What are the elements that play a role in starting a marketing campaign?

Let's remember a brief definition: a marketing campaign is a short-term communication plan that involves the use of different channels to achieve certain sales objectives. Its purpose is therefore to involve the public and influence them towards the purchase.

The goal of this work is, in general, to identify activities and advertising media relevant to the product, integrated in such a way as to achieve predefined objectives and reach customers effectively. A success plan implies an engaging, shareable marketing concept that uses online and offline communication tools and, of course, social media.

What are the elements that play a role in starting a marketing campaign?

Marketing activities require careful planning so that every step of the process has been screened before launch. Since an advertising campaign consists solely of pure tactics and is entirely based on projects, it is necessary to make the process of initial promotional choices coincide with the final result. Here are the main points to think about:

  • Choose your target audience: who are you interested in attracting?
  • Set your goals and KPI: what do you want to accomplish with this campaign and how will you measure the results?
  • Determine your offer - what incentive will get their attention?
  • Identify your channels: what elements are you going to involve to promote this offer?
  • Create your website homepage: what will the visitor experience be?
  • Take care of communication: how do you want to help and encourage your customers in their purchase journey?
  • Monitor the results: what will be the parameters of success?

Choose your target audience

Before you can choose the what and where of your marketing campaign, you need to determine who your target audience is and how you want to reach them.

I bet you are now saying: "yes, but we have already defined our target audience in our marketing plan!". In theory, of course. But let's say you offer two services: coaching for independent professionals and consulting for small businesses of up to 20 employees. Which of these two audiences will you target for this campaign?

The best way to reach this diverse audience is to understand their particular needs and how to address them. Define your customer in detail to help you refine your messages based on their specific needs. You will most likely want to carry out a separate marketing campaign for the other target as well.

Set your goals and KPIs

Marketing activities can have different types of results: revenue, visitors, visibility or engagement. Every marketing campaign must focus on one primary purpose. Based on that purpose, you need to set specific goals and metrics or key performance indicators (KPIs) that will help you determine your campaign's performance against your goal.

For example, if your campaign focuses on generating revenue, how many do you want to generate and how will you determine the success of those results?

Determine your offer

Depending on the campaign, your offer could be content, a free webinar, a free trial, or something that appeals to those looking to buy your brand. These offers must appeal to the buyer and distinguish themselves from others of the same type.

Offering a free one-hour webinar to people who don't know your brand or aren't interested in buying anything could be a waste of time. Providing a useful and concise guide always turns out to be the best presentation for your brand. Make sure you align your offer with something you know your target audience is asking for.

Identify your channel

Which marketing communication channel will you use to communicate your message and attract and capture your audience? Your online and digital channels can include:

  • Websites (blogs, custom website);
  • ocial media (Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, TikTok, Snapchat, 21Buttons);
  • E-mail, newsletter;
  • Specially created apps;
  • Search engine;
  • Video on Youtube.

Depending on your business, you may include some traditional communication channels such as direct mail, local classified ads, site banners, written on transportation such as trucks, and networking events.

The channels chosen will be different based on the product, target audience and objectives.

Track and calculate the results

It is important to keep track of marketing activities and calculate the results. They will be determined by what your goals for the campaign were. But in most cases, the results are generally in terms of qualified sales or leads.

Tracking and measuring results can be simple or complex, but it is based on the nature of your business. In its simplest form, you can measure cost per lead if you have the details of how much you spend on lead generation. In the more complex measurement arena, the influence of marketing on closed deals can be tracked using marketing automation software.

After completing the cycle of a marketing campaign, ask the following questions during the review:

  • Have you met your goals? If not, why?
  • Did your offer satisfy your target audience? If not, what can you offer?
  • Should anything be changed the next time you start the campaign?
  • What have you learned that you can apply to your next campaign for this target audience?

Launching a marketing campaign isn't something you can do quickly and get immediate results. Each initiative must be planned and thoroughly tested before starting the campaign, to ensure that the marketing activities are effective and generate a solid ROI (return on investment).

Effective monitoring of a marketing plan ensures that your investment is not wasted; without knowing how right each strategy is, you may be wasting money on futile efforts. As you plan and execute a marketing plan, build tracking tools from the start and be ruthless in cutting out strategies that aren't worth the time and money spent creating them. With a traditional evaluation program, you can get an efficient and powerful marketing system.

