Curious about how to plan and manage an effective online marketing campaign for your business or team?
That’s exactly what am about to show you.
No doubt; promoting your brand online is a battle. A war to get your ideas, products or services the attention, you feel, they deserve.
The dizzying array of online detractors that devour your target market. With 93% of web users beginning their online experiences with a search engine, and 47% of these people only click on one of the first three listings (SEJ). The battle for attention online has never being hotter.
“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”― Sun Tzu, The Art of War
This battle is not for the faint of heart. You need a solid shield to take heavy blows, and a bag of sharp arrows to help win online marketing war.
There are many learning curves; from the structure of your business website, to plugins you’ll need to install, social networks you’ll need to employ, tools you’ll need to deploy and even to marketing techniques you need to try.
Technology aside; you also need strong interpersonal, leadership, management and productivity skills to properly run and manage an effective online marketing campaign team that will have a positive impact on your business.
There is a lot to learn, and even bigger ground to cover to succeed in marketing your brand online. With so much information online, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and discouraged.There is a lot to learn, and even bigger ground to cover to succeed in marketing your brand online. Click To Tweet
But their is good news; effectively marketing your business online is a skill that you can learn. To prove this point is why I’ve taken time to write this detailed guide to help you take inventory and plan an organized digital marketing strategy for your business – that is sure to make your idea bright.
So before you venture any further into battle, you better make sure you’ve got all resources are adequate and your flanks covered – you better know how to organize a digital marketing strategy like a pro.
Skip this planning stage, nothing can save you. Your battle is lost.
In this article – using my agency’s exact SEO consulting process – I will help to properly assess your business for its marketing needs, and choose your marketing techniques or channels based on these, so you can grow that dream of yours.
The aim of this post, believe me, is to give you a premium SEO consultation at no cost. If you are tough enough to get to the end of this detailed practical 8 phases and 35 steps , you should have successfully mapped out a well-planned inbound marketing strategy that covers all areas, tools and resources you need to turn your business online presence into a lead generating powerhouse.
An integral part of organization is documentation, so without further ado let’s put things in their proper place.
Organize Your Digital Marketing Campaign.
Each business strives to grow and develop because even stagnation is a sure sign of failure. In order to achieve its goal, a company needs to constantly work on its image, products and services – and vital part of that is keeping things organized
Before getting into the steps proper, your first goal is to organize your campaign. Now there are a lot of productivity tools you can choose from out there, but in this post I’ll be using Google suites.
Because Google cloud includes professional email, an integrated calendars tool, collaborative documents, spreadsheets, presentations, a virtual meetings application, a way to store any file securely online, and much, much more.
Using Google Cloud’s suite of– known collectively as G Suite, you can plan, and manage your business’ entire online marketing campaigns from start to finish.An integral part of organization is documentation. Click To Tweet
You should store your campaign ideas in an accessible location. You and your workers should be able to regularly add to and comment on those ideas so you can keep track of progress.
How to Organize Your Campaign Brainstorms:
- First, open Google Drive (or any spreadsheet you’re familiar with) and create a “master” folder for your campaign assets.
- Next, create a new spreadsheet. Name it “Marketing Campaign ideas” or something similar for your team to recognize and remember.
- Create separate columns for each of the steps we will cover below, so for now just create your spreadsheet and you’ll fill in the blanks accordingly as we march forward:
• Have a column for notes (where you can explain aspects of your idea in more detail.
- You can share this document with your team and instruct them to add their ideas. You can use the comment feature to comment on specific sections and give feedback.
Phase 1: General Campaign Information:
Step 1: Brand Name:
This is necessarily not your official company name. It’s should likely be a name or phrase that clearly represents your brand, what you offer or just a name that highlights your unique capabilities.
A brand name is a name (usually a proper noun) applied by a manufacturer or organization to a particular product or service. Brand names are usually capitalized. In recent years bi-capitalized names (such as eBay and iPod) have become popular. A brand name may be used and protected as a trademark.thoughtco.com
Most often than not, it’s the name you want displayed in Google search to find you, your brand, product or service. Thus; in thinking creatively, your brand name should contain key phrases that clearly describe your company or what you offer.
[tweet=”A brand name helps customers to identify and differentiate one product/company from another.”]
Your brand name is a great tool in your online marketing arsenal. Alliteration in your brand name is a great way to make sure people remember your business and the name of it when they’re looking for you in Google.
If you need to choose a great brand name for your product, service or business, start by considering the importance of the name in your overall digital marketing efforts. Choose a two-syllable name – Shorter domain names (and fewer syllables) have a direct correlation with ranking better in Google
Choosing a brand name is hard! How can you encapsulate your whole brand with just a few letters?
Here’s 5 quick steps to thinking up some strong brand names to grow your business.
Step 2: Your Contact Information:
To show up in maps or location-based web searches – especially if your business serves people in a particular town, or geographic area – being specific and consistent, in your contact details, across the web is critical to marketing your products and services online.
Local search engine optimization is the aspect of digital marketing that grinds on contact information. In fact; by just creating a Google My Business profile, and listing your brand/company name, email addresses, phone numbers, industry and services – might just be the small obstacle you need to scale to overtake your competitor across towns.
Maybe the location of their business is one of your competition’s biggest strengths – by being visible to web searchers looking for what you offer – turn the tide in your favor by using your web skills to start turning internet users into foot traffic.
