How to Create a Winning Digital Marketing Strategy in 2022?

There are dozens of brands quietly building strong, data-rich digital marketing strategies for every overnight success in digital marketing. To commit to the process of growth, you have to be intentional and keep your attention on it.

You don’t just want to be successful this month or this year. You always want to be successful. So, today we’re going to look at how you can build a digital marketing plan that helps your business grow in a steady, long-term way.

Why do you need a plan for digital marketing?

Having a clear plan for digital marketing gives you some immediate benefits. Right off the bat, it gives you some level of protection. Brands make sure they spend their money wisely by planning well.

People often worry that their marketing campaigns will waste time and money, but it can be a nightmare if you don’t have important information about your marketing plans and how you make decisions.

When you make a plan for digital marketing, you can test and confirm certain marketing data points. Let’s say that your latest campaign is trying to get customers to act in a certain way.

When you have a clear digital marketing strategy, you can put your marketing assumptions to the test, which is especially helpful when you’re trying to reach specific people.

At the same time, your digital marketing strategy is laying the groundwork for continued marketing growth. Imagine that the first marketing push for a brand doesn’t do very well. Without a clear plan, it can be hard to figure out exactly what went wrong.

  • Did they pay attention to the wrong KPIs, or key performance indicators? 
  • Did they start out with goals that were too high? 
  • Was something wrong with the way they looked at their competitors? 

When you have a clear plan for your digital marketing, it’s much easier to answer these questions.

4 Steps to Make a Plan for Your Digital Marketing

If you’ve never made a digital marketing plan before, it can be a little scary. When making your marketing strategy, you can choose to focus on many different metrics and methods.

For now, let’s focus on two important things: clarity and trying new things. To make things as clear as possible, we’ll spend time figuring out who our target audience is and what our goals are. When it comes to trying out new things, we’re going to focus on growth and putting certain marketing strategies into place.

As time goes on, your digital marketing strategy will get more complicated as it grows. The more information you gather, the more complicated your plan will have to be. That’s why it’s so important to start out by building a strong foundation.

1. Research and Get to Know Your Audience

Before we jump into digital marketing strategy, we need to take some time to explain the idea of target audiences.

There are certain data points that help define target audiences, such as:

  • gender
  • age
  • education
  • ability to buy
  • location

By focusing on certain groups, you can get the most out of your advertising budget.

This, of course, brings us to the hardest part of audience targeting: figuring out who your audience is.

You should start by looking at your market. Find out if you are in a well-established market or one that is still growing. 

Is your business a big one? 

Who do you think are your main rivals?

Once you’ve clearly defined your market, think about the type of customer you’re looking for. A good rule of thumb is to start with a general idea of your ideal customer and then use data points to narrow down your audience even more.

For instance, let’s say you sell high-quality backpacks for hiking. You can start by deciding that one of your target groups will be hiking-loving men. But if you look into your ideal customer’s age, location, and income, you can get a much clearer picture of who they are.

Men between the ages of 25 and 35 who live in Colorado and make between $4,000 and $6,000 a month could be the people you want to buy your product. Still, this is only a small part of the problem. If you want to know your audience well, you need to know how they use digital media.

Find out what the most popular blogs are in your field, where they shop online (like REI), and what YouTube videos they watch. Keeping track of this information gives you an idea of what they like to read, which will make it much easier to reach out to them and make content for them.

2. Set goals and KPIs for your digital marketing strategy

Remember when we said that clarity and experimentation were two important things? Well, setting goals in the right way makes it easy to track and change your digital marketing strategy.

Okay, it’s important to set goals. The real question is how on earth should you set marketing goals?

Most people tend to think about qualitative goals when they think about setting goals. One example of a qualitative goal would be to improve the way people see your brand or to move your brand up in its industry.

You can start to see why these kinds of goals are not good. Qualitative goals are notoriously hard to measure because they are not concrete.

Since it’s hard to measure something, it’s also hard to make it better.