The most used tools for monitoring a campaign: Google Analytics and personalized discount codes

Choose the appropriate tracking tools for each strategy in your marketing plan. List all your marketing goals for the following year and find tools that will help you track their effectiveness. For web-based initiatives, see website analytics programs such as Google Analytics; for discounts, you can use different promotional codes for each place where you advertise.

Use technology to avoid putting a lot of effort into monitoring

Furthermore, before launching a new campaign, implement the monitoring tools. Insert a script that can help you in your website's HTML, for example, or set up a spreadsheet to track sales progress. Treat evaluation and monitoring as integral parts of the marketing process and assign one of your marketers to this specific task.

Talk directly to sales people to understand key moments in a product's success

Track sales feedback before and after a marketing campaign launch. Since the ultimate goal of marketing is often to increase sales, keep an eye on how each event affects sales. Ask sales people for specific feedback on the number of specific revenue coming in after a new promotion, and ask them to ask customers how they got to your business to get more detailed results.

How to monitor customers' emotions and brand awareness?

Talk to your customers to study live marketing engagements that are difficult to quantitatively track, such as awareness raising, customer sentiment, and non-loyal target audience members. Send simple emails on social media profiles and post blogs and informational content on your website. Plan questions that will give you specific information related to the success of your marketing campaign: for example, customer knowledge of new features or awareness of the environmental efforts your company is making to achieve an environmentally sustainable system.

Clean Up: Eliminate what you don't need

On the other hand, it eliminates ineffective marketing strategies. To make your tracking efforts worthwhile and streamline your marketing plan, cut out projects that don't meet their initial goals. Pay close attention to strategies that cost a large amount of money to make sure that what is invested is truly worthwhile and not a colossal flop. Analyze your marketing plan so that it contains only the most effective activities, which will leave room for new efforts. In general, the biggest trend is to use social media sponsorship (Instagram, Facebook, Youtube): it doesn't cost much, unless you choose to employ people with a very large following, and usually tends to get great visibility. . Thanks to this strategy it is also possible to monitor well the revenues per single social network, the clicks to the website or the use of the discount code that is given to each influencer.

An example: Coca-Cola's "share a Coke" campaign

A few years ago, Coca-Cola launched its "Share A Coke" campaign in the United States, using 250 of the most common US names to market its product to individual consumers.

The campaign appears to have been a huge success with the stars and stripes, and has ensured that it has spread to the rest of the world.

According to the Wall Street Journal, more than 125,000 social media posts referenced "Share A Coke" between June and July 2014, and 12% of online interactions on Coca-Cola at that time can be attributed to the campaign. In addition, more than 353,000 virtual bottles of the famous drink were shared via the website specially created for the occasion.

Another metric to the success of this campaign is highly visible once you look at the data for the Coca-Cola brand in Google Trends. After being launched in the United States, "Share a Coke" has gained more and more attention. The search term "share a coke" saw a significant increase in Google searches in the United States in the short span of three months, from June to August of the same year.

What can we learn from this campaign?

One of the reasons "Share a Coke" has been so successful is because it directly appeals to individual consumers. What better way to get someone's attention than to put their name directly on your product?

Of course, this isn't a realistic strategy - or even an optimal strategy - for many businesses, but it's important to always consider how your campaign will be perceived on an individual level.

Another aspect that makes this advertising method so memorable and effective is its ability to adapt to narrative structures. Namely, this campaign offers endless storytelling possibilities when sponsored. And since advertisements that try to tell a story are likely more effective because they are easier to remember, this has been a big plus for Coca-Cola.

In short, when you plan your next advertising campaign, immediately think about the narrative potential of the campaign.

To conclude

In conclusion, every decision-making strategy in a marketing campaign focuses on the product and on the way in which you want to represent it to the public. Once the brand identity has been defined, it is then necessary to understand exactly the profile of the target audience and the various integrated ways that can serve to reach it effectively. The case of Coca-Cola's "Share a Coke" campaign shows how reaching individuals is an effective method in the field of marketing and it is easier to track its success online.

Author: Alessio Hocevar

Alessio Hocevar


Dr. Alessio Hocevar our expert SEA (Search Engine Advertising), SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and SMO (Social Media Optimization), graduated in Communication Sciences and Technologies, also deals with copywriting, e-mail marketing and Video marketing. Google Ads Fundamentals Certified, Google Shopping.

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