Wanting to take the plunge into the world of digital marketing, but not sure where to begin? You’re probably not the only one blankly staring at their computer screen feeling overwhelmed and exhausted, unsure of how to start. Stress no more, we’ve got you covered.
Given the vastness and depth of our community, attempting to navigate the ins and outs of digital marketing for the very first time can be discouraging. For your sake, we’ve compiled a guide geared towards supporting beginners in their efforts of breaking into this fun and ever-growing realm. With the following steps under your belt, you’ll be a thought leader in no time!
Step 1 – Explore HubSpot Academy
Stop what you’re doing and head to HubSpot Academy ASAP. With HubSpot Academy’s several training and certification programs, you will have a strong grasp on digital marketing in no time.
Begin with the Inbound Certification program. This will lay the groundwork for what digital and inbound marketing are all about. Topics including SEO, blogging, email marketing, social media, and even more will be covered. At the end of the course, there will be an exam and practicum. Upon completion, you will officially be Inbound Certified.
After becoming Inbound certified, continue your FREE digital marketing education by taking advantage of HubSpot’s other training programs. While the Inbound Certification program gives you a broad overview of elements of inbound and digital marketing, become a subject matter expert in applicable areas. Explore specific corners of digital marketing, such as content marketing, contextual marketing, or email marketing.
With HubSpot constantly making improvements and offering new content, it is essential to be proactive. After receiving your certifications and watching the relevant training videos, remember to frequently check back to see what’s new within HubSpot.
Step 2 – Do Your Research
It’s hard to get bored with digital marketing and almost impossible to understand all facets of this topic, as it is always evolving and shifting. Individuals are discovering ways to take digital marketing’s capacity and usage a step further every day. With this being said, you must take initiative and do your research on how digital marketing is evolving in order to stay relevant in this field.
Every week, perhaps even twice a week, take an hour out of your day to research the latest trends in digital marketing. Learn about the new tools available that you can apply to your digital marketing strategy. Start by simply skimming news articles on the topic. In addition, bookmark some of your digital marketing blogs (Revenue River’s 'The Cutting Edge' comes highly recommended).
While it doesn’t take much to stay current in this realm, with digital marketing’s presence being everywhere we look, it can severely hurt your strategy if you ignore this simple advice. In this world, methods and techniques become outdated FAST and it doesn’t take a marketing expert to determine whether or not your tactics are still relevant or not.
Step 3 – Get to Know Your Client or Brand
When it comes to digital marketing, a siloed mentality doesn’t work. To be truly successful, your knowledge must go beyond your digital marketing toolkit. Seek to understand the goals of the company as a whole alongside its marketing goals. Know what your client’s current strategy looks like and how this compares to where they want to be. Know your client’s offerings inside and out. Lastly, gauge how your clients prefer to communicate and the level of communication they are expecting. Know whether or not they would like a check-in once a week, and know whether they prefer that check-in be in-person or via phone.
Step 4 – Begin with Your End Goals in Mind
Begin by establishing smart marketing goals. Every actionable step you take should be getting you one step closer to reaching your overarching goals. When devising a plan, ensure that the plan is in support of your strategy. When executing a plan, ensure that you are still on course with getting you closer to the end goal. When reflecting on your actions, determine ways that could have brought you even closer to your end goal for the next time around.
Step 5 – Analyze and Report on Your Results
Last but not least, ANALYZE! The key to a successful strategy is analysis. Reflecting on and analyzing the performance of your work is just as important as actually implementing the work. Without it, you have no direction for future steps. Simply reviewing your work post-implementation will provide you with a clear path. In analyzing your work, be sure to answer the following questions:
- Did you meet your goals and expectations?
- Is your work supporting your conversion efforts?
- How can you improve the performance of your work?
- What will you do differently going forward as a result of the performance of your work?
Don’t let the immense amount of content and options out there intimidate you from getting started. Our simple, easy-to-follow guide will make your digital marketing endeavors manageable and stress-free. From experience, we have weeded out the bad and compiled the good that has ultimately allowed us to grow.
To further assist in your mission of becoming a digital marketing star – and help you check Step 4 off your list – check out our Smart Marketing Goals template below.