Mistakes to Avoid When Planning a Digital Marketing Campaign

Mistakes to Avoid When Planning a

Digital Marketing Campaign

In this era of immense competition, digital media is playing a crucial role in the corporate world.

Research shows that 64% of people use social media channels to find inspiration for shopping. Thus, designing a top-notch digital marketing campaign is essential for both newly emerging and well-established brands.

Even the best marketing connoisseurs can sometimes derail the entire campaign by making seemingly harmless mistakes that don’t go down too well with their target audience.

The internet never forgets. When digital marketing goes awry, your brand is tried in the court of public opinion. IHOP made such a mistake when they compared their product to breasts! Needless to say, Twitter exploded.

The Twitterati was so outraged, IHOP had to issue an apology.

While digital marketing provides endless opportunities to grow, companies need to treat it carefully, as their reputation is at stake.

With the boom of digital media channels, online marketers need to know the pitfalls of implementing ineffective, or worse, shoddy campaigns.

Many businesses have faced great losses due to this carelessness. Therefore, we are sharing 7 mistakes that companies must avoid when planning their digital marketing campaigns.

1. Allowing the boss to set your company’s digital marketing strategy


Bosses are not always right. The boss can be anyone, an investor who is waiting for his returns, a CEO who is focused on increasing sales and cutting costs, or a manager who wants to show commendable performance to the top level management.

All these bosses are only interested in making money. Their sole aim is to get maximum returns and nothing else. But as a digital marketer, your aim is to get maximum returns while keeping all other strings attached, like branding, audience expectation and long term goals.

As a digital marketer, you must not let them ruin your digital marketing campaign. Do your research and prove the effectiveness of your ideas with data, instead of gut feelings.

2. Setting campaigns and goals without understanding your target audience


Understanding your target audience is of prime importance. From budgeting and planning to implementation and results, everything depends on your target audience and their preferences.

Knowing the likes, dislikes, demographics, race, color, income, education and other important information related to your market segment lets you design a powerful marketing strategy.

Some marketers are of the view that their brand is for everyone. However, this approach is wrong. A good example here is Crystal Pepsi. This cola did not contain caffeine. But they also did not study their target market well. Since people weren’t as health-conscious and aware as they are today, Crystal Pepsi failed to create the impact that they had hoped for.

David Novak, Crystal Pepsi Inventor and retired Yum Brands CEO, said he learnt a valuable lesson due to this failure.

Every brand has a target audience and understanding this segment is essential for crafting a campaign that nails it. Dove declares that beauty is for every woman. It targets women of all ages and says that there is no age limit to enhance a woman’s beauty. Put simply, Dove understands the psyche of their target audience, and owes the success of their campaigns to this understanding.

If you are a new brand planning to add some explainer videos about your product, understanding the pain points of your target audience will inevitably help you create work that speaks directly to them.

A good example is the Dollar Shave Club that came up with attention-grabbing videos and created a billion dollar business in less than 6 years. The new player grabbed a big share of men’s razor market, and most of the credit goes to their intelligent digital marketing campaigns.

Products have to be innovated as per the market needs and the taste of people and all of it is only possible with thorough research about a target audience.

Let’s say you have a very innovative and interesting campaign on a particular social media channel but you aren’t getting as many followers or discussions as you had expected. You keep pouring resources into the campaign only to realize later that your target audience is active on a different social media channel. Thus, you’ve squandered your resources.

This is why understanding your target market is the foundation on which you can build a solid brand and reputation.

3. Ignoring data


Charts and reports might look dull but they can do wonders for your business. Every social media channel like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram provides comprehensive analytics whenever someone engages, interacts, likes, or dislikes your page.

You can even get data on your profile visits or the viewers of your recently shared video. These numbers are of immense importance. For instance, you will be able to see which age group or which nationality is most engaged with your videos.

Similarly, the number of shares can tell which videos are most liked by people. This data helps many companies revise their marketing strategies to be more impactful.

These analytics also guide your future marketing strategies.

4. Ignoring technical SEO aspects


One cannot stick to old school SEO principles such as spamming through guest blogging and keyword stuffing. Since Google is changing its policies, we need to keep a keen eye on our SEO strategies. What matters the most is offering quality to our audience.

The number of backlinks or the number of likes and followers will not make a big difference if you are not using a smart strategy. Fake likes and links from PBN might give you short-term results.

