The world around us is constantly changing and even more so in the area of customer engagement. Developments in technology, business models, predictive analytics and marketing ROIs mean that we need to be more scientific in our marketing approach. This is what we mean by “smart marketing”.
With 70% of customer engagement online, the sales process needs marketing even more than ever before. Gone are the days of rocking up to a company reception desk or lunch meeting in the hope of finding new business using nothing more than a bit of charm and some well-worn phrases. No, these days it’s all about collaboration between sales and marketing, letting the customer lead the way, responding to their needs and meeting them in their ‘micro moments’.
And marketing has to be super smart.
The stats vary, but it takes about 6-8 touches before a prospect becomes a lead. On social media, you have about 8 seconds for a user to speed read your content and engage with it. Just a couple of seconds’ delay on your website load times, and you’ve trashed your conversion rates and increased your bounce rates. This is why it’s so important to set digital marketing smart goals as part of your overall marketing strategy.
So what do we mean by marketing needing to be smart?
Perceptive, well-informed, resourceful, inventive, creative, alert – these are all synonyms for ‘smart’, and they should all describe a successful marketing team and smart marketing process. If you’re not thinking ahead to the user experience and the customer journey, your competitors most definitely are. You need to be one step ahead of them.
Because your website is your shop window, you’ll want to drive as much traffic there as possible – and keep people there for as long as possible. This means setting smart marketing goals and tracking:
Make sure you track this over time. A fall in traffic might be due to broken links, technical problems with page load times or issues with the search engines. You need to monitor the situation constantly and be ready to take action.
Keep monitoring those keywords, create and promote new content via social media and build links to your website.
Where are people coming from? Is it organic traffic, referrals from your outreach program or direct? Which sources are increasing or decreasing, and what action can you take? And, of course, as part of your digital media planning, make sure your tracking codes are reporting correctly.
Are they new contacts or returning? How many interactions are they having on the website? If you have frequent returning visitors, this is a sign of valuable and engaging content. Of course, the opposite is true if they never return!
How often are people returning, and how long are they spending there?
Which are the most visited pages and viewed or downloaded content? What are your click-through and conversion rates?
Are people leaving the site? Do they tend to drop off at a particular page or piece of content? And don’t forget to measure those all-important bounce rates (people leaving after just one page view)
Finally, the essential benchmark process – how have these measurements changed over time, and how do they compare with your competitors?
Armed with all of this information, you can start to become smarter about engaging with your prospects and customers, setting those smart marketing goals and ensuring you achieve them. The key to meeting smart digital marketing objectives is being able (and brave enough) to monitor and change tactics in the middle of a campaign – constantly tweaking and improving the results to maximise your ROI.