In our experience one the quickest ways to kill a good Digital Marketing Plan is what we call Paralysis by Analysis. You have seen it before, the team has finally be drawn up and the first couple of weeks have gone by. Everyone knows what the goals are, they know what their role is and the CEO has told them that the work they are doing is very important. So, with great enthusiasm, they set to and start to analyze every aspect of their Digital Marketing processes and all the Big Data they can lay their hands on.
Six weeks later they are still at it. They have nothing to show. One member of the team has already been taken off because something more urgent has come up. You know just how this project is going to end up, right. They have nothing to show for their effort.
On of the keys to success for any project is to identify and aggressively achieve Early Wins. In Consultancy speak this is also known as going after “low hanging fruit” – the easiest to pick off the tree.
What type of Early Wins should you look for in a Digital Marketing programme?
Obviously the types of early wins will depend upon the nature of the campaign e.g. omnichannel or single channel, the nature of the company e.g. multinational or national, and the sector in which it is working e.g. B2B or B2C. However we have seen a number of common areas which can easily be changed within a week or two and can improve results dramatically and more importantly quickly.
Here are some examples of areas we have seen:
Quickly automate social media interaction
In many companies the Social Media has grown organically with the company and there may even be a person that is assigned as the “Community” Manager. However we often find that the gathering and posting of articles is still done manually. This whole process can be made much more efficient simply using a couple of tools.
First there is the gathering of relevant material from outside the company. For all but the major brands – think at the Coca Cola level – posting non corporate information is a good idea. First of all it means that you are not pushing the brand down people’s’ social media throat and you are going to get a more interested public. Finding the right material is not easy in some sectors. Clearly identifying the right blogs to look at will help tremendously. We recommend a to set a wide net and look for many different sources around the subject area. This will make your public offering appeal to a wider audience and you will pick up followers that you may not have with a rifled approach.
Scheduling the material across the different channels can then be automated. We suggest the use of a tool, like Buffer which will also allow you to directly find material from feeds and pass them to your social media stream as well as suggest a schedule to put the material in front of the largest audience. With measurement packed in the dashboard as well this is an extremely useful tool.
Check employees are signed up and share company social media postings
This is so easy it is just untrue. By simply asking, cajoling, incentivizing employees to follow the company social media feeds and subsequently share them then you can increase both the number of followers and more importantly the reach of the message. Different companies have different policies as to how much they require from their employees and what proportion of employees need to participate. For large companies this can be a major win.
Check employee signatures
Make sure that all employees emails have the relevant signature information with a link to the web, the blog and the company’s Social Media feeds.
Check the relevance of blog topics
In very simple terms if you make cat food and you blog about dogs, it doesn’t matter how good the blog posts are, you not going to get much relevant interaction. Without having to really delve in a major analysis you can simply look for the most popular blog posts that you have already posted and make a note of the titles (initially it is the title that would have attracted the audience). Note the social sharing numbers.
Now do the same for your leading five competitors over the same timescale – if they have social sharing data then you will be able to rank them. Look at the gap and you will see whether your posts are relevant to the audience you want to get to. If you see gaps them plan to write three relevant posts and publish them over the next 10 days.
Engage with your followers on Social Media – even for just 1 day a week
Take one person in the team. Open up your Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter feeds. Go to your followers. Check what they are saying that day and engage with them even if it a like that is OK but better a comment, a relevant retweet or a public share. You will gain respect from them if you do it judiciously and they will be more likely to share your content. Set this up for one day a week – we often suggest a Friday.
Easy SEO wins
SEO can take time but if you look at these simple items you will get some positive reactions:
- Check you have an up to date sitemap logged with Google. The emphasis is on up to date!
- Check your robots.txt file is not blocking Google from seeing the content you want them to see. This is especially important for mobile
- Check your important pages for 404 errors – just inspect Network using Chrome
- Check for broken links using the Broken Link Checker
- Check your mobile compatability with the Google Mobile Friendly Test
- Check your website speed with Google Page Insights
Add heatmap tracking to your website
Where your visitors are looking on your website is a very important element. You need them to be able to easily and quickly see the parts opf your web that are going to seel your products either through educating them, or informing them or getting them to take actions. Use the CrazyEgg Heat Map to see where they are looking for each of your important pages.
Is that Call to Action really as visible as it should be? Are the visitors missing your navigation hamburger? If the analysis shows this up then get in tehre a qucikly chnge a couple of pages and begin to monitor the interactions.
Make sure your company Social Media profiles are up to date
This is a no brainer but something that many companies forget – it was done last year and then forgotten but since then things have changed…..new VP’s pr Directors, new offices, new web presence etc. etc.
These are just some examples – carrying out a full Digital Marketing Audit will bring to the surface those elements that can be quickly turned around. If you can show positive actions in the first 15 days of a program up and running then it will add to the inertia of getting the programme moving forward. Actually in many projects we actually keep a couple of quick wins behind just in case the project begin to run out of energy or the required effort means that there will be a long period without results (for example preparing a whole bunch of content).