As consumers increasingly shift their attention and time towards social media and other online channels to fulfill their needs; be it shopping, information, entertainment, education or establishing human connections, it becomes imperative for business to have the right set of digital marketing strategies in place to achieve desired business outcomes
Success of any strategy lies in getting the fundamentals, facts and assumptions about the market place, competitors, company and customers correctly. Having said that, by no means I am ruling out the significance of execution which is super important to any successful strategy.
Keeping this in mind, I created a simple guide that helps companies craft an effective digital marketing strategy. Perfect these Ps and you can perfect your digital marketing strategy and outcome.
Let’s start with the first P – PURPOSE
As a business, the first and foremost question you need to ask is what is the purpose or goal of the campaign that you are planning? In other words, what are my business goals and how digital marketing channels can help in achieving that?
Define your business goals clearly in the first place. Your marketing goals could be
· Driving brand awareness or website traffic
· Brand Consideration
· Lead generation
· Conversions or product purchase
· App Installations
Whatever your goals are, you need to be absolutely clear on this before you move to the next step.
The Second P is PERSONA
While this is a no-brainer, defining your target segment clearly and precisely is absolutely essential for the success of any campaign.
Answering these questions will help you in defining your target clearly.
· Who is your ideal customer? What data and insights you have about their geographic, demographic and behavioral aspects?
· What are their goals (business or personal goals) and pain points/challenges they face in personal or business set-up?
· How your product or service can solve customers’ pain points?
· What are the reasons to believe? In other words, is there a compelling benefit or set of benefits your product/service offers that are better than what the market offers or customer currently receives.
The Third P is the PLATFORM
Given the business goals and the target segment you want to go after, choosing the right digital marketing channels is essential. You do not want to drain your hard-earned marketing dollars by spending it on channels that are inappropriate or irrelevant to your business. Asking few simple yet important questions prior to your campaign will come a long way in picking the right channel or channels for spending your marketing budget.
· Who is your TG? In which platforms or channels are they active or engaging with more often?
· If you are looking at social media, then you need to understand the characteristics of social media platforms in terms of audience profile, reach, average engagement rate etc.
· Is this channel the right fit for my type of business and goals? For instance, LinkedIn is more appropriate for B2B, employment marketing or for establishing professional relationships. If you are in fashion, travel/tourism, food etc, Instagram, Face book or even YouTube might be a relevant platform. If you are looking at an audience who are intent driven, (currently on the lookout for something) search ads or shopping ads can be a great fit to drive traffic to your website or app. Twitter might be better for creating buzz, sharing trends or current events, handling public relations or even customer service.
The bottom line is you need to be on platforms that align well with your type of business, audience base and business goals.
The fourth P is the PRODUCT
Don’t get confused with the product or service that you sell or offer to the market. The product I refer here is the type of ad format you choose to achieve your business goals. For instance, you want to tell a brand story that develops across each card or highlight product features or show different products, then carousel ads can be a good fit. If you want to tell your story with sight, sound and motion, then video ads are good fit as it comes in range of lengths and style. On the other hand, image ads offer a simple format to convey your brand/product imagery and Illustrations. You can use imagery ads to showcase your product or service in a visual way. You can also try multiple ad formats for the same campaign, see which one is gaining more traction among your consumers or driving better results and optimize your campaign on the go.
The fifth P is the PRICE
Again, not to be confused with the how much you charge for the product or service you sell. In the context of digital marketing channels, price is mapped to the budget and the bidding strategy you choose. A bid represents what you are willing to pay to achieve a desired result from someone in your target audience. In general, your budget and bidding strategy depends on the no of channels you choose, different kinds of campaign you run and the advertising goal you have. For instance, if brand awareness is your goal, then cost per thousand impressions bidding might well be suited for your campaign. On the other hand, conversion bidding might be well suited to you if you want your customers to take a direct action on your website. You can use cost per view, if you run video ads and your goal is product or brand consideration.
If you are using Google ads, the focus is mainly on any of these goals
Views (For Video ads only)
If your focus is on conversions, then you can use smart bidding strategies like Cost per action (CPA), Target Return on Ad Spend (ROAS), Enhanced Cost per click (ECPC), Maximize conversion bidding or Maximize conversion value. You can also use the automated bidding strategy to do the heavy lifting for you and get the guess work out of the equation while setting or choosing the bids.
Last but not the least, the sixth P is the PERFORMANCE
Defining the right set of metrics or KPIs is crucial to measuring the performance of the campaign. What metrics you should be looking at or measuring largely depends on the campaign goals you set at the very beginning of the campaign. Have a definitive and clear agreement among your team on what success means to you or how it looks like when you attain your business goal. For instance, if your business goal is lead generation, then no of leads generated, quality of leads, sources of leads, cost per lead are some of the KPIs you need to be looking at. If it is email marketing, then open rates, click through rates, bounce rates are some of the metrics you can look at to analyze the performance of your email marketing campaign.
Always remember, strategy is a choice. Deciding "Where to Play" and "How to Win" is the key to crafting a winning strategy.
Are there any Ps you think that are critical to crafting an effective digital marketing strategy? Do share your thoughts.