Don’t take my word for it. Do you know, according to research on location-based Search marketing:
- 46% of all Google searches are looking for local information. (Source: GoGulf)
- 72% of consumers that did a local search visited a store within five miles. (Source: HubSpot Marketing Statistics)
- 97% of people learn more about a local company online than anywhere else. (Source: SEO Tribunal)
Success at anything online begins with satisfying the web users with adequate, valuable and relevant information. To improve your chances – especially in attracting local web searchers to your business – start by listing out concise and correct contact details for your marketing campaign.
- Business Address
- Phone number
- Main phone number
- Any extra phone or fax numbers
- Business contact email
- Hours of Operation:
- If applicable; locations your serve etc
Step 3: Your Contact Persons:
“Service, in short, is not what you do, but who you are. It’s a way of living that you need to bring to everything you do if you’re to bring it to your customer interactions.”Betsy Sanders
Who are the guys behind the +0s, the @s, #s and so on.
In plain English; who are the primary contacts from your organization?
Who will answer the phone, check the email, reply to comments, or open the door?Providing outstanding customer service online naturally starts from finding and hiring the right persons for your customer support team. So how do you get efficient hands on deck?
Customer service employees who excel at their tasks, have to have some specific characteristics – both personality traits and skills. After one negative experience, 51% of customers will never do business with that company again (newvoicemedia.com).
Here are some key characteristics of a good customer service personnel.
- Patience. If you don’t see this near the top of a customer service skills list, please stop reading.
- Emotional Intelligence & Attentiveness.
- Clear communication skills.
- Knowledge of the Product.
- Ability to use positive language.
- Acting skills.
- Time management skills.
- Ability to ‘read’ customers.
74% of people are likely to switch brands if they find the purchasing process too difficult.
Takeaway: Not only do you miss out on short-term sales with a difficult buying experience, you miss out on long-term loyalty and higher LTVs.
Here; list names and schedules. (Customer service fact, quote, stat)
Step 4: Your Brand:
Can you describe your company in at least 3 sentences?
Always have an elevator pitch in hand. Include a brief description of your company.
How long have you been in business? what do you offer? How do you offer it? How many employees do you have?
Answer these questions for a start to get an idea of how to describe your brand.
If you have a boilerplate description used on your organization’s marketing materials or for press releases your consider re-purposing it here.
From your brand name or tagline to a unique product feature or brand attribute – introduce your company, and offering as clearly as possible.
The following five steps will help you get accurate ideas on how to describe your company.
i. List EVERYTHING that your business offers:
The first step is to list all of your products and/or services. I know. It can seem counter-productive to list everything when trying to write a short description. But don’t worry. In the next step we’re going to doing some housekeeping.
Please list each service and/or all products you offer: or products that you intend to provide.
In the event that you have products, please provide the top 5 categories within those products.
ii. List Your Ideal Customers:
A well-crafted description also indicates the right customers for your business.
- Who do I sell to?
- What do they want to achieve?
- What will happen if they don’t achieve it?
- What’s their pain-points, needs and questions?
- What are some of the key reasons the target audience chooses your companyʼs products and/or services (cost, service, value)?
If you find this question tricky to answer, you can use the 80/20 rule to identify your typical buyer. Yep. There’s another rule. The 80/20 rule states that 80% of business comes from 20% of customers.
By the way, it is possible to have two types of buyers. However, it’s best that they have similarities i.e. entrepreneurs and small businesses. Then your description will reach both customer groups at once.
iii. Identify what you really WANT to sell.
It’s reality check time. Yes, you may have the skills to do lots of great stuff. But why include things that you don’t like selling or doing in your business description?
This is the time to ask, “Is all of this really of interest to me?”
iv. Make it Short:
Your information must be brief. Web users have very low attention span. You’ve only got seconds to grab attention. Today, more than ever, people skim instead of read. When describing, or introducing your brand, try and limit your information to three powerful points or less.
A pared down business description highlights the SCOPE of what you sell or do, and who it’s for. In introducing your company, no one wants an inventory, narrow your products and/or services down to love it or leave it out.
This is the time to be courageous. If you find yourself eliminating products and/or services, I’ve got great news for you! Offering a minimal selection of products and/or services makes you a specialist. Businesses that specialize are in the expert category. And Experts charge more!
So describe your business in two sentences or less!
5. Put it ALL together.
Once you’ve identified the top things that you want to offer, and the right buyer(s), it’s time to write your description. Below are a few examples I put together for you.
- Description for a Range of Services : We do everything from creating your social media profiles, to growing and maintaining them!
- Description with a Benefit Tagline: e.g XYZ incorporated has been making money for individuals and families since 5000BC. We love turning your dreams into reality!
P.S. Know when to get HELP: Even with a road map like this, it can be tricky to put your own business description together. Most people are too close to their business to be objective. I can help you.
“When people ask me what’s the ROI of Social, I ask them… what’s the ROI of Trust, and what’s the ROI of Loyalty. The answer, when used to build relationships the results will be… longer lifetime value of a customer, larger average order value, and increased frequency of purchase. All measurable and all lead to increased sales and profits.”– Ted Rubin
Be sure to summarize your main points and key takeaways.
Step 5: Your Website:
List your current or intended website URL .
To properly represent your brand on a strong footing online, you need a website. What platform will your website be built on? (WordPress, HTML, Wix, Joomla, SquareSpace, etc.)
