These days, there is no escaping the seemingly endless stream of digital advertisements cluttering your online experience. In their efforts to stay competitive and have their message heard, marketers flood the web with advertisements and promotions in the hopes that it will draw traffic. Unfortunately, this strategy has resulted in countless websites becoming so cluttered with advertisements and in-your-face marketing that many customers are actively avoiding them.
In a time when users want to consume information as quickly as possible without the intrusion of unwelcomed advertising or popups, how can you structure your Digital Campaign to maximize conversion rates and sales?
Using our experience gained from over a decade of implementing unique, results driven tactics, we have created the 5 Steps to Taking Your Digital Campaign to New Heights. Through the 5 Steps of: Identifying, Understanding, Strategizing, Measuring, and Adapting, you can learn how to build, streamline and automate a Digital Campaign that is geared for success.
The first step to creating a successful campaign is to establish your short-term goal and identify your target audience.
Do you want to:
Create a loyal, engaged following?
Reach a larger audience and drive traffic to your site?
Increase the conversion rate of your existing customer base?
Once your short-term goal has been set, you will be able to evaluate the value of each action, moving forward. With your goal in mind, we now want to determine who we are expecting to help achieve this goal. Who is your Target Audience, or a better way to visualize it is, who is your Ideal Customer?
Visualizing Your Customer Profile
When picturing your Customer Profile, start by choosing a subset of a larger audience to be the focus of your marketing efforts. Thankfully, with the advent of modern day analytical tools, the process of identifying your target audience has never been easier. Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools are free resources that gather and track priceless data about the customers that search for your product/service and visit your site.
Everything from your customers' age, gender, language, location, and even their interests can be tracked and saved for future use. You can then utilize this information to create a profile of your target audience and a Customer Profile from each Target Audience. Give your Customer Profile a name that easily defines them.
How old are they and where do they live?
What are the thoughts they worry about late at night?
What do they think about when they first wake up?
A business owner between the ages of 25-65 is based in the United States, and already has an online presence. He knows how to run his business, has a clear understanding of his industry, and is looking to scale up.
He gets calls at least once a day from some web company overseas telling him his site is ugly (which is like telling someone they have an ugly baby – rude right?), and that they will get him on the first page of Google. He’s frustrated because he’s already on the first page for popular keywords, his site is optimized for mobile devices, and his company has been in business way longer than any other competitors he has. In fact, he knows with confidence that his product is a better quality, and his company provides better customer service than his competitor.
He’s been at this for a while now, and just hasn’t seen the results he’d hoped for when he initially created his online presence. Meet one of our Customer Profiles, “Scaling Up Scott.” What’s Scott looking to do? He wants to scale his online business…Yesterday!
Goal-Driven Marketing Flowchart
A goal-driven marketing provides you with a visual overview of your Customer Funnels, and makes identifying the underperforming areas of your campaign significantly easier. When creating your marketing flowchart, work backwards. Start with the end goal, (for example, purchasing a product from your store) and write down all the steps it took for a customer to reach that action.
Next, identify all points of entry that customers are using to get to your site. Social Media Profiles, Blogs, AdWords, Email Newsletters, and Networking Events are all avenues in which customers might enter your funnel. Map out the paths for each entry point that customers take leading up to your goal. Be sure to include paths where customers frequently drop off, as areas where customers are leaving your sales funnel are just as important to include as areas with a high success rate.
Now that you have the end of your funnel visualized, and the entry points, all you have left is the middle. The in-between steps are the part of the digital campaign that lead them back to your site, or keep conveying your message until they are ready.
Now that you have your Short-Term Goal established, a picture of your Customer Profile, and an overview of your Marketing Flowchart mapped out, you need to create messaging that will resonate with your Customer Profile that you can use in your Marketing Flowchart that will help you reach your Short-Term Goal. Effective messaging that addresses the concerns and thoughts of your Customer Profile, Thought Zone Messaging.
When you utilize effective Thought Zone Messaging, you are broadcasting a planned, carefully crafted message with the goal of it resonating with your Customer Profile. You already have the tools in place to track your efforts, now you must understand the position of your Customer Profile. Take time now to write a few sentences that would resonate with your Customer Profile.
Example Thought Zone Message
Our message to Scaling Up Scott would look something like this:
Have you built an online presence, but aren’t sure what the next steps are to take your business to the next level? At Border7 Studios, we’ve been helping businesses succeed online through our quality, warranty backed services and unique strategies since 2005. If you are ready to create a goal-driven campaign that will take your business to new heights, request your Free Digital Strategy Session Now: 805.416.2457!
The goal of our Thought Zone Message is to convey to Scaling Up Scott that although we may not be experts in his industry, we are experts in digital strategy, and we understand his situation. He’s tired of empty promises, and not getting the traffic or conversions he was expecting, so during his strategy session, we are going to listen and make sure that we deliver.
