After years of working with a variety of different size and type companies, there is usually one question that just doesn't get a clear answer. How successful is your digital footprint? One of the reasons why I think it may be a challenging question, is because many marketers struggle with exactly what their digital footprint should be. Therefore, it’s impossible to know if it's successful if it can't be well defined. Therein lies the bigger issue … Exactly what is a Digital Footprint?
One of the first steps we suggest to clients is to define the foothold they would like to have online. You could start with outlining the tactics and channels you are currently engaged in or working on, but remember to also include areas of opportunity. These could be interactive advertising campaigns or website projects that were sidetracked due to lack of budget or resources, as well as digital efforts the competition is doing but you aren't.
When our team works with marketers to help them develop a strategic digital footprint, these are typically the main areas of focus we review and consider:
- Company Website – Design, Usability and Functionality, as well as Mobile-Friendliness.
- Tracking and Measurement – Typically through web analytics
- Interactive Advertising – To include search, display, video, behavioral, retargeting, social ads, etc.
- Social Media – Where, when, how often and with what?
- Content – Strategy, development and marketing for your website and beyond.
- Search Engine Optimization – Within the website, as well as opportunities to rank unique content offsite.
Developing, and more so successfully implementing, a relevant and effective digital footprint for your organization is critical. This will become the playbook for your company's success, given the increasing importance of the web for any business looking to grow market share and stay competitive. Once you begin implementation of the defined strategy, don’t forget to leverage web analytics to measure the success of each tactic/effort deployed.