Step-by-step guide for structuring a digital marketing plan

How can you successfully create a digital marketing plan for your company?

In our digital marketing agency Barcelona we consider in all our marketing plans all the important aspects that will help us to achieve our objectives. Market analysis, competitor analysis, SEO and web positioning, strategies, social networks, objectives and metrics is what you are going to have to do if you want to succeed.

Implementing digital marketing actions without a previously devised plan or strategy could lead to failure by not considering all the aspects that could have an impact on its development. When developing a digital marketing plan, it should include components such as determining your target audience (buyer persona), business objectives and an appropriate value proposition.

What is a digital marketing plan?

A digital marketing plan is a document that shares all the details of a digital marketing campaign or action plan. These include:

-Short, medium and long term business goals.

-Strategies to achieve digital objectives.

– Channels to be used.

– Action and development plans.

– Investment and budget.

– The calendar and the roadmap.

According to Philip Kotler, considered one of the founders of modern marketing, a traditional marketing plan serves: “to document how the organization’s strategic objectives will be achieved through specific marketing strategies and tactics, with the customer as the starting point. It is also linked to the plans of other departments within the organization.”

With this in mind, does your company need a digital marketing plan?

The answer is yes.

You need it to:

Attract, convince, convert and make your customers fall in love with your product or service.

Plan all strategies and actions to reach your target customer.
Segment your marketing campaigns to deliver value at every stage.
Before developing the steps that define the structure of a digital marketing plan, you should be comfortable with your company’s online domain, your objective, the channels it should be present on, and who your competitors are and what they do.

Below, we’ll give you a step-by-step breakdown of the structure of your digital marketing plan.

Step 1: Situation analysis

The first thing you should do when developing your digital marketing plan is to conduct an internal and external analysis (SWOT analysis) of the brand. A useful framework for this is the SWOT analysis that allows you to look at the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and weaknesses of your company and the market in general. We need to be familiar with the ecosystem in which we operate, the needs of our customers and the needs we meet. This analysis is equally qualitative, as it is quantitative through the observation of factors such as digital habits, intermediaries, influencers and more. The implementation of benchmarking techniques designed to identify the best digital practices and success stories and apply them to the business has become an increasingly important part of the overall strategy of the business. We also need to conduct an internal study to find out how our company is doing in the digital age: is our website customer-oriented? How is the UX and the browsing experience? Do we update our blog periodically? What is the current positioning of our website? And what is the social media presence?

Step 2: Establish digital marketing objectives

Once you have your place in the market and your strengths in mind, work on setting some objectives to get a clear idea of where your actions should take you. Everything you plan has to work to achieve those objectives. You can consider the SMART objectives framework to develop this part of the digital marketing plan: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely objectives. Here’s an example: Not a SMART goal: “I want to increase the number of visits to my website”. SMART Goal: “I want to reach 20,000 hits per month on my website every month within three months. To do so, I will do A, B and C.”

Step 3: define the marketing strategy

Once you have defined your business objectives, what are you going to do to achieve them? Personalization is becoming increasingly important in digital marketing. Therefore, when defining your strategy to carry out your plan, keep these factors in mind:

  • Segmenting your target audience: Know who you want to talk to, what their tastes, needs or preferences are, where they are looking to meet their expectations, etc. This is the time to create your buyer persona.
  • Positioning: To achieve an adequate positioning, it is essential that you are very clear (and reach your audience in the same way) about what your value proposition is and what it implies. In short, that’s why the consumer should choose you and not the competition. You need to know how you are going to communicate your unique value proposition and how to do it properly in the channels where your audience is present (social media, blogs, email marketing and more).
  • Content strategy: This is important to create, distribute and manage original content that attracts users and positions the brand as a reference in users’ minds. In addition, you also have to draw up a specific communication plan (content marketing) for each channel. Some of the tools we use to enforce this strategy are:
  1. Keyword research: It is about identifying the right keywords to use correctly in our content to improve our SEO positioning organically. If you want users to find you in search engines, this is essential to any content strategy.
  2. Content calendar: a content calendar is key to ensuring that your strategy makes sense. Add value; enable you to think long-term and optimize resources, help create ideas, etc. In a content calendar, you should include the date of publication, the author, the subject of the publication, the keyword, the tags to use/take into consideration, etc.
  3. Social publishing: writing an article and not promoting it on social networks is a mistake. It’s not about spam, it’s about planning what you’re going to post and when on each social media platform with the most appropriate copy for each, all while containing the optimal amount of characters, links, hashtags, etc.

You should also consider: What your audience is like. What topics you are going to talk about. What shade you are going to use. How often will you publish.

Step 4: Digital strategies and tactics

Based on our objectives (attraction, conversion and loyalty), we will start implementing different strategies: email marketing campaigns, social media, CRM, web optimization, SEO strategies, Paid Media advertising, etc. Nowadays, considering that the number of channels to manage is multiplying and the amount of information we get about our customers is increasing, it is essential that we use marketing automation tools that allow you to automate your marketing campaigns. Thanks to these tactics, you will be able to create workflows that will allow you to create hundreds of campaigns with a few clicks. You will be able to personalize messages according to their buyer personality, increasing their chances of success; not only that, you will be able to lead them, depending on their interactions with the brand, towards the moment of purchase. Technology has become a fundamental tool for implementing digital strategies, so it is essential that you learn to make the most of it.

Step 5: Measuring results and KPIs

The work doesn’t stop after you have designed and implemented your digital marketing strategy. The next step is one of the most important: analyzing the results. Analytics has become a key pillar for successfully optimizing digital marketing performance and spend. We have to measure each action using KPIs to determine if we got the ROI we expected. Measuring the effectiveness of the strategies and activities we implement in our digital marketing will help us to correct what is not working to achieve the objectives we set out to achieve. Make sure you have an effective real-time data visualization system. The digital world evolves rapidly, so you must be alert at all times to identify opportunities and room for improvement in an instant. Keep these steps in mind when creating your digital marketing plan and do not leave anything to fate; it is your biggest enemy if you are looking to position yourself and increase your presence in the digital space. Also, remember that technology can be your best ally for personalization, automation and, ultimately, successful marketing activities. As the task becomes more complicated, the new tools available allow you to simplify your work and improve your performance.