5 Things to Include in Your Digital Marketing Budget This Year

March 21, 2017 Doug Milnor

Digital marketingEach week I either lead or participate on quite a few client calls.  Listening and analyzing the difference between success and chaos I have boiled down to organizations that stop for a few moments and map out their marketing objectives for the quarter and their calendar year.  Having a clear direction about what you hope to accomplish for the year and then setting financial constraints provides the right guardrails for success.

What we have experienced is, if done right, allocating budget to digital marketing has typically generated the highest ROI.  Stretching your digital marketing dollar means you're lowering your costs of conversions, reducing your costs to find customers and increasing your profit. These are direct benefits of having a proactive digital marketing strategy, one that reaches your customers in real-time and one that continually engages them. You increase your marketing ROI each time you generate more leads and more conversions for every dollar spent on marketing. To help, here are 5 things to include in your digital marketing budget this year.

1. Content Marketing

There is this misnomer online that content shock has made content marketing all but obsolete. Well, it’s not true. While it is true that content is being created at a historic rate, it’s simply wrong to think that content marketing is done. In fact, it’s more important to have a content strategy than ever before. Your content must be more specific to your buyer personas, more unique to their interests and more in line with answers and solutions they need. That requires more investment in time - not less. Content works because it produces leads and conversions for years on end. It engages your audience and keeps them informed. However, just writing about your product won't work. You need a plan, one where videos, info-graphics, and vivid images catch your audience's attention. 

2. Marketing Automation

If you’re going to invest heavily in content creation, then a portion of your digital marketing budget must be allocated to marketing automation. In this case, you want to deliver the right content piece to the right buyer persona at that critical moment when and where they need to be engaged. A marketing automation platform ensures that your email marketing, content marketing, and digital advertising is always on point. It is the ultimate content delivery system and it allows you to quickly ascertain which content works best. 

3. Videos and Customer-Facing Podcasts

Videos will reign supreme for years to come. However, it’s not enough just to post a video. You must expand your video offering and combine it with customer-facing podcasts and webcasts. Consistency is key. Putting your best foot forward on videos is exactly what today’s audiences want. Those videos must be part of your overall marketing automation strategy. Deliver engaging content and videos to those buyer personas you know are interested in buying. Make that content relevant by piggybacking on news, trends and emerging technologies. Propagate that content across your audience’s preferred social media channel. You’ll find your content more impactful alongside podcasts that generate instant leads. 

Digital marketing

4. Content Creation Planning

Investing in content creation is critical to digital marketing success. Invest the time in a content calendar. It allows you to plan content in advance of important dates. You can pool all your intelligence by bringing together your internal resources. Each of your people has a core competency and knowledge that suits the different buyer personas you target. Use that knowledge to your advantage. Keep your content plan visible to all team members. Participation is vital to reaching your audience. 

5. Conversion Rate Optimization, Predictive Analytics,  and Big Data Marketing

Predictive analytics has become a critical component for today’s digital marketing strategies. The ability to predict customer behavior comes from a big data marketing platform where customer data is always reviewed, enriched, scrutinized and leveraged properly. That comes from having a marketing database software, one where you know that certain content works well with certain buyer personas and customer segments and one that allows you to react instantly to real-time feedback. It’s the same kind of data enrichment that allows you to focus on conversion rate optimization (CRO). After all, driving traffic with content won’t accomplish much if you’re not doing everything in your power to increase conversions. 

Digital marketing teams now know that content without a plan isn't productive. You must be well-versed in search engine optimization (SEO) and have a thorough understanding of your market, your customers, and your buyer personas. Only then can you maximize your digital marketing budget. 

If you're looking for help on how to put together your digital marketing budget, one that is truly representative of your market, then contact us now and request an assessment

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