The Ultimate Digital Marketing Checklist + PDF Template (Fully Updated for 2018)
Updated: 20.04.2018 7
With so many tools in the digital marketing arena, it becomes more challenging to keep your marketing strategy organized.
Take a look at how the amount of marketing technologies has developed since 2011.
Seriously, how can marketers keep up with all the latest technologies?
It gets worse:
Some platforms tend to change their specs every year which creates a lot of confusion.
Here’s a clue:
You need to have the latest digital marketing checklist at hand.
By the common effort of our marketing team, we compiled the most up-to-date digital marketing checklist for you.
The cherry on the cake:
In the end, you will find a free PDF template of the checklist.
Here’s a breakdown of what the checklist contains. You can jump into a part that interests you the most.
1. Content marketing
4. Social media
5. Social media ads
6. Search engine ads
8. Lead nurturing
10. Marketing events
11. Public relations
12. Video marketing
14. Marketing reading
Think about it:
Content marketing generates over three times as many leads as outbound marketing and costs 62% less.
There’s no doubt that content marketing should constitute an important part of every marketing team.
Here are the tools that help our team take our content marketing to a whole new level.
Content editorial calendar
It’s important to plan your content ahead to avoid stress over upcoming deadlines.
That’s why having an ultimate content calendar is crucial for every marketer.
There’s a variety of options to choose from when it comes to an editorial calendar.
- CoSchedule is a marketers’ go-to tool for planning content.
- If you want to download a ready-made template, the color-coded spreadsheet by Vertical Measures is a good option. It offers both a month-to-month and an entire year overview.
Content calendar by Vertical Measures
Blog posts headings
Your content might look like a million dollars, but without a catchy headline, it won’t generate any clicks.
Our content creators usually look for inspiration in these sources:
- 74 Attention-Grabbing Blog Titles That Actually Work by Inc.
- 101 Title Ideas for Your Next Blog Post by AudienceBloom
Whether you create long articles or make occasional social media publications, having a spell check tool in your arsenal is a must.
We use Grammarly for proofreading our content.
Download Grammarly Chrome extension and your social media posts and other online publications will be mistake-free.
There are many ways media monitoring can facilitate your content marketing:
- Finding the right type of content when seeking for an inspiration for a new piece of content.
- Tracking the performance of published content in the media and social channels.
- Engaging with the audience
For example, as email marketing geeks, we actively listen to the industry-related conversations using LianaMonitor.
Also, by tracking the mentions of our latest article, we never miss a chance to get engaged with the audience even though some of the users didn’t tag our account.
Here’s what we recommend for marketers to help them maintain websites without any IT headache.
There’s no longer need to call for help of your IT department when you want to handle a redesign project.
Utilizing a Content Management System (CMS) tool is the best solution, as it contains all features required for managing a high-quality website:
- Mobile optimization
- Maximizing SEO
- Content management
- Building tailored landing pages
- Tracking visitors’ behaviour
You can hardly find a business that does not use landing pages as a lead generation machine today.
We tend to experiment with different landing pages formats for different campaigns.
For our solutions, we mostly use a long format of the landing pages
For whitepapers, we tend to use a short format
Common questions that most webmasters face:
What pages do most visitors hover?
What areas of my landing pages get most of the clicks?
Heatmaps give you solid data on how users interact with your site and thus provide answers to the above questions.
Our marketing team finds Hotjar to be effective.
With an abundance of web design features you can stumble upon a question:
Which landing page format or headline copy drive most conversions for my campaigns?
An A/B testing tool (sometimes called split testing) is, therefore, another important weapon for marketers.
Our team has used VWO to test how different landing pages formats can impact conversion rate.
The study conducted by Chitika confirmed that the top listing in Google’s organic search results receives 33 percent of the traffic, compared to 18 percent for the second position.
And the traffic drops significantly from there.
There is no doubt that investing in SEO is a huge thing in 2018.
Taken the number of technical features related to SEO, a lot of companies outsource this part.
However, there is still a bunch of non-technical SEO work marketers can employ to rank their websites higher on search engines.
A common practice is to divide your SEO project into on-page and off-page SEO tactics.
These sources can help you conduct an on-page SEO strategy:
- Moz Open Site Explorer is a good place to start for an overview of your current SEO situation. With this software, you can also check the position of competitors on Google.
- Finding the keywords that your ideal prospects use to search for your company is vital. SemRush is a great software for keyword research.
- A goldmine for effective keyword research by Backlinko
This part boils down to the effective content promotion and link building.
