Instagram. Twitter. Retargeting. Paid search. Facebook ads. Email marketing. LinkedIn articles. There’s a veritable buffet of marketing tactics that can feel downright overwhelming when launching your first digital marketing campaign. Everywhere you look, there’s a different success story and different “must do” tactic that will supercharge your conversion rate or magically quadruple your social media following– and many of these approaches seem to contradict one another! It’s no surprise that one of the most common questions clients ask us is “What should I do first?”
2 Key Tactics for any Digital Marketing Campaign
There’s no single answer. What we recommend for one business is different from what we tell another. That’s why we start with an initial marketplace analysis to determine where a company stands, where your market is heading, what your competition is doing, and what’s a realistic path (considering current budget and available resources) for your business moving forward. Once we have completed this market analysis, our recommended tactics may be different, but our advice is similar: Keep It Simple!
Paid Search + Social + Content: What's Right for My Digital Marketing Campaign?
Generally speaking, digital marketing tactics fall into one of these three categories: paid search (e.g., PPC ads, retargeting), social (organic and paid post promotion on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc.) and content(blog posts, white papers, eBooks and other thought leadership articles). Don’t try to do every tactic at once. Not only is that a recipe for some very long nights at the office, but since many tactics overlap, you may find it more difficult to pinpoint whether the jump in conversions is due to your Twitter engagement, your new eBook, or your display ad retargeting campaign.
4 Questions to Ask to Guide Tactics
So what should you do? These questions can help guide you towards the right starting tactics.
- What are your digital goals? For example, if your overarching campaign goal is to “increase sales” then your digital goals might be to increase average order size, decrease shopping cart abandonment or increase website conversions. Once you know your digital goals, you can connect this with KPIs and identify your starting benchmark (e.g., conversion rates is 45%, shopping cart abandonment between initial item and checkout is 12%, etc.)
- Who is your audience? Get specific with audience segmentation. If you have not done so already, develop audience personas. What motivates this audience segment to purchase from you over the competition? What are their needs and wants?
- What digital channels does your audience prefer? As you refine your audience segments, you can research based on demographics and geographic location the best digital channels for targeting them. For example, most people have multiple social media accounts but may only be truly active on one or two of them. Maybe you scan Facebook quickly while waiting in line for coffee but pay little attention to our feed. You spend less time on LinkedIn but when you do open the app, you actually read a few articles. Or maybe you prefer to read your articles via Medium’s daily digest email. Understanding your audience’s content consumption preferences is crucial to distributing content on the right channels for maximum engagement.
- What’s the best way to reach your audience to further your digital goal? The last part of that sentence – “to further your digital goal” – is critical. As we explored at the beginning of this article, there are many ways to reach your audience. The key is to focus on the one or two tactics that will be most effective to further your digital goal based on your understanding of your target audience. Just because your audience is on Instagram, for example, does not mean that’s the right channel for your company.
In the world of digital marketing, it's better to do two things right than try to do 10 different things that are just "so-so" and aren't the right fit for your product, audience or digital goals. Once you've mastered these two tactics, assess where your campaign stands and determine which additional tactics make the most sense to integrate next.