Do you have a blog? if so, what’s the web address and who is in charge of it?
And it has never being easier to create one. All you need is to purchase a domain name and hosting, install the platform you want to use in designing your website on your cPanel. Then go on to create your own website, even with no technical or coding skills. It’s easy.
So to get ready for business. Publish your website and go live. Drive traffic to your site
You an do it.
“An idea not coupled with action will never get any bigger than the brain cell it occupied.”―Arnold Glasow
Here are two good guides to help you get started in planning and building a website for your business:
- How to Build a Website: the Step-by-Step Guide to Easy Setup
- How to Create a Website : An easy, step-by-step guide for beginners
Before you get into full gear building your site, how do you want your website to be seen and heard?
Look & Feel:
- Do you have a logo? Do you want a [new] logo?
- How important is it to maintain your current look, feel, logo, and branding?
- Does your company/organization have a tagline?
- Do you feel your current site promotes a favorable user experience?
- Do you have imagery or photos you want to provide?
Describe visual elements or content that should be utilized from your current site or marketing materials (logo, color scheme, navigation, naming conventions, etc.).
Now use a few adjectives to describe how your site visitor should perceive the new site. (Examples include prestigious, friendly, corporate, fun, forward thinking, innovative, and cutting edge.)
Step 6: What’s Your Solution?
From the perspective of a potential customer or user, what problems could your company, product or service solve?
Be sure to highlight the main attributes of your products/service. (services & FAQs pages).
- State the problem your products/service intends to solve. To create added urgency, it makes sense to also touch on the consequences for not taking action.
- Give a high-level overview of what readers can expect from start to finish.
- Explain the benefits of using your products/service.
What will your reader be equipped to do after reading what you have to say?
Step 7: Your Online Competition:
On today’s online battleground, brands compete aggressively for consumer attention. Understanding the competitive landscape and your rivals’ positioning and strategy has become a prerequisite to success in marketing your business online.
Those who take active steps to outsmart their competition achieve higher market share and revenue growth.
So to get attention for your company or product, and remain relevant online, it’s critical to pay attention to the digital performance of those competing for your audience’s attention.
You have to be aware of the techniques they are using, how you presently stand against them, their shortcomings and level of performance. This valuable insights will enable you build inbound marketing strategies that outmaneuver the competition and drive more revenue.“Think about what the user is going to type” – Matt Cutts Click To Tweet
Please list competitor URLs you find compelling and why.
Learning how to identify those competing for your market share is vital to helping you position your brand for success in the market place.
Armed with insights from identifying your competitors, it’s time to move on to how you fit into the big picture.
Your brand’s positioning.
Step 8: Competitive Positioning:
In the world today, people are bombarded with information left, right and center..
For instance, at the click of a button, I can get more than a million options for whatever am looking for – via a simple Google search. Companies are battling it out on social media, and other online communities to grab our attention. Not mentioning we get so much news, that we can hardly differentiate fact from fiction anymore.
Which can be disastrous . Learning how to combat information overload is one critical aspect to improving productivity.
“Information overload occurs when the amount of input to a system exceeds its processing capacity. Decision makers have fairly limited cognitive processing capacity.interaction-design.org
That’s why I took time to give you this detailed guide, so you can plan all your business’ marketing activities in one place, instead of swimming in an ocean of data, that results in paralysis and destroys productivity.
I want you to succeed, and I want you to have fun doing it.
So back to yours truly, in this stress inducing information age – where customer has countless choices and companies are outspending each-other in marketing arenas – why should I even notice your brand?
“An old man sitting on a stool can see farther than a young man who has climbed a tree”African Proverbs (Kikuyu Ethnic Group, Kenya)
This is where you have to differentiate yourself by highlighting your company’s unique features, or capabilities, or reasons why you’re the right choice – and always remember, it must tie back to your brand, products and solutions.
As Seth Godin’s once said “No one picks the mediocre one, everyone wants the best”
When was the last time you checked Google’s 3rd page?
It’s worth asking:
- How do you differentiate your company or what you offer from countless choices out there?
- Why should a web searcher go through all the trouble to visit your website, go through your content and subscribe, download or contact you?
- What makes you Special?
In business cycles, this is called your USP.
Your unique selling point/proposition, or USP for short, is a feature or element that differentiates your brand or offerings from the competition.
This can be stuff like; the highest quality at the lowest price, first-ever product of its kind or product guarantees, it can also mean the way you go about solving the problem, the speed, workmanship, customer/after-sales service etc
Just think of your USP in terms of; what you have or can do, that no one in your market doesn’t have and can’t do.
Example of Good USP:
- Avis: We’re number two. We try harder.
- FedEx Corporation: When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight.
- De Beers: A diamond is forever.
- Domino’s Pizza:You get fresh, hot pizza delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less or it’s free.
- Konta SEO: Digital marketing solutions that connect
“The Pessimist Sees Difficulty In Every Opportunity. The Optimist Sees Opportunity In Every Difficulty.” –Sir Winston Churchill
Coming up with an effective message that will resonate with your target audience, clearly represent and differentiate your brand requires some deep soul-searching, inventiveness and extensive research.
One way to start is to analyze how other companies use their USPs to their advantage.
For starters; to identify your USP list:
- Insightful points about your brand.
- Your capabilities or expertise
- Any interesting piece of data
- Awards and accolades
- Any important takeaway
This is just a pointer. You can add or subtract based on your specific needs or objectives.
