How to define your digital strategy in 5 simple steps

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when it comes to digital marketing as there are so many channels and so much content already out there to compete with. Unless you are a super brand with an enormous budget it is impossible to appear everywhere. Follow these 5 steps and feel totally focused on where your brand should be.

Set your goals
Firstly, ask yourself the question “What is the ONE main outcome I want from my digital marketing plan? Use this to define your mission.

Next, set your goals and be really specific about what you want to achieve. The best way to do this is by making sure your goals are SMART.….

Time based

So rather than just saying “generate more traffic”, the goal could be “generate 20% more UVs (unique visitors) to the website from facebook ads in 3 months”.

Carry out an audit of your current marketing activity
There is no point setting your future strategy without looking at  what is already working and also learning from your mistakesTake a set period of time, say the last 3 months, and plot performance on a spreadsheet to clearly see which channels are performing best. Use these learnings to set clear and realistic KPIs.

and what your competitors are doing….

Are they using a marketing channel you are not active on? Are they sharing content at completely different times of day to you? Are they using different keywords to you? (SEMrush is a great tool for tracking this) Then it might be worth testing similar options out in your marketing plan.

Find out where your customers are
It is crucial to Identify where your potential customers are hanging out as you do not need to be everywhere. If you are a postnatal yoga instructor, for example, then it’s unlikely that your target mums are going to be seeking post natal fitness tips and support on linkedin.

Be realistic about your budget and resources
On a limited budget in a competitive marketplace PPC (pay per click) advertising on google is not going to be an option. Instead focus your efforts on organically growing traffic to your site (SEO) and Social media which is free.

Likewise, hiring a photographer and designer is not going to be possible on a modest Startup budget so take advantage of cheap online resources instead. Get a logo designed on Fiverr, use Canva to create free social media assets and download high quality free stock images from sites such as Unsplash, kaboompics and Pixabay

If you don’t have a dedicated team member to manage your digital marketing or much time yourself then you are unlikely to have time to keep a blog regularly updated. Instead, share carefully curated content – using Feedly is a great way to gather relevant articles to share.

Accept this is not a final plan
The only way you can understand what works for your brand and audience is to Test, test and test some more! There is no right or wrong when it comes to what imagery to use or what time of day to post so just get testing and see what works for your brand.

If one channel  isn’t working, isolate the issue and do some more testing. If it still doesn’t work then focus your energy elsewhere. If one channel is outperforming all others then pour more time and budget into it. See your digital marketing plan just like the digital space – unpredictable and ever evolving!

Hannah Flores is founder of Digital Clinic which was set up to help Startups and SMEs get the most out of marketing their business online.

Hannah has over ten years experience in the digital space and is really passionate about it. She loves helping startups and growing brands achieve the results they desire without hefty agency day rates and retainers.