A Digital Marketing Framework for Executing More Effectively

 

 
We often find that marketers are under such pressure to create and execute campaigns that they often don’t take a step back to clearly define and optimize their marketing strategy. Completing this fundamental step establishes a strong foundation for your entire program. Having this foundation allows you to build faster and more cohesive campaigns and to realize better results.

Signal developed a digital marketing framework to help our clients consistently showcase the value and benefits of products and services across key digital channels. This framework is designed to ensure campaigns are planned strategically and monitored consistently for maximum efficiency.

Completing this process will help your team:

  • Establish your marketing program goals and define priorities
  • Focus on the most effective use of your limited time and budget
  • And forecast and evaluate campaign performance and ROI.

Step 1: Define Campaign Goals, Objectives & Constraints

Tools used: Program Summary, Program Map, Content Outline

 
Start by creating a Program Summary to catalog current and future campaigns:

Name Purpose Budget Start End Channels
General Awareness Promote overall company awareness $50,000 Jan 1 Dec 31 Website, Email, LinkedIn, Search
Product X New product intro
Product Y Education Product Training

 

Establishing this bird’s eye view of your entire program clearly highlights your internal constraints (resources, budget, time) and can help your team prioritize campaigns and identify which dials to turn up and down. You’ll define the channels approach for each campaign, determining timing and assigning budgets.

Next, take inventory of what you’re doing and analyze any gaps.

Create a Program Map to give you a more granular and actionable view of your current marketing program. This flow chart will illustrate your marketing channels and how they are connected – how social, search, email and offline channels lead to landing pages and websites, and how those integrate with your marketing automation and CRM platforms, as well as other tools in your marketing technology stack.

Create your Content Outline, a simple catalog of your existing marketing assets – landing pages, print collateral, videos, case studies, and so on. This allows you to quickly see what content you can leverage and what gaps may exist, which is instrumental as you plan and build future campaigns.

 

Item Name Type Related Content Description URL
ABC General Landing Page Website/Landing Page Product X, Product Y Category homepage abc.com
Product X Landing Page Website/Landing Page Product Y Features and benefits abc.com/productx
ABC Infographic Infographic Product X, Product Y Infographic abc.com/graphic
Product X Brochure Brochure Product Y Download from landing page abc.com/downloadx
Product X Sales Presentation Presentation Product Y Links to all arterial sub-pages abc.com
Product X Solution Article Blog Product X, Product Y Product copy + features graphic abc.com
ABC Corporate Video Video Product X, Product Y Capabilities video abc.com

Step 2: Define Featured Offerings

Create a spreadsheet that lists your company’s products and/or services. Add positioning and categories for quick reference. This tool will allow your team to quickly prioritize campaigns with internal stakeholders.

Product Category Product Priority Related SKUs Description URL
Category X Product X 10 6 Insert positioning and benefits
Category Y Product Y 5 2 Insert positioning and benefits

Step 3: Identify Target Audience

Tools used: Personas and Customer Journey Maps

 

To be successful, you must thoroughly understand and connect with your audience. Creating customer personas and customer journey maps are critical to this process. These documents can be as formal as you want to make them, however, we recommend keeping it simple. Know that they are fluid, working documents and you can continue to refine them.

We suggest first talking with internal stakeholders to paint a picture of the target customers. If possible, also talk with actual current and potential customers to validate any internal assumptions.

Mapping the Customer Journey goes hand in hand with defining your sales funnel. A Journey Map typically includes stages and corresponding types of content:

  • Awareness Stage: blogs, infographics, social media posts, podcasts, short videos
  • Interest Stage: eBooks, white papers, explainer videos, conversion landing pages, paid/display ads
  • Consideration Stage: case studies, customer testimonials, sales emails
  • Purchase Stage: on-location and in-studio video testimonials, sales collateral

The Journey Map also captures the customer’s goals, process, problems and KPIs at each stage of the journey to ensure the customer’s needs are clear and highlight key opportunities.

UXPressia Persona and Journey Mapping Tool


Step 4: Identify the Competition

You won’t know how to stand out in the market until you have a clear picture of the competition you’re up against. Understand the landscape, including market share and activity. The first time you do this, you can focus on keeping it high level.

  • Positioning
  • Visual impact
  • Digital properties
  • Strengths and weaknesses
  • Calls to action

Doing this research will help you determine how you can compete and excel in branding, messaging, program offerings and content strategy. When you get into individual campaigns, you can begin to drill deeper into competition for that specific offering.


