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Digital marketing is online marketing for websites. Simple, right? Turns out, there are at least seven main ways to market a website online. And that’s where digital marketing strategy comes into play.
These are the big guys — like search engine optimization (SEO), digital advertising, social media marketing, the list goes on. And each category represents a specialty of its own along with a unique set of skills and best practices. In other words, what happens in SEO is very different than what happens in digital advertising.
For this reason, it’s not easy to create a digital marketing strategy.
Since every website is different, it’s important to take a custom approach to creating digital marketing strategies.
In this guide, we’ll cover the different areas of online marketing, explain the digital marketing strategy process, and then provide a 10 step guide on how to cover the basics.
You’ll need more than just a strategy to help you conquer digital marketing. Get the free Agency Survival Guide!
The 6 Pillars of Online Marketing
The world of online marketing has grown, and today there’s clearly more than one way to market your website on the internet.
The good news is that though these areas are separate marketing categories, they can all work together to achieve your goals and grow your business.
Online marketing can be categorized in 6 main disciplines:
Content marketing – The creation and publication of useful content designed to attract, educate, and maintain your target audience.
Native advertising – Also called advertorials, native advertising is a type of online advertisement that resembles the editorial content of the website or publication they’re promoting.
Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising – PPC is a marketing strategy that involves online ads. Advertisers pay each time a user clicks on one of their ads.
Search engine optimization (SEO) – This is the practice of improving a website so that it becomes search engine friendly and brings organic traffic to the website.
Social media marketing – The practice of promoting a product or service on social media platforms.
Email marketing – A marketing approach that uses email as a way of marketing to and nurturing potential and existing clients.
How to Create a Digital Marketing Strategy in 10 Steps
Now that you know a little about the different types of online marketing tactics, it’s time to learn the basics on creating the strategy.
From personas to the right tools, there are plenty of big and little things that can help or hinder your digital marketing strategy’s success. Here’s the foundational work you need to make sure your strategy works well, including our favorite tools and software.
Step 1: Create a Customer Persona
Previously, digital marketers collected qualitative and quantitative information about the target audience that included age, gender, occupation, interests, and location. The definition of the potential customer has been taken to another level recently, with buyer personas taking over. Now, the most effective marketing strategies are incomplete without them.
Buyer personas are a term used to describe the ideal customer that can be defined by surveying and contacting the pre-defined target group. To define your own buyer persona, you can make use of online tools like MakeMyPersona and Persona Creator.
Step 2: Identify Your Goals and Tools
Every professional marketer knows how important this stage is. Without goals, the strategy simply will not work, so defining them is your main task. Make sure that the goals you developed are suitable, and make them measurable.
Example of a weak marketing goal:
Increase the conversions on the website next year and create two promotional offers.
What is wrong with this goal? Right, it is non-measurable! How one can measure the progress using this goal?
Here is how it should have been formulated:
Increase the conversions on the website by 20 percent in the first quarter of 2020, and create two promotional offers: free marketing report and a marketing book. Have them online by February and March respectively.
There, measuring the progress becomes possible now.
Step 3: Focus on Blogging
Creating high-quality content is important for any digital marketing strategy. Blogging is one way to create quality content for a site and expand your content marketing strategy. This key aspect of the strategy performs some critical functions, including bringing more traffic to your website, reinforcing social media presence, positioning against other companies, and ranking all those long-tail search queries and keywords.
If you have a regularly updated blog that the visitors find useful, it means that your website will be easily found through the search engines and can be used as a platform for your marketing campaign.
Step 4: Evaluate Existing Digital Marketing Channels
Analyze the digital assets and channe
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