Over 4.2 billion people in the world are now connected to the internet. Consumption of content – text, audio, video – on the internet is rising exponentially. Apart from the great reach, the internet also offers ways to narrowly target ads to users in a particular demographic.
Digital Marketing has enabled many facets of marketing to get more precise. With the internet, we can understand user behavior better, we can reach them better, target and experiment with different strategies and designs in a short span of time and get an accurate Return on Investment (ROI) for the marketing budget spent.
However, marketers make many mistakes that are easy to avoid. Let us look at some common reasons why digital marketing campaigns fail.
No clear strategy or targets
Digital Marketing has to be precise. Without a strategy, there will be no returns. A clear strategy for identifying the target customer, reaching through the most efficient channel, capturing the lead and convert them into a buying customer. This entire process requires a solid strategy and targets that are based on experiments. Without this, we are just shooting in the dark.
Less emphasis on metrics
Many digital marketers do not take into account that this is a math driven exercise. With the right metrics in place, we can measure key parameters and avoid spending without results. Digital marketing works best with the least amount of subjectivity.
The right mix of avenues
Digital marketing is an umbrella term for a host of marketing avenues available online. It includes Search Engine Optimization, Search Engine Marketing, content marketing, influencer marketing, newsletters and email list building, affiliate marketing, social media marketing, analytics and much more. Each of these avenues presents a sea of possibilities.
Marketing Funnel Design
Digital Marketing’s most overlooked part is the design of the funnel. This represents the complete strategy in numbers and measurable targets. For example, if you are reaching your target market through Ads on Facebook, Instagram or Youtube, they are your channels of outreach. Once the target customer clicks on your Ad on one of these social media platforms, they could be sent to a lead capturing form on a landing page. Once that lead is captured, they could be sent a series of drip emailers that deliver some value while prompting them to buy a paid package of your product / service. A fraction of the initial audience who saw your Ad will buy this. This whole process is the funnel that gets you paid customers. If this funnel is designed well, you can keep optimizing and measuring the true ROI of your campaign.
What Inbound Marketing Offers
Many marketers look at digital marketing channels as online billboards. They are not. Users on the internet are intelligent and will not buy without persuasion. It is important not to just sell the products. Inbound marketing offers ways to capture the interest of those seeking your expertise.
If you are selling Organic Oils, you might want to start a blog that educates people about the benefits of organic products. Many internet users would find your blog as they search for it, or via social media sharing. Once they do, get their email id for a free newsletter. Once the person is on your mailing list, they will have a greater chance of trusting you, looking at you as an expert in this field, and then buying from you. This is where great loyalty is achieved.
Choose your target audience
Since the internet is filled with possibilities, while designing your Facebook paid campaign for example, you might want to target the entire country with an age group of 18-60. This sounds like a wider net for the fish, but it also means you are losing money on people who might not be your most immediate buyers. You are wasting your budget on buyers who are less likely to buy than others. Instead of doing this, you could run small experiments. Let’s say this experiment shows that people between the age of 28-35 are two times more likely to buy your product compared to an 18-year-old or a 60-year-old, narrow your funnel.
A wide target audience would mean wasted resources.
Not understanding buyers’ behavior
Tools like Google Analytics and mobile engagement measurement tools are often ignored by marketers since they are complicated. But these are very important in helping us understand buyers’ behavior. This is similar to market research on digital platforms.
We cannot ignore this step. If a marketer does not understand buyer behavior, which buttons do they click on your website the most and why it will mean wrong and unoptimized strategies.
Social media posts that are not tied to the goal
More often than not, the team designing social media posts / news is detached from the core marketing team and this results in social media posts not being tied to the strategy or end goal. If our goal is to get users to click on our landing page, that is what the social media posts should reflect. They cannot start talking about the product benefits within the social media post.
Each social media post has to have a tangible goal that can be measured as part of the larger funnel.
Not investing enough in copy
Social media posts, landing pages, website, and email copy is probably the most important factor in drawing the user towards a brand. The strategy, funnel and analytics, everything might be in place. But if the copy is written by an intern who doesn’t relate with the brand’s image, the end customer will be confused. Investing in the copy is one of the most important aspects of a good digital marketing strategy.
This is also the case with video and graphic content. Any inbound content has to be aligned to the brand’s message and positioning.
Digital marketing allows for experimentation and fine-tuning of strategies. It involves substantial mathematics and a keen eye that can spot the customer’s behavior patterns. It can provide a great return on investment if the execution is right. But it can also be a black hole that sucks your entire marketing budget if not controlled.
For more information and to learn about the author, please visit Design Point.