Do you look at your marketing strategy every year? You should be. An annual marketing plan guides the direction of your campaigns, helps you reach your goals and ensures you’re staying on budget. And, as you notice certain trends in your planning, you can hire or outsource the talent you need to make sure that everything goes smoothly.
Below are five simple steps to follow when creating an effective digital marketing strategy. You should do this once a year to meet your goals and continue growing your business.
1. Assess Your Current Situation
Before you get started with a new marketing plan, you must know what your current situation looks like. Too often, marketers assume they have the total picture, when in reality, they only have a snapshot of it. Make sure you take time to understand your current standing and how you stack up to the competition.
A competitor analysis can be helpful in this situation. This analysis allows you to compare yourself to other businesses in your industry. How do you compare? What are you missing? What is the advantage you have over them?
2. Define Your Target Audience
Once you have a better understanding of your current situation and the market you’re working in, it’s time to define your target audience. If you already have your buyer personas, this step should be fairly easy. All you have to do is refine your current personas.
If you don’t have a buyer person, you should create one. You’ll have to do some market research – assumptions aren’t enough. Some of the information to include in your personas are age, gender, income, pain points and goals. Try to be as specific as possible.
3. Write Down Your Goals
You won’t know what you’re working toward if you don’t have clearly established goals. We recommend defining SMART goals – Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely. In other words, all of your goals should be specific and have a time frame for when you want to complete them.
4. Analyze Your Strategies
With your SMART goals in place, it’s time to analyze your marketing tactics. This step will determine which tactics will help you reach your goals. For example, if your goal is to increase Facebook followers by 10%, the strategies you’ll want to use might be hosting a giveaway, responding to all comments and posting on Facebook several times a day.
5. Set Your Budget
Because most businesses don’t have unlimited cash flow, a budget must be set. Luckily, you should have a list of the best tactics to use to meet your goal so you can determine pretty quickly if your budget can afford them. Using the Facebook example above, your budget would have to afford an aggressive social media marketing campaign.
By following these five steps, you can create an effective digital marketing strategy that brings you success. For more information about launching and managing your marketing strategy, contact WSI Internet Partners today.