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Digital Marketing from Scratch

Marija Stijaković, Marketing & Communications Manager

6 min readNov 24, 2020.

Where to start

When I was first hired as a digital marketer in the IT industry, I didn’t know where to start. I had all the resources I could wish for, but no one to help me. I was given the time to learn how things are done in IT, but I still couldn’t figure out most of the technical stuff. And when we combine that with the fact that what they teach us at schools is only partially applicable, I had more loose ends than I could account for. It took me a good three months or so until I realized that taking it slow is the best thing I could do at the moment. IT industry or not, when you start something from scratch, baby steps are the safest ones to be made.

at the computer, working

Your go-to list of marketing essentials:

1. A clearly defined target group

Don’t do anything before creating a target group. You have to know who the people you are trying to reach are. Create your ideal buying persona, the type of person who will definitely buy your product or services (for B2C marketing strategy), or the person who will do the same on the behalf of their company (for B2B marketing strategy). Try to pinpoint what their problems are and offer them an easy way to solve them with your product or service. Every product solves a problem, no matter what you are selling. When you find a problem you can solve with your company’s product or service, you just have to think of a person who is the most likely to be facing it, and you are halfway there.

2. Research on your competitors’ activities

Instead of trying to reinvent the wheel, analyze what more successful companies in your niche are doing. Look at their marketing efforts and analyze the result they get. It will save you a lot of time and money. Check their social media accounts, see what they are posting on LinkedIn, what their website is like, and what topics they talk about on their blogs. Try to find out if they are involved in some community projects or joint campaigns with other companies. Try to reach out to a person who has the same job as you (but not in a company that’s your direct competitor) and ask him or her for advice, you would be surprised how many people will be happy to help. You can contact them on LinkedIn, which works well for both asking for advice and offering your services. The approach is a bit different, though.

3. Digital marketing assets

The most important assets you should have at your disposal are your website (if you don’t have one, you can always contact us for help :), your website’s blog, branded assets (like icons, logos, acronyms, etc.), video content (video ads, product demos), images (infographics, photos of your products, employees and workspace), different written content (such as blog posts or e-books, product descriptions, testimonials, reviews of your company /product /service) and of course, social media pages. In terms of social media, you also shouldn’t forget influencers. Having an influencer who will endorse your company or any of the products/ services you offer, can make a big difference for any of your marketing campaigns. Finally, your emailing list. Prospective clients and buyers are out there- you just have to reach out to them. Attain as many assets as you can. And if you lack any of the ones mentioned here, consider investing some money in expanding your assets list, all marketing efforts are a long-term investment that does pay off.

4. The best marketing channel

Well, this one is tricky. The first two items on the list can give you some idea about which one to choose - your buying persona might prefer Facebook to Instagram because of his/her lifestyle, and you can see that your competitors have a fairly successful Google Ads campaign - but that doesn’t mean that their approach is the best one. Or that you can beat them in their own game. At this point, you must have a clearly defined goal of your marketing strategy - what you what to accomplish. Do you want to raise brand awareness? Or maybe to attract young talents, and you need to focus on creating an employer branding strategy. Perhaps you are rolling out a new product, and you need people to buy it. Whatever your intentions might be, your goal and target group have to match. Different marketing strategies will have different target groups, depending on your end goal. So, when you know what you want to do and what kind of audience you will need for that, you can choose between these marketing channels:

  1. Content Marketing and SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
  2. SEM (Search Engine Marketing )
  3. Influencer / Affiliate Marketing (people partners)
  4. SMM (Social Media Marketing)
  5. PPC (Pay-per-click)
  6. Email Marketing
  7. Mobile Marketing
  8. Video Marketing (TV)
  9. Audio Marketing (radio)
  10. PR (Public Relations)

Just make sure you analyzed all of the above (their pros and cons, resources invested vs the value you gain, the right timing, etc.), consider your strategy and end-goal, and base your decision on what you learned.

5. Data collected

Last but not least, you will need a way to estimate the success of your marketing efforts. You need to have well-organized documentation on all your marketing activities. Mark the start and end dates, resources invested (time and money both), and results you got. If you keep a record of all the data, you will be able to compare and contrast all the information gathered and conduct different analyses. And this will give you valuable insight into the success of different strategies and campaigns you implemented. This data can also help you get to know your audience better, recognize, and follow certain trends, as well as pinpoint new target groups.

writing a list on the board

And there you have it. If you don’t know where to start or you are a bit lost in the hectic world of digital marketing, start with the basics. These five simple steps helped me a lot, and I hope it will do the same for you.