Digital campaigns allow organizations to feature their mission and elevate their initiatives into the spotlight in a variety of ways. Successful digital campaigns should contain a few vital elements to kick start a movement, create communities of supporters, raise much-needed funds, or implement long-term change for important causes. A digital campaign is an online marketing effort to drive engagement, conversions, traffic, or revenue. The campaign should ideally map to overarching organizational goals and include one or more digital channels. A digital campaign is one component within a much larger digital strategy:
- A digital campaign is a short-term effort to achieve a particular goal
- A digital strategy is a long-term plan to achieve all online goals
Your goals: focus on what you want to achieveBecause digital campaigns are always part of a larger digital strategy, you should try to deliberately map campaign efforts to a particular goal—for example, to promote your work, raise funding, or communicate impact. If you can clearly define your goals, then the tactics you use to meet them in your campaign will likely be more effective.
Your audience: know who and where they areYou will need to speak as directly as possible to your audiences if you want to be successful in encouraging engagement. In most cases, you have more than audience and you will be far more effective if you can personalize your messages for each one. This could be in the form of segmented email lists, targeted messages by social media networks, or demographically-based search engine marketing (aka SEM). If your audience is not present on a certain social network, then don’t spend your time and resources there. Focus on where your audience is active, and how you can reach out to them where they are.
Your brand: be consistent across all assetsBecause your digital campaign is likely going to be present across various digital platforms and social accounts, you will want to ensure brand consistency so that your audience can easily identify you and find the content they are looking for. This means having a consistent brand narrative across your social media accounts, website, email templates, and related print material. If someone comes across your campaign on Instagram, they might try to find that info later through your Twitter account. Make it easy for them to do so through a consistent visual and content brand.
Your plan: maintain and stick to a scheduleCampaigns are busy by nature. They often take place over a short period of time and involve a lot of people and a lot of mediums—which is why sticking to a plan and a schedule is going to be imperative to ensure that you can navigate through it all. In this endeavor, an editorial calendar is your best friend. A calendar will help you manage your daily outreach and carve out and manage extra activities should your campaign gain a lot of traction or need a little extra help to gain momentum.
Your impact: measure and optimize as neededSimilar to advanced planning, you’ll want to be ready to measure your digital campaign’s success. Are people engaging with your campaign? Are your messages resonating? Are you getting any closer to reaching your goals? In the case of digital campaigns, the sooner you can start measuring impact, the better you’ll be at optimizing your strategy in real-time. Measurement is not just about seeing how you can improve next time, but how you can maximize impact in the moment. — These are the vital elements that are common—and essential—to all digital campaigns. How you customize and expand upon each is up to you and the extent of your goals. In some cases, these elements will be easy to implement; in others, they may present a number of challenges. As much as you can, give yourself enough time to consider and plan for each of them.
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