Magic Bullet or Perfect Storm - What’s Your Digital Marketing Strategy?

When it comes to marketing strategy, most business executives take the same approach they do to the rest of their business - they problem solve. By nature, this problem-solving approach targets the source of the issue. It puts a laser focus on the cause and then works toward a resolution for that specific issue. I like to call this targeted strategy the ‘magic bullet’ - one issue, one solution.
 
Unfortunately, in my experience, that magic bullet approach rarely works when it comes to marketing, leaving many business leaders confused and frustrated since a targeted focus works so well in other areas of business. 
 
In today’s world of digital marketing, very rarely does any singular program or tactic stand by itself. The answer to your lead performance issue is not as simple as ‘our website isn’t generating enough leads, something must be wrong with the site.’ 
 
Understanding the Magic Bullet Mindset
Marketing programs tend to intertwine and work together toward achieving multiple objectives. This is why the simple cause and effect premise of the magic bullet strategy doesn’t work. 
 
“Magic Bullet Marketing” doesn’t consider the many different factors that are influencing the outcome of your campaign or program. It doesn’t look at the programs that may or may not be driving traffic to your website. It doesn’t consider that perhaps your ad campaigns or social media programs aren’t reaching the right audiences. The magic bullet theory doesn’t consider that there are likely multiple factors driving the undesired effect.
 
Instead of the magic bullet, I like to think of a successful marketing program as being the result of a ‘perfect storm.’ 
 
Creating a Perfect Marketing Storm
In a perfect storm, many seemingly individual factors come together to make a ‘perfect’ moment, a successful marketing outcome. Today’s integrated digital marketing is the definition of a perfect storm. Your website, social, email, blogging, public relations, online advertising and other activities work together to bring your prospect in and make them your customer. Today’s customer doesn’t hear of you just through one channel or another, but through many, and if you don’t look at all of those factors together, you are missing the different ways that your customers see and that are part of their experience.
 
For example, if your website leads are down, your website might not be the only factor at play. Examine Google Analytics data to see where the traffic is coming from. Is your social media driving traffic? How much? Could it do more? What about your ads? Referral partners? Blog posts?
 
And if you think just adding social media to your marketing will solve all your problems, think again. Social media can’t fix your leads if your website doesn’t work. Social media won’t reach people who don’t use it, so identify your target audience and learn where they go for information. Social media messaging that doesn’t coordinate with your email campaigns and website content can cause confusion or conflicting perceptions of your company. 
 
Digital marketing today is as much art as it is science. Yes, you have numbers to back you up, but you also need to look at non-measurables like brand impression, market perception, the feel and tone of your materials and the overall experience your company delivers to a customer or prospect.
 
Don’t live with a “magic bullet” mindset...
Whether you are problem-solving or just getting up and running with your marketing efforts, start by building a plan that considers all of the ways customers and prospects will find and experience your brand and company. Build your own ‘perfect storm’ so that you know what they see and what they know and make sure it represents the vision of your company. Use data to back up your plan and regularly examine that data to make sure that all programs are working in sync. This way, when something isn’t working, you’ll have the perspective and a plan to fix it successfully.