By creating content that is meaningful to your audience, and also search engine-friendly, you will notice a growing trend in your interactions with the customers.

Similarly, if you are guest blogging only to generate links, and your articles are not providing quality information to readers, soon enough they will be flagged as spam by search engines.

Semantic SEO should also be kept in mind as Google is now becoming a platform where we cannot just discover information but we can order it, too. If you overlook these technical aspects of SEO, you are making a big mistake!

Video marketing is a great option, but remember that a video should not take too long to load otherwise customers won’t think twice and leave.

These days, animated marketing videos are widely used by various brands and these videos are generating great traffic. This animated video called ‘The Scarecrow’ by Chipotle Mexican Grill was viewed millions of times on the internet and was hailed as innovative marketing and a beautiful piece of art.

Here’s a guide explaining how you can create your own professional animated videos.

5. Using social media for conversions


Gone are the days when people used social media for conversions. This practice only provides short-term results.

The main purpose of being active on social media channels is to get feedback from clients to improve your product or service, and build and maintain close relationships with existing and potential customers.

One cannot answer all queries in detail if the basic aim is conversion rather than relationship building. Social media channels are a great platform for taking reviews from clients. Brands like Nike, Adidas and many others have built a strong customer relationship by being active on social media.

On the other hand, social media gives an opportunity to potential customers to read reviews of former clients and develop trust. In addition to this, a social media platform is also used for increasing connectivity among clients. Here are some ideas on gathering more testimonials.

6. Not scaling campaigns and channels


Scaling is of utmost important when it comes to designing a digital marketing campaign. When resources are limited, we need to maximize the output in a smarter way.

For instance, if the budget is low and a company’s target audience is mostly active on Facebook, they should direct a part of their marketing resources to creating content that resonates with a Facebook audience.

Here’s a guide to help you scale your digital marketing campaigns.

7. Running organic and paid parts separately


Whether we are talking about organic or paid channels, both of them are important. But, it also depends on the nature of your business. If you’re running a social service, organic will play a vital role because users will have a hard time trusting you through a paid advertisement for community development.

In a digital marketing campaign for a company, one needs to align both organic and paid aspects of the campaign to get maximum results.

If your organic results are awesome and you are not active in paid ads, it is likely that your business won’t show on Google’s top searches. Google is now showing ads in the top 2-3 searches.

This means one cannot stick to just organic if you want greater visibility for your business. A quick search for social media management software on Google shows this:

On the other hand, having only paid ads with no presence in the SERPs is also a big drawback because most people won’t rely on paid ads, particularly if they aren’t already aware of your brand or product.

In short, digital marketing campaigns are the lifeblood of brands. A few factors such as scaling campaigns, conducting thorough researches, using analytics, keeping expectations realistic and using the latest technology are sure to give the results you need.

As we assessed different digital marketing campaigns, we found mistakes mentioned in this article to be common in most of them.

Note: The opinions expressed in this article are the views of the author, and not necessarily the views of Web Design and SEO of Carolinas, its staff, or its partners.

Author: Thrive Internet Marketing

Thrive Internet Marketing: a full-service online marketing company offering web design, digital advertising, SEO, social media marketing, and more. Since 2005, our team has been delivering massive and sustainable sales growth to all types of businesses across North America. Thrive is passionate about using the power of the Internet to grow any business. View all posts by Thrive Internet Marketing

SEO 2017

SEO 2017

Is SEO DEAD?

SEO has become a dirty word for a lot of website owners. Search engines have been progressing forward in leaps and bounds headed by Google as the leader. These changes did not happen overnight, they have been progressing since 2013 and possibly earlier. So it’s not like we just woke up one day and all of these newfound changes are here. Google has been posturing for quite some time now showing us the direction in which they were headed. Some of us listened and the majority did not. The majority of website owners are still dumbfounded as to the direction that Google and other search engines are headed.

Let’s break this down as to who is affected and the ones that aren’t. Once again the almighty dollar has come into play to achieve rankings. Online companies with deep pockets are not affected. They have the money to pay for marketing. Now, for all of us website owners that have to work hard every day for our money are the ones affected by these new changes. Is the American dream for business owners without deep pockets dead?

