Whether you are a large multi-national firm or a small business, you can guarantee that your customers depend on various digital channels every day to research and evaluate your products and services. This raises the question, do you have a digital strategy in place?
If you do not have a digital strategy in place the chances are you are missing an opportunity to increase sales and be seen by new customers. Even a basic strategic plan can give you an advantage over your competitors.
Developing a strategy is not a painful as it might sound and the benefits can have a real and visible impact on your business.
How a digital strategy helps
- It gives you direction towards your overall business goals
- It helps you save time and money by not duplicating your efforts
- It gives you a greater understanding of your target audience
- You gain a greater understanding of your place in the market against the competitors
- It helps you run you digital marketing channels efficiently, rather than making it up as you go
Where can I find out more about digital strategy and planning?
Planning and strategy are areas of business that you can undertake yourself, although you can always hire a digital marketing consultant to guide you through the process. SOSTAC® by PR Smith – SOSTAC is a great way to get started.
- Situation Analysis (where are we now?)
- Objectives (where do we want to go?)
- Strategy (how do we get there?)
- Tactics (the details of strategy including the marketing mix & comms mix)
- Action (the details of tactics – who does what , when & processes & systems)
- Control (metrics that you need to measure at different times)
One question this leads to is “what is the difference between strategy and a plan?” In the SOSTAC framework above the SOS is more focused on Strategy while the TAC is more action-oriented – Tactics/Action/Control. However many people, including agencies use these terms interchangeably, so it is always good to clarify.
the Chartered Institute of Marketing centenary poll voted SOSTAC® in the Top 3 Business Models worldwide. Whether a blue chip, like IBM, or a smaller business, professionals who discover SOSTAC® embrace it for life.
– PR Smith
Don’t get tied up in the technical details, digital marketing is about people communicating with other people; the technology is just the bit in the middle that helps it to happen. Your digital strategy should provide you with a high-level view of the digital marketing landscape with your business right in the middle.
So if you are using search engines, social, email, etc. to drive your business online, you need to understand the market. How your customers are using the internet and how you can best utilise those opportunities to build your business and keep your customers happy.