The top considerations for designing a dynamic and traffic-drawing marketing budget include, among other things, the attributes of the target market,the resources available, the size and stage of the business and the industry characteristics. With digital marketing techniques being bred anew almost every day, it is important not to lose sight of the timelines and deliverables that must be assigned to the main budget.
Identify, Analyse and Segment your Target Market
Understand who your end-user is. Classify the buyers according to demographics like age , gender, income, profession and as an additional step, understand their personas to enhance their emotional buying potential. Factors like purchasing intent, buying frequency and online habits can be analysed to focus only on those channels that can attract maximum traffic on a minimum budget. Chasing after an irrelevant target market is a mistake one cannot afford to make while aligning resources to different campaigns.
Establish Measurable and Short-Run KPIs
What do you want your online marketing budget to achieve? Key Performance Indicators are effective control mechanisms that can be built into the budget. Instead of having unrealistic and intangible KPIs, drill down them down to numbers like, number of social media followers achieved, percentage of cart size increases, number of content shares or downloads, number of visitors converted, percentage of returning customers compared to acquired ones and so on.
Evaluate your spend on agencies, periodically
Digital marketing agencies are those experts who can tailor the best budget for you by making use of their expertise, market access and multi-channel deployment. However, the costs of bringing in such experts must be justified in light of the available resources and the results that have been promised in the agreed time-frame. Milestones and performance indicators must be mutually agreed. The world of your customers cannot be manipulated with flashy ads. They are becoming increasingly ad-averse and look only for candid facts. The agency must be able to identify their pain points and present your brand as the ultimate solution.
- Repurpose Your Online Content
This is a time and cost saving tip to leverage your content marketing activities. Different types of content are demanded by different content platforms. For example, a white paper published online may need well-researched and in-depth content, while a tweet or an insta-post doesn’t require essays, but short and crisp punch lines. Instead of demanding fresh content all the time, it is worthwhile to look internally for recycling content. Various content published on slideshows, blogs, newsletters, user feedback and snippets on social media are some platforms that can be considered for repurposing content.
- Build an omnichannel marketing plan
Omnichannel marketing is an endeavour that provides an identical and seamless buying experience for the customer to access your business from multiple devices and channels. Your multi-channel marketing budget must provide an integrated customer experience. An important difference from multi-channel marketing is that the omnichannel approach is not about using as many channels as possible, but to relate every channel with customer consistency, satisfaction and engagement.
- Enlisting all Channels and Tactics; Choosing Wisely
The mistakes firms make while adopting a DIY approach is that they ignore many relevant and easy options that are already at their disposal. Unless they are detailed, a rational choice remains elusive. Keeping in mind the paucity of time available to attract your prime lead, time must be sensibly divided among the most rewarding channels from the list below:
- Social media campaigning
- Email marketing
- Inorganic/ Paid advertising
- SEO/ Website optimization / SEA/ CRO
- Mobile marketing
- Be Mindful of Industry Trends
Going through how different channels have performed in the line of industry you are in will save precious time in designing your online marketing budget. Depending on the sector of business, be it manufacturing, FMCG, marketing, fashion, healthcare or ecommerce, both the past and future trends of the industry can help you form an objective SWOT analysis of the channels and their digital attributions. While social media ads might have drawn a significant ROI for one industry, another might have achieved the same by a prudent investment in online banner and display ads. Most importantly, make your online marketing campaign mobile friendly as it cuts across all types of industries.
- Understand the Analytics and Reprioritize goals
Any business can generate numbers. Numbers on website visitors, followers, and sales percentages can be generated within seconds using modern day tools. But these numbers can also be converted into actionable data using qualitative analytical tools that form the basis for data-driven decisions. Important tangents with regards to buyer response to online marketing campaigns, buyer psychology on new launches, social media presence and brand awareness can be drawn when numbers become action points.
- Undertake Competitor Analysis
Quite often it is a proactive move to understand who your competitors are and how they plan their online marketing activities, including the time and budget allocated to various channels. This activity of profiling competitors is necessary when you need to stay one-step ahead and save time and money. By understanding buyer response to competitor campaigns, you can refine and tweak your own, instead of building something new from scratch.
- Ditch What Doesn’t Work and Pursue Performance
Like any other marketing strategy, the digital one takes time to show results, but short-run monitoring is necessary to identify and dump low performing ones. In a competitive landscape, unless you pursue the top-trending channels, you are likely to become outdated. The investment you have made in irrelevant marketing channels becomes heavier when you cling to it without the determination to dump it at the right time.
Before you seal your budget for the year, ensure that your core priority or expectation is rightly addressed, be it sales, lead generation or brand awareness. Make use of various analytical tools to track your budget and do not hesitate to tweak your budget and revisit online marketing goals. Pursue only those channels that can bring you maximum mileage for your investment, in a time-frame that justifies the dollars spent.