Latest posts by Jay Dillon (see all)
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Thinking of taking a new campaign into the bright world of digital? Well things have changed since the good old days. Here are some things you’ll need to consider before, during and after you take the plunge into the brave new world.
Start with a strategy
Start at the very beginning; know what you’re setting out to achieve and how you’re going to achieve it. Outline what your aim is and the objectives of how you will achieve this aim. Include your three or four key messages, your audience segments and tools you will use to deliver the digital marketing campaign into the marketplace.
State what your desired outcomes will be and how you evaluate the success of your campaign. With every campaign there will be learnings from what has worked and what could have been improved. These are particularly important when you are dealing within a new space; either digital on the whole, or a new social platform, positioning approach or product.
Understanding your audience
In the days where there were only traditional types of media, audience demographics were easy to come by thanks to the advertising media kits made available through these outlets. Understanding demographics associated with certain communications channels, particularly in the digital world, are a lot harder to nail. For this part you’ll need to do some leg work. And it’s well worth it.
There are lots of free platforms which help you identify people and groups you wish to target.
Generally start with your own website, through Google Analytics, and understand who your audience is, where they are coming from (sources) and what search terms they are using to find you. Look at how they are seeking information from your website and how and what pages they navigate within your site.
For Facebook, it’s a little harder and will take some leg work. Hook your page into other groups by liking specific pages and then seeing who they follow. Use the backend analytics then use the Page to survey and ask your audience specific questions (make it a promo to try and push further engagement within your Page and to outside audiences that your followers introduce you to via their sharing)
Use other intelligence that you already have like any subscriptions list, twitter lists you’ve compiled, records of other engagement and take a look at special groups on LinkedIn or those who follow particular hashtags associated with your area or brand. Spend the time to look around the vast WWW and gauge the sentiment.
Scope your platforms
Determine what social media platforms, blogs, news sites, networking sites or forums align to your product or brand. Make sure you have clearly identified how each of these platforms can be used to take your message to market. The thing about inbound marketing is that one size does not fit all. Remember that a solid email marketing campaign is a huge winner when done correctly and can compliment your social in a huge way. It can help you kick start a campaign with your closest supporters, who are also your biggest brand advocates. Use them.
Determine your content
Align the development of your content to the objectives of your campaign and carefully map out what type of content you will you – whitepapers, press releases, advertising, promotions, video, photographs, infographics, podcasts. With all of these ensure you have a clear call to action so that people can get closer to your product or brand.
Use a tool (there are plenty to be found or develop your own) to capture what content will be used, where and when it will go into market and how the content will work strategically for the campaign.
Developing content and having it ready to push into market is a challenge for any campaign. Ensure you have people assigned to write, create, design and distribute the content by your launch date. But remember not to get bogged down by the production phase – make sure it’s managed so that this important part of campaign development doesn’t become your bottleneck.
Review your risks
Get the working group around a table for the specific purpose of identifying risks and contingencies surrounding the campaign. Once you’ve laid them all out assign someone to map these separately and distribute it to the campaign team so they are clear on what they need to do if something goes wrong.
Do the numbers
Make sure you have costed your campaign, have money spare for any contingencies or opportunities (being agile within a campaign is like the new marketing ‘black’). This is an important part because it can show you what things costs and allow you to measure return on investment.
Measure, evaluate and capture your learnings
This goes without saying. Inbound marketing is an evolutionary thing – what worked yesterday may not work today. Something off the wall may work it’s head off and be the campaign break you need. There are plenty of free and paid metrics tools in the market to help you understand what has worked and what has flopped. Bring these into action early. Spend the time aligning them to your campaign and track them as it rolls out.
Need some tools to help you through this process? Why not check out these free resources.