Instead, focus on goals that can be measured. Let’s try a little thought experiment if this is getting too hard to understand.

Let’s say that we have two brands, A and B. With their new marketing campaign, Brand A wants to change how customers see them. They use their advertising budget to make content that makes their brand look good, and they share that content on many different channels.

Even though they get a lot of visitors, they quickly realize there’s a huge problem. From this campaign, they haven’t really learned anything useful. Brand A isn’t sure why they got so much traffic, and they’re also not sure how much of that traffic turned into sales. If they didn’t pay attention to being clear or collecting data, they didn’t have a real way to grow.

Brand B did things in a different way.

Instead of focusing on the big picture, they chose to set measurable goals. Brand B didn’t just want to change how customers saw them; they also wanted to sell more of product X. Product X makes up 75% of their business, so improving the conversion rate of this product is one of Brand B’s top priorities.

The goal is to raise the number of people who buy Product X by 5% over the next six months. They plan to do this by making more posts on social media, making video ads, and sending out a monthly email newsletter.

Make no mistake, Brand B began the process of setting goals by coming up with some vague goals. The difference here is that Brand B went a step further and set concrete goals for each of the more general goals. It is easy to measure and can be broken down into simple parts so that you can try different things.

If the goal is reached, Brand B will know exactly what action led to the increase in conversions. If they don’t reach their goal, they will know exactly which parts of their marketing didn’t work right. Brand B gets the information they need to make their next marketing campaign a success, no matter what happens.

Set clear, measurable goals, figure out which KPIs are important for your brand, and set goals that allow for long-term growth and experimentation.

3. Make a plan for your digital marketing

Now that we’ve taken care of the basics, it’s time to make a digital marketing plan and put it into action.

The hardest part is figuring out which form of digital marketing to focus on. This step is stressful for a lot of people, so you’re not alone. One of the things that makes this decision so scary is the fear of putting money into a channel that won’t work.

Brands can find out how effective a channel is without spending thousands of dollars on it by starting with small campaigns that are very focused.

Want to know more about paid social media ads? Set a goal, do a little bit of marketing, and see how useful Facebook ads are for your brand. Using this information, you can guess how successful future campaigns in that channel will be.

In fact, if you use this method across multiple channels, you’ll quickly get a good idea of which channels work best for your audience. Test different marketing strategies and different groups of people to get as much useful information as possible.

In a year’s time, you’ll have a set of easy-to-understand data points that you can use to make successful marketing campaigns.

When it comes to making content, there are two main ways of thinking about it. Sometimes, the people who are listening to you want to be entertained. Fun content can be a powerful tool if it fits with your brand and you are sure of your writing skills.

It could be a funny video ad or a meme on social media. It’s not the best way to do things for everyone, but it works well when it’s done right. Take a look at Old Spice and you’ll see that its weird sense of humor fits their brand voice perfectly.

Let’s say you don’t think you have a good sense of when to be funny or that your brand doesn’t fit with absurdist internet humor. The second way of thinking comes into play here. It can be just as powerful to teach your audience something as it is to entertain them.

To be clear, when we say “educate your audience,” we don’t mean that you should only teach them about your brand. No matter what the business is, customers have problems that need to be fixed. Most of the time, they’ll have problems in their industry that you might not be able to solve right away.

Here’s what I mean. Say you’re trying to sell those hiking packs again. Could you just keep writing about backpacks for hiking? Yes, but there’s a lot more you can talk about!

If you’re selling to hikers, they have a lot of questions about what kind of grills to use, how to help first-time hikers, what to look for in a sleeping bag, etc. If you are an expert in your field, you probably have enough ideas in your head right now to fill a whole blog.

A good rule of thumb is that if you wish you had known about it when you first started, it will help someone else. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on advertising to reach people. Just make marketing content that seems like it could really help people. If you can do that, you can make marketing campaigns that really make a difference.

4. Keep getting better

Brands all over the world have trouble with growth, especially growth over the long term. It’s one thing to gather all those pieces of information. It can be frustrating to try to turn them into the marketing campaign for the next quarter.