A Customer Funnel details the path a customer will take from when they first make contact, to when they make a purchase. Your Marketing Flowchart is made up of multiple Customer Funnels, and the goal of optimizing your Flowchart is to enhance each individual Customer Funnel. Now that you’re initial campaign planning has been tackled, and you have an understanding of your Customer Profile’s Thought Zones, we strategies to get customers into your Customer Funnel.
We’ve Identified who we are selling to, how they are going to enter and exit our campaign, and what type of messaging will connect with them. If it’s your first time creating a digital strategy campaign, it can be tricky. So, to provide a clear overview of how an optimized Customer Funnel operates, in this exclusive guide, we have outlined an optimized Customer Funnel from start to finish. Use this as the basis for your new campaign, or as a baseline to compare your current marketing strategy to.
Your Unique Selling Point (USPs)
A key element of a Customer Funnel is getting customers into that funnel, and differentiating yourself from the competition. Thanks to the Target Audience we established earlier, we can bypass buying habits of customers and focus on a set group of people with similar interests and thought zones. Consider what you do or offer that your competitors do not. What makes you different and why should someone buy from you? Think of how you stand out from everyone else, and you have a Unique Selling Point (USP) and can help when creating effective thought zone messaging.
Example Unique Selling Points
When we communicate with Scaling Up Scott, we are going to make sure that he knows we are based in the United States, we do not outsource, we have dedicated project management systems to ensure he is always updated on the status of his project, and we back all this with a satisfaction guarantee warranty on work completed by our team. We will also make our testimonials readily available for Scott, so he can see what other clients have experienced when working with us. We know Scott isn't interested in the feature-rich systems or coding magic we use, he wants to reach his goal of increasing traffic and conversions, and he wants it done and done right.
Building Your Audience
You can build your audience through social media engagement or giveaways, content creation on a blog, or newsletters, but if you have ever handed out a business card, you might not know that you have missed an opportunity to build your audience. Instead of a business card, you could have handed out a Squeeze Card, a lead generation tool, and the first step in this Customer Funnel Example.
If you’ve ever been to a networking event, you’ve left with a stack of business cards that have most likely sat on your desk until you finally realize that so much time has gone by that they probably won’t remember who you are or what you talked about. That’s because the business card they gave you just includes their information. You will only think to contact them if you have a referral you can give them, or if you could use their service. Instead, what if they gave you a Squeeze Card that included a free gift you could access by visiting their website. Who doesn’t like a free gift that could add value to your business, right? Now you’ve decided to visit their site to checkout this gift, and you’ve learned more about their business than you would have by simply reading the information they chose to include on their card. You can also sign up for their monthly newsletter to ensure you are kept in the loop, and keep the conversation going long-term.
A Squeeze Page features an over view of the benefits of the Attractive Marketing Device (AMD) you are offering, and requests that in exchange for the AMD, a visitor to the page shares their email address with you. In our experience, we have found that taking a visitor to a Squeeze Page with a clearly defined goal increases the changes of them converting significantly. A Squeeze Page is a new take on the popular Landing Page concept. Landing Pages proved to be very successful over the use of traditional informational, or product and category pages, but they did not ensure that there would be a future opportunity to communicate. Unlike Landing Pages who provide the customer with information, the primary goal of a Squeeze Page is to obtain information from the customer.
Thanks to Email Automation, you can set up an email Autoresponder for all of your Squeeze Pages. An Autoresponder is an email that is automatically sent once a customer performs a specific action. This will allow for all customers interested in your Squeeze Page content to automatically receive it after opting-in without having to contact one of your team members for more information. While customers are reading up on your content, their emails are being automatically added to an Email Drip Campaign.
Email Drip Campaign
An Email Drip Campaign is a series of emails aimed at getting the customer to purchase a product or a service. A great example of this would be the stream of emails you receive from stores around the holiday season telling you about all the new popular toys or gadgets and the deals associated with them. These are a series of prewritten emails that are being automatically sent out to customers over a set period of time, either every day or every few days. This level of automation frees up your sales team for customers who are ready to make a purchase.
Nowadays, technology has made some truly impressive technology to monitor and track the success of a campaign available. With tools like Google Analytics and Webmaster, as well as Misaic, WooRank, SpyFu, and Raven, you have a range of systems available to deliver the information you need to make an informed decision. Google Analytics’ reports, specifically on-site data such as the User Flow, Bounce Rate, Click-Through-Rates and Conversion Rates are your allies in your mission to determine the effectiveness of a campaign. Consider the following elements while assessing your campaign: Audience, Message, and Price.
