Smart Insights conducted a 6 year survey to see how widely used digital marketing strategies are. The results have shown some big improvements over the years. A few years ago they found around two-thirds to three-quarters did not have a digital marketing plan.
Their latest research suggests an improved approach to planning; however, fewer than half did not have a digital strategy. Here are 10 reasons they came developed based on their report.
10 Reasons Why You Need a Digital Marketing Strategy?
1. You're directionless
Companies without a digital marketing strategy (and many that do) don't have a clear strategic goal for what they want to achieve online in terms of gaining new customers or building deeper relationships with existing ones. And if you don't you likely don't put enough resources to reach the goals and you don't evaluate through analytics whether you're achieving those goals.
2. You won't know your online audience or market share
Customer demand for online services may be underestimated if you haven”t researched this. Perhaps, more importantly, you won't understand your online marketplace: the dynamics will be different to traditional channels with different types of customer profile and behaviour, competitors, propositions, and options for marketing communications. There are great tools available from the main digital platforms where we can find out the level of customer demand attracting them to your site.
3. Existing and start-up competitors will gain market share
If you're not devoting enough resources to digital marketing or you're using an ad-hoc approach with no clearly defined strategies, then your competitors will eat your digital lunch!
4. You don't have a powerful online value proposition
A clearly defined value proposition tailored to your target customer personas will help you differentiate your online service encouraging existing and new customers to engage initially and stay loyal. Developing a content marketing strategy is key to this for many organizations since the content is what engages your audiences through different channels like search, social, email marketing and on your blog.
5. You don't know your online customers well enough
It's often said that digital is the “most measurable medium ever”. But Google Analytics and similar will only tell you volumes of visits, not the sentiment of visitors, what they think. You need to use other forms of website user feedback tools like Google Reviews, Surveys, Referrals, etc.
6. You're not integrated (“disintegrated”)
Everyone agrees that digital media work best when integrated with traditional media and response channels. We always recommend developing an integrated digital marketing strategy and once Digital Transformation is complete digital marketing activities will be part of your marketing plan and part of business as usual.
7. Digital doesn't have enough people/budget given its importance
Insufficient resource will be devoted to both planning and executing e-marketing and there is likely to be a lack of specific specialist e-marketing skills which will make it difficult to respond to competitive threats effectively.
8. You're wasting money and time through duplication
Even if you do have sufficient resource it may be wasted. This is particularly the case in larger companies where you see different parts of the marketing organization purchasing different tools or using different agencies for performing similar online marketing tasks.
9. You're not agile enough to catch up or stay ahead
If you look at the top online brands like Amazon, Dell, Google, Tesco, Zappos, they're all dynamic – trialling new approaches to gain or keep their online audiences.
10. You're not optimizing
Every company with a website will have analytics, but one has to act on them or they are useless. Once a strategy enables you to get the basics right, then you can progress to continuous improvement of the key aspects like search marketing, site user experience, email and social media marketing.
So, the good news is that there are powerful reasons for creating a digital strategy and transforming your marketing which you can use to persuade your colleagues and clients. There is also now a lot of experience from how other businesses have successfully integrated digital marketing into their activities.