Here are just a few of the problems that brands face when their marketing campaigns come to an end.

  • The brand has no idea what problems need to be fixed.
  • The brand doesn’t know enough about their customers.
  • The brand can’t see how their data is useful.
  • The company has too much information and can’t figure out what it all means.

You can always ask professionals for help analyzing and making changes, but if you have a small marketing budget, that might not always be possible.

Setting clear, measurable goals and keeping track of your results makes this process a lot easier, but some brands have trouble understanding the idea of long-term growth. What growth looks like in the real world, to be exact.

To answer that: growth isn’t always a straight line. You might put money into five different marketing channels, but only one of them will give you a good return on investment, or ROI.

Every time you add to your digital marketing strategy, you’ll learn which parts work and which ones don’t. Smart brands know this and work to build their business in a way that will help it grow over time. They will check out the newest social media site. They will try the newest ways of marketing.

This approach probably won’t lead to astronomical growth in two months, but the goal of a strong digital marketing strategy is to not stumble upon a marketing channel that gives insane results. Why? Well, because sometimes these ways stop working.

Instead of looking for the “silver bullet” of marketing, collect useful information and slowly build a long-term plan for steady growth.

It’s easy to think about the more technical parts of digital marketing when we think of e-commerce businesses. SEO, Pay-Per-Click, etc. Amazon, one of the biggest e-commerce sites in the world, does things a little differently.

Amazon has a strong social media marketing plan that is meant to inspire and connect with potential customers in new and interesting ways.

There’s more to social media marketing than just paid ads and memes. When your e-commerce brand talks to customers on social media, for example, the whole world can see how you handle both compliments and complaints.

Amazon cares so much about social media that they’ve made their own shopping feed for social networks. Customers can talk to brands through the Amazon app’s feed for that brand, which is made possible by Amazon Posts. These posts are about products and are written in a way that consumers are used to.

By understanding the power of social media interactions, e-commerce sellers can find new ways to connect with and talk to customers.

Note: Small business owners also need a digital marketing plan.

It’s rarely easy to make content that really makes an impact. Even big brands like Coke and Pepsi don’t always get it right. That’s why I’m always amazed by how quickly Dollar Shave Club became popular.

In Dollar Shave Club’s very first video ad, they make a strong case for their product while also making it a lot of fun to watch. You want your small business to make a difference. Most small business owners think they need a huge advertising budget to compete in their industry.

Let’s get something out of the way: you don’t need money to stand out. You just need to know your brand, who you’re trying to reach, and what makes your product unique.

Every marketer has had to deal with the fear of coming up with old, boring content. Once you’ve thought of all the usual content ideas for your industry, it can be hard to come up with new and interesting content ideas. Smart marketers get around this problem by promoting user-generated content, or UGC.

UGC gives the average customer a unique way to interact with your brand. More importantly, it might give you an idea for something you can share with your audience. The real challenge is to find an action or activity that is interesting enough to make people want to take part.

The Starbucks Cup Art challenge is one of the best examples of how UGC is used in marketing today. People really like the way Starbucks looks, and being able to contribute to that look was a fun and exciting chance.

Customers were encouraged to come up with their own designs for Starbucks, and the company promoted the best ones and even kept some of them.

Find out what your customers love about your brand and give them a real say in how it grows in the future.

Author Bio: Shaifali’s

Shaifali is a content writer who is a marketing geek holding a degree in MBA-Marketing. She writes about digital marketing strategies, metaverse marketing, content marketing, metaverse, artificial intelligence, B2B marketing, blockchain and cryptocurrency. 

She is creative, organized, strategic and analytical. Her strength lies in being empathetic. Due to this quality, she is able to step in the shoes of the audience and know their pain-points and write the exact content around it.

When she is not writing, she is either gardening, or creating DIYs at home, decorating her newly rented apartment or sipping tea in her balcony watching the moon and stars. She loves nature and everything about it.