Digital Marketing Strategy Framework: A Step-by-Step Guide

In this article, we will focus on a proven digital marketing strategy framework that has helped dozens of our clients achieve clarity in their marketing efforts and boost lead generation. Learn why you should consider conducting in-depth customer interviews, how to perform market research, and how to convert gathered data into a strategy.


Marketing is a vast field, brimming with numerous tools and approaches, making it easy to become overwhelmed and lost within it. Add to this information bubble, a product of daily business operations, and you can quickly lose sight of your vision, finding yourself ensnared in the rabbit hole of ad hoc marketing activities.

Trust us, we’ve been there too.

In fact, this is what sets us apart from other marketing agencies.

Our journey involved not just helping other tech businesses to succeed, but also building our own startups in various niches, ranging from ecommerce and media to B2B consulting, which bestowed upon us invaluable experiences and insights.

Of course, failure was a frequent companion on our path to learning. We ardently desired to learn, understanding that the best way to do so is through practice and immersion in the company of fellow practitioners.

Our business ventures afforded us the opportunity to interview over 150 successful entrepreneurs spanning nearly all domains.

Now, in retrospect, we can assert that marketing is, in essence, quite straightforward. All you need is to employ the right tools, methods…

…and Focus.

The issue we observe in nearly all B2B companies is that marketing tends to be excessively generic and dispersed.

Business owners often strive to convey their message to the market in the broadest possible manner, assuming that it will attract a wider circle of customers. Regrettably, it often works in the opposite way:

broad = nobody.

As a consequence – ad hoc activities that don’t have any system behind.

But how to achieve focus?

Numerous approaches and tools are available to help achieve focus. They all have their merits, with one caveat: they must be used in real life, not merely as an exercise.

We have extensively tested many of these approaches, and over years of practice, we meticulously selected the tools and methods that yielded the most efficient results. Ultimately, they coalesced into a coherent digital marketing framework.

Essentially, you engage with your client, analyze your competitors, and enhance your offering based on that information. It’s as simple as that—no marketing voodoo required.

Why does it work? Because it’s based on common sense.

Certainly, it demands some effort and time, but the outcomes will provide you with the clearest perspective on your marketing efforts.

As a business owner or manager, you recognize that your most potent weapon for solving any problem or achieving any goal is building systems. Moreover, you understand that a robust system must receive relevant inputs to generate predictable outcomes.

Our approach hinges on collecting such data firsthand. Once you possess these inputs, the system virtually assembles itself.

So, without further ado, let’s dive right in!

Digital marketing framework

Our framework comprises two essential phases:

Phase 1: INPUT

  • Interview with the business insider.
  • In-depth customer interviews.
  • Competitor analysis.

Phase 2: OUTPUT

  • Compelling gathered data into a strategy.

Phase 1: INPUT

Interview with business insider

Usually we start cooperation with new client from the interview with company’s insider. Preferably CEO or owner. Our task here is to get a comprehensive overview on the company’s tangible goals and it’s offering to market.

We use this information as a starting point for our research.

In-depth Customer Interviews

At this stage, we explore how customers perceive the company’s offerings. Conducting such interviews is essential at every stage of the company’s lifecycle.

For instance, if a company is new and lacks customers, we interview its potential customers. The same applies to established companies that launch new products or services.

Our objective is to uncover the actual needs of real people and adapt the company’s offerings to meet these needs as closely as possible, achieving product-market fit.

If the company has a history with its offerings, we analyze how customers perceive them. This helps us determine the right market positioning.

Each in-depth interview yields several deliverables:

  • Interview transcriptions
  • A detailed customer profiles that summarizes the persona’s goals, needs, and frustrations.

If you want to learn more, read our comprehensive guide about in-depth customer interviews.

Competitor Research

At this stage, we are analyzing competitors that address the same market needs as our client. We examine their product features, pricing, customer feedback and online presence. This analysis helps identify their unique selling points, online engagement strategies, and customer perceptions.