No the dream is not dead, but the road getting there will probably be bumpy. Website owners still very much need SEO companies but there is a catch. All website owners will need to be very savvy in their selection of an SEO company. Here is the reason why. Search engine optimization and search engine marketing are now more united than ever. The SEO companies that only know how to rank keywords are now a thing of the past. What was working at the beginning of 2016 and before doesn’t work the same in 2017. My suggestion for finding a qualified SEO company will go something like this. Ask to see ranking reports of their past and present clients. All qualified SEO companies will have these reports and gladly show them to you and explain their details. Do not accept reports that show traffic. Here’s why, 95% or higher uses Google analytics for traffic reporting. If the account has not had the proper filters put in place the report will be flawed by as much as 25% to 40%. Until the filters are put on the analytic account the account will show a large amount of spam usually from other countries that are attaching to their URL. This is very common but can also be used to show traffic that isn’t real. For this reason alone do not accept an analytic report as to the quality of the SEO companies experience.

These ranking reports are produced in a time frame. For this reason the SEO company will be able to show you when they started with the client and the progression of rankings that they achieved for that client. What you can expect to see is positive performance from month-to-month. That is all any legitimate SEO firm will guarantee with a few small exceptions.

The suggestions that I have given you will give you the best response in hiring the right company for you. The reason why SEO has been given such a bad rap is because there are way too many amateurs claiming to be professionals. Out of all the companies that claim to be SEO experts only about 10% truly are experts. Now that you have some new weapons in your arsenal you will be much more prepared in selecting the right SEO firm. Now let me get back on topic.

If you will take a couple of search term keywords that you are trying to rank for, an Google them you should be able to see a difference in the search results. If you have been keeping up with your rankings for your website you should have an idea of what companies have been populating the first and second page. You should be seeing companies that have dominated these pages starting to fall back to page 3 or four.

The big dogs in your industry will always be there because of their deep pockets. What this means for you is that you will have to be very savvy on how you spend your money so that you can get the best bang your buck. The direction that Google and other search engines are headed would be to provide better informative search results. Let me mention a few other search engines before we move too much ahead of ourselves. Google, Yahoo, Bing, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Insta-gram, LinkedIn, YouTube to just name a few. These are the main search engines that you should target.

What you should be seeing depending on your industry is that the ads are geared towards reviews and quality information about the search term. What you will see fading from these results will be ads advertising products or services directly. All of us have noticed over the last year or two how are meta-descriptions have shown up in the results partially or information taken directly from URL listed. This is why Google did not just drop this in our lap overnight.

seo company, seo experts,seo company, seo experts Google has been showing us the way for quite some time. Your meta-title and meta-description have always been character limited and they still are for the website owner but not for Google. I have seen ads where Google pulled the information from the website that have over 300 to 500 characters in the description. When the meta-description are filled out your limited to 150-175 characters for that box. If the Google bot finds data that it likes you can bet that it’s going to be displayed.( see photo above) As site owners we cannot place that much description in the box if we want it to be seen. What I am leading up to here is that Google is looking for informative information about products and services. Yes I know you’re thinking right now that you have been doing just this but if you are not on page 1 or two then you have not been doing this correctly. What all of us website owners must do is re-think how we write our information to produce sales.

Write quality information describing your product and giving reviews about what people are saying pertaining to your product. “Leave the sales pitch out of the information that you want to show up online.” It’s okay to have the sales pitch on your website or the page. Do not place it in your meta-boxes or title. This is what 95% of us have been doing for years. Now that must “stop” if we want to rank higher for our search terms. This is not a hard concept to grasp, it takes a little bit of rethinking how the search engines are ranking keyword terms in 2017. The proper SEO for websites and optimization of pages are still the same. This data must be improved on all pages that you want to rank in the search engines. Let me clarify that if you are using PPC you can place the ad any way that you want because you are paying for it. For those of us that are trying use the organic method of ranking this information is for you.

Summary

I hope that this article has given you a better look as to how the search engines are moving forward in online marketing. Pay to play is the new theme and will only increase as time goes by. Deep pockets will prevail and those of us with our pockets half-full or less will have to be very savvy with our funds in order to succeed in this online market place. SEO is an investment for all website owners that will bring you value down the road. Investing in your website should always be your main goal. Be smart when choosing an SEO company, there are many fakes and amateurs out there that will take your money and deliver nothing. Check out our information and give us a call to discuss your plans to success.

Please check back for more informative information about SEO and the road going forward.

Kris Kartopolous