Every company has a business plan, an overall strategy identifying their objectives for years 1,2 and 3 – and often years 4 and 5. Laid out in this plan are the steps, resources to implement and challenges to overcome to successfully achieve their plan. If you were to speak to any business owner then they should know this plan – inside and out.
Now, would the same business owner believe that they need a digital marketing strategy? Is it important enough to warrant its own, fully documented, plan? Or is it merely a by-line on the overarching business plan? If you aren’t sure if your business needs a full, bespoke, digital marketing strategy then below are 7 points to make you reconsider:
- Rudderless – without a firm digital marketing strategy your online presence is similar to a wayward boat, carving a path wherever it fancies. With a clear digital marketing strategy goals are laid out, resources required to reach them are highlighted and it acts as an incentive to actually spend time analyzing how much success you’re having in achieving them.
- Online share – like any operating in any market, you should know your online marketplace. By understanding who within this sector you can tailor make your online presence to reach your target audience. Don’t assume that because you have done research into more traditional market channels that your online marketplace will be the same – it won’t, you will have different customer profiles, competitors and communication methods.
- Competitors – companies that have embraced a digital marketing strategy will be doing better than you, if you don’t have one. If you, at the very least, want to maintain your standing in your industry and protect yourself against start-up companies then a digital strategy is needed.
- Adding value – the first thing many people do, when considering a business or service to use, is to go online. A well-structured digital marketing strategy will help to drive customer interaction and also, let them know you are a ‘current’ business which can help to create brand loyalty.
- Consistency – if you have a variety of online presences (Websites and social media platforms for example) then you need to ensure each represents your corporate identify, your brand, tone and message. If the ‘message’ (colour, style of font, style of writing etc) all differ across the board then this will creates distrust with your consumer base.
- Managing it – if you operate in a big business then many different departments may be involved with the company’s overall digital profile. With an identified digital marketing strategy which people are aware of and know where to access, you can afford a measure of control throughout the business.
- Trials – online you can make quick and easy amends which means you can run different marketing campaigns, monitor success and amend it quickly if it isn’t working out – all relatively cheaply.
Really and truly, it comes back to oft quoted adage – ‘fail to prepare, prepare to fail’. If you don’t have a clearly defined digital marketing strategy then it can come as no surprise if your online presence is sending mixed messages to consumers and missing out on new business. With a structured, practical and realistic digital marketing strategy in place the whole of the business – no matter its size – can ‘buy into it’ and implement it right across the whole spectrum of the company.
If you want some help in creating your digital marketing strategy for 2015 then contact our Digital Agency in Melbourne.Remember to apply some or all of these to your business and create a digital marketing strategy plan to help drive your online presence forward.