8 Steps to a Digital Marketing Strategy that Drives Sales
The digital revolution has leveled the playing field when it comes to winning at marketing. It’s no longer necessary to have a huge marketing budget and to work with a pricey agency to increase your sales.
With the right digital marketing strategy and understanding of all the latest digital marketing tips and tricks, you can reach your audience, drive traffic to your site, and optimize conversions, no matter how limited your budget is.
- Being strategic and methodical with your digital marketing efforts will set you up for success.
- Don’t try to do too much – choose a few strategies and channels to focus your efforts on.
- Automation and optimization are critical to getting the most out of your time and resources.
1. Define Your Goals
It’s impossible to measure your success without having goals in the first place, so make sure you take the time to define some concrete, time-limited goals.
Every business will have different goals, and you should have a mixture of short, medium, and long-term goals. For example, one of your short-term goals might be to increase your Facebook followers to a specific number, while a long-term goal might be to rank in the top search engine position for a specific keyword.
Make sure your digital marketing goals align with your overall business goals. Every business wants to increase sales, but you should also have other goals in mind, such as increasing the lifetime value of each customer and raising brand awareness.
2. Get to Know Your Audience
The next step is to do some thorough research and really understand your audience – who they are, as well as their wants and needs.
Just as you can’t create a digital marketing strategy without having goals, you can’t hope to succeed without having a good idea of who exactly you’re marketing to.
Creating customer personas for each of your target markets can be a useful exercise for getting to know your audience better. In the process of doing this, you’ll use several sources of data to research your audience (web and social media analytics, your own CRM, and customer surveys) and build up a picture of a typical customer in each of your target markets.
By amalgamating everything you know about a particular audience into a single persona, it will help you to create stronger marketing messages and content as you won’t be trying to create something that appeals to everyone.
3. Take Stock of Your Assets
Being successful in digital marketing is all about building assets. In the real world, your business assets might include your office buildings, stock, computer hardware, and vehicles. In the digital realm, your assets include your website, social media accounts, and any kind of content you’ve already created online.
Most businesses will already have at least some digital assets unless they’re brand new. To get the best results as quickly as possible, you need to make as much use of these assets as you can.
Start by cataloging exactly what you have. This includes taking stock of your website traffic, mailing list contacts, social media accounts and followers, and all content assets on both your own site and other sites, including blog posts, infographics, ebooks, videos, and any other type of digital content.
When you have a full picture of exactly what digital assets you already have, you can make the most of them by repurposing existing content into new content (such as turning a video into a blog post or vice versa) and work on growing your website traffic and social following.
Make use of what you already have – there’s absolutely no need to start from scratch, even if you haven’t been too successful with your digital marketing so far.
4. Choose Your Marketing Channels and Strategies
There are many different types of digital marketing, and even the biggest companies don’t do all of them.
It’s best to choose a few strategies to focus on and concentrate your efforts on being successful in these areas. As your online presence grows, you can always expand into other areas.
Some types of digital marketing you might want to choose as part of your overall strategy include:
- SEO (search engine optimization)
- Content marketing
- SEM (search engine marketing) and PPC (pay per click)
- Email marketing
- Social media marketing
- Video marketing
Likewise, you need to make the most of the resources you have at your disposal by choosing a few main channels to concentrate on.
Rather than trying to grow your social media presence on as many platforms as possible, choose just a few (for example, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter) and focus your efforts on growing these channels.
5. Plan Your Content
Whatever digital marketing strategies and channels you choose to concentrate on, you’ll need content.
When you created your customer personas, you should have already started to build an idea of what type of content can help your audience to meet their needs and overcome their challenges.
In cataloging your existing digital assets, you may have already identified some content that fits this description. You can now expand on and improve this content, as well as fill the gaps.
Your content should work in two ways:
- Be of use to your customers and audience
- Promote your brand and drive conversions and sales
However, you should always prioritize the needs of your customers and audience when it comes to creating content. Sales and conversions will naturally come when you shift your priority to creating real value.
6. Nail Down Your Promotional Strategy
Creating excellent content is only one half of the content marketing equation. To be successful in digital marketing, you’ll also need to promote this content.
This is where you use the digital marketing channels and strategies you chose in step 4 to drive more traffic to your content assets.
For example, when you publish a new blog post, you might post it to your social media posts and include it in your next email newsletter. Make sure you’re promoting every piece of content you produce and don’t forget about promoting older content, too.
7. Automate Your Workflow
If you think this all sounds like a lot of work, you’d be right! However, you can save yourself a lot of time and make the most of your resources by using marketing automation to streamline your workflow.
Marketing automation platforms can remove a lot of repetitive tasks from your to-do list so you have more time to focus on building relationships and strategic planning.
For example, you can automate a lot of your social media activity, such as queuing up content to post automatically at set times and posting automatically to other social networks when you publish a post on one of your main channels. You can also automate your email marketing like this:
Automation can also help you to build engagement with your audience and nurture leads through the buying funnel. It’s impossible to keep track of your following on an individual basis unless it’s very small. But automation enables you to personalize your marketing communications and optimize your messages for the best results.
8. Measure and Optimize
The final part of your digital marketing strategy is also one of the most important aspects.
It’s vital to ensure you’re measuring the success of your content and campaigns on a regular basis and making tweaks and changes to optimize your results.
Keeping an eye on your engagement, conversions, and traffic figures will give you valuable insights into refining your content strategy. This, in turn, will enable you to create more successful content in the future.
If you are ready to get more traffic to your site with quality content published consistently, check out our Content Builder Service. Set up a quick consultation, and I’ll send you a free PDF version of my books. Get started today – and generate more traffic and leads for your business.