I recently saw and answered this question on our company Quora newsfeed:
Why are digital marketing strategies important for businesses in 2018?
Now, my initial thought was to spell out a series of points proving why every business should have a marketing and digital marketing strategy.
But when I started to read through other answers (most were very good), I realized that is what everyone else had already done. So, I decided to take a different approach.
Here is my response to this Quora question:
Think about digital (or any) marketing this way:
Imagine you are not a runner, but you decide you are going to run a marathon in April of 2019. Now, you could just start running today and see how it goes. You could get up every day and see how far you can run with no plan, no goals, and no strategy.
You just run.
By April you might be able to run that marathon. However, the path to get there is going to be extremely frustrating and disheartening. You may give up for a couple of days or weeks. Then, when you go to start back up again it is almost like starting all over. The likelihood of your making it to the starting line of that race, let alone the finish line, is very low.
Now imagine the opposite. You decide you are going to run a marathon in April of 2019. The reason you are going to run this marathon is because you need a targeted way to exercise. The reason you need to exercise is because you need to improve your health.
The first thing you do is ask your friends and colleagues who have run marathons what they did. Almost all of them say the same thing: “I spoke with someone else who is an expert in marathons and then I made a plan.”
So you do some research of your own and find a local marathon expert that has a strong history of successfully training and crossing that finish line. You meet with the expert and she helps you write out a plan for you to train for the marathon. This includes a strict diet, scheduled running intervals, and other training.
While not all the training is directly running, she recommends other exercises that are going to positively impact your ability to run those long distances.
She explains that while running that marathon might be the immediate goal, your vision is a healthier and longer life.
By working alongside your marathon expert, she is able to guide, assist, and encourage you all the way to April. Where you cross that finish line. You see how your hard work and dedication has really made an impact not only on your health, but in your overall life.
By setting goals and striving for a vision, you have impacted the way you look at your entire life: your family, your work, your hobbies, and more.
Now, you are in a lifestyle of progress, instead of always playing catch-up.
A digital (or any) marketing strategy is extremely similar.
You could attempt to do it all on your own with no plan, goals, or vision.
You won’t get very far.
You will give up a lot because you won’t see the value in what you are doing. You will waste energy, time, and resources. And your bottom line will continue to slide.
By creating a strategy alongside someone who has been there, you can create a lasting impact on your business. You will ultimately still be responsibly for the end outcome. But partnering with a marketing expert you exponentially increase your likelihood of success with measurable goals, checkpoints, and an attainable vision.
That is why digital marketing strategies are important in 2018.