To ensure your campaign is reaching the right audience, we had to first identify out Target Audience. While measuring the results of your campaign, look at the data and determine if your advertisements are reaching the right people at the right time, and when they are in the right frame of mind?
A Click-Through-Rate is the percentage of total customers who saw your advertisement, call to action, graphic, or social media post compared to those who clicked through to your site. This is the most important statistic at determining the effectiveness of your messaging. If your campaigns have a low click through rate you may need to reevaluate the messaging you’re using.
If you have a high Click-Through-Rate but a low Conversion Rate, it might be time to reevaluate the price of your product or service. If your messaging and price is compelling, then you can safely determine that it was the wrong audience, and work on structuring a plan to get your campaign in front of the right people.
What’s Working and What Isn’t Working
What good is data if you don’t analyze it? Now that you have built up data from your marketing efforts, it’s time to sit down and review what aspects of your campaign are working, and what funnels need help. Don’t let the data overwhelm you, and break it up into manageable chunks of information.
Identify Dropoff Example
If we see Scaling Up Scott is on our landing page, but only clicked one of our 2 “Read More” buttons, we know that our message needs to be improved, or refined. Maybe Scaling Up Scott likes our message, but was overwhelmed by too many options. We will then want to setup another page to test our hypothesis, and see if we can optimize our content direct him to our goal, contacting us for a free strategy session. If after our test we confirm our hypothesis, we adapt.
So far we have Identified your Target Audience and Customer Profiles, both Short-Term and Long-Term Goals, effective Thought Zone Messaging, created a Marketing Flowchart, and Customer Funnels. At this point, you should have all the tools necessary to setup and measure the performance of your digital campaign.
What separates average campaigns from exceptional campaigns is the time and effort that goes into planning, refining, and adapting a campaign to support your industry. Monitor each funnels’ success by tracking the performance, and make changes as necessary.
Change What Isn’t Working
Automating your digital campaign does not mean that you can let it run on its own. If you’re not periodically checking in to see what funnels are working, and which need to be improved, then you are not in a much better position than someone who does not have the tracking in place. Utilize your data to strengthen the funnels that are performing well, and to optimize the funnels that need improvement.
If your site’s user flow, or usability needs to be improved, determine if updating your site will benefit your customer profile. This is where you can A/B test content, graphics, and layouts of your squeeze pages and landing pages, and consider the performance of your site in its entirety. As your campaign continues to improve, your brand's image will become even more important as a means of differentiating yourself in today's rapidly growing marketplace. Your branding should always clearly convey your company's message and what differentiates you from your competitors.
Keep an Eye on Your Competition
With your new process and campaign in place, you still need to stay ahead of your competitors. Keep an eye on what they are releasing on social media, and their online presence, so you can always stay ahead. Even if you’ve left them in the dust, you might think of a great new idea that will set you into a whole new category that they cannot replicate.
Branding Yourself as a Trusted Resource
You now have your online marketing efforts covered, but don’t think you’re off the hook just yet. There are several other strategies you can utilize to bring value to your customers. Two creative ways in which you can elevate your brand's credibility are with an eBook (don’t forget a hardcopy version as well) and public speaking events.
Become a published author or speaker within your industry and you will establish yourself as an educator, significantly increasing your credibility. Get started with an e-book, as these are are a great way to build partnerships within your industry (coauthor the e-book with someone that complements your industry) and create content. When your clients see you as a resource and an educator, they will be more likely to trust you and follow your recommendations.
If you aren't ready to write a book yet, or don't have the desire to be a speaker on a stage, there are other tactics that you can employ to reach new customers. Networking events and tradeshows are great places to meet other businesses and new clients. If you can be constantly expanding your network, you are also growing your audience.
Putting it All Together
When it comes to Digital Strategy, there is no “silver bullet.” Anything worth doing takes time to plan, research, and execute. However, if you can learn and apply these 5 key steps, we are confident that you will be on your path to taking your digital campaign to new heights!
Identify, Understand, Strategize, Measure, Adapt
When we market to “Scaling Up Scott,” we are direct. We tell him that we are experts who know what we are doing, we are honest with him, and we deliver. You know what happens when “Scaling Up Scott” works with us? He enters our next Customer Profile, "Getting Ahead Gabe." “Getting Ahead Gabe” has different obstacles, new thought zones, and best of all, he has worked with us before as “Scaling Up Scott.” This means he knows we do what we’ll say, we deliver results, and we offer superior customer service. So just because a customer grows out of your Customer Profiles, it doesn’t mean that they are no longer a Target Audience. They just get entered into a new Customer Funnel.
We hope that you have found our 5 Steps to Taking Your Digital Campaign to New Heights informative and empowering. At the very least, we hope that you feel like you have the process and tools to evaluate the effectiveness of your digital campaign.
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