Mind you; having a list like this can help you craft an image that sets you apart from the rest – by shining your headlight.
You can use this guide to identify your USP.
Step 9: Target Audience:
Describe a typical site visitor/ target audience – the kind and/or type of people you want to attract online. : How often are they online, what do they use the web for?
To ensure proper content creation and targeting, it will help to list their demographics.
If your brand is directly targeting consumers, you could list your target markets’ age, occupation, income level and purchasing habits etc – e.g. 28 years’ old Accountant, pays rent monthly, and lives in Accra Central.
Or if you’re marketing directly to businesses you could list their titles, positions or companies, e.g. Junior Management Accountant at Ghana Revenue Authority, advises Startups and Small Medium Businesses in Greater Accra.
Researching and identifying your target markets information will not only aid in generating messaging ideas for creation and distribution of content, but will give your brand a solid positioning edge.
To attract the right people and raise the bar in satisfying web searchers, be sure to use as much detail as possible in creating your buyer personas. Profile more than one type if appropriate to target a wider audience.
So get to work; give direction to your company’s content and online marketing campaign, by taking a systematic approach to research, in identifying your target market information.
Step 10: Stakeholder Management:
Will you need executionists (marketing manager, in-house staff or digital marketing consultant) to be the main project managers or will you be the hub for all the work?
- Do you have the intention of your own content? If so, what would you be providing, and at what frequency?
- Who is responsible for what tasks? (designing promo images, crafting emails, setting up marketing automation)
Running a successful online marketing campaign for your company is basically about managing a well- oiled process – over a sustained period of time. It takes creativity, focused-discipline, perseverance, and most often than not, it takes managing people to achieve your desired outcome online.
Stakeholder management probably isn’t one of the first things that spring to mind when you consider the ideal skill set, required to properly market your company online – and yet, there’s not much you can get done without it.
Briefly; stakeholders are those with any interest in your project’s outcome. They are typically the members of your project team, project managers, executives, project sponsors, customers, and users.
According to the Project Management Institute, the term project stakeholder refers to, “an individual, group, or organization, who may affect, be affected by, or perceive itself to be affected by a decision, activity, or outcome of a project”. ISO 21500 uses a similar definition.Wikipedia
Listen; managing your campaign’s team is not just some hit-and-hope networking buddies club, and not just about managing difficult people, but finding those who can help you so you can bring them into a controlled process – to attain a common goal.
You can be hot-head in social, but if you can’t persuade your manager to add a new plugin or some post scheduling tool etc, then you’ll fall short of your potential. A winning digital marketing team will need to continually implement new tools, techniques and strategies if it is going to maintain its long-term survival.
As you might be aware, things change quickly on the web. Thus; you’ll need to continually make big decisions, from changing your approaches to internet marketing to digitally transforming legacy processes.
My point is simply; the people around you have a massive effect on your ability to get things done. As a result; stakeholder management should never be left to chance
It is imperative for you to identify all stakeholders from the very start of the project and create a strategy to manage them for the success of your online marketing campaign.
Your project’s stakeholders may be inside or outside your organization : they are typically the members of your project team, project managers, executives, project sponsors, consultants, advisers, customers, and users etc.
Now, in your organizer list all your campaign’s stakeholders;
To help out, you can list:
- Third party companies or agencies
- Digital marketing specialists &/or consultants
- Web developers & designers
- Software programmers
- Sales executives
- Customer Service & Social Media
This is by no means an exhaustive list, it’s just a pointer, you can add or subtract based on your specific needs. After establishing your project’s stakeholders, the next thing to do is to categorize them in a way that empowers your stakeholder management process.
How influential are they, or less so?
Even if you’re working solo in creating and executing your company’s online marketing campaign, learning how to identify and manage a project/or digital marketing team is one skill you’ll need down the road.
Honing your leadership skills
Not just the CEO, but every agent of change is a leader. As such, honing your leadership skills can provide a significant boost to the success of your stakeholder management. We recommend you seek out guidance and case studies on the subject and absorb their teachings.
Phase 2: Campaign Inventory
You now have the structure in place, so far, you know the why, what, how and where of your online marketing campaign. To take things further, let’s get practical, what do you currently have or need to execute a campaign that will have an impact on your business goals.
It’s time to take stock.
Step 13: Your current Web Properties
Here provide any properties – including your website (if you have one) – that your company currently controls online.
- Your website/s
Step 14: Multimedia Properties
Do you have any new images or videos that are not currently syndicated on the internet? Do you have any image or video properties?
Do you have ownership of all images for your site, or will you require purchasing stock photography?
Do you have videos you’d like incorporated into the site?
List them here.
Here are some:
Also consider graphics, slide-shares and Charts.
If you have data you’d like to present visually, you have two choices: build graphics yourself or work with a designer (if you have a designer on staff). In general, it’s best to have a professional designer handle graphics.
Step 15: Local Citations
Where has your business being cited on the web
A local citation is any mention of your business on the web; it is any combination of your company name, phone number, address, zip or postal code, and website address. Citations in SEO are a key factor in improving your local search results.whitespark.ca
To keep moving provide any other directories you may be associated with or listed on e.g.: Google My Business, Yahoo business, Moz Local, Better Business Bureau, Yellow Pages, etc
List all the ones you’re currently on, and begin the search for new ones.
