Writing a Digital Marketing Plan: Boost Your Business Growth
An effective digital marketing plan is essential for any business looking to grow online. But crafting a strategic, results-driven marketing plan can be challenging.
This comprehensive guide will walk you through the key steps and considerations for writing a digital marketing plan tailored to your business goals. Follow along and you’ll have a custom digital marketing blueprint ready to fuel online growth.
Define Your Digital Marketing Goals and Objectives
First, establish clear goals and objectives for what you want to accomplish through digital marketing. Be specific and attach KPIs where possible. Examples:
- Increase website traffic by 10% month-over-month
- Generate 5 new leads per month via content syndication (or 50 depending on your “norm”)
- Grow social media reach by 50% in 6 months
- Double conversion rate from email campaigns
Make sure your goals align with your overall business objectives so that your digital efforts drive broader growth.
Research and Define Your Target Audience
A deep understanding of your ideal customers is essential for an effective digital marketing strategy. Move beyond basic demographics to paint a detailed picture of key audience segments and buyer personas.
Consider factors like:
- Demographic details: age, gender, income, location
- Psychographics: values, interests, personality traits
- Challenges & pain points: what problems do they face?
- Objections: what stops them from purchasing?
- Buying motivations: what moves them to buy?
- Behaviors: where and how do they spend time online? What brands do they interact with?
- Buying signals: what indicates they’re ready to purchase?
Personas should be based on real data and insights so you can tailor content, messaging and experiences.
Audit Your Current Digital Marketing Footprint
Take stock of all your existing digital assets and activities. Scrutinize your:
- Website: design, content, calls-to-action, navigation, conversions
- Blog & other content: topics, engagement, conversions
- Social media channels: followers, engagement, click-through-rate
- Email marketing: lists, open rate, click rate, unsubscribe rate
- Paid advertising: costs, return-on-ad-spend, conversions
- Search engine presence: rankings, impressions, click-through-rate
Identify what’s working well and gaps where improvements are needed. This informs channel priorities and tactics.
Map Out Your Digital Content Strategy
Content remains king in digital marketing. Lay out a strategic content calendar integrated with campaigns across channels.
- Define content types: blog posts, videos, webinars, ebooks, whitepapers, etc.
- Map topics to audience interests and buyer’s journey stages.
- Determine cadence for consistently publishing and promoting content.
- Assign creation responsibilities and production timelines.
Coordinate your calendars across teams for seamless content creation and distribution.
Select Your Digital Marketing Channels and Tactics
Determine which digital channels you will focus your efforts and resources on based on your audience, content and budget.
- Search engine optimization (SEO) to boost organic rankings
- Pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns through Google, Bing and social
- Retargeting ads to reconnect with visitors after they leave your site
- Affiliate marketing partners to promote your products/services
- Email campaigns to nurture leads and retain customers
- Social media marketing to increase brand awareness and traffic
- SMS/text message marketing to boost engagement on mobile
Define specific tactics you will deploy within each channel based on their strengths.
Build a Technology and Tools Roadmap
Audit the technology, software, and tools your digital marketing team needs to successfully implement strategies across channels.
- Website hosting platform, email service provider
- Marketing automation, CRM, and analytics to track KPIs
- Content creation and collaboration tools
- Social media management and scheduling tools
- Digital asset management for images, videos, brand assets
Identify gaps in your martech stack and outline needs, budgets, and timelines to address them.
Define Your Digital Marketing Budget
Based on business goals and cost estimates for tactics, determine an integrated digital marketing budget. Factor in:
- Staffing: salaries, bonuses, training
- Software/tools: purchases, subscriptions, integrations
- Paid advertising: search, social, display ads, sponsors
- Content production: creators, tools, promotion
- Website: hosting, maintenance, analytics, security
- Marketing automation and CRM costs
Weigh overall revenue targets and cost of customer acquisition to set budgets. Allocate intelligently across channels for ideal ROI.
Map Your Execution Roadmap
With strategies defined, map out an integrated execution plan across channels detailing:
- Campaigns and tactics mapped to KPIs
- Asset creation: copy, images, videos, graphics
- Promotions: emails, social posts, ads, partnerships
- Timelines and schedules for launches
- Accountability: owners and teams for each initiative
This roadmap allows you to orchestrate the elements of your plan and track progress.
Manage Risks, Setbacks and Contingencies
Identify potential risks for disruption or issues, like:
- Platform algorithm changes impacting organic reach
- Loss of important partnerships limiting distribution
- Unexpected new competitors
- Technology glitches interrupting campaigns
- Changing consumer trends and interests
Define contingency plans addressing what you will do if these or other challenges arise. Smart risk management ensures you can adapt quickly.
Now Get Writing!
Following this comprehensive process will arm you with a strategic digital marketing plan tailored to your business goals and audience. Pulling all these elements together into an actionable written document is the crucial last step.
With a living document that guides your digital activities, you can pursue online growth strategies in a focused, data-driven manner. So get writing and let your digital marketing plan lead the way to business success!