Digital Marketing: The Hype, Hype, Hype…

by Heidi Schwende, Featured Contributor

I’M SURE that’s how it must feel, but the fact of the matter is, digital marketing strategy is critically important for your business.

Digital-Marketing-Mix-thumb5 techniques, 10 secrets, 7 tactics ~ Enough!

I’m sure you’ve read the 5 techniques to crack content management or the 10 secret success factors to winning at social media or even the 7 tactics to earn this or that or the other….

No 5, 7 or 10 things will succeed on their own

The digital landscape is incredibly complex and no 5, 7 or even 10 things not founded in strategy will help you win on their own. To claim that is a gross oversimplification of our present digital marketing landscape.

So how can we all cut through the flood of information that comes at us daily on what we should or should not be doing with our digital strategy? It’s tough, I know. So I hope I can cut through the [ehem] hype and clutter for you.

The most important shift happened in 2014

One of the single most important shifts in the digital landscape happened earlier this year. For the first time in internet history, internet usage on mobile devices exceeded PC usage. According to Search Engine Watch*, the time has come to seriously consider integrating mobile-ready versions of all mission-critical assets; applications, data, websites, communications, demos, sales materials, customer service ~ all!

It took a considerable amount of time for businesses and brands to embrace the potential of websites and the internet in general, but with the advent of mobile, we no longer have the luxury of time. If we aren’t mobile ready, we can’t delay because we will be leaving money on the table so to speak.

Executives are leading the way in mobile adoption

Contrary to what so many might think, the shift to mobile doesn’t just affect the B2C landscape either. I has shifted in the B2B space as well. Mobile isn’t just for shopping, listening to music or checking out social media. In fact, it’s executives who are actually leading the way in mobile adoption.

Here are some statistics on *B2B decision makers and their mobile devices:

  • 92% of executives own a smartphone used for business
  • 77% of executives use their smartphone to research a product or service for their business
  • 93% of executives will purchase that product via the internet using a laptop or desktop
  • 86% of executives use their tablet to research a product or service for their business

Plotting your course

My strongest recommendation is to start with the basics and work your way out from there. In setting out your strategic course, digital marketing planning should be thought of in a much different way than any other more traditional business planning.

Plan for the unknowns

The unknowns make it quasi-impossible to plan for more than a year at a time, if that. The technological influences are changing at lightning speed and your plan needs to be fluid enough to move along with the most impacting of those changes as you go. That being said, set your foundation first and ignore the rest for a little while.

Your basics should be done in this order:

  1. digital marketing strategy
  2. user interface design
  3. creative elements
  4. content creation and SEO
  5. fully optimized mobile ready website
  6. analytics and tracking
  7. social media integration to your site
  8. marketing management
  9. paid search strategy
  10. search marketing management

Then and only then should you begin digitizing your operations setup:

  1. Marketing Operations
  2. Sales Operations
  3. Advertising Operations
  4. Social Operations
  5. eCommerce Operations

This is what the digital landscape looks like as mapped out by Gartner** [see below]. No wonder there’s so much confusion around digital marketing. Find someone who understands how this all affects your business and who can take you through the steps to getting there in the most productive and cost-effective way possible. Please don’t leave this to amateurs or solution pushers. Work with a digital strategy development consultant even if it’s on a solution. A consultant will have a clear understanding of your existing architecture and will be able to evaluate the business impact of any solution proposed.

Trust me when I say this, the needle will absolutely move for you as soon as you embrace the power of digital marketing strategy for your business.

You’ll be a digital enterprise before you know it and reaping the rewards of your efforts.

Gartner Digital Marketing Transit Map


Heidi Schwende
Heidi Schwende
THE disruptive impact of digitization. It's a wave that'll wash away those who aren't embracing it. Very soon businesses of all sizes will acquire, manage and retain customers 100% online. I've worked in digital marketing for Global Fortune 500's for over 15 years and I assure you, this wave of disruption will only intensify as time goes by. Priority 1 is helping business succeed online. I will bring every bit of my experience to bear in working out a digital strategy for your business. And together with my team, we'll develop solutions to target, engage and convert for you like never before. My specialties are; digital marketing strategy, proprietary social media platforms, Google enterprise, social selling, responsive design, mobile marketing and social media, adaptive SEO, paid search, web systems & CRM integration, IMM & Governance.

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