Having a digital marketing strategy is a given for any company that is trying to market itself online. Most digital marketing blogs will give you that impression. The conversation has eclipsed from being a question of whether you need a digital marketing strategy to how to develop one. Yet, with all of this, most companies do not seem convinced. In fact, nearly half of marketer have active digital marketing programs, but no defined strategy. Maybe there is a good reason for this. Many companies feel that they already have a lot of plans and strategies written out that they rarely use, so this would just be another one of those times in their eyes. However, there are many benefits to having a strategy or hiring an integrated digital marketing agency to help out.
Gives you direction and focus
Companies that have not written down their plan may have a general idea of what they want to do online, but have likely ill-defined some of the essential elements. For example, they may know that they want more visits on their website, but do they know how many? Without specific targets based on research and conversion forecasts, it is a lot harder to know exactly what you need to do online, and measure the success. There is a common challenge in digital marketing where marketers try to spread themselves too thin. Having a strategy in place helps you choose what to focus on based on priority.
Everyone is on the same page
It can be difficult to ensure support for your strategy within your company. It is a lot easier to obtain, however if you have a written plan that spells out exactly what you are trying to accomplish, how it can fit into the other marketing priorities, and how you plan to measure the success. This also means that there is something that everyone has to sign off on. In this case, clarity is essential.
You will be better resourced
Working without a strategy will make it harder to work out in advance what the budget of your program will be in order to succeed, and what skills your staff may need to execute it. Yes, you could apply for more funding and hire staff as needed, but this isn’t exactly efficient. If you present a long-term plan, things will go more smoothly and you can work with the staff you have.
You can stay ahead
Though every company with a website has access to analytics, many managers don’t ensure that their teams review and act on them. Having an integrated strategy will build the testing into your plan, ensuring that continuous improvement happens. You can also benchmark your activity against competitors to show where you are falling behind and where you are ahead.
At the end of the day, if you are a marketer without a strategy, then you are falling behind. There are many benefits to writing out your plans, and taking the time to do so will only benefit your company.