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“Plans and strategies are crucial.”

You hear this a lot in the marketing world but, it seems, many of us are failing to put our money where our mouth is - or finding it harder to do rather than just say. Partnering with Technology for Marketing, we recently surveyed our members to discover how they approached digital marketing optimization. What we found was a distinct shortfall in strategy and planning activities.  We asked our members to rank their digital marketing abilities at the initial “Plan” stage of the RACE Growth Framework on a scale of one to five. ‘One’ meant having no strategy and ‘five’ stretched to a significantly advanced level. 57% of our respondents rated themselves within the lowest stages - one or two.  [si_guide_block id="155497" title="Download…

Take our short poll to share which skill you need to improve most within the year

This month we're focusing our content on Digital Marketing skills and careers development. As a marketing advice site, we're always creating new resources to help marketers plan, manage and optimize their digital strategy and channel specific tactics. We 20 toolkits spanning from digital marketing strategy and planning, campaign planning to B2B, Agency and much more. However, to understand what is needed and where marketers need to spend time improving, we need to know what areas of digital marketing are the weakest within companies and personal skills. To help us understand the skills gap in 2018 please choose the 3 skills which you most want to learn in the year ahead which are also important to your business. If you can't see the poll, please click here to complete the poll. We'll be sharing our findings at…

The implications of GDPR are looming, but is your company ready for the European change?

With new GDPR regulations to be effective from May 2018 - it's a topic on every email marketer's mind. But what is your company doing to prepare for this change? The Smart Insights team would really appreciate it if you could contribute your companies readiness for GDPR (which comes into force in May 2018). Please take the poll below: Is your company GDPR ready? If you can't see the poll but would like to contribute, please vote directly here. We will be soon releasing a new guide on GDPR, by our Email Marketing Manager, Kim Greenop-Gadsby, which details who and what it affects, steps to prepare for GDPR, a practical GDPR checklist, practical implementations of data collection and examples of poor judgments by companies that have panicked about GDPR. Keep an eye on our content so…

10+ sites that are useful for keeping up-to-date with marketing, which do you prefer?

Staying up-to-date and constantly learning is vital in marketing, particularly since so many of the digital marketing platforms like Facebook, Google and LinkedIn are moving targets, with updates every week it seems. There is always a new update, a new tool to use or a new way of innovating your marketing practices. It begs the question of where is the best place to stay up-to-date, where do you find out about the latest changes to social media platforms or Google algorithms. At the same time, we need to review new communications strategies, for example, those made possible by inbound and content marketing, marketing automation and artificial intelligence and machine learning.

What sites do you use to keep your marketing knowledge up-to-date?

Regular readers of Smart Insights will know that we look to alert readers to the biggest changes which could benefit your…

5 reasons why you don't and 10 reasons why you could

Surely it's obvious, with today's digital marketing platforms like search and social networks, desktop and mobile web applications that you need a digital marketing strategy? I don't think so, the obvious isn't always obvious, or practical to make happen, or even considered necessary. So, a couple of weeks ago we asked readers of SmartInsights.com whether their company, or if they work for an agency or are a consultant, their typical clients have one. These are the shocking? results... Thank you if you voted or shared this post, we had around 110 responses, so a fair number, although we have no sample frame of who since it's just an informal poll. As I suspected, there has been little change since we asked the exact same question back in 2010 as the chart below shows. This suggests that…

What do you think are the worst mistakes in website design today?

I'm a firm believer that one of the best ways to learn effective digital marketing is to review examples of good practice in digital marketing from other companies - like this example of good practice in landing pages. But we can also learn a lot from mistakes that are commonly made. I hope the Smart Insights blog can help marketers avoid the time,money and stress involved with these mistakes by getting digital marketing right first time or fixing problems which mean missed opportunities. So what are the worst mistakes? Well, last week I gave a choice of 10 and you kindly gave me your view on the worst. This is what you thought:

Well we've got a clear winner which is the main customer journeys / next steps unclear.…