A digital marketing plan is a document that includes the planning of the different elements that make up your online marketing strategy, how you are going to develop it, through which channels and what will be the investment in each of them.
Is the digital marketing plan contingent on the company’s overall marketing plan?
This is an interesting question to open a debate and I would love to read your opinion in the comments at the end of the article.
Many professionals believe that, in reality, the company has a single marketing plan and two different lines of work are included in it:
- The one that takes place offline.
- The one that takes place online.
The other idea is that each one has its own entity, so much so that they represent two departments within the organization chart of the company. In this way, both will depend on the same person in charge, generally of direction.
Regardless of which of the two approaches you identify with the most, what is clear is that both must be aligned with the general objectives set by the company.
How to design a digital marketing plan: 11 steps
Once you have done the briefing with your client or boss, you will be in a position to discuss the design of your digital marketing plan.
We are going to see point by point what elements you should include in it so that your proposal is accepted and begins the path of the company towards the achievement of achievements.
1. Internal analysis of the company
If you want to be successful in your project to create a digital marketing plan, you cannot apply an identical template to all companies. You need to customize.
Yes, I know, this is a lot of work. We went from being able to have the strategy designed in 1 hour to needing 3 hours. But it’s not just about doing things, it’s about doing them right, right?
It is important that you take into account the evolution of the digital transformation in which the brand is located, because only then can you understand why until now it did not have this planning.
In addition, you have to do a little psychology and see the receptivity to digital change that your manager has.
As soon as you know them, you can influence one of the points you address in the digital marketing plan and make a difference with your competitors.
2. Analysis of the company with the current environment
Although this is the second step of your plan, it is actually the first step that you should highlight in the document that you will present to your superior.
In this chapter you must analyze how far the company is in relation to its competition.
Benchmarking is more than necessary because you want the brand to know where it is in the long distance race for customer acquisition.
It focuses on which digital medium the company’s potential customers move, on which social networks they are present and the trends of digital users. Evaluate which influencers move in the same sector as you.
Make a SWOT and include it in the document.
3. Why a brand should have a digital presence
4. Identify the general and marketing objectives of the company
5. Define the digital role you want the company to develop
The digital role of a company is linked to the way it relates to society through online media.
In addition to the product or service that the company offers, you have to be able to identify what social role the company is going to assume.
It is a two-way relationship: society influences the changes that occur in a company and this, in turn, affects the variations of the first.
To help you define this digital role, ask yourself: “What does the company want to be, what does it want to contribute socially?”
There are several roles you can take and these will influence the creation of the digital marketing plan:
Leader: for a benchmark brand in its sector.
Caregiver: for a brand that monitors the safety of users.
Adviser: for a brand that ensures the health of users.
Everyday: for a brand that values simplicity and moment.
Familiar: for a brand that appreciates people.
These are just some examples. One of your tasks is to find out what role your company performs best.
6. Investigate what the brand’s presence is like in the online world
A crucial point in the digital marketing plan, you have to know what the company has done so far.
It is likely that you have a website, blog or profiles open on some social network … or all! Keep in mind the possibility that you have even opened several social profiles for different business areas and you should consider whether it is convenient to unify them or leave them separate.
Don’t be afraid to make the decision to close one if you don’t see it as suitable for the company.
If you have a website, if it is updated and check its usability.
If the website has a blog and what use do they give it, in case there are publications.
What social profiles do you have open?
How they are managed in terms of content and publication scheduling.
Relate your conclusions to the proposal you make.
7. Feel the pillars on which you will base your social media strategy
Designing a social media strategy is a separate reflection that you must do.
In all likelihood, you even need to present it to the customer in a specific document. In fact, we have a post dedicated solely to creating a social media plan.
Sometimes, you may also need it to present it to your team and that everyone understands the actions that you must apply in the project.
I want to highlight 3 fundamental bases that should not be lost sight of:
Branding. Achieve improve online reputation through maximum dissemination of content. This will bring the brand closer to a leadership position in its sector.
Establish a content strategy that seeks to generate emotions in users, which enhances engagement.
