Slow Down To Speed Up – Laying Your Digital Foundations

Sometimes we have to slow down before we can speed up.

When a business decides to invest in a new campaign, there tends to be a great big hurry to get the content machine motoring and channels channelling.

This is totally natural. Key decision makes have put their names to this project and they need to see early signs of a return.

The trouble is the results they’re so desperate for, invariably depend on more than just the direct scope of the campaign, so if that other stuff isn’t fit for purpose they’e going to be leaking pounds faster than they can shove them back in.

It’s a bit like when you see someone stick spoilers on a 15 year old banger. You can’t help but feel they’ve totally and utterly missed the point.

Some of the most common examples of where value is leaked include:

🎨 Incomplete brand guidelines leading to inconsistency between the campaign channels – remember, even if you’re leading with one primary channel, you use will encounter your brand across a range of mediums. So without the necessary guidelines, no matter how beautifully constructed the content is and how intelligently the media plan is developed, you messaging will lack the consistency it needs to tell one coherent story.

🌐 Website UX, messaging or conversion issues – 9 times out of 10, your strategy will involve sending the user back to the website to complete (the digital phase) of their journey. This should represent the climax of their experience with your band. Evey word counts. Every image matters. Every call to action is business critical. Yet when you ask most businesses how they feel about the key sales pages of their website, they will tell you the are a bit outdated, not fit for purpose, and in need of a good review – and this is after they’ve pushed the button on the new campaign!

📧 Absence of compelling email capture (so often the secondary objective of a campaign) – even if you’re in the minority of businesses that have really nailed their UX and key sales pages, the overwhelming majority of traffic will still refuse to do the main thing you want it to. That’s just how it is I’m afraid. However, you can still turn that traffic into value by capturing their data. Unfortunately, websites with well considered data hooks are like digital unicorns.

‍💻 Weak technical optimisation of the site – not only does this have huge implications from an SEO perspective, but the broader UX problems caused by slow loading websites, lack of browser/device compatibility and other technical issues are enormous and could undermine you entire content and channel strategy.

🥅 Incomplete goal/event tacking – what is the point of this investment if you’re not able to demonstrate its worth? How will you justify scaling up the activity or pulling back on it if you can’t see what’s actually delivering a return? Ensuring you have all the fundamentals working within analytics is the absolute minimum before you hit the launch button.

As ever, it’s about doing the right things in the right order.

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