Marketing used to be a fairly simple procedure. It looked like knocking on a door and talking to whoever answered. Society didn’t yet have access to printing processes to achieve large scale reach about a product or service. You had to build a relationship with your customer one on one and relied upon word-of-mouth advertising.
We all know and understand that the dynamics have changed as society and technology has moved forward and most recently at an incredibly rapid pace. The more we become ‘connected’ via the internet the more we need to have a strategic plan in place for our marketing. What might be a little more difficult to understand is how to start with a true Digital Marketing Strategy. In this article, we hope to give you some ideas on how to start with digital marketing by sharing how we achieve this at TheOnlineCo.
Start with Strategy
The first things that pop into most people’s heads when you say the words Digital Marketing are obvious. Social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram and terms like SEO and Google Ads. We’re here to let you know that thinking about these platforms first is like putting the cart before the horse. In order to get your business to where it needs to go, you first need to start with strategy. The tactics (Instagram, FB, SEO, etc) are great but in order to use those tactics to best advantage, you first need to build a strategy. And that is where TheOnlineCo. ’s Digital Marketing Playbook comes in.
TheOnlineCo. Digital Marketing Playbook
The Digital Marketing Playbook is a process we use that helps us build a strategy unique and tailored to your business, based on achieving your business objectives. We perform a comprehensive assessment of your industry, uncover the story of your target market, map out your customer’s path to purchase and discover the tactics which are most appropriate to execute the strategy.
We design the Digital Marketing Playbook to become the cornerstone of your digital marketing. It is used by our internal team as the guide to your business and ensures everyone knows exactly who you are as a business and what you’re about. Our clients can use this Playbook to help share their brand’s goals and vision with their team and keep track of the expectations and goals of the marketing campaign we design.
The playbook will:
A. Review your competitive landscape (Your Industry)
B. Stock the toolkit (Your Voice)
C. Find the best route (Search and Social Strategy)
D. Make the journey exciting (Supporting Activities)
How it works:
1. Assess the competition.
First, we help you to assess the competition by finding the three businesses closest to yours in demographic, geographical location and products/services offered. By choosing only three there is less confusion and a more easily defined focus for the strategy to be created.
We have a look at how your closest competitors are using digital marketing in their overall marketing strategy and compare how your business is competing with them online. We will find areas of opportunity for your business to do better and work out where your competitors may threaten your brand.
2. Work on your ‘voice’.
This is where we all discover what you’re really about and what you bring to the table as a business. We find out who your ideal customer is, what they do and who they are outside of work hours in order to best find ways to connect with them.
We work to discover your ‘Points of Difference’. How can you stand out from the pack? What is it that makes your clients come back or want to stay with you?
What are your value pillars? These values will help you to frame your language and how you ‘speak’ to your potential clients through your marketing. Values are defined as principles or standards of behaviour; one’s judgement of what is important in life. When you know what these values are for your business you will be able to clearly see how your communication can be best framed to support them.
3. Search and Social Strategy
And now comes the part most of our clients weren’t even aware they were missing. HOW we are going to do WHAT we do. Strategy BEFORE Tactics.
First, we will create the overall strategy – which platforms will work best for your business. (And we definitely recommend platform’S’ – only using one or two is barely making a dent in your potential for awareness.)
Then, we find ways to help your business BE FOUND. SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), your company website, SEM (Search Engine Marketing), Social Media, Paid and Organic posting and LinkedIn are all areas your business needs presence, development and continual optimisation in order to experience growth.
4. 12 Month Roll Out Plan
And here’s where the playbook pays off. By assessing these areas with you, we are then able to develop a 12 month roll-out plan for you that clearly identifies when and how each tactic is to be executed based on the overall strategy. Strategy is no good if it simply sits in a playbook and is never practically outworked.