Think back to the days before digital marketing was around. If we had asked most SME business owners to make a marketing related wish, here’s what most would have wished for:
“A set of free marketing tools that would allow us to target and get our message in front of millions of people across the world.”
That wish was granted. All business owners, regardless of size, can now access the same tools and platforms as businesses 100 times their size. So, everyone should be happy and making tons of money from digital marketing, right?
As most of us have learned by now, it’s just not that simple. Most SME business owners struggle to make digital marketing and social media work consistently. It can use up an enormous amount of time, we need new skills, and it’s challenging to constantly generate content on a daily basis.
One of the main reasons for this is that very few of us have taken the time take a step back and create a well thought through strategy. Here are 8 key reasons why creating a digital marketing strategy will be the best thing you could do for your marketing efforts right now.
- You’ll have a clear direction
Businesses without a clear strategy and a clear set of goals for what they want to achieve online in terms of getting new customers or raising brand awareness, are more likely to waste time, energy and money.
- You will be able to really get under the skin of your online audience
In many cases, your online audience could be different to customers who come to you from non-digital channels. A big mistake is to assume that they are all the same.
- You will outperform your competitors who have no clear strategy
If you’re approach to digital marketing is ad hoc with no clearly defined strategy, your competitors who do have a strategy will be taking your customers.
- Your customers will understand the value you deliver
Having a clearly defined digital value proposition that’s targeted to different customer personas, helps you differentiate your offering in the market.
- Your digital marketing will work seamlessly together
Digital marketing can suffer from silos. One person in the office looking after Facebook, an agency taking care of your SEO. Another agency doing your Google ads, a friend of a friend doing bits and pieces on your website. Having a digital marketing strategy gets everything singing from the same hymn sheet and working towards the same set of goals.
- You’ll make every penny spent, and every hour used really count
With no strategy in place, you could be wasting money and time on the wrong things.
- Your digital marketing will be agile enough to keep up with changes
Digital platforms are like supermarkets. You just get used to where the baked bean aisle is, and then they change everything around. Digital platforms tweak, update and change things almost daily. You need to make sure you’re on top of changes and can switch your approach without missing a beat.
- You will understand your analytics and can act on the data
Most small businesses don’t spend enough time looking at their analytics across all the platforms they use. This data is the gift that keeps on giving. You will be able to see what’s working and what isn’t which keeps your marketing time and money investment optimised at all times.
Join our Masterclass called: Create a Digital Marketing Plan which starts on 16th June.
It’s run by Emily Whitehead. Emily has over 10 years’ experience working within the tourism sector both as a business owner and providing business support.
The Masterclass is broken down into 3 separate workshops, with actions to be taken in between each session.
Workshop 1: Creating a digital marketing strategy to hit your goals
This two-hour workshop will begin the development of your digital marketing strategy covering:
- Defining where you are on your digital marketing journey
- Identifying challenges and opportunities
- Review your assets and tools and how to get the best out of what you’ve already got.
- Define your vision, mission and brand.
- Post workshop exercise: develop the strategic framework for your digital marketing strategy.
Workshop 2: Developing a high impact tactical digital marketing plan
The second of three workshops will begin to delve deeper into the development of your digital marketing strategy.
- Discussion to review the post workshop exercise and what delegated want to achieve through their digital marketing strategy.
- Review the main tools at your disposal and how you can use them to attract new and retain your existing customers.
- Develop an understanding of what you will need to change and evolve e.g. website, Social media activity, business model.
Create a plan for the development of digital marketing tactics:
- Website: Keywords, SEO, user experience.
- Social: Bios/hashtags/target audiences, management solutions, messaging.
- Email Marketing: content, integration, analytics and management.
- Developing content: key messaging, storytelling, killer visuals, management platforms.
Post workshop exercise: using toolkit develop digital marketing implementation plan.
Workshop 3: Implementing your digital marketing plan
This workshop will focus on bringing it all together and delivering your digital marketing plan.
- Discussion to review post workshop exercise and delegates ideas on how they will implement their digital marketing plan.
- Refining the digital marketing plan: creating powerful customer journeys, developing great content, moving customers through the sales funnel.
- Discussion to review plans, identify skills requirements and to identify the resources and support available to execute the plan.