by: Thomas Young
Our blog posts have made strong arguments for the importance of effective digital marketing, the growth of pull marketing and the ability to measure ROI from online marketing efforts. Yet, most companies fail to give digital marketing the proper attention by reviewing their web stats or developing ongoing action plans to improve strategic digital marketing results. One of the best things an organization can do to stop this pattern is to schedule monthly strategic digital marketing meetings.
Just the act of scheduling the strategic digital marketing meeting moves the team in the right direction and will put in place the mechanisms needed to track online marketing results. Holding the monthly meeting keeps people accountable regarding completing strategic digital marketing action items and reviewing web stats and data. Each action item and website statistic can be reviewed for its impact on strategic digital marketing targets and ROI. It also forces the team to learn and understand more about the meaning behind the web stats.
Who Should Attend the Meeting?
The digital marketing team should be made up of a variety of individuals with a variety of skill sets. This includes designers, technology staff, photographers, content writers, SEO specialists and more. For the most part, strategic digital marketing meetings should be attended by the key decision makers involved in running strategic digital marketing programs. This would include the strategic digital marketing director, traffic generation staff and project managers. See chapter 16 for more detail on the make-up of your strategic digital marketing team.
Design and technology team members can be brought in to these meetings on occasion, but they are not necessarily the focal point of the meetings, nor should they lead the meeting. Many business leaders make the mistake of spending too much time on technology and design issues, because the meetings are generally driven by designers and IT developers. Develop action plans in the meetings to provide direction for graphic designers and IT team members and use the meeting time to review strategy and major action items.
Action Items and Accountability
Each meeting should include a review of your online marketing goals and targets. This includes a review of web stats from Google Analytics, Webmaster Tools, SEO reports and other data. The stats review should highlight the areas where online marketing efforts are excelling and where there is room for improvement as measured in your strategic digital marketing targets and goals.
Sample Digital Marketing Meeting Agenda
Here are common areas to include in a typical agenda for an effective digital marketing meeting.
- Digital Stats Review – This is an analysis of Google Analytics, Search Console, AdWords reports and other SEO and strategic digital marketing reports. Work with monthly data and compare year-to-date stats against the prior year and the monthly goals set for your website.
- Goals, Targets and ROI – If you don’t already have goals, then set them before your first meeting and review your targets as they relate to your web strategy.
- Competitive Website Reviews – Many competitor websites and online marketing strategies have excellent best practices you can learn from and improve upon. Review competitor websites in your meetings and find best practices that can work for your website.
- Usability and Conversion Analysis – This is a review of what works on the site to drive sales conversions. Website usability impacts online conversions and the meeting is a good time to discuss and review the site’s usability and user testing. There could be an issue in the area of web usability if your website conversion goals are not meeting targets.
- Design and Development Updates – This should be discussed in each meeting as it can improve the company’s branding, website usability and overall conversion rates. Include feedback from website users in these discussions. Website design is never completed and can always be improved. Web stats shed light on the effectiveness of your design.
- Online Traffic Generation – This discussion is mostly composed of increasing visitor traffic through SEO, new content, social media and links from referring websites. This is an ongoing project that is never complete and is measured very closely in your web stats.
- Content Marketing Updates – Content drives both traffic and conversions and the strategic digital marketing meeting is a good place to review online content results. Use the meeting to determine which content is most popular among site users and develop action plans to add new blog posts to the site and other content that can help attract visitors to your website and motivate them to contact your company.
- Monthly Action Items – Action items, team member accountability and due dates are critical to strategic digital marketing success. Assign a project manager to see action items are completed. This final agenda item is the reason for the meeting, and without it meetings can be a waste of time and drain your budget.
Digital marketing meetings should be scheduled to review strategies and develop action plans to drive marketing and sales results. Inbound marketing from your website is important enough to warrant these meetings on a regular basis, either weekly or monthly at a minimum.
- Schedule monthly digital marketing meetings for the next twelve months.
- Use the agenda in this blog post and ask team members to come prepared to review each area.
- Plan about sixty to ninety minutes for the meeting and close with a review of action items with assigned team members and due dates. Your first meetings will take more time and the meetings will become more streamlined over time.
- Set criteria and targets for action items.
- Be prepared to answer questions about strategic digital marketing data in each meeting.
- Leave each meeting with a clear action plan to improve digital marketing results.