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Bridging The Gap On Your Digital Strategy

Digital marketers -white unicorns- nowadays have to face the challenge to join their creative abilities when helping customers to make their purchasing choices, and at the same time, they should be making the most of available technology to seamlessly put all those pieces to work in tfeaturedhe stake of the company’s goals and objectives.

 Creating your own voice on social media, defining your content strategy aligned with your WHY as an organization, optimizing your organic positioning, designing beautiful experience across digital assets, creating an unforgettable customer experience throughout on-boarding programs, improving performance and enhancing conversion through customized and personalized display and media buying. And finally, to top it all, integrating all your data to connect your inner ecosystem to the outside world, and back to start again. That’s the way it works. Simple, easy and many more lessons coming ahead.

Basically, we have two single challenges as digital strategists upfront. The first is to assist our users to flow over our digital ecosystem when they are building an opinion around our offer. Helping customers to develop strong opinions about our value offer leveraged upon an accurate content strategy is just the trigger. Then, the rest of the pieces may appear one after another. The right tweet at the right time. An unexpected email whispering the answer to the post’s questions. Great search positioning on the niche keywords in advance. Simple, responsive and easy-to-navigate web and mobile assets. Maybe great and gorgeously designed native apps to evaluate different product or service specs. And, DONE. The most difficult part of the path is already walked. From that moment on, juts assist them, retarget them, offer best-in-breed customer support again. And once they purchase your product or service put all your data to activate new recommendations and to reinforce their purchasing decision because nobody wants to feel that they have made a wrong decision. Think about the next steps in advance and email your customers with more information regarding their post-purchasing experience. At this stage, you as a marketer are on the verge of crafting loyalty. The mastery of creating unforgettable digital experiences is the holy grail of digital marketers. Quoting Simon Sinek and his highly viewed Golden Circle all ”is about inspiring people to join you in your pursuit”.

“Everything we do, we believe in challenging the status quo. We believe in thinking differently. 

The way we challenge the status quo is by making our products beautifully designed, simple to use and user-friendly.

We just happen to make great computers.

Do you wanna buy one?”

The second challenge is to make the right choice in terms of technology. And what I mean by  technology is tools and code that connect information and data to facilitate conversion tactics.

In a post called Sex, Tags & Rock n`Roll, I was talking about the fact that there is always a tool for every need you have as a digital marketer. Let’s say: ”In Tools, We Trust”.

I’ll be damned if these are not the tech requirements that digital marketers need to do their job.

  • Analytics tools that would allow you to grow and optimize each one of your digital assets. Tools that would truly help you to learn about your visitors, both current and potential, especially when they are about to complete a purchase. Mobile is the journey, not the destination perfectly exemplifies how influential mobile devices are nowadays throughout the customer journey. My tip here would be the following: “Mobile first… or second, or third, since mobile is always present. And may not even be the last interaction before the final purchase”.
  • Testing and personalization platforms that would enable a constant optimization culture. You cannot afford to approve creatives supplied by your agency; you should instead strive to facilitate choices and make improvements on a daily basis. You cannot commit the mistake of modifying details of the main menu for all users without having tested multiple options. You cannot just guess the best Call to Action. Neither can you offer the same homepage to all of your clients. Luckily, testing and personalization tools nowadays allow you to incorporate the lessons learned, without having to make the same mistakes in the future. And I do give my word that I myself made those mistakes in the past.
  • Some time ago I had an interesting conversation about the need to conceive all content from my digital assets in a flexible way. The lesson is pretty simple: “1 content = n devices”. It’s difficult enough to skillfully manage all digital competencies (SEO, UX, Social Media, CRO, Emailing, programmatic advert, etc.) let alone devise content strategies for each one of your assets. The content should be liquid and your focus, to conceptualize the journey of each and every user. Technology is capable of this. Unfortunately, CMS is one of those things that IT Procurements departments closed on a global-deal scale and Marketing suffered on a daily basis.
  • If there is a place where content is king, it is on social media. If someone wants to jog their memory, this statement belongs to Bill Gates and was pronounced back in 1996: “Content is where I expect much of the real money will be made on the Internet”.  A conversation with no valuable content is like a conversation with no words. Being able to monitor, measure the results and stimulate the conversation on social media via other channels is a necessity. A single place of tracking and generating social media activity which is integrated with all your web and mobile analytics, my target audience, mi internal data marts, and paid media tactics. I have a dream!
  • A unique space to optimize paid campaigns. A command center to assess the success of your campaigns and monitor your investment in paid media. Gone are the days when Excel documents were made by others. You must ponder ex ante the possibilities of success for each of your investments and consequently verify the results. And all that information linked to my previous learning on audience across my own media (digital assets).
  • What if someone could connect all the information and lessons coming from my data? The notion of Data Management Platform (DMP) is trending and there is a reason why: it is crucial for a digital marketing professional to unify all of the lessons learned and to translate the process into the conversion improvement. We could discuss whether technology should be owned or not. What the real matter of discussion is whether we should enrich our first party data with segments from third party data. Ultimately, the aim is to unify digital data with offline data and to activate both for each interaction with the client.
  • A digital marketing professional needs to connect everything. This is the dream of all of us who have done SEO, Testing and Personalization, Voice of Customer, remarketing and retargeting. What if someone could help me to connect these disciplines and launch personalized communications to clients and prospects? We all know that personalized web content tends to raise the conversion rates. Assuming the following impact, even more qualified this time, by an email or a phone call is a guarantee for a definite conversion improvement.

To make this more comprehensive, I have summarized all those steps in a simple and easy-to-remember list. Call it a Digital Marketing Data-Tech Manifesto:

0. Stick to your principles. And don’t forget to have principles in advance.
1. Inspire your users through content. Content that is inherently aligned with your branding DNA.
2. Build your digital assets to keep inspiration going (help, assist, compare, illustrate and easy-to-close convert)
3. Do before thinking about the right option. And once you are immersed in “the-doing” task, take the advantage of testing different options.
4. Do not think your traditional segments are more valuable than your digital audiences. I wouldn’t be so sure.
5. Split your digital skills (Content Strategy, Social Media, SEO, Paid Media, Programmatic Ad). And keep your assets unified, as well your users’ tracking with tools and data.
6. Make technological decisions and do not forget that winning your users is an Art.

All this takeaways are fully condensed in this single statement:

“When Digital (and anytime in life), Be consistent”.

And I want to add up the next request: ”Please, share this post” (to give a context to the final statement).

Thank you. My gratitude.

Acknowledgement: To Tania Asa for your ideas + inspiration shaping “Cerrando el Círculo de la Estrategia Digital” into this post.

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