In web design, development and digital marketing, many clients want quick results. While with some know-how and a ton of elbow grease, online advertising can generate fast, attributable, qualified and economical results it doesn’t make much sense to develop a media plan, targeting strategy, and compelling creative unless you have a destination that’s tuned for trust and conversion.
And creating the perfect destination on the first shot is a wee bit… well… wishful. When your destination is not right, it doesn’t matter how good your integrated and social media marketing campaign is because it will underperform.
Time and money are never our side, but in an ideal world, the most responsible process to drive results using digital media should be:
- Develop a strategy that’s rooted in research, that’s differentiable and sustainable, and that’s specifically connected with what the customer wants/needs;
- Design and implement the perfect(ish) destination;
- Design and implement a comprehensive digital marketing campaign that targets your customer’s demographic and psychographic attributes; and
- Test, monitor and improve both the destination and the marketing campaign.
Of all this, testing is the one thing that get’s the least attention. Maybe because there is no time, or money, or we as an industry are afraid of getting our egos dinged. But it’s probably the most important step and we encourage clients to demand it and our colleagues to recommend it.
Testing websites can be very expensive and time consuming. But it doesn’t have to be. It’s fairly easy and quick to run informal ad-hoc usability studies. With slightly more time and money, a formal study using crowd-sourcing usability testing outfits such as usertesting.com can be a good option.
As everyone knows, what people say is not always what they do. Consider rounding off the analysis with some quantitative input from Google’s Experiments (A/B Testing). It’s free, fast and super telling.
As for your ads, keep a close eye on the creative and their variations. Look closely at what clicks and what converts, and make the necessary adjustments to achieve the campaign’s strategy. Digital advertising is not a “set it and forget it” deal. It has to be monitored daily.
In the end, it’s not just about a marketing campaign or a destination, it’s about their performance.