Designing a digital marketing strategy can be a daunting task. Here we look at the key questions to be asking throughout the design process and beyond into the implementation stage.
Identify your organisational goals
1. What is the overall mission of your organisation?
2. What are your organisational Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) ?
3. What marketing objectives tie in with the above?
4. What are the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to your current marketing model?
Conducting a SWOT analysis focusing on capacity, brand, values, reach and impact will help you to think through this.
Define your audiences and stakeholders
5. Who does your organisation depend on?
Doing a stakeholder mapping exercise could help you to categorise the people you engage with and inform the ways that you communicate with them. Remember to include internal stakeholders such as staff and trustees.
6. From this list, who are your priority stakeholders?
Find your values
7. Every organisation has values, even if they aren’t clearly articulated. What are yours?
8. How can you make sure these values influence your digital strategy?
Here are examples of values held by charities we have worked with:
Prioritise the participation of local communities
Tell positive stories that empower and inspire change
Use digital as enabler rather than the end-goal
Use appropriate and sustainable solutions for the context
Place women’s rights at the heart
Involve young people
9. How can you include your team and beneficiaries in defining your values? Focus groups are a good place to start.
Work out your capacity
10. How many man-hours do you have to invest in your digital marketing?
11. What’s your budget?
Decide what content you’re using
12. What’s your strongest content asset? We love that WWF regularly use pictures drawn by their supporters.
13. How are you going to use this content to engage your supporters? Oxfam GB took a humourous approach in this image shared on Instagram, in direct contrast to the type of imagery shared by many international development NGOs. (Read more about the importance of positive and engaging imagery here.)
14. What types of content are appropriate for different audiences?
Identify your channels
15. What is the best way to engage with your different audiences? Is there any research you can draw on investigating how the demographics you are targeting respond through different channels?
16. Set up benchmarks and goals for on and offline marketing. What does success look like? Doubling your donations?
If achieving these goals involves your target audiences interacting with your website, then setting up goals in Google Analytics (eg. donating or downloading a resource) is an important tool for helping you work out how your efforts are contributing to overall organisational goals.
For example, rather than just tracking the amount of people who subscribe to your newsletter and open it, by setting up goals you can start measuring directly how many of these go on to donate to your organisation or fill in a volunteering enquiry - a much more meaningful figure.
17. How does success translate into website goals?
Plan, analyse & adjust
“Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.” - Albert Einstein
Always come back to your marketing KPIs and adjust your activities in order to increase positive results.
18. What pages have the highest bounce rate on your website?
19. What content has the best engagement?
20. What external trends do you need to bear in mind?
21. How do these findings suggest you should change your activities in order to better achieve success?
For more information on designing, measuring and improving your digital strategy take a look at our guides section where you'll find lots of free resources including a step by step guide to building a communications plan for your charity together with a free communications plan template.