Dimension 2 is called 7 MODES (also known as Modalities or Stages) in the overall marketing process. Each Mode is relevant to all of the Pillars, and even starts before/outside the Pillars, and then cuts through.
The Modes apply to all marketing projects or campaigns, as well as web development, or almost any professional project for that matter. Before moving through them, it is important to assess whether any of the Modes are already set in stone. For example, there may be a team (Mode 4) and budget (Mode 2) already locked - which answers some key questions and gives more focus for the other areas such as Strategy (Mode 3).
So let’s look at the 7 key Modes or stages in the overall Digital Marketing process. Each Mode is a process of its own that is relevant to all Pillars, Digital and Traditional. The 7 Pillars framework covers all of these bases, by explaining what typically happens and what the key actions and decisions are required at each stage, and for each Pillar.
7 Modes of Digital Marketing
(Research, Ideation, Discovery) This is the ideation, assessment and discovery phase of any marketing campaign or project. Anything goes in this stage, as specific budgets and decisions are not set yet. Whatever existing data or resources are in place is analyzed in this phase, including formal audits and assessments (ie. SEO Rankings, existing customer base, SWOT, etc) This is when you do your research, read industry news from various sources, explore the history and case studies associated with the Pillar, and gather your key information.
ROI (Budgeting & Goal Setting):
Here is where you answer questions like ‘How much can we spend? What do we need to make? How long will it take? Essentially, your ROI goal setting and planning take shape in this stage.
A formal strategy can be put together once the first two stages are done. The campaign is potentially on at this point. Ideas are more well-formed and organized. More focused research is being done on specific tactics. Here is where specific tactical strategies, say for Pillar 3 (Organic Search), tie in with the overall marketing strategy, including traditional and digital elements. Domain (industry) knowledge becomes more important here. Segmentation is critical as well. The following two Modes can also be seen as sub-sections of Strategy, as can the Budgeting phase; but each of these Modes has distinct elements, skill sets and decisions associated with them, which is why they’re considered separately.
People (& Teams):
With budgets and strategy in place, the next question is who can execute the work? What is the right mix of people by skill level, location, etc? How do people and team dynamics impact timelines and ROI? Should you work with an agency or do this work in-house? This is where those key decisions are made.
Tools (& Tech):
Everyone likes to use tools and platforms that they’re familiar with. Developing knowledge and expertise in technology takes time. So with the project staff selected, the next key decisions revolve around which tools can be used to organize, manage and analyze the campaigns. As we delve deeper into the model, we will review what some of the best tools and technologies are for all the Pillars, and the hundreds of sub-tactics that exist within them.
With all that setup in place, it is time to get the actual work done! In reality, the prior 5 Modes all require some type of work to be done; however, that is all considered as planning or pre-production. Execution is the stage where the curtain is lifted and the show is officially on.
Analytics (& BI – Audit, Optimization):
Once execution begins, especially in the digital marketing realm, analysis and campaign optimization come into play. Analyzing results, and generating recommendations to improve things, such as Conversion Optimization on website landing pages, are of great importance. While the audit process connects to all Modes, full campaign audits are centered in this phase.
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