Step 16: Testimonials
Google’s dictionary definition of testimonial is “a formal statement testifying to someone’s character and qualifications.” These usually come from customers, colleagues, or peers who have benefitted from or experienced success as a result of the work you did for them.
In promotion and of advertising, a testimonial or show consists of a person’s written or spoken statement extolling the virtue of a product. The term “testimonial” most commonly applies to the sales-pitches attributed to ordinary citizens, whereas the word “endorsement” usually applies to pitches by celebrities.
Do you have testimonials not currently represented on your website? Please provide all testimonials you may have.
Step 17: Distribution/Promotion
What distribution channels will you use to promote the campaign?
What to consider:
- email marketing
- Blog posts
- Business Listings
- image sharing
- Paid ads (Adwords/PPC)
- Social ads
- Q & A sites
Do you have an email marketing account set up? If so, which vendor do you use?
Step 18: Social Channels
Social media is an invaluable tool you can use to, better distribute your content, and to improve customer service
What social channels will you use to promote the campaign?
Step 19: Frequency
How frequently will you promote the campaign via all your distribution channels?
It also makes sense to know who is responsible for what and is in charge of each channel, Taking advantage of a good editorial calendar will go a long way in keeping your campaign organized and on track.
Step 20: Forecast:
By this time in 12 months time, where do you see your business?
Will you be expanding any of your current services or products within the next 6 months? Please provide any information that could apply, and state how this will likely have an effect on your online marketing efforts, and possibly how you plan to adjust.
Step 21: Core Topics
What problems do you wish to solve with your online content/
Do you want to just talk, entertain, inform, advice or inspire? And how do you plan to do it using what you push out on the web?
Pro Tip: This should tie to your business objectives for marketing online.
You might focus on “how to ..” posts, if your target is to educate or 1″50 steps to…” if you want to inform etc
If possible provide the top five topics you would like to cover with your web content.
Step 22: Target Keywords
Keywords are simply the words and phrases people type into search engines – like Google to find things online.
The keywords you aim to be found for, as you might have guessed, must be linked to your brand or what you offer as a business.
Your online marketing campaign will consume hundreds if not thousands of keywords to be successful – no doubt.
But you need to start researching keywords from a basic set of words, that we like to call “seed keywords”. Then with help from insights gained from spying on your competitors keywords, tactics and strategies, coupled with tested and reliable SEO tools build up the seed keyword list to get as many variations as possible to inform your content and campaign efforts.
I have written an extensive, easy-to-understand guide on how to find keywords and analyze your competition using free SEO research tools, it should help you get started.
So, what are the target keywords associated with the campaign?
Step 23: Relationship Building
According to Simon Sinek, being a leader involves only one thing: “Followers”.
It’s no secret, links are an important factor in how search engines, gauge the popularity of a website. Thus the number of links your business website has can influence your brand leadership.
It’s worth noting that building these links, or at least the quality ones, involves building relationships. Having friends, contact, followers, connections, and readers online, that are genuinely interested in engaging with your brand is like gold online.
To be a good leader, you must first be a good follower.
So provide at least 5 blogs, social accounts, influencer, brand to name a few that you currently follow as a business and/or personally.
Step 24: Your Budget
Though cheaper and delivers a higher return compared to other forms of marketing like TV, radio or the papers, marketing your company online can still consume a considerable amount of resources.
Don’t forget it takes a sustained period of time – especially for search engine optimization (at least 3 – 6 months) – to bear fruits.
Do you have a specific budget range already establishes for this project?
Taking time into account can this project be divided into phases to accommodate budget and timing restraints?
An opinion, your total marketing budget should usually be between 5% – 15% of your total revenue. That’s a rough estimate of 9%. Digital marketing should make up a substantial portion of your overall marketing budget. In general, 10%-50% of your total marketing budget should be used for digital.
You don’t need to be a financial wizkid to know how to set a budget for your campaign, just follow this guide for a little help.
Phase 3: Business Campaign Objectives:
Step 25: Campaign Goal:
What is the primary purpose of your site?
According to Wikipedia; a goal is an idea of the future or desired result that a person or a group of people envisions, plans and commits to achieve. People endeavor to reach goals within a finite time by setting deadlines.
Thus; marketing goals are specific objectives described in your digital marketing plan. These goals can be tasks, contents, quotas, improvements in KPIs, or other performance-based benchmarks used to measure marketing success. When explicitly set, measurable goals are key for marketers to be successful.
What is the secondary purpose of your site?
Your marketing goal must be specific, measurable, aspirational, realistic, and time-bound metrics that drives all your marketing efforts. That is to say, use the SMART technique to set goals that help grow your business.
Please provide a concise statement about the goal or purpose of the website
Step 26: Campaign Objectives:
An objective is a specific result that you or your team aims to achieve within a given time frame and with available resources. In general, objectives are more specific and easier to measure than goals. Objectives are the basic tools that underlie all planning and strategic activities.
Objectives encompass the specific steps you will take to achieve your desired result or goal.
Simply put; these are things that you plan to do or achieve, based on real facts and not influenced by personal feelings, prejudices, or interpretations.
So based on your goals, what are the mountains you need to conquer to get there?
How many conversions do you currently get per month?
How much traffic does your site get per month?
Am here for you buddy, here is how to set reasonable marketing objectives for your business’ online campaign.
