solutions: including Digital Marketing Strategy, Audience Segmentation and Persona Development, Website Design and Development, Search Marketing and SEO, Social Marketing and of course Inbound Marketing, Marketing Automation, and Marketing Technology.