EyeCandy Creative

Digital Marketing is Useless. (If You Don’t Start With Strategy.)

When a new client comes to EyeCandy saying, “I need some digital marketing,” I always start off with the same response: “Why?” It’s not a dismissal or a challenge—it’s a genuine question, and a crucial one.

Most businesses do need some kind of digital marketing. But “some kind of digital marketing” could mean PPC ads, SEO, email drip campaigns, or dozens of other options. Which tools and tactics are right for your business? It depends on the “why.”

Often, leaders hear the buzzword “digital marketing” and figure they need to invest to stay competitive. Which is true, on a base level. But if you don’t work through the “why”—open-mindedly, completely—you may throw money at campaigns with unfocused keywords, off-base audience targeting, and murky messaging, none of which results in real ROI.

The “why” informs a digital marketing strategy. And a digital marketing strategy is what your business actually needs.

Building a Digital Marketing Strategy 

Digital marketing strategy is one of the most misunderstood and, consequently, undervalued services in the marketing world. It’s complex and forever changing, so it can seem like no one agrees on best practices. That’s because digital strategy isn’t one discipline. It doesn’t have one answer. And it generally can’t come from just one person. 

Done well, digital marketing strategy development is what happens when a knowledgeable, curious marketing team collaborates with a client to put “how,” “when,” and “where” behind a “why.”

The step-by-step work that goes into building an individual digital strategy involves answering a slew of other questions. Who do you need to reach online? What do they care about? How do they communicate? What key problems do you solve for them, and how is your solution different from all the other ones? What does a “win” look like for you?

The answers help you set a goal, create a budget, and commit to a purpose. Those feed into a strategy that’s focused on where you want to go, with streamlined tactics to get you there.

Making Digital Marketing Work

Digging deep into your online marketing goals sometimes unearths the need for other foundational marketing work, which is a good thing. Many teams realize that, before it makes sense to invest in digital ad campaigns and animated explainer videos, it’s necessary to go back and build comprehensive brand guidelines and develop a website that’s intuitive to use and reflects the brand’s personality. 

The process can feel a little like peeling an onion—layers revealing more and more layers. But you land at a firm understanding of who your online audience is, what you want and need to tell them about your business, and how you’re going to do so.

We’ve stressed to clients many times over the years: Let us guide you through identifying what you really want and need to get out of digital marketing. There’s value in getting perspective from outside minds, especially ones that understand how to turn a “why” into a data-backed digital strategy with tactics and timelines that squeeze the most out of your resources. 

Part of our job is saying “no.” Or, more specifically, “Here’s a more effective option”—advising our partners and protecting their investment so every marketing dollar works toward a goal.  

More often than not, what a company needs in a digital marketing strategy isn’t what they initially expected. And that’s the beauty of the process.

Looking to expand your digital marketing efforts in a focused, strategic way? Schedule a meeting with EyeCandy.