Create a community around social networks, with specific objectives for each of them and that encourages active listening to detect their needs.
Leave these points in the digital marketing plan. It is important that your client or senior manager knows what you plan to do.
8. Outline what your content plan will be for each
As with the social media strategy, you are going to need another document that addresses what the content plan that you plan to achieve the company’s objectives will be like.
Decide a chapter where you talk about it and incorporate it into the digital marketing plan. You don’t need to fully develop your ideas, but you do need to define their structure:
Who are you addressing?
What topics are you going to talk about.
In what tone will you do it.
How will the editorial calendar be and how often will you publish.
How you will spread the content or optimize them so that they are positioned in the search engines.
Add value to the content plan and identify each topic you will talk about with the company’s product and service categories.
Justify, in a clear and simple way, each of your decisions.
9. Analyze the company website
The website of a company is its headquarters, the base camp from which everything is born. It is the digital face of the brand. Therefore, make sure that it is well ordered and ready to be seen, to “invite” to visit it.
Make a brief analysis that gives you an idea of its condition. You can use Woorank as the first tool. She will give you a basic answer about her situation. But later you will have to delve into this section to optimize it to the maximum.
Above all, monitor these 5 sections of the website:
- Contents: for search engines and users it is essential that a website has quantity and quality of good content. Calculate the text ratio in relation to the total HTML of the web.
- Study of keywords: search engines answer user questions based on the concurrence of the words they enter and those contained in the web. Make sure you know what those keywords are and see if they appear on the web in sufficient numbers.
- SEO: SEO ensures that a website makes search engines understand what each of its pages is about. It is the path that you mark so that users find what they are looking for on your website.
A brief SEO audit is essential at the beginning of your digital marketing plan. Assess how to improve your positioning.
Depending on your knowledge in this section, assess the possibility of going to an SEO expert to do it for you.
- Usability: in digital marketing francocolmena.com it is essential that people who visit your website find what they are looking for in the most agile and simple way possible.
Analyze if the way to use the website of the brand you are studying is comfortable and quick to learn how to use it.
- User experience: understands how a visitor who enters the web feels after browsing it. Your experience must be positive for you to want to return to it.
This is a concept linked to usability and content.
Most of the digital marketing actions you launch will have to do with the website. Therefore, give maximum importance to this section.
10. KPI and measurement tools that you will use
Measuring the results of your digital marketing actions is the way you have to show your superior the success of your work. At least once a month you will have to check with him and explain the evolution of the project.
To do this, the first thing is to set the KPIs that you are going to measure and that show whether or not the objectives that were defined at the beginning are met. Then choose the tool that best measures that KPI and start monitoring it.
Think that the digital marketing plan is not static and, as the project progresses, you can make variations to correct the deviations from the marked objectives that may have occurred that month.
10 + 1. How much is your work worth? Write your budget
This is not step 11 because not every time you design a digital marketing plan, it is accompanied by a budget. So I preferred to call it 10 + 1.
It may happen that you are responsible for the department and are part of your functions. It may also be the case that you are a freelance or marketing agency that already works with or for the client in other areas and you decide not to bill this document for commercial courtesy.
However, what I do advise is that you do not present a digital marketing budget without your recipient knowing what you are going to do in it.
I suggest that you advance the need for investment in ads that you are going to have to do so that later it does not catch you by surprise.
Likewise, it draws up some contractual points that support the agreement that both parties will reach, such as the cost of images, taxes or form of payment.
If your digital marketing plan is accepted you will have to prepare other documents to present to your client or higher. We have seen some of them in this post and I do not want to end without mentioning the need for a crisis protocol.
To end this post, I want to remind you that the digital marketing plan is a basic document to start developing a project. My main tips are:
Don’t start without it.
Plan well what you are going to do and write it down.
Find a professional team to develop it.
Adapt and modify it when necessary.
Discuss it with your trusted colleagues when you are undecided.
Do you have any doubts? Don’t keep them. Write them in the comments and we’ll see it together.
I wanted to create this guide based on my experience and trying to answer how to create your digital marketing plan.