A new website launch is an exciting time. It’s the evolution of your brand, and serves as an opportunity to do bigger and better things with your digital marketing.
However, it’s the time spent after the “go live” of your new website that determines your digital marketing success. A website is one of your most powerful tools, but your ongoing strategy is more important. Below I’ve outlined three simple, but not necessarily quick, steps to be successful with your new website.
Step 1. Determine Goals
“If you aim at nothing you will hit it every time.” Zig Ziglar
Write down your top goals of your new website. Be sure to include any stakeholders in your discussion in determining goals. You may already have goals in place as part of the process of designing and developing your new website.
The more specific you can be, the better. State the goal, and the why behind choosing that goal.
Some example goals:
- Increase organic search traffic by 20% in one year.
Why: Increase ongoing non-paid marketing reach.
- Double the number of lead form submissions in the next six months.
Why: Increase revenue for the business.
- Increase email list subscribers by 500 in one year.
Why: Increase reach of our email content.
- Triple our social media engagement on Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn.
Why: Engage more of our customers on the platforms they use.
With goals determined, be sure you have adequate means of tracking any KPI (Key Performance Indicators). You can use tools like Google Analytics to track website conversion, your Sales CRM to track lead sources, and Google Search Console to follow organic search rankings.
Step 2. Develop Your Strategy
To achieve your goals, you need to have a sound strategy in place that helps you create the inbound demand, engagement, and growth that will drive your marketing to the next level. Your website is simply a tool in that strategy, but it can not act alone.
Your digital marketing strategy should be well thought out, and thoroughly explore any of the areas that will help you achieve your sales and marketing goals.
A digital marketing strategy should include:
A detailed description of who your customers are. This is a creative exercise that helps you develop an identity for your customers, and provides you with a clear target for your marketing messages. Know who you are marketing to.
Assuming that organic search traffic is part of your digital marketing strategy, you should have solid SEO research in place. Know what keywords you are targeting, how you are currently ranking, and ensure that tools are in place to optimize your content and track your ongoing rankings.
In the online world, content is king. The content that your brand produces is what is “consumed” by your prospects. Your blog posts, newsletters, Instagram posts, etc., are all part of your overarching content plan. A good place to start with a content plan is what I call The Content Equation. This outlines the content consumed by your prospects at each part of your sales cycle. Along with the type of content you plan on creating, be sure to include a frequency.
Social Media Plan
Your customers and business will determine what social channels are most relevant for your strategy. As you move through creating your customer personas and content plans, determine what social media and online engagement channels you want to use. Choose the platforms, define the content, and set the frequency you want to engage.
Always tie your strategy back to the goals you selected. Be intentional, and keep your strategy simple.
Step 3. Build Discipline and Execute
Like any plan in life, it all comes down to execution. Building the discipline to stick with your strategy and run through the activities is what will make or break your digital marketing success.
More often than not, if you are having trouble with building the discipline to complete your online marketing activities, it’s probably because A) You don’t have defined goals in place, or B) You don’t have a well-developed strategy.
Set yourself up for success by making your goals and strategy clear, as well as keeping your activities simple. Know what you are going to do, why you are doing it, and when it will be done. Do less, but better.
Use a calendar or project management program to create a fixed schedule of your content and distribution channels.
While you are a champion of digital marketing success at your business, you may still find that others can help with content creation. Review your internal team and see if there are others who can provide unique perspectives.
Your Ongoing Success
Keep a growth mindset as you continue to execute and build on your digital marketing strategy. You’ll find that as your business evolves, along with technology, your goals and strategy will change along with them.
Your ongoing success will be most effective by finding out what’s working, and doing more of it; and finding out what’s not working, and doing less of it.
As you look back in six months, one year, five years, you’ll be able to see the cumulative results of your digital marketing strategy. Your new website serves as a primary tool, but your strategic actions are the deciding factor.