Step 27: Site’s conversion points:
The Conversion point, or Conversion page, is the site page where a conversion action is successfully completed. Examples of Conversion points are: the thank you page for completing a form, the confirmation page for an online order and so on.
In simple terms; these are points on your website, where you turn your visitor into a subscribers, paying customers or make a download etc.
Have you conducted usability tests or gathered visitor feedback for your current site?
If so, what did you find out?
What is the primary “action” a visitor to your website should take when coming to make a purchase, become a member, search for information?
At this point describe your site’s conversion points:
- email option
- call you
- product purchase
- ebook/app download
- subscribe to newsletter
What areas of your current site are successful and why? If not, please list any shortcomings on the site or anything you would like changed. Use this 39 quick ways to instantly understand online conversion, and increase your website’s conversion rate .
Phase 4: e-Commerce:
Now money talk.
What will you be selling or doing via your website?
List your services and products, even the ones you are not selling or community initiatives you’re active in as a brand.
- hard goods
- downloadable product etc
Step 28: Products and/or Services
List all you’ll be selling here, and do your products have particular features?
Do you remember your USP?
Please describe all options and configurations of size, color, strap, finish, etc.*
Things to consider:
- How many products or services are you starting out with?
- How many do you intend to sell in a month, quarter or year?
- How many categories do you cover?
- Do you want to set up cross-selling, upselling on the product detail pages?
- Do you need particular search filters for searching the product catalog?
- How will you be managing inventory?
- Would you want to import product data initially from a .csv file?
- Will you be generating coupon codes, discounts?
- Do you need to integrate with any ERP or 3PL?
- Will there be any particular shipping rules (free shipping over a certain cost, flat rate, table rates, etc. )
- What shippers will you be using?
- Which payment gateways and services do you want to offer? (PayPal, Google Wallet, bank transfer, COD, check/ money order, zero total checkout).
- If you own a store, would you want it to sync with eBay or Amazon account?
- Do you want to show translated versions of your website, products or services?
- Do you want to allow customer reviews? Do you want to enable customers to create and save wishlists?
- Do you want the ability for users to share products via social channels? What about “tell a friend”?
Answer these questions based on your objectives online. After coming up with a list of all you plan to sell online, to help your website own the process describe how youʼd like these to work.
You can say: a user will go yo my “home” and “about” pages to find out about my brand and to get an idea of what I offer, then to my “services” page to get in-depth details of my products and services and onward to my “contact” page to contact me or purchase a product.
Something like that.
Phase 5: Content
What is the overall message you are trying to convey to your target audience?
Think of things like; cost-effective, caring, humorous, secure, reliable, efficient etc
Step 29: Brand Messaging
Content can have huge impacts on your online marketing campaign, but to make it work for your business you must invest time, and lots of it.Your content marketing strategy needs to help you find customers and build your business.
As such you, or your team, should be thinking about the messaging of the content that people would be searching for, and how you could be helping them find it, in turn helping them to find you and eventually becoming a website visitor, and subsequently a new customer. Alternatively turning a current customer in to one that is constantly engaged and loyal to your business.
Brand messaging refers to every communication which makes a buyer relate to the brand by influencing them, motivating them and propelling them to buy the product. It’s the message that tells why your brand matters, what is its value proposition, and how it is different from the competitors.mbaskool.com
To begin determining the kind of message you intend pushing out and in what format, it’s good to start from the solutions your company offers and how you plan to achieve it online.
it’s also worth considering how your brand is currently perceived offline and how you plan to either build a new image or carry that online.
Does your current brand perception favor your brand’s image or what you want to achieve online?
What do you want your ideal website visitor to think of your website and it’s message?
It’s vital to think about or learn how to create a solid brand message that helps your company meet customer needs and stands out from the crowd, like your USP, it should reflect your uniqueness.
Over to you.
Step 30: Content Creation
Do you already have content for/or on your site?
If not, will you be creating content in-house or using an outside provider?
For starters; creating content is the process of identifying a new topic or idea you want to write about, deciding which form you want it to take, formalizing your distribution strategy (keyword, SEO, social or otherwise), and then actually producing it.
Content creation is the contribution of information to any media and most especially to digital media for an end-user/audience in specific contexts.
Content is “something that is to be expressed through some medium, as speech, writing or any of various arts” for self-expression, distribution, marketing and/or publication.
Typical forms of content creation include maintaining and updating web sites, blogging, article writing, photography, videography, online commentary, the maintenance of social media accounts, and editing and distribution of digital media.
A Pew survey described content creation as the creation of “the material people contribute to the online world.”Wikipedia
Content is simply the cord that holds the chain in marketing your brand on the internet. It can help ignite your company’s online visibility and awareness, boost trust and loyalty – people consuming your content will start to build an impression of your brand. Publishing informative, well-researched content can turn your business into an authoritative and trustworthy source.
Don’t take my word for it.
The 2018 B2B content marketing statistics from the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) show that 91% of B2B marketers use content marketing to reach customers. And the CMI’s 2018 B2C content marketing stats reveal that 86% of B2C marketers think content marketing is a key strategy.
If you’re not producing content, your competitors are.
To help you higher, use this simple 5 step info-graphic from Constant Content to get/keep the ball rolling.
You have to consider the message you’re trying to convey through your content, before deciding the best means of production. Is it a personal or product story? Can it be better done in-house?
