Digital strategy: formalise it

Digital strategy: formalise it

A majority of businesses still don’t have proper planning in place for their digital marketing efforts – those that do are at an advantage.

In its 2015 What Works Where survey of B2B marketers, Omobono found that only 28% of businesses have a formal digital communications strategy. A further 39% had an ‘informal’ version, but 33% had none at all.

So, what are the advantages of creating a digital communications strategy?

  1. We are living in a new world in which digital is now a part of everyday life, not something separate – strategies need to be similarly integrated.
  2. Digital spending grows every year; it will rise to nealy US$200 billion worldwide in 2016, according to Statista. Digital spending is also increasingly fragmented across channels. No business can tolerate failure to control strategy and spending in such an important area for long.
  3. CMOs who have never had one before can take the opportunity to re-orient the entire company in a digital direction.
  4. Strategy allows for boldness. Marketing is becoming increasingly complex, so many marketers are forced to try and cover ‘all the bases’, resulting in unadventurous decisions to do the job adequately. A formal plan is an opportunity to set out and implement a revolutionary strategy.
  5. A long-term plan can be adjusted so that the business can take advantage of trends such as the growth in mobile/interactive, while maintaining consistency from the customer’s perspective.
  6. It helps ensure every department is on-message. Social media means all employees can communicate; a formal strategy enables the marketing department to keep this under control and maintain brand consistency.
  7. Consistency can be achieved geographically as well, and this is more important than ever. The Omobono survey revealed that 78% of those marketers with responsibilities going beyond one country are now covering to a wider range of territories than three years ago.
  8. In the spirit of breaking down barriers and removing silos, if parts of the company’s marketing have been hived off – by the IT team, for example – this is a chance to bring them back under proper oversight.
Thomas Brown Former Director, Strategy and Marketing CIM
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