It goes without saying that there are a LOT of digital marketers out there. Many attend the top conventions to learn from the best. Unfortunately, most digital marketers have the bad habit of running before they’ve learned to walk. They dive into the latest tactics head first with no preparation, ample research, or goals in place. Putting these elements in place doesn’t take that much time or effort, but it does take a teaspoon of organization and a dash of understanding intent. Here are 32 must-have digital marketing habits to include in the day-to-day workflow that will help give you a clear path to growth and success.
32 Good Habits & Tactics Every Digital Marketer Needs
Pre-Production Goes a Long Way
If you follow a lot of digital marketing blogs, it’s tempting to jump straight into a new tactic that you just read about without creating a game plan. Creating a game plan is key to organization, documentation, and better future decision-making. Here are the elements to include when putting together an effective game plan:
- List down objectives. Identify your objectives for each campaign. Don’t forget to include start dates, end dates, and any financial goals to hit for these objectives.
- Create Squeeze Pages. If your customer journey starts from Facebook, make sure you’re sending this audience to a congruent squeeze page. Make the squeeze page match the visuals of your ads so people know it’s the same company. When people bounce off your squeeze page because they don’t recognize the lander, it’s a costly opportunity miss and waste of your time and resources.
- Split Test. ABT. Always be testing. Plan out your split tests. Whether it’s a button color or a headline, only test 1 thing at a time.
- Documentation. Designate a place to document your performance. Include a location for uploading screenshots so it’ll be easy to refer back to in the future.
- Congruent Email Followup. As soon as you acquire a lead, have a congruent email followup to warm them into your brand. Indoctrinate them into your mission, let them know what to expect, and give insight into what they can gain by being a subscriber.
Interacting With Clients
Too many businesses treat customer service as an afterthought. Whether you’re acquiring a new lead, selling an existing customer another product, or answering a customer’s question, you’ll have to find the best communication method to interact with your clients effectively. By the way, this doesn’t just refer to email communication… Read on!
- Start a Facebook group. There are more than 1 billion people on Facebook. Chances are high that your customers are already on this giant social media network. Make it easy for them to communicate with you by starting a Facebook group to provide customer support, answer questions, showcase your brand, and most importantly: prove you’re not a robot. The residual effects of being active on a public group page will be incredible for your brand in the future.
- Survey existing clients. Get feedback, ask questions, reach out. You’ll be surprised at how honest and helpful people will be if you ask them nicely and proactively.
- Schedule AMA’s. “Ask me anything” is a fantastic Facebook Live or YouTube video topic that allows you to communicate with your audience all at once. It also helps to humanize your brand because there is a face that responds (again, not a robot or canned reply).
- Improve communication skills. While this sounds very general, effective communication skills are vital in providing quality customer support and generating interest with potential clients. The key to good communication: be a better listener. Here’s a fantastic TedTalk for improving communication skills by improving listening skills.
- Show genuine interest. People can smell phoniness from a mile away. Be polite, but also be real with them. Show genuine interest in solving their problems, and in hearing about their endeavors. If you don’t care, don’t ask.
- Follow up. This is what separates the men from the boys. Follow up on leads, on collaboration projects with your colleagues, on your past communications with customers… Follow up. Check on how they’re doing. Give your feedback. Offer assistance.
Marketing & Copywriting
Another area where bad habits run rampant is in copywriting. High converting landers start with the right copy. After you get the copy just right, the other elements of a lander or sales funnel should fall perfectly into place like a puzzle. Always, always: Start with the audience.
- Know your audience. The way you write to a 60-year-old woman vs a 24-year-old man should be distinct. In copy, when you try to make 1 size fit all, you end up fitting none. Yes, it’s a little more work to dial in your vernacular to fit the demographic, but it’s worth the effort in the end. It’s important to go beyond age and gender. Is your audience located in a specific city? Are they more conservative? Do they share a common problem? Get these elements early in your copy so that you can connect with them asap.
- Be honest. There’s no need to sugarcoat. Just stick to the facts and your solutions to problems and people will feel (and will be attracted) by the sincerity of your communication.
