A Complete Online Marketing Strategy Plan Template for Any Business

So you’ve decided to take the plunge and start an online store. Congrats! Now it’s time to pick the platforms and tactics to engage with your customer base.

Creating an effective strategy is critical to your success as an online business. Why? Because digital marketing is constantly evolving and changing, and being agile is critical to surviving in this ever-changing environment. Your digital marketing strategy should be developed with the understanding that it is a living document that will need to be revisited and refined as you learn and evolve with each new phase of your digital marketing life cycle.

What is a strategy?

From the Oxford Dictionary:

“The process of planning and thinking through beforehand, so as to achieve a planned objective.”

In other words, a strategy is simply a plan of action. You’ll use your strategy to guide the decisions you make throughout your marketing life cycle. When creating your strategy, you’ll want to take the time to think of all the different platforms available to you, as well as those yet to be launched. You don’t want to rush into creating a plan that is limited by your current platform selection. Doing so could potentially limit the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. Better to take the time to do some research and consider all your options.

Why an Online Marketing Strategy Is Important For Any Business

As a business owner, you’re undoubtedly aware that marketing is an essential part of operating a successful business. However, you might be surprised to learn that a lot of businesses operating today don’t have a single marketing strategist overseeing all marketing-related decisions. This type of approach often leads to poor marketing performance, with lackluster growth and wasted resources. Why is this the case?

The primary reason has to do with marketing being such a broad term. Essentially, marketing can be defined as the “process of getting people to try your product or service and keep coming back for more.” The truth is that there isn’t a single formula for making this happen. That’s why it’s so important to develop a strategy for each marketing channel you choose to utilize.

Instead of throwing one big marketing budget at a “shotgun” marketing approach (spending money on platforms with no real strategy behind them), you should instead be investing in platforms that can be integrated with other systems you might already be using to conduct your daily operations. This way, you’ll be able to pull relevant data into your marketing plan and effectively track the results of your efforts. 

When developing your strategy, you’ll want to make sure that you integrate all the different platforms available to you. While it is important to have a presence on as many platforms as possible, you don’t necessarily need to use every single one of them. Consider using a content creation tool like HubSpot to develop and maintain your blog. You can integrate your blog with other systems you might be using (like email marketing tools) to create an even more comprehensive marketing plan.

What Should You Include In Your Strategy?

When developing your strategy, you’ll want to make sure that you have everything you need in order to be able to track your progress. This includes things like 

  • An objective or goal.
  • The target audience.
  • The product (or service).
  • The marketing goals or objectives.
  • The channels (or methods) of reaching the target audience (e.g., Search Engine Optimization, Social Media, Email Marketing, etc.).
  • The budget (how much are you willing to spend on marketing, and how much do you have already spent).
  • The timeframe for the plan (how long do you plan on implementing the strategy).

The most important thing to keep in mind is that your strategy needs to be cohesive. You can’t have a fragmented marketing plan where each element is standalone. Instead, you’ll want to develop a comprehensive plan that ties together all the different components. This will help you move forward more efficiently and make sure that all the pieces fit seamlessly into one big picture. At the very least, you’ll know that your plan is complete and can be followed without too much thought or effort. 

How Long Do You Plan On Implementing Your Strategy?

Another critical question to ask is how long do you plan on implementing your strategy? Be realistic here. You don’t want to set yourself up for failure by creating a plan that is overly-ambitious. It’s important to consider what you know about your industry, as well as your company, and create a plan that is within your grasp.

The length of your plan will be determined by many factors, including your company’s growth rate and the nature of your business. If you’re just getting started, you might want to create a shorter plan and revisit it once you’re able to achieve some milestones.

Are You Ready To Start Your Strategy Plan?

With all that in mind, are you ready to start your strategy plan? The answer should be an obvious “yes.” You’ve made the right decision and taken the time to do so. Now, all you need is a plan to bring all those ideas to life.

Creating a comprehensive strategy for your online marketing efforts will take some time. So, don’t rush into it. Take your time and do it right. You’ll be much happier in the long run.