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Developing a Digital Marketing Plan for 2013

Wednesday - December 19th, 2012

Written by: Tristan Pelligrino

Developing a Digital Marketing Plan for 2013

Typically, companies develop a marketing plan on an annual basis. Just before a new year starts, many companies hold year-end meetings to discuss past performance and strategies for the upcoming year. As we move closer to 2013, most companies are developing digital marketing plans for the new year.

Marketing Trends in 2013

I must admit, I enjoy reading round-up posts at the end of the year or right at the beginning of a new year. For example, posts that talk about the “best marketing campaigns of 2012″ or “what to expect in social media in the next year” always catch my eye on Twitter and other social networks. Before getting into the development of a digital marketing plan for 2013, I thought I’d highlight some of my favorite posts that discuss trends in 2013. Here’s a brief list to checkout:

As you can see, digital marketing is changing every year. In 2013, there’s a lot to consider, so it’s important to get a plan together for your organization. Here’s a blueprint for creating an effective digital marketing strategy in 2013.

The Components of Your Digital Marketing Plan

  1. Understand your Audience – Some things never change. The first step you need to complete when creating a digital marketing plan is to determine who your target audience is. By fully understanding who your target audience is, you will be able to create content specifically for those people and determine which marketing methods will be best to reach those consumers on the web. One of the major tasks that you should consider is the development of buyer personas. As data moves to the forefront, it is still important to humanize your audience. The Content Marketing Institute has a great post on how to dissect your audience.
  2. Set Goals – Having clearly defined goals in place before you execute your digital marketing plan will allow you to periodically take a step back and analyze whether or not your plan is helping you reach your goals. If you notice you are not hitting your goals, you can make changes to your plan and try to optimize specific portions of your marketing plan. One of the obvious things that you’ll need to do is ensure you have your analytics in order (Google Analytics).
  3. Create Great Content – A big aspect of digital marketing is content creation. Not only does your website need to be filled with high quality content, but all of your marketing content needs to be of high quality as well. When you distribute premium material useful for your audience, you will be able to position yourself as an industry expert. This will help you gain the trust of your target audience, allowing you to better market your products or services down the road. No matter what type of content you are creating whether it is a blog post for your website, a guest post for another website, a Facebook update or tweet, you need to ensure your content provides some type of value to your readers. This will ensure the rest of your online marketing efforts are rewarded as your audience will continue to be receptive to the new content that you produce.
  4. Broadcast and Share Your Story – Once you have your content created, it is equally important to distribute and broadcast across the web. Rather than just tweeting your posts, join smaller online communities and build relationships. Work with an influencer blogger in your niche to share information. In 2013, get creative with your distribution tactics and go beyond a simple tweet or Facebook post.
  5. Monitor Progress – Your digital marketing strategy is not set in stone in 2013. In fact, things change so rapidly that I can guarantee you’ll need to make some modifications. Analyze your site traffic and user behavior to understand more about your customers. To get more out of your analytics, checkout SEOmoz’s post on creating custom dashboards. In addition to your site, monitor your progress on social media and identify areas where your content is shared.

Ultimately, understanding your target audience, finding where your audience congregates online, creating high quality content that provides your audience with value, setting goals for your campaign and monitoring the results are the major ways you can build a successful content marketing strategy in 2013.

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