The key elements for developing an effective digital strategy includes; Planning, Creation, Deployment and Evaluation.

Each of these stages overlap into the next to deliver a coherent digital campaign. Combined, they deliver an ongoing digital strategy as the audience and brand perception evolves.

1. Planning
The planning of a digital strategy involves analysing the following:
• The initial aims and expected returns, both tangible and non-tangible.
• The background of the brand, present positioning and perception
• The audience – broken down into key segments
• Audience locations and value of each audience segment against initial aims

The planning stage deals purely in the analysis and identification of focus areas.

2. Creation
The creation stage is purely focused around campaign formalisation. This involves:
• Planning campaign elements based upon previous analysis
• Creating key performance indicators per channel and estimating expected return per channel
• Design and build of campaign elements / channels
• Planning and establishing deployment routes, communication flows and expectations

The creation stage for each channel finishes on the launch of each channel.

3. Deployment
The deployment stage focuses on the delivery of the campaign, including:
• Building the engagement timeline
• Engaging with the audience through the engagement loop
• Sampling progress through a campaign and optimising the campaign message
• Recording salient information through each campaign step for evaluation

The deployment stage runs as a microcosm of the strategy as a whole and relies on rapid responses to tune the strategy.

4. Evaluation
The evaluation of a digital strategy is imperative to learn the lessons of the campaign, including:
• Evaluating KPIs and fiscal achievement
• Reviewing engagement and unexpected longer term benefits
• Taking lessons on board to build stronger future campaigns
• Scoring the strategy and the benefits that it has given

Evaluation improves the effectiveness of future campaigns and strategies by becoming the key building block in planning them.