Consider using these resources:
- Link building guide by Backlinko (updated for 2018)
- Outreach templates for any situation, like guest blog request or promoting your new infographic
Whether you run a small business or a big enterprise with a dedicated social media team, having this list of sources is crucial.
Social media images sizes cheat sheet
While previously you could only post only square images and videos on Instagram, the platform now allows uploading images in various dimensions.
That’s why it’s crucial to have the latest social media dimensions in your toolbox.
This 2018 Social Media Image Sizes Guide depicts detailed image guidelines for every social channel.
Social media calendar
Do you produce a lot of content? Does your team participate in many events across the globe?
Then you should make sure you share everything on social media and don't miss a beat.
Keeping a social media calendar will allow planning all your publications in advance.
These tools and resources will be a huge time saver for you:
- CoSchedule's detailed guide on how to create a social media content calendar accompanied with a free excel template for 2018.
- You can also try out Buffer or Hootsuite — software for social media scheduling.
Social media card validator
Not sure how your update will look like on social media?
We feel you.
Don’t even try to deny it:
Emoji is a big thing in 2018.
Emojis even get their own conference and constitute an important part of Apple’s presentations.
To have emojis at hand every time you need them, the handiest way is to install an emoji Chrome extension.
Mac users can use the keyboard shortcut Command - Control - Spacebar to access emoji.
According to Stream Creative, 25% of people who see a social ad, will then respond by visiting the store or website.
Investing in social media ads is crucial regardless of your industry.
Here’s a toolkit you need for successful social media ads campaigns.
The biggest challenge we faced while working on social media ads was this:
All social networks have different requirements in terms of image size, the number of words in the copy and other important specs.
Bookmark the following guides to be prepared for your next campaign:
- Facebook ads guide
- Instagram ads guide
- Twitter ads guide
- LinkedIn ads guide
- Pinterest ads guide
- YouTube ads guide
What’s the biggest struggle for social media marketers?
Exactly, measuring the ROI of social media.
Research by SimplyMeasured confirmed it.
Here’s the trick.
By Using UTM parameters and marketing automation we measured the ROI of different social channels.
The tools for UTM parameter generation:
- The most common way is to use Google Analytics URL Builder
- A good alternative is UTM Tracking Code Builder by Effin Amazing
While marketers realize the importance of search engine advertising, quite often setting and running the ads sends chills down a marketers’ spine.
However, there’s no need to be scared of the process if you have the right tools at hand.
- We have listed step-by-step guidelines on how to start with Google Ads.
- On Google Adwords Youtube channel, you can find useful tutorials on running Google Ads and advancing your campaigns.
- 18 Step Google AdWords Audit & Optimisation Guide for 2018
There are 20,000+ Marketing Analyst Jobs on LinkedIn — why?
Because analyzing your marketing performance is crucial as the amount of big data is growing tremendously.
Here are marketing analytics tools by Google that our team recommends.
- Google Analytics — the most widely used web analytics service
- Google Data Studio — your easy-to-digest Google Analytics reports through data visualization
- Google Trends — the latest trends, data and visualizations for any search term
- Consumer Barometer with Google — a tool to help you understand how people use the Internet across the world
- Think with Google — mind-blowing insights and studies for any industry
- This cheatsheet contains the list of metrics and dimensions Google Analytics captures
- A guru of Digital Marketing Avinash Kaushik publishes the blog on Google Analytics for both beginners and advanced Analytics users
- Google Analytics Academy provides a series of free online courses taught by Google experts
Acquiring a new customer is from five to 25 times more expensive than retaining an existing one.
Therefore, to keep the right customers closer, marketers need to be armed with the most effective tools.
Email marketing tool
Email marketing has the highest ROI among all marketing channels.
But wait — there’s more.
The effectiveness of email in terms of ROI has been remarkable already for many years.
And in 2017 as well:
Choosing a suitable email marketing software can be tough. With the upcoming GDPR regulation, you should keep in mind the reliability of your email marketing tool.
Read our tips on how to choose an email marketing software you’ll love.
Use this Email marketing ROI Calculator to track the ROI of your email marketing with precision and accuracy.
According to our marketing automation survey, the biggest benefit of the automation is improved targeting of emails.
With targeted emails, you can nurture the leads to take steps towards customership as well as retain current clients. Examples of targeted messages include:
- A welcome message with a special promotion
- Birthday greetings
- Automated emails offering customer support
Therefore, complementing your email campaigns with a marketing automation tool is a must in 2018.
A customer relationship management (CRM) tool allows you to manage your contacts in a systematic way. With a CRM system, customers are more easily and accurately segmented.
