True digital marketing innovation marries the past and the present.
We often hear that we can’t know where we’re going unless we know where we’ve been.
Of course you have to start somewhere, but once you have a baseline for guidelines you should use that to dictate your next move.
Here’s how to look back and propel yourself forward …
How You Should Look At Digital Marketing Innovation
Let’s go to the granular level to break it down:
The Past: Time Tested
- Understand your proven techniques
The Present: What’s Happening Right Now
- Adapt your old techniques with what’s happening now
The Future: What We Expect To Achieve
- Analyze your techniques and modify based on your results
Even if you’re just starting out, there are some questions you can answer to determine your baseline.
We use an onboarding questionnaire to get a feel for where our new clients sit with their digital marketing, and based on their answers put them into “buckets” or levels.
Here are some ideas based on our worksheet to help you pin down your level of marketing:
- I am tracking and measuring my campaigns based on behaviors (example: clicks) (Y/N — Level One)
- I use standard metrics to gauge my digital marketing success (Y/N — Level One)
- Google Analytics is an important tool in my toolbelt (Y/N — Level One)
- I use benchmarking to marry past results with current results (Y/N — Level Two)
- I use analytics software or worksheets to track results (Y/N — Level Two)
- I’m comfortable using optimization tactics — for advertising or online content (Y/N — Level Two)
- I use segmentation strategies with my marketing list(s) (Y/N — Level Two)
- I use some form of automation with my digital marketing (Y/N — Level Two)
- I use drip campaigns to nurture potential clients and convert leads (Y/N — Level Two)
- I use advanced segmentation with my marketing list(s) (Y/ N — Level Three)
- I create personalized content based on my advanced segmentation (Y/N — Level Three)
- I produce cross-channel messaging for my digital marketing campaigns (Y/N — Level Three)
- Everything is mobile optimized (Y/N — Level Three)
- I maintain high levels of growth — with strong engagement — on social channels (Y/N — Level Three)
- I have performed deep audience profiling as part of my audience development plan (Y/N — Level Three)
Be honest with yourself.
Some people aren’t even at Level One, but that’s okay because at least now you have something to aspire to (and a semi roadmap to get started with!).
You Can’t Be Innovative Without The Basics
You simply can’t win if you aren’t in the game.
Development in the following areas is critical for businesses looking for a leg up online:
- Content marketing
- Digital advertising
- Social media marketing
- Landing page optimization
- Email marketing
The basics should make up your baseline, and moving forward you can add pieces or elements to supplement your campaigns.
Other Past, Present, & Future Things To Observe
Past: Who did I target?
Present (or starting place): Who am I targeting? New niches? New segments? Or if you’re just starting out this is where your buyer personas come in.
Future: How will I define, attract, and maintain my alpha audience? What segments are most engaged?
2. Content Strategy
Past: What pieces performed best? Worst?
Present: How will I get my content to move (content distribution)?
Future: Where does my content need to be seen? How does my alpha audience prefer to consume my content?
3. Lead Generation
Past: Which landing pages have the highest conversion rates? Why?
Present: How can I attract new leads through content?
Future: How will I nurture my leads once they’ve opted in?
Past: Which content, emails, landing pages, etc. spurred the most positive behavior(s)?
Present: What KPIs (key performance indicators) and tools will help us track success?
Future: How can we improve on poor strategies or go further with working campaigns?
Innovation, Not For Idiots
I see a lot of posts talking about how to be innovative and other digital marketing innovation tips.
And honestly, I don’t think you can make something be innovative, just like you can’t make something go viral.
Those who do happen upon innovation have done so through tried-and-true measurement, through strategic planning, and a solid digital marketing foundation.
The bottom line is: Know where you’ve been, or make today the starting point, and measure, track, glean, learn, and gain insight every step of the way.
Doing that is the only surefire way I know to be innovative.
Do you agree or disagree? Let me know in the comments below!
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