What is a Digital Marketing Strategy?
Defining a digital marketing strategy is an essential step to launching a digital marketing campaign. A digital marketing strategy provides you with a roadmap to your business’ success, revealing your marketing campaigns need to succeed.
Without them, you’ll struggle to create effective campaigns that drive results for your business. Rather than setting generic objectives, though, you should make them SMART.
Pioneered by Peter Drucker in his book “The Practice of Management,” SMART is an acronym for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-based. The general idea is to create objectives for a digital marketing campaign that meet this criteria.
SMART objectives are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-based.
Your digital marketing objectives should be specific, meaning they are detailed and clearly defined. Many businesses make the mistake of setting generic objectives like increased sales or website traffic.
Without specific objectives, though, a business may struggle to optimize its campaigns, thereby limiting the effectiveness of its digital marketing strategy. If you want to increase sales or website traffic with digital marketing, define a specific number.
If you can’t measure an objective, how will you know if or when you achieve it? To put it simply, you won’t. Your digital marketing objectives should be easily measurable using quantifiable data so that you can asses the success of your campaigns.
Objectives like stronger brand recognition or increased product awareness aren’t measurable. Even if a digital marketing campaign helps you achieve stronger brand recognition or increased product awareness, you may not know because these objectives are difficult to measure.
Examples of measurable objectives include generating 20 new email newsletter signups or 30 new contact form leads per month. Using the right analytics software, we can easily measure newsletter signups and contact form leads.
There’s nothing wrong with being optimistic about your digital marketing campaigns, but you should create objectives that are realistically achievable. You can’t expect to grow your small business into a Fortune 500 company overnight.
It takes time, patience and hard work to achieve this level of success — and digital marketing is no different. Therefore, you should create objectives that you can realistically achieve. Analyze historical metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) of your previous digital marketing campaigns to create attainable objectives.
No two businesses have the exact same needs, so it’s important that your digital marketing objectives are relevant to your business’s needs.
A real estate agency, for example, may seek additional leads from prospective home buyers, whereas an e-commerce business may seek additional website traffic. Consider your business’s core operations and create objectives that are highly relevant and meaningful to what it does.
Finally, your digital marketing objectives should be time-based. In other words, they should focus on a specific time or time frame. Attracting 30 new customers, for instance, doesn’t specify a time. It may take a business several weeks or several months to achieve this objective. And without a time frame, this isn’t an effective way to measure the success of a digital marketing campaign.
SMART objectives include an element of time, such as attracting 30 new customers per month using pay-per-click (PPC) advertising or social media — the keyword being “per month.” Of course, you can use other elements of time, such as per day, week or year.
Creating SMART objectives will help you achieve greater success with your digital marketing strategy. Keep in mind that you can change these objectives to better suit your business’ needs. Visit 7 Steps to a Powerful Website Marketing Strategy for 2019 to learn how to put your strategy.
If your business grows more quickly than you anticipated, for example, you should modify your objectives to include a higher volume or sales or leads for the given time frame.