Here are content types and format you can consider adding to your online marketing strategy.
Do you have a content strategy in place?
It’s your winning ticket online.
This guides should come in handy.
- Starting from Scratch: 6 Steps to Your First Content Marketing Plan
- 10 Steps to Build a Content Marketing Strategy (and Execute)
- 7 Simple Steps to Improve Your Content Marketing Strategy
Phase 6: Technology:
Step 30: On-Site Technical issues
What is your target platform and browser?
You also have to consider the blogging framework to use and if you need to integrate with any pre-existing database. Not forgetting you need a tech-hand to help you do some job on-site to ensure a smooth e-commerce operation.
Technical Search Engine Optimization elements like:
- Site Security
- Site Speed
- Indexing & crawlability
- device responsiveness
- site errors
- redirects etc
Technical SEO refers to improving the technical aspects of a website in order to increase the ranking of its pages in the search engines. Making a website faster, easier to crawl and understandable for search engines are the pillars of technical optimization.Yoast SEO
Thus; whom can you talk to in your organization to help respond to technical issues?Having a better understanding of technical SEO gives you the ability to better analyze your site and make it more accessible to web users & search engines. Click To Tweet
Will you need any of the following?
- Search Engine Optimization
- Registration(log-in/ membership)
- Survey/Voting Tools
- Mobile / Tablet Optimized
- Newsletter Distribution
- Hardened Web Security
- Photo Gallery
- Web Traffic Analytics Tools
Also keep in mind the database you plan to/or are currently using (FileMaker, Access, SQL Server, Oracle, etc.)Will you be using any scripts or code that have already been established?
Check out the guides below to get an idea of what to expect from the technical aspects of managing your website for marketing purposes
Do you have an in-house IT person who can maintain the site or you need to hire a webmaster?
Phase 7: Campaign Measurement
Running a successful marketing campaign takes time, money, and effort. A key advantage marketing online has over other traditional means of marketing, like TV or radio and the rest, is that your efforts can be measured.
“Research indicates that workers have three prime needs: Interesting work, recognition for doing a good job, and being let in on things that are going on in the company.”Zig Ziglar
And measuring the success of your content marketing campaign is vital from an ROI standpoint.
The key denominator to what “success” looks like varies on an individual basis.
But there are generally two trends among most online marketers.
- Sales and leads: These could be measured by revenue, by contribution to pipeline, by sales opportunities created, or by other metrics.
- Begin with the end in mind: Define your goals for it from the beginning.
To measure the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns, you must first have an objective.
- What is the point of running a marketing campaign in the first place?
- What results do you expect to receive from that campaign?
- What are your KPIs?
Once you establish objectives, measuring effectiveness becomes much easier. In fact, it’s so easy that even a simple caveman like can do it with even the most basic of tools. You can probably do it, too! Many digital marketers get stuck with measurement, because they think in terms of tools and technology, not in terms of what the business really needs. So instead of settling on a KPI or metric of value, and then choosing the easiest technology solution to measure this point, we get stuck on bolting those objectives on to our existing tools. The result is often a square peg trying to fit into a round hole. No.
Think of objectives first, tools last, and the solution becomes easy. Tactically, you can measure just about every objective with two tools that have been around for well over a decade.
- Campaign tracking URLs in Google Analytics.
- Goals in Google Analytics.
Step 31: Analytics & Monitoring:
“There are only three measurements that tell you nearly everything you need to know about your organization’s overall performance: employee engagement, customer satisfaction, and cash flow. It goes without saying that no company, small or large, can win over the long run without energized employees who believe in the mission and understand how to achieve it.”Jack Welch
How will you be making updates to your site and what analytics tools do you plan to use in measuring and monitoring your online marketing campaign efforts?
Once you’ve produced and distributed enough content, you may want to track things like adoption, usage, and quality to help you analyze the current state of your marketing performance.
Internal controls are key to achieving your organization’s objectives. They are also critical to eliminating mistakes and preventing lack of productivity. Online most of the activities you carry out to maintain internal control and productivity will do with measuring your efforts.
Analyzing and monitoring the data you put out online properly necessitates formal documentation & standardization of business processes.
This constant activity of your online marketing plan has several benefits.
Standardized business processes are easier to teach when staff turnover occurs and easier to enforce.
As i said earlier, consider Google Analytics and/or Bing Analytics for a start, in addition to other good analytics tools to supercharge your overall marketing strategy.
You can also check out:
- Analytics in Marketing – Measure, Analyze, and Manage.
- 19 Digital Marketing Metrics for Measuring Success in 2019
Phase 8: SEO SWOT Questions
“Given the right circumstances, from no more than dreams, determination, and the liberty to try, quite ordinary people consistently do extraordinary things.”Dee Hock
A SWOT analysis is an incredibly simple, yet powerful tool to help you develop your business strategy, whether you’re building a startup or guiding an existing company.
SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats.
Strengths and weaknesses are internal to your company—things that you have some control over and can change. Examples include who is on your team, your patents and intellectual property, and your location.
Opportunities and threats are external—things that are going on outside your company, in the larger market. You can take advantage of opportunities and protect against threats, but you can’t change them. Examples include competitors, prices of raw materials, and customer shopping trends.
A SWOT analysis organizes your top strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats into an organized list and is usually presented in a simple two-by-two grid.
The following questions will help you put this into action for your business – if you can’t answer some of these questions then this also highlights more weaknesses.
