Integrating Digital Marketing into Your Traditional Marketing Plan
As a marketing professional, you know it is not always easy to explain or convince your CFO of the value of digital marketing. Their comfort level may be low, and it can be difficult to convince them that the return on investment will be in line with the upfront costs. If you find yourself in this position, there are five ways to help integrate your digital marketing efforts with your traditional offline efforts while demonstrating that the ROI is indeed worth the transition from traditional to a balanced approach.
Choose the right platform
First and foremost, you must have a good platform from which to start. Most businesses today have a website, but you must go beyond a cookie-cutter approach or a custom-coded static website. Your website should support and encourage visitors, potential customers, and eventually sales.
Build your website on a quality CMS and integrate it with a reliable marketing automation platform. To provide the best experience for your customers you must give great thought to exactly who they are, what they need from you, and how best to deliver it to them. With that in mind, a properly architected website can do just that.
Organize your team
Online marketing is not a onetime activity, nor is it a task that can be done sporadically if you expect consistent results. You will need dedication to structure and execute your marketing objectives. This might entail reorganizing your current marketing staff and their responsibilities, or even hiring new staff. Often this process can be best handled in the beginning by outsourcing, and then gradually moved from an outsourcing team to an internal one.
Destroy those silos
The fourth step is to integrate your sales and marketing teams — too often one hand does not know what the other is doing. It goes without saying that it is your marketing department’s responsibility to generate leads for your sales department. With traditional marketing, such as commercial spots, trade magazines and direct mail, there is an inherent distance between the customer and the company.
Digital marketing changes that. The customer now becomes a willing participate by way of your website and marketable content and social media. This change in dynamics must change the relationship between the salesperson and customer. Because of this, it is imperative that the sales and marketing department are working together with similar objectives driving to the same result.
Measure more than sales
Many marketing leaders are concerned with only response rates or sales conversion metrics, and this tends to be where success and failure is determined. With digital marketing, you will need to expand your current measure of success. By looking deeper into the lifetime value (CLV) of your segmented customers, you can better determine where to allocate your marketing and sales investment.
Use CLV, in addition to sales and marketing response, to determine the ROI of profitability. Digital marketing brings its own advantages over traditional marketing when it comes to quickly ascertaining success on this level.
Compare and contrast
The final step is to calculate the ROI of your traditional sales channels and your digital marketing to establish from where your greater ROI is coming. At this point it is easier to demonstrate to your CFO, in black and white, where your marketing dollars need to be spent based on conversion rates.
You may not be able to increase your marketing budget, but you can reallocate your resources to include less direct mail, for example, and increase your digital presence.
Bridging the gap between traditional marketing and digital marketing can be difficult when dealing with your CEO or CFO, but demonstrating the ROI that can be achieved through a mix of traditional and digital marketing can make the process easier.