Creating a successful digital marketing strategy
Organisations are facing new challenges – we are living in a digital era and consumers are changing their habits constantly. To succeed, organisations must ensure that they create differentiated customer experiences which allow them to meet these new expectations.
In order to compete, businesses need to elevate their marketing operations and develop an integrated digital marketing strategy where the customer is at the centre of all the business decisions. This requires the integration of marketing channels and technology in order to create a personalised experience for all customers.
What are the benefits of digital marketing?
- Personalisation: Customisation is the reality. Data analysis allows companies to understand better consumer’s habits, interests and behaviour. A clear digital marketing strategy helps to provide personalised experiences, which deliver added value to the consumers and improve trustworthiness, engagement, traffic and conversion.
- Engagement: The proliferation of the use of technologies such as mobile phones, has changed the way brands are engaging with customers. It has become fundamental and common to deliver relevant content which keeps the customers physically engaged with the brand experience by sharing it, commenting it and liking it. This creates a kind of relationship between the customer and the brand which is very important especially when building a long term relationship, eventually achieving loyal customers.
- Analysis: Data analysis allows organisations to learn more about their customers and their habits and behaviour resulting in the delivery of the perfect message at the right time during the customer journey.
- Communication: Reviews, comments, likes, testimonials and chatbots have changed the way customer service teams can communicate and satisfy customer needs and wants. Through such channels, businesses can analyse the impact and the reaction of customers and help them in the best way possible.
Some interesting data and trends
- 4.18 billion of internet users access via mobile phones.1
- The average amount of time that internet users aged 16 to 64 spend on using social media is 2h and 12 minutes.2
- Google, YouTube and Facebook are the most visited websites according to Similarweb.3
- 90% of internet users aged 16 to 64 watch video content on YouTube.4
- 32.5% of Instagram users are between 18 and 34 years old.5
Website: Websites are the most important and powerful digital channel. Having a branded, new and user-friendly website will allow brands to deliver a better positive experience to their potential and current clients while increasing retention. It is crucial for first impressions and interactions with a brand to be positive! Tips:
- Make your website mobile friendly.
- Make the website speed fast.
- Use HTTPS.
- Avoid intrusive ads.
- Use content, such as videos, blog articles, infographics and case studies, to facilitate the sales process.
- Include call to actions.
SEO: This is the process of making improvements on and off a website in order to increase traffic and gain more exposure in search engine results. SEO is a long term strategy and it takes some time to get results. Tips:
- Run a keyword research.
- Selected keywords must match the page content.
- Optimise your website creating relevant and useful content.
- Use page titles, heading tags to outline important content and alt tags on images.
- Use interlinks and backlinks.
- Sign up to webmaster tools and monitor your visibility on search engines.
- Use local business SEO.
Paid Search Ads: Pay for advertising to appear above the organic search results on search engines. It is a short term strategy, in fact, you can rank on the first page of search engines straight away. Tips:
- Set up your business goals and find and align the right keywords.
- Use negative keywords on your campaigns. Basically, this prevents your ad from being triggered by a certain phrase, such as “free”, “cheap” etc.
- When writing the copy ad focus on the benefits of your company.
- Implement extensions and connect with your data analytics tool.
- Target the correct audience and countries or cities.
Display Ads: These are paid adverts, such as, video and display which generate awareness by the combination of audio/video and creative visual formats. Tips:
- Use a tool called Display planner and chose the right keyword and target audience.
- Use a clear and simple creative following your brand look and feel.
- Use compelling call to actions
- Enhance with remarketing.
Social Media: Social media help businesses increase brand and product awareness, humanise and protect your brand reputation, boost sales, engage and build relationships with customers. There are two type of social media marketing: Organic: This is available for free but you can just reach your followers and their friends with your posts. Paid: You pay for impressions, actions or clicks and you can reach anyone by targeting specific audience by demographics, profession, income, interests and behaviour. Tips:
- Choose the right social media platform for your business.
- Engage regularly by posting content such as blog articles, videos, infographic news and images.
- Use social media management tool such as Hootsuite.
Email marketing: Email helps businesses to retain customers and deliver useful and relevant content. Tips:
- Building an organised mailing list. This is crucial.
- Choose an email marketing platform. For example Mailchimp is free and easy to implement.
- Personalise and segment properly your emails.
- Use email marketing automation.
- Use A/B testing.
Identify your business goals: The first step of a digital marketing strategy is understanding your business objectives. For example, increase leads or e-commerce sales, increase the traffic to your website, increase your brand awareness through social media (likes and followers).
- Identify the target audience: You should build your buyer persona profiles. Include demographics data, income, job position, interests, wants and needs.
- Creating a customer journey: You should identify the different stages, the users take from awareness to retention. You should think about product information and questions that are required to get noticed, to create an intention to buy, and how to retain customers.
- Identify channels: For each action on the customer journey you should think about a specific channel. For example if you want to attract new customers you could use Paid search Advertising or a blog article (remember the importance of SEO).
- Planning the content: Based on the customer journey you can start planning content and allocating it during the journey.
- Analysing and optimising: At this point you would measure the impact of your strategy and optimise it where necessary. You need to set up SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time bound) goals. For example: if one of the business objectives is to increase brand awareness, you would set up a SMART goal such as: I want to increase my Facebook followers by 30% in the next 3 months.
Overall, having a digital marketing strategy is vital because it gives organisations a sense of direction and creates a competitive advantage. A strategy helps you organise the flow of work, track campaign progress in real-time, achieve business objectives and also allows you to gather market information about customers, potential customers and competitors. In other words, it allows marketers to adapt to change quickly, especially in the ever transforming digital world.
Digital marketing at Deloitte Digital
Deloitte Digital’s digital marketing and UX team offers a variety of holistic services geared towards putting the customer at the heart of any digital journey for an intuitive, effortless experience.
1-2. “Digital in 2020”, We Are Social, Hootsuite, https://wearesocial.com/digital-2020
3. “Top sites ranking”, Similarweb, https://www.similarweb.com/top-websites/
4-5. “Digital in 2020”, We Are
Social, Hootsuite, https://wearesocial.com/digital-2020
6. “Understanding page experience in
Google Search results”, Google Developers, https://developers.google.com/search/docs/guides/page-experience
About the authors
Luigi Gasparri and Timothy Aquilina are Digital Marketing Consultants with Deloitte Digital within Deloitte Consulting.
Timothy Aquilina has worked in the Digital Marketing team at Deloitte Malta Consulting since 2018, as a Digital Marketing Consultant. His remit is to help clients with their digital marketing strategy and execution. He is involved in Search Engine Optimisation projects, Pay-Per-Click campaign management and social media campaigns.
Luigi Gasparri joined the Digital Marketing team at Deloitte Malta Consulting in February 2020, as a Digital Marketing consultant. He brought with him his experience in digital marketing for the fashion and health care industries. His remit, is helping clients to understand how digital drives success, identifying issues, planning, testing and implementing the digital marketing strategy.