- Refine your message. Again, a single message may not be applicable to all prospective clients. You may use templates for marketing materials, but apply modifications for various audiences.
- Be creative. People have become desensitized to old marketing tactics (like fear mongering). Make sure your copy stands out from the competition with creative messaging and personality.
- Educate. Education can be a form of entertainment when you do it right. If you can educate someone, you’ve provided them with value and demonstrated your expertise. Now that’s a great way to start a healthy relationship with a potential customer.
- Use animation. Video, movement, gifs. Animation catches the eye and holds attention longer than static images. Not to mention, it helps to increase readability.
Now that you have your copy perfected, it’s time to make it sing with the visuals. Here are the good habits to hone in when designing your landers or sales pages.
- Solidify a style guide. Sure, people have heard of style guides in relation to logo use, but why not apply those same quality control principles to landers and sales pages? Color scheme, headers, footers, text font size, image sizes… All of these can be set in a strict style guide to ensure that anything you publish on the web looks like it came from the same company (not to mention a million bucks).
- Consistent style and branding. If you have a design that works, keep it consistent. Don’t try to reinvent wheels for every lander or sales page. Make everything look like it belongs in the same set, by the same brand.
- Include contact information. Not only is this a requirement if you’re advertising on Adwords, but it shows that you’re a real business and provides your potential customers with transparency. Wherever you publish a new landing page, always include your contact information in the header and footer.
- Use Good Images. Images have been proven to increase readability and help to break up text walls. Be picky about the images you select. Make sure you have the rights to use it. Here’s a beautiful site we love with non-stocky looking photos that are royalty-free.
- Color Theory is a thing. Are you trying to convey trust? Maybe your goal is to help someone relax… Whatever your visual goals may be, look into color theory and how certain colors convey certain emotions. Match the emotional goal to the colors that you’re using.
- Design with intent. We see this all the time: Design for the sake of design. Examples include: visuals that push vital information below the fold, adding site elements that are copied from other competitors or high-performing landing pages, but are completely out of place. Design with the intention of micro-goals. If the micro-goal is to make people scroll down to the next section, make it enticing to scroll down with a little peek above the fold.
- Make it easy. Why allow a potential customer to squint and struggle with reading text that’s too small? This is such an easy mistake to avoid. When choosing between design and usability, ALWAYS choose usability.
- Make it mobile. We’re already living in the mobile world. If you don’t see 60% of your visitors coming from mobile devices, you will soon. The majority is mobile. Design for mobile first, desktop second.
- Make it fast. Nobody likes to wait for giant images and videos to load. Optimize your image file sizes and try to keep them under 100kb to be in the clear.
Documentation and Reporting
Accurate reporting is a well-known must in any digital marketing practice. What is equally important, however, is to archive the reporting so you can refer back to it with ease. Here are some tactics that help to keep new and old reports manageable and trackable.
- Graph your progress. Create a graph of your various conversions periodically (monthly, quarterly, yearly). Having this visual representation will allow you to clearly see how your conversion campaign is going.
- Develop a scoring system. Instead of graphs, you may also implement scores to see the progress of your conversion strategies. This will allow you to grade your performance at the end of every period.
- Create a file naming scheme. Stick to a folder or spreadsheet naming scheme so it’ll be easier to find in the future.
- Take screenshots of what you’re measuring. That way when you refer back to them, you will have a screenshot readily available to remind you of what you did, what you tested, and how far it has come.
- Identify each step. Don’t just look at the end result of your conversion strategies. Take a look at each step of your implementation to spot any flaws in your workflow.
- Set data analysis meetings. Invite everyone involved and pour through the data. Do this monthly so you have enough time to implement optimization strategies that come out of this meeting and yet, still have time to shift gears on things that aren’t working.
These good digital marketing habits will ensure that you’re covering your bases. Digital marketing isn’t about who has the best idea (although, that does help). Rather, it’s about the numbers and execution. If you are watching the numbers to make informed decisions about the execution (and yes, actually execute the projects) you’ll be ahead of the fray.
Did we leave any other good habits out? Share your opinions in the in the comments below.