Step 5: Define How you will Measure Success

Tools used: Measurement Plan

 

How will you know if your marketing campaigns are successful? You need to define clear goals, determine KPIs and set specific targets to measure performance. Without a Measurement Plan, it will be difficult to monitor and optimize your campaigns to achieve the best possible results. Having a Measurement Plan also helps you set realistic expectations for the ROI of marketing efforts vs. simply focusing on increased sales revenue.

See Our Post on How to Create a Measurement Plan


What’s Next

Once you’ve completed these 5 steps, you have the necessary digital marketing planning framework and tools in place to chart your path forward. Now it’s time to confidently move into tactical campaign planning and execution.

Plan and execute each campaign by completing the following steps, referencing and continually refining the tools you’ve created:

  1. Select campaign channels
  2. Determine tactics and timing
  3. Prioritize budget across channels
  4. Set campaign goals and align measurement plan
  5. Develop campaign content and creative
  6. Launch
  7. Monitor and optimize

 

Ready to take your company’s digital marketing framework to the next level? The Signal team is here to help.

Power Tools Social Media Campaigns

Ingersoll Rand’s Power Tools division maintains an active social media presence, promoting its popular line of products. When the manufacturer needed help producing compelling content for its B2B user audience on Facebook and Instagram, they looked to Signal to provide additional bandwidth.

The Power Tools division was keenly focused on market research, launching new products and keeping dealers and distributors happy. They relied on Signal for creative writing, design and animations on a regular basis, to keep the pages interesting and engaging.

From raw assets of product images and/or video content, we provided monthly batches of posts, in advance, to help client teams streamline the approval and execution process.

Dealer Communications Assets

Hyster-Yale Group designs, engineers, manufactures, sells and services a comprehensive line of lift trucks and parts marketed under the Hyster and Yale brand names. To support its dealer networks, the manufacturer created an online hub for dealers to access various marketing templates. Hyster-Yale brought in Signal to map out and develop or redesign all possible templates for both Hyster and Yale brands.

We made the marketing assets easy for dealers to access and customize, while maintaining strict visual standards for each brand. Now that this comprehensive template library is in place, Hyster-Yale can seamlessly direct their dealers to important communications tools that fit their efforts at the local level, delivering manufacturer support before, during and after routine sales as well as inventory pushes that drive customer traffic to their door.

In addition to campaign landing pages with embedded content that could be inserted via iframe into a dealer’s website, other key assets included:

• Email templates with ready-to-go content
• Social media posts and graphics
• Digital banner ad templates
• Sales and promotional flyers
• Rental unit campaign materials
• Indoor and outdoor signage
• Mailers

Industry Vertical Campaigns

Cree Lighting is a market-leading innovator of LED lighting and semiconductor solutions for wireless and power applications.

Cree engaged Signal to develop microsites targeting specific vertical market segments with information on relevant high-value product SKUs. They were seeking new approaches in marketing and lead generation, especially under pandemic restrictions for sales teams and outreach. Each segment’s landing page was rich with targeted content, from videos to case studies and interactive guides. See the microsites for Healthcare, Petroleum, and Education.

Integrating with the Cree’s Pardot marketing platform, we created a series of 4 to 5 emails for each industry segment, aimed to gain trust, provide greater visibility to content previously buried within the larger brand site, and to create opportunities to enter the sales funnel at different sales cycle conversion points, through remote demos and webinars, strengthening the lead scoring for prospects and newer audiences that were now working remotely.

Due to the landscape at the time, Signal helped develop priorities in healthcare campaigns first, then education with the shift toward getting students and faculty back into classrooms. With gas station/convenience store audiences being more of a mainstay, we timed design and development to coincide with the industry’s virtual conferences over the summer months to help prospects engage with the brand, as if they were at the show.

We provided content development and art direction as well as coding and development for the client to execute distribution and tracking/analytics.

Employee Inspiration Video


Teleflex is a global provider of medical devices and technologies, which is committed to promoting superior customer experience through its internal “Exceptional Everyday” campaign.

The company asked Signal to create a video to be shown the Teleflex annual corporate meeting, as an introduction before the CEO’s keynote address. The goal was to celebrate the importance of every employee’s role in the customer experience, affirming to every one of them that “what you do matters” in saving the lives of patients.

The resulting video was a complete turnkey project from Signal’s video production team, from concept development, script and storyboards, thorough voiceover recording, music sources, mixing and editing. For authenticity, the production included two days of location shooting with actual Teleflex employees in their work settings.

 

Brand Development and Website

CliniStart is a new company specializing in specific administrative aspects of clinical trial startup and management. They came to Signal for development of their branding, messaging and website, with the goal of cutting through the clutter and clearly presenting their unique value proposition with a friendly tone.

