Updated February 2019
A Digital Marketing Strategy is a series of steps you need to take to ensure you have an online presence. Without a clear digital strategy, you might be missing out on some key opportunities and leads. It can be as simple or as complex as you need, depending on the size of your business or site.
Before working out your strategy, you need first to consider:
- Your end goal
- What you are working towards and
- What you want to achieve.
Once you’ve figured that out, you should initially focus on the following four areas.
A good website should show what your business does and why you are trusted within your industry. When a user goes to your site, you have about 10 to 20 seconds to grab their attention. It’s a good idea to have your most eye-catching content above the “fold” or the point where the user must scroll to see the rest of the page.
Your website should be effectively designed and user-friendly. When designing your site, you should always have the end user in mind. Ask yourself “will the user understand what to do on this page?”
A few design tips I’ve come across are:
- Logos should be at the top left of a page because this is generally where people expect to find them
- The menu for navigation should be clear and easy to use
- You must have an “About Us” page to tell the user the story behind your brand; this also gives your business a human side
- You must make sure your site is mobile friendly.
One thing to keep in mind – 75% of people don’t bother looking past the first page of search engine results, so you need to make sure you’re on the first page.
How do you get there?
- Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), and
- Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
One will cost you time, the other money.
SEO is the method used by Google to determine who will get the top result using a complex and continually evolving algorithm to rank pages according to their relevance. Keywords are the key here. You need to make sure keywords appear in the right places of your website, BUT you also need to be careful that you are not “writing for the robots” and that your content is still engaging. Your content should always remain your top priority.
SEM is the way around Google’s ranking system and still appear at the top of the results page by paying for an advertised spot. This will also involve keywords, and you must spend time researching them and your competitors to ensure your ads are effective.
My number one tip here is to never use Social Media in place of a website. Social Media is a connection tool – a way to stay in touch with your clients in a very organic way and is generally not about structured information delivery. Social Media is a great tool to build brand awareness, informal engagement with your clients and fans to build a loyal community and should run alongside your website.
No matter what type of business or blog you run, you should consider having a Facebook and Twitter account. Then depending on your business or blog, you may also wish to have Instagram, Linkedin, Pinterest.
For my blog, I have Facebook which is my main Social Media account – the one I invest money in and spend most of the time on. I have Twitter as it is a great way to connect with other bloggers and I have Instagram which provides my followers with a behind the scenes look at my life and more significant insight into me as a person.
For my business, I have Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin.
This will be one of the most critical parts of your digital strategy and one you should invest the most time in. See my tips on How To Grow Your Email List.
Your website should include the option to sign up to your mailing list. You can do this in several different ways. You can offer something to people who sign up (such as a discount code, an eBook, printable or service) or you can rely on your users finding interest in your content or products and signing up without a lead magnet.
Once you have your list, you can use it in a variety of different ways including driving traffic to your site, building your brand, engagement or direct sales.
Whether you’re running a small private blog or building your online business, it is beneficial to consider your digital strategy so that you have a clear direction of where you are headed online.