by Reed Congdon
These days, there are so many shiny new toys available in the digital advertising landscape for brands to explore. From Connected TV and digital audio to social, display, mobile, and more, it’s hard for business owners not to dive in and want to start spreading their brand messaging across each and every one of these platforms as soon as possible.
But keep in mind, a common mistake businesses tend to make when getting started with digital advertising is jumping into the “how” without first exploring the concept of “why.” Business owners want to know how they can utilize the newest digital tools, but they’re not asking themselves why they want to in the first place.
When developing a digital advertising strategy, it’s imperative to start the conversation by identifying what your business objectives are – this is the WHY behind your advertising strategy. Once the “WHY” is clear, the “HOW” will follow.
Setting goals and determining how you will measure these goals is essential to determining whether or not a campaign is considered successful to you and your business. It will also give your campaign direction and dictate how you interact with your target audience. Here are a few key tips to consider when setting goals for your digital advertising campaign.
Understanding Your Customer
As this article from Salesforce outlines, understanding how your customer journey fits into your marketing funnel will help you keep track of where you should be focusing your marketing dollars. While on one hand, the marketing funnel tracks a customer’s stage of interest in your business (from brand awareness to acquisition) the customer journey is the path that customer takes through these stages. This path is oftentimes nonlinear and winding, looping back and forth between stages of interest in your product or service. By mapping out this customer journey through exploring your website analytics to see how users engage with your website, you can keep tabs on each touchpoint a customer will encounter, giving you a better understanding of where to direct your advertising budget. Simply put, by learning more about your target audience, you’ll be able to reach and engage with them when it matters most throughout their journey.
Once you have an understanding of your target customer’s journey, setting a clear and concise campaign objective sits at the core of a successful digital marketing campaign. These business objectives – or your “whys” – should be the driving force behind your entire marketing strategy. Establishing these will give your campaigns clear and measurable direction. Some key examples of digital marketing objectives are:
- Building Brand Awareness: reaching your target audience on a large scale so those who have yet to discover your brand will take notice of what your business has to offer.
- Generating Consideration: enticing your audience to take interest in your business by learning more about your product or service.
- Increasing Conversions: winning over a customer in the form of a lead, sale, appointment, etc.
- Establishing Customer Loyalty: establishing loyal engagement with your customers so they become repeat customers.
After you’ve decided the objectives that you want to prioritize, it’s important to set goals that will reach those objectives, and be clear about what Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) will be the markers of success. While some business owners often tend to judge performance based solely on direct sales or revenue, it’s important to understand that success can also be measured by increasing leads, consumer engagement, or anything else that helps you reach your business objectives.
For example, a social media campaign can be massively successful in spreading the word about your brand even if it doesn’t result in direct sales. After all, generating sales wasn’t the goal of that particular campaign! On the other hand, an SEM campaign that may not deliver a ton of impressions may still be considered successful as long as it results in a few high quality leads or conversions. Measuring the success of a campaign is all dependent on what the intention of the campaign is – this comes from clearly defining your goals and relevant KPIs from the start.
Measuring Your Goals
Once you have a clear understanding of what exactly you’re trying to achieve through your digital marketing efforts – or your “WHY” – and have outlined specific goals and KPIs that you’ll use to track your campaign, you can then dive into those shiny new digital marketing tools and figure out which channels are best to reach and interact with your audience. But, whichever tools you go with, make sure you’re clear on how you’ll track your KPIs ahead of time. That could mean making sure you have access to keep tabs on impression delivery and reach in a targeted display campaign aimed at increasing brand awareness. As for a conversion campaign, you may want to keep a close eye on how many of your website visitors are filling out a contact form – in this case, you’ll want to ensure you have goals set up on your website analytics platform that tracks that information. The logistics of setting up goal tracking can be daunting if you’re new to digital marketing, but with the right guidance, your campaigns will be set up for success in the long run.
As always feel free to reach out and connect with our team of digital experts. We’re happy to help you and your business get started!