Following interviews with the company’s executive team, we drafted a message platform to map out the CliniStart brand messaging and what makes the company different. From this approved document, we organized and composed website content with a dash of conversational flair. The services page is based around simple, declarative statements and interactive icon boxes. Subheads throughout the site capture the leadership’s wry observations on their unglamorous work in contract negotiations and protocol budgeting. For instance, “We love to do the boring stuff so you don’t have to,” and “Extremely dull work, done extremely well.”

Signal also reworked the company’s logo with a more modern and professional look, expressing the CliniStart’s foundation in knowledge and technology aimed at forward progress. The logomark features dots networked together in the configuration of “play” button, creating associations with the start of a clinical trial.


Experience the site here

UX Optimization

The world’s largest independent distributor of Toyotas called upon Signal to audit and optimize their finance website to provide customers with an improved user experience for managing their vehicle leases and loans. Their goals were to improve navigation, fix usability issues, and to personalize content based on where customers are in the life cycle. Our team followed Signal’s user-centered optimization approach to enhance the customer experience (CX).

Step 1: Planning and research

• Analyzed current website performance and identified opportunities
• Put a good measurement plan in place
• Investigated website analytics
• Gathered input from customer data and hot search terms

Step 2: Information architecture

• Audited website content
• Used card sorting for the optimal organization
• Developed a new site map

Step 3: User interface

• Created wireframes to help iterate the design
• Used clickable prototypes to polish
• Used agile design, with the end user in mind

Step 4: Testing and optimization

• Conducted testing with real website users
• Made tweaks for the best possible user experience (UX)

Results: Improved time to task, better navigation and page layout, improved key metrics.

Customer Experience Motivational Signs

Teleflex is a global provider of medical devices and technologies, which is committed to promoting superior customer experience through its internal “Exceptional Everyday” campaign and an annual “CX Week” event.

For the 2019 event, held at the corporate headquarters in Morrisville, NC, Signal developed a set of promotional materials that included office signage and posters, elevator wraps, LED screen graphics, and email and PowerPoint templates. To extend the reach of Teleflex CX Week beyond the home office, we also supplied asset files to the end-to-end facility in Maple Grove, MN, which employs teams in R&D, engineering, manufacturing, distribution, and sales & marketing.

The goal was to celebrate the importance of the customer experience in two different aspects: from a culture perspective with internal customers, and from a revenue perspective with external customers. The connecting principle is affirming to employees that “what you do matters” in saving the lives of patients.

Attends Social Media Marketing

Attends, a brand of Domtar Personal Care, is a pioneer in the incontinence industry, with products that deliver confidence and freedom to millions of people around the world. Domtar has engaged Signal to assume control of the Attends social media channels for planning, content development, design and development of visuals, and scheduling posts.

Our objectives are to help the client build audiences and brand awareness, to reach younger and more active users as well as caregivers, and to drive traffic to designated “Where to Buy” pathways that can be tracked to capture measurement. We plan monthly editorial calendars with a mix of content that includes product profiles, general wellness tips, holiday celebrations, links to relevant third-party articles, and so forth. Each month we review the proposed material with the client for their approval, then create and deploy the posts as agreed.

 

Results:

Increasing awareness while minimizing the stigma of incontinence by engaging users through aspirational content and helpful resources.

  • Increased monthly reach by more than 275,000 people

Driving more product exploration and sample requests to help get users into the right product for their needs.

  • Increased website traffic by 260%
  • Increased direct response actions by 419%

Americas 2020 Annual Kickoff Inspirational Video


Headquartered in France, bioMérieux is a worldwide leader in microbiological testing solutions for medical and industrial applications. The company engaged Signal for turnkey production of an inspirational video for their America Annual Kickoff Meeting, to be played as an introduction for the executive keynote address.

The goal was to motivate the audience of sales field teams to navigate and overcome challenges in the changing healthcare landscape, tying in with the meeting’s motif of kayaking through whitewater rapids by means of skill and teamwork. The video used a symbolic “kayak instructor” as a narrator over outdoor action scenes, interspersed with testimonials from bioMérieux sales reps and other experts. Signal edited the script and developed storyboards based on the client’s general outline.

The original concept was to film these testimonials on location at a riverbank setting, but weather conditions on the day of the shoot forced a change of plans. We adapted by shooting these segments in a studio set against greenscreen, and composited stock footage of nature scenery in post-production.

The completed video met with positive response at the client’s event. The executive giving the keynote was reportedly “pleased and genuinely enthusiastic with it,” and leadership from the home office was also impressed.