The number of techniques to master, ready to use tools, and data to be treated continue to
discourage novice marketers. It's like they’re at the foot of an impassable mountain.
We will see in this article how to establish a virtuous cycle rather than a growth hack and how to
gain effectiveness and ROI.
1 ) Stop putting means before strategy
A) Objectives, Strategy & Means
To succeed in digital marketing, one has to make the distinction between means, strategy, and
objective. Objectives are what we want to achieve, for example, Lead acquisition, Lead quality,
and customer loyalty. To reach these goals, different routes may be taken. The routes are the
different possible strategies. In digital marketing, we can combine inbound and outbound
marketing strategies. And finally, there are means. In the context of inbound marketing, the
means are for example content, social networks, scoring, and marketing automation. These are
the elements that laid end to end feed into strategy.
Take that to another situation: Tennis: If the objective is to win the next match. We could adopt
a new offense and defense strategy. When playing the attacker, means are service and
knocking the ball over the net in midair and by hand. For defense, it will be endurance and the
game at the end of the court.
Similarily, when a tennis man trains to knock the ball over the net because they have chosen an
offense strategy, a marketer is going to work on their blog articles because they have chosen an
inbound marketing strategy. It is therefore absurd to speak about blogging strategy, because
blogging is just a means, among others, at the service of the chosen strategy.
B) How to stop focusing on means
The “problem” in digital marketing is the profusion of means made available to marketers. There
are so many possibilities that it is difficult to make a choice. We are tempted to test all of them.
Being enticed to take on everything, eventually leads to being out of breath and wanting to stop
in our tracks.
The obsession with growth hacking entices marketers to immediately seek the winning move.
And lots of strategies require regularity in order to be performant. For example, when embarking
on creating new content, one often needs 6 to 9 months to see tangible results. To avoid
burning out, one must move away from this build-up of means and take control. Stop focusing
on means and relearn how to unwind and find new objectives.
2) Set the wheels in motion to get the virtuous circle into first gear
It is not because of the wide range of possibilities at our disposition is hefty that we have to use
it all. Dispersion is counter-productive. In order to set the wheels in motion, one has to choose a
strategy and go for it. For example, if we make the choice of using a content strategy, we are
not going to start immediately writing a bunch of articles. Further upstream, in order to correctly
create a virtuous circle, we should rely on personas and keyword analysis. Afterward, start by
creating 2 or 3 articles per month and implement the promotion on social networks, email, as
well as bloggers and influencers in order to obtain backlinks.
If these first steps are done well, the virtuous cycle will snap into place. Once correctly amplified,
the content will gradually generate traffic. On that basis, the contact list will grow. The site will
gain in notoriety and authority. Therefore SEO traffic and incoming links improve and positioning
of keywords becomes more fluid.. and so forth.
In the same comprehensive way, we can put a virtuous circle into place with a publicity strategy
and PR, events strategy / sponsoring.
3) The key to success: start on a solid foundation
For Rand Fishkin, Moz founder, each strategy has its merits and own mechanism. Is it not the
strategy which is chosen that will result in a virtuous circle. It is primarily the act of basing
strategy on a solid foundation. Influencers insist on the importance of self-managing their
website and contacts. In order to be performant, one needs to have control over their content
If we choose to focus on content marketing, the fundamental requirements for being the most
efficient are as follows:
- optimized technical site (CMS, responsive, duration of page charge, efficient CTA and landing
- optimized site in terms of content (keyword choice, optimization,SEO...)
- perfect knowledge of targeted clients(personas, pain points, challenges)
- editorial strategy( what to talk about, to who, when, how, where)
- visit tracking tool, nurturing campaign put into place, scoring and lead detection)
Without these elements, we cannot save ourselves from a hack.
The notion of a virtuous cycle, don't exclude the notion of a hack. But growth hacking does not
substitute for strategy. It can be useful to clear an obstacle that appears in the virtuous circle.
But without a solid foundation, it is impossible to succeed in digital marketing.
All strategies reclaim consistency and time. FInd a good starting point, and as you go along,
testing, and experimenting, results will be achieved, efficiency will be gained and ROI will be
improved. This is how, by advancing step by step, that a positive spiral is created.
Contrarily to what growth hacking can make one believe, one does not succeed in digital
marketing by with a one shot. To put all the chances on your side, it is better to put a virtuous
cycle into place, by constructing a solid foundation, and by adopting good practices that will
endure longterm. Wager on work and regularity than on flagrancy. Save our growth hacks for
when you need to get over points of contention that are blocking the advancement of funnel marketing.
The article was written by Benoit Collet Taken from Journal Du Net