Driving a Digital Marketing Campaign

A digital marketing campaign is an agency’s organized and packaged effort to conceptualize and scale a brand’s awareness, integrity and strength for the growth of the brand’s buzz, reach and engagement.

Any digital marketing campaign will have its share of ups and downs. In an industry marked by high expectations and strict deadlines, the beginning phases of a digital campaign can be daunting, but it’s well worth it to watch a campaign pilot to success after putting in the necessary work on the front end. We’ve listed out seven fool-proof steps for encouragement and guidance as you walk through the ebbs and flows of running a digital campaign.

1. Understand your audience

Before strategizing and planning, it’s vital to pinpoint your target market and target segments, respectively. Determine your audience by asking questions like, “Who would benefit from what I offer?” and “Who is using my product/service currently?”

Once your audience is identified, research the mediums and marketing channels that would most effectively reach your audience based on popularity and preference. For example, if tech-savvy teenagers are your target audience, focusing on social media marketing would likely be a wise move. Be sure to connect with your audience as well through data-driven research.

2. Set goals and measure outcomes

After determining a target market, set goals and objectives for your campaign. What exactly are you trying to accomplish with this digital campaign? Regardless of the industries involved, setting goals that are both ideal and realistic is the way to go. Reaching outside of your comfort zone and stretching yourself will help your organization grow. When setting campaign goals, jot down some desired end results of running the campaign (e.g. revenue growth, increased website traffic, increased brand awareness).

It’s also necessary to find a campaign metric to analyze what parts of your campaign are working and gaining organic reach and what parts need a boost. Here at Swim, Google Analytics is our weapon of choice to measure key performance indicators (KPI), but there are a number of online tools you can use to take the temperature of your campaign.

3. Develop your plan

You’ve set goals, so now it’s time to build your strategy. This is the step of the process where you determine the “when,” “how,” and “why” of your approach. Drawing out and sticking to a timeline, deciding which marketing channels to utilize, and developing audience-specific content (both visual and written) will be a game changer.

As you go to the drawing board, don’t neglect to incorporate a call-to-action (CTA). This CTA could be used to drive website traffic, make a purchase or join a group. Just like your campaign message, your CTA should be clear and understandable for campaign followers.

4. Determine a budget

Allocate your resources and set a budget for the lifespan of your campaign. If social media, for example, will be a substantial part of your efforts, then make those funds available for social media marketing. With any digital campaign, you need to prepare your agency for relatively high up-front costs, but don’t let the cost be a momentum-killer.

Although the financial sacrifice may seem lofty up front, a successful campaign venture can result in higher profit, increased brand loyalty and a positive return on investment for your company.

5. Execute the plan

Prior to this stage, you’ve spent money, energy and resources building an intentional strategy. But execution is the stage where the pieces come together and your campaign vision starts to culminate. As you publish your campaign and its deliverables, check data analytics fairly often to gauge the early-stage success of your efforts and opportunities for improvement moving forward.

Like a finely finished table, the fixes and furnishings of a digital campaign take time to build and perfect, so it’s important to not get hung up on initial results if your campaign isn’t experiencing its expected reach right off the bat.

6. Be prepared to change the plan

Throughout the duration of your digital marketing campaign, keep an eye on the parts that aren’t on track to reach their predetermined goals. If something doesn’t work as you expected it to, don’t abandon the strategy altogether. This just means it’s time to problem solve at the root and identify troubled areas.

Constantly reassessing and touching up your initial strategy is often the best tactic for problem solving. Remaining steadfast in your approach and sticking to your initial vision will often yield better results and will be more rewarding for your agency.

7. Review the results

Analyze the campaign data to identify what worked and what didn’t. Having a strong grasp of your agency’s areas for growth will better equip you for your next digital campaign launch.

In a digital industry that expects things to be done quickly, our knee-jerk desires for immediate results aren’t always realistic. Running a successful digital campaign requires patience and flexibility. These seven steps certainly aren’t an end-all, be-all mechanism to delivering a campaign, but they also don’t exist in a silo. These steps can be used as a compass to guide you through the murky waters sometimes experienced in the digital marketing sphere.