Getting successful results from your digital marketing efforts requires a plan. Starting with a good plan will not only help you grow your business, but will save you time and effort in implementation.
We’ve created a plan you can adopt for your organization to put you on the right path.
Watch the recording of a webinar we presented this week where we talk about 4 parts of this plan:
- Know your client
- Understand the buyer’s journey
- Pick your channels
- Convert prospects to customers
Here is a summary of the points covered.
Know Your Client
Who are you trying to reach? In this age of information overload, your messages must resonate with your audience. If you try to connect with everyone, you will end up connecting with no one.
Create a marketing persona – a profile of your ideal client. Look at:
- Problems they have that your product or service solves
- How they get their information
When looking at characteristics of your current customers, focus on your best customers – the type of customer you would like more of.
Understand the Buyer’s Journey
The sales process has changed dramatically as technology has evolved. Buyers today are researchers. Consumers now want a lot more information before they ever contact a salesperson.
How does a person buy from you? Map out the process someone goes through when purchasing from you. Each organization is different, but listed below is a typical buyer’s journey.
- Awareness – they know they have a problem and they want to solve it
- Consideration – they research options to solve the problem
- Decision – they decide to purchase
- Purchase/ Buying Experience – they make the purchase and implement your solution
- Retention – they want to stay with you and refer to you
Your marketing plan should take into consideration the various stages of the buyer’s journey and should include elements for each stage.
Pick Your Channels
It can seem like there is a new social media platform or opportunity every month. So where should you focus your efforts to get the most out of your marketing strategy? It is important to have a consistent message across channels. This strengthens the message and also allows you to streamline your marketing efforts. Here are some considerations for picking your channels.
If you are a business operating in a specific geographic area the most important thing you can do is make sure you are showing up on maps. Much of what we do on mobile devices has local intent. In order to be found in a local area, you must on the map. One of the first things you should do is claim and verify your business listing on Google. (add link to business.google.com). It’s free and Google does not call you (link to post here)
Make your website the center of your strategy.This is important because you own your website and control the content there.
Social media channels are rented land, meaning you don’t have as much control over your presence. Social media is in the moment too, so it is difficult to get find the information about you that doesn’t change very often. Information like why you do what you do and he range of products and services you offer is not always visible on social media.
Pick a website platform that is easy for you to update with new information. To rank well you must have good content. Are you providing the answers to the questions people ask in search. Other key considerations to improve search ranking and user experience for your website today are:
- Mobile-Friendly – More visits are made from mobile devices than desktop devices
- Fast – Potential customers hit the back button – especially on mobile – if it takes too long to load
- Encrypted – All sites should be using HTTPS which encrypts traffic between the website and the viewer (marked with the green lock icon in your browser) Browsers like Chrome and Firefox are starting to mark sites that do no use the HTTPS protocol as “Not secure.”
Your Email List
Your goal should be to convert social media and website traffic into leads, prospects, and fans you can contact when you want. Consumers still prefer email for communications from businesses. Some of the benefits of email are:
Customers are there – your customers are in their inbox every day
Deliverability – unlike organic social media, people actually get your message
Action – the recipient must choose to do something with your message. Even if they don’t have time to read, they still see your name and the subject line to your message. You are reminding them of you.
Use social media to spread the word and reach new potential customers. You don’t have to be on all the social media channels. It is best to focus on those your ideal client uses most.
When starting out:
- Claim your profiles
- Observe conventions
- It’s called social for a reason. – Make your message entertaining, informative or useful to your audience.
- Consider it an advertising platform.
Convert Prospects to Customers
On average 50% of leads in any system are not ready to buy yet and almost 80% of new leads never become sales. Nurtured leads make 47% larger purchases than non-nurtured leads.
So, how do you reach those clients when they are ready to buy?
Often it is a situation where it is who a prospect remembers last. Continuing communication is an easy and effective way to keep your business in the back of people’s’ minds. People will do business with companies they grow to know, like, and trust. There are a couple of ways to keep communications open:
- Have a place in process for keeping in touch once they respond to your call to action
- Grow your email list
- Targeted drip campaigns and autoresponders can give each lead your best, ideal follow up to move them along the buyer’s journey.
Decide which leads are prospects
There are different questions you can ask yourself to determine if your leads are in fact prospects. Choose two or three criteria to help you qualify whether or not a lead fits your criteria.
- Do they fit your ideal customer profile?
- Do they have a need?
- Do they have the authority to make a decision?
- Do they have the money to buy?
- Do they have enough information to qualify them?
Have a repeatable process in a place to determine who is a prospect and have a way to track your process.
Building a relationship with someone and asking effective questioning can help you decide if you’re communicating with a prospect. Categorize your questions and be strategic with your initial conversations.
- Uncover needs and goals
- Avoid simple Yes/No questions
- Have a plan
Your Blueprint for Digital Marketing Success
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Are you ready to get results from your online marketing efforts? We no longer go online, we live online. Adapting your organization requires a plan to turn your digital marketing efforts into sales.
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