A goal without a plan is just a dream.
Websites, SEO, Direct Mail, Social Media: They all seem simple on the surface. There are many tools and strategies that can help you get the word out in a relatively short period of time. As a technology company that helps people communicate in print and online, we are constantly asked the following questions:
The question we ask: What's the point?
Your goals will dictate your digital marketing strategy. None of the questions presented above matter, unless they contribute to your goals. Instead, here are the questions you should be asking:
Here is what we think the right way is to build out a marketing
Building an effective strategy includes a number of key steps. These dictate how, where, and why you market
Buyer Personas are a fictitious representation of potential patrons of your business. Marketing experiences are created for these imaginary people. They guide what content is created, where it is placed, and who it is promoted to in order to maximize impact.
Businesses don't sell to businesses, people sell to people. Until you can articulate who your buyers are, where they spend their time, and what they care about, why spend time and money marketing at all?
Marketing triggers are events that take place which prompt someone to be interested in what you have to offer. These can be simple events like online searches, or an event that they attend in the real world.
These marketing triggers shape the way that your digital presence is positioned and where visitors will be directed once they find you.
Triggers may lead to content offers, emails, direct mail, or even a notification that someone in your organization reach out to a particular prospect because that prospect is ready to become a customer.
As search engines become more advanced, they have get better at answering questions, rather than simply showing results for web pages. This is
These suggestions, or topics, will be the focus of content creation. The best content for a given topic will rank the highest on a search engine. The higher the ranking of a website, the more likely it will appear when someone searches for that topic.
When marketing offline (using tools like print,) these same topics will apply. Personalized printing helps you address specific topics with specific clients, depending
Marketing Goals should be S.M.A.R.T. - This means:
These goals will be used as Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to track the progress of the digital marketing strategy.
An example of
This goal works because it is:
Content is communication distributed through a medium. This could be a video, image, photograph, text, or some combination thereof. A content strategy defines how content should be used.
The distribution of content may be accomplished via strategic publishing on social media channels, websites, and print. Different types of content are best suited for specific channels, so the strategy should include guidelines to ensure the right content is presented to the right person at the right time, and then lead them where you want them to go.
For 2017, it is generally accepted that 50% of content should be video based. This video may include that which is professionally produced and edited but should also include "on the fly" video captured using smartphones.
The nurturing process develops contacts into customers. It could also be described as the process by which readers of your newsletter become customers.
Nurturing is typically accomplished utilizing a sequence of email and personalized direct mail, providing educational information in order to inform the reader. These emails are sent at a regularly spaced interval.
Regular communication packed with valuable content designed to help the reader will build trust and ultimately help you attract the right customers to your business.
Roll up your sleeves and get to work.
Once a strategy is created, technology may be used as a tool to automate communication processes. Marketing automation tools like Hubspot can help you to manage campaigns. Customer relationship management tools like Salesforce.com help to track information about each prospect, enabling you to tailor your marketing efforts specifically to their interests.
These tools are designed to help acquire contacts, manage them, and (most importantly) communicate with them.
There is a tendency to jump straight to tools because they are shiny and interesting. That said, having a plan for how to use it will bring a lot more value to your business.
After you know what your prospects are interested in, how to reach them, and how to keep track of them, it's time to get tactical.
The best marketing keeps you "top of mind" with active buyers, so it's important that content is created and distributed at a regular cadence. Staying on track requires a calendar that documents:
You can make this as high or low tech as you want, but we suggest starting with a spreadsheet. Keep in mind that you may have similar messages distributed via several channels - for example, you might write 4 blog articles which will be promoted by social media, and then re-purposed as articles in your printed newsletter.
Once your calendar is set up, it's time to start creating and distributing content. This takes time, but remember to stick to your plan. If you fall behind your calendar, don't stress about it - adjust your calendar to make sure that nothing "falls through the cracks."
Here are a couple of tips:
Whatever you do, be helpful and have fun. Share your culture with your clients and assist in solving their problems. This drives trust, loyalty, and ultimately, sales.
Embrace success, learn from failures and keep creating.
It is often said that 80% of marketing dollars are wasted, and if you could only figure out which 80% that was, you could be really successful. At CASEY, we believe in the power of data. Whether this comes from sophisticated tools like Hubspot, CRM applications, Google Analytics, or something as simple as a spreadsheet, you really need to hone in on what components of your marketing mix are successful and apply key attributes to those components which could use a little help.
Attribution is the process in which you look at sales and try to figure out which marketing activities can be "attributed" to that revenue.
There are many different places where a prospect might interact with marketing before a sale takes place. It's easy to see what they are, but harder to determine which one was responsible.
In some cases, attribution will be given to the first piece of content with which that person interacts. In others, it is best to attribute a specific campaign as being responsible for bringing the client (and their dollars) through your door. For example, if you were a cleaning company and you ran a spring cleaning campaign that consisted of paid search advertising, three print pieces, and several blog articles, and the client interacted with more than one of them, wouldn't it make sense that the campaign as a whole get credit, rather than the one thing that they actually clicked on?
Successful marketers don't think of campaigns as a "
Making one change at a time is crucial to accurate tracking of metrics. Here are some examples:
The most important thing is to keep doing stuff. Eventually, your experiments will teach you what works, what doesn't, and you will need to expand your sales team to keep up with demand!
If you're ready to shine a light on all the great work you're doing, you can get started by scheduling your complimentary 30 minute consultation with Casey by hitting that "Talk to an Expert" button below! Whether you're looking for someone to lead your team through creating a markeing plan, or just looking for a starting point - we're looking forward to helping.