The customer journey today is incredibly complex. We need to be able to focus on important moments that can help inspire people to buy our products and services. If we can gain an understanding of our prospects’ context and intent, and deliver them useful content that answers their questions, we will be in a position to win. But before we can put ourselves in a position to take advantage of those moments, we must successfully implement a strategy. In order to implement that strategy, we must take the time to understand your business, it’s goals and the obstacles it’s facing in achieving them. This list is our starting point for helping your business achieve what it is you want.
1. Ask The Right Questions -This is the most important step when developing an integrated online marketing strategy and plan. Without a clear and in-depth understanding of why marketing is important for the business, it’s nearly impossible to prioritize the different marketing activities and determine whether or not you’ve hit meaningful goals for your organization.
2. Identify the problem statement and the meaningful goal(s) the marketing wants to impact. Once we have an in-depth understanding of your goals and objectives, we should then be able to explicitly identify the problem the organization is facing, as well as the meaningful goals we want to impact.
3. Develop a methodology for identifying the appropriate marketing channels or activities to invest in. The next step to develop an integrated online marketing strategy is to determine the appropriate channels to invest in based on the overall problem statement and the already established goals.
4. Develop core objectives for the specific channels we would invest in. Once we’ve identified the specific marketing channels, we want to be investing in the goals we want to outline and some very core objectives that we want to achieve for each of these channels. This will be instrumental in helping the individuals who are responsible for execution to develop a strategy that will help support the overarching objectives.
5. Put together an efficient and integrated workflow process for marketing activities. One of the most important takeaways we’ve learned when developing and executing an integrated marketing campaign is the value of putting together an extremely clear workflow.
6. Report and reassess results and then expand or reallocate resources as needed. Once different marketing channels have been launched and there is ample data to be analyzed and reported on, it’s important to reassess this information and determine whether the activity has adequately performed; and more importantly, if the channel has potential to grow given its existing performance.
Ultimately, compiling an integrated online marketing strategy can definitely be overwhelming, especially given the wide-range of different platforms that currently exist within our industry (not to mention the continuous technological advancements that increase the number of tools that are available). It’s important to develop a framework that ensures the resources (such as time, money, headspace of individuals) is focused on the right set of activities that will help support the company’s overall business vision, goals, and objectives. This type of framework is initially time-consuming, but in the long run, can save a lot of confusion when the complexities within an organization’s marketing team increase. Having very clear objectives of why you’re investing in a specific channel and for what specific purpose not only aids with reporting, but also ensures that everyone on the team (both internal and external) have a clear understanding of appropriate targets. As marketers, we embrace these new challenges and look forward to beginning the process together. There’s no better time than the present.