Step 32: SEO Strengths
Strengths are an internal factor and are typically the easiest thing to detail so we start here.
• What do you rank well for currently?
• What are your digital assets? Website? Content? Tools? Knowledge?
• What is your very best asset?
• What makes your better than your competitors?
• What ranks well currently?
• What drives the most organic traffic?
• What are your best links?
• What previous SEO had the best results?
Step 33: SEO Weaknesses
Weaknesses are again internal. And determining weaknesses is not so easy. You will have to be honest. Smart competitors will target your weaknesses so you too must target them as opportunities for improving your SEO.
• Which areas need improvement? Website? Content? Links? Strategy?
• What do your competitors do better than you?
• Where are your competitors stronger than? Content? Links?
• Do you have the requisite SEO skills in house?
• Do you have the budget required to reach your SEO objectives?
• How far are you behind the competition? In what areas?
• What content is currently driving little to no traffic?
• Which SEO tactics have previously failed to deliver?
Step 34: SEO Opportunities
Your SEO opportunities are born out of the strengths and weaknesses. Strengths are areas to be built upon. Weaknesses are areas to be explored.
• What content could be built that would have significant impact?
• What aspects of the site could be optimised to improve results?
• What areas of the site that do well could be expanded to do better?
• What weaknesses are easily resolved?
• What link sources are we yet to tap into?
• Are there any changes to the search engine results we can leverage?
Step 35: SEO Threats
Threats are the hardest element and needs to be based on an understanding of your own weaknesses and your competitors strengths. This also needs a critical appraisal of how search engine results are changing in ways that could impact your business.
• Which competitors are strong where you are weak?
• Are newer, less experienced competitors improving their SEO?
• Is the gap between you and your competitors growing?
• Are search engine results changing in a way that could impact your business? (more ads, new SERP features etc)
• Are any new start-ups aggressively gathering market share?
- Decent domain name
- SEO-friendly and easy-to-use CMS
- Loads of content
- Industry expertise
- No SEO skills
- Poor copywriting
- Competitor already ranks in top 3
- Competitor may increase SEO strategies
- Competitor has strong domain name
- Entry restriction to market weak-new entrants
- Optimisations will enable long tail capture
- PPC possibly
- Low competition in SERPSs means quick results
- Possibility to use social media (emotions
SWOT Analysis Courtesy: Bowler Hat UK.
Once you have nailed down the specifics of the campaign with the help of Google sheets, it’ll be time to add that campaign to your team’s campaign launch calendar in Google calendar.
“I start with the premise that the function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers.”Ralph Nader
Bonus Phase 8: Collaboration &/or Communication.
Of course, setting all of the milestone dates and deadlines associated with planning an online marketing campaign requires a ton of communication.
Google Hangouts is an easy-to-use solution for hashing out the details of a campaign with your cookers, even if some of those coworkers are working remotely.
“A manager is responsible for the application and performance of knowledge.”Peter Drucker
“Rank does not confer privilege or give power. It imposes responsibility.”
“When people are financially invested, they want a return. When people are emotionally invested, they want to contribute.”
Use your campaign planning Hangouts to answer questions like…
- Who is responsible for X task?
- Does anyone need help with a task?
- Does everyone agree with the timeline/find it reasonable?
- Are there any potential roadblocks that could delay launch?
- Do we have a backup plan is X doesn’t work?
At the end of every campaign meeting , we use Gmail to send out a meeting recap, which highlights all of the key takeaways from the meeting as well as what decisions were made.
SO WHERE DO YOU START?
“The man who starts out going nowhere, generally gets there.”Dale Carnegie
So you have just read nearly a zillion words and maybe are a little overwhelmed. To help you get started to growing that ideal earned and organic website traffic, here are the 7 key phases you need to focus on after finishing this post:
Phase 1: General Campaign Information
Phase 2: Campaign Inventory
Phase 3: Business Campaign Objectives
Phase 4: e-Commerce
Phase 5: Content
Phase 6: Technology
Phase 7: Analytics & Monitoring
”Management is efficiency in climbing the ladder of success; leadership determines whether the ladder is leaning against the right wall.”Stephen R. Covey
You have now got some work to do. But done well and with persistence you can attract a ton of traffic to your website and blog. Building an online platform and business is not a “get rich quick” scheme. It takes focus, creativity, skill, time and hard work. Remember “Done is better than perfect.”
At least twice a week – as I said earlier – I will be putting out posts that will help you achieve success in marketing your company online, this is the foundation, quickly set up your campaign and join me again.
In my next post I’ll be sharing with you some sure fire techniques and tips to market your brand, product or service online without spending any coin on it.
Don’t resist marketing your brand online any longer. After all, we are in the digital age. What better way to promote and sell your offerings to consumers? You’d be hard-pressed to find one.
If this post has being helpful to you, please do share or you might add your suggestions and questions in the comments below, am interactive – You’ll get a response, ASAP.For when purpose and passion comes into play, chaos and weary takes the bench Click To Tweet
Stay strong, stay brave, stay focused.
Peace and Love.
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Eko Odinta is a creative, SEO-focused, online marketing strategist in Accra, he helps business owners, start-ups, and mid-sized companies grow and retain customers with actionable insights and humanistic automation. A chess enthusiast and passionate Arsenal fan, he’s open to marketing-focused guest posting and speaking engagement opportunities.