This process provides a comprehensive understanding of our actual competitors and their operations within the same market.

The deliverables from this competitor research should include:

  • Detailed competitor profiles that highlight their offerings, strengths, weaknesses, and market positioning.
  • A comprehensive SWOT analysis for each competitor to understand their strategic landscape thoroughly.
  • Actionable recommendations to improve our marketing strategies based on insights gathered from the research.

This research may also reveal insights into our business model, pricing, and broader business strategies, potentially leading to significant strategic adjustments.

If you want to learn more about this phase, read our guide: How to Conduct Competitive Analysis for B2B Marketing Strategy

Phase 2: OUTPUT

Crafting Digital Marketing Strategy

If you made it to this stage, you may have already noticed something important: you have a clear understanding of your customers’ needs and the offerings in the market, including your own. You can see what needs improvement.

Now, let’s refine this knowledge into something more tangible: content and it’s distribution. Basically, it’s what you should communicate and where.

Content is King, Distribution is Queen

Content

General vision: you’re no longer a service/product provider, you’re an expert. Your goal is to create content that doesn’t sell anything directly (a paradox, right?).

Instead, you’re sharing your knowledge with your defined customer personas to help them solve specific problems and achieve particular goals (all this information you’ve learned from customer interviews and market research). And your content is so relevant, valuable and irresistible, that your potential customer would be happy to pay for it.

But you’re giving it for free.

Guess who will be the go-to person when they will need to solve those problems and achieve those goals?

Distribution

In short words, it’s relevant informational channels where your content will be served to your potential customers. For example: your website, blog, podcast, social media, conferences etc. Here’s when our research comes handy – you clearly see which channels work for your competitors and what’s lacking on the market.

But where to start?

To simplify and prioritize content creation, let’s divide our content into different stages of your marketing funnel.

Marketing Funnel

The typical answer to “What is a marketing funnel?” often refers to the three main stages of the customer journey:

Top of the funnel (TOFU)

Awareness Phase: In this initial stage, the buyer is encountering a problem or symptoms of discomfort and aims to resolve them. They seek informational resources to better understand, articulate, and identify their issue. For instance, a potential search query at this stage might be, “How to get more leads?” At this point, the buyer isn’t considering specific solutions or providers; rather, they are focused on defining their problem.

Middle of the funnel (MOFU)

Consideration Phase: During the consideration stage, the buyer has clearly identified and labeled their problem and is dedicated to exploring all possible solutions and methods for addressing the identified issue or opportunity. For example, a search query during this stage could be: “PPC vs. SEO” At this juncture, the buyer is evaluating options and is not yet ready to make a purchase. Your role is to educate them about the advantages and disadvantages of different options, considering both direct and indirect competitors.

Bottom of the funnel (BOFU)

Conversion/Decision Phase: By the decision stage, the buyer has chosen a solution strategy, method, or approach. Their current objective is to gather a list of potential vendors, narrow it down, and ultimately decide on whom to purchase from. A search query during this stage could be: “SEO agency in Los Angeles” or “ERP system for manufacturing”.

Prioritizing Your Marketing Efforts

We typically advise starting with the bottom of the funnel when optimizing your website. Begin by refining all product and service pages to ensure they align with customer needs and effectively highlight your unique offerings. Additionally, complete all necessary technical setups, including analytics, remarketing scripts, CRM integrations, and more.

Next, extend your presence across all platforms where your potential customers are searching for your products or services. This could include software comparison sites, business directories, search engines etc.

Above this foundation, develop additional content types designed to attract, engage, and convert your prospects, such as blog posts, social media updates, and lead magnets.

This is a broad topic, and we’ll delve deeper into these strategies in our upcoming posts.

To summarize

While it’s possible to kickstart your strategy based on intuition and assumptions, leveraging a structured digital marketing strategy framework will greatly enhance your likelihood of success. This approach ensures that your decisions are informed and aligned with your business goals, thereby increasing your chances of achieving desired outcomes.

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