Thus, you can send your customers emails they are interested in at the right time, leading to more up- and cross-sales and higher customer retention and satisfaction.
Tons of email to read, constant messenger notifications and the endless stream of distractions.
Does this sound familiar?
Here are some Chrome extensions to boost your productivity when you have a lot on your plate.
Save to pocket
Found an interesting article on the Web in the middle of the workday? Just save the Web page with the one-click and continue reading the article at home. The saved pages will appear in your Pocket account, which gets synced across all your devices.
You’re likely to have a crazy number of tabs open when you’re working. OneTab organizes all your open tabs into a list. You can recall the tabs anytime you need them.
Set a certain duration of time you want to spend on sites like Facebook and Twitter. If you exceed the time limit, StayFocusd will block your access to all of these sites for the rest of the day.
According to Endless Events survey, the majority of marketers (80%) believe live events are critical to their company’s success.
Preparation for the events involve a lot of stakeholders and can be quite time-consuming. Therefore, you need to plan your event marketing thoroughly.
Consider the following resources to plan your events effectively and in a timely manner.
Calendar of marketing events
A well-planned event calendar contains all relevant info in one place. Thus, it can be effectively utilized by many teams, such as designers, social media people or email marketing department.
We don’t try to reinvent the wheel when it comes to the event calendar.
An oldie but a goldie Google Calendar serves us well.
List of digital marketing conferences
Not sure which marketing events to attend in 2018?
- Check out this list of must-attend SEO, PPC and digital marketing conferences in 2018 by SemRush
- The Digital Marketing Conference Calendar by Bruce Clay has a breakdown of 250+ events listed by location and topic
Event management tool
Hosting your own events or webinars?
Using an event management software is a sure-fire way to help you organize the entire process.
From sending invitations to gathering payments, an event management tool takes care of many important steps.
We at Liana Technologies use Eventilla for every event we host.
Press releases haven't become obsolete.
According to our latest PR survey, journalists actively utilize press releases in their daily job.
Thus, with the right tools at your fingertips, press releases can give your brand a big exposure online.
PR distribution tool
Our marketing team uses LianaPress to send press releases about company’s achievements and other important announcements.
But we are always one step ahead when it comes to PR distribution:
By complementing our PR efforts with a media monitoring tool, LianaMonitor, we can immediately see when a press release has been published by a certain media.
For instance, we could easily spot when our latest press release was published by Business Intelligence Middle East.
Dealing with presentations or helping your sales team to deliver a great one is an inevitable part of PR.
In case you’re wondering what presentation tool to use, check out these:
- Marketing professionals love the cloud-based Prezi as it’s great for collaboration and does not require designer skills
- A lot of marketers refer to Haiku Deck as being an easy-to-use tool
- Our Marketing and Sales teams use Apple’s Keynote
Marketers use online surveys in any number of ways:
- Conducting market research
- Getting customer feedback
- Finding out customers’ preferences
Ultimately, the survey results can be effectively used to boost your PR.
Aside from Google Forms, there are other online survey tools in the market:
In 2018, investing in video marketing is earth-shattering.
Make sure to have the following tools to get the most out of video marketing.
Having a good camera in your toolkit is important for shooting customer cases or other brand videos.
There are a ton of good ones out there:
- Sony a7R
- iPhone X
- Samsung Galaxy S9
Our team has Canon 5D Mark III for shooting company’s videos or customer success stories.
Video editing tools
The most common misconception floating around video editing:
It’s difficult to edit a video without sufficient skills.
However, with these tools you can effortlessly create short video clips:
- The barrier to enter iMovie is usually low
- VivaVideo is a good tool for creating short clips right on your mobile device. The app is available for both iOS and Android
- Video editor Splice has a user-friendly UI and a great music collection
- Motion Array contains Motion Graphics templates, Premiere Pro templates, stock music, and much more
Give them a try and see for yourself!
A collection of stock videos can add a little spice to your videos:
Dealing with graphics is something that every marketer eventually faces in their everyday job.
Make sure you have the relevant graphical tools at your disposal.
Image editing tools
The following tools can help you with basic design tasks, such as whipping up a social media post or a header image for your new blog post.
- Our marketing team uses Shutterstock collection on top of taking photos ourselves
What do all successful marketers have in common?
They constantly expand their scope by reading industry-relevant blogs.
Our team recommends the following blogs:
- Social Media Examiner
- Content marketing institute
- Marketing Land
- Business 2 Community
- Social Media Today
Use Feedly to keep all of your favorite blogs organized in one place.
Remember to share the checklist with your team at your next marketing meeting!