Creating a Successful online Strategy

  • By Joe Wozny
  • 29 Aug, 2016

As Featured In

Five-Step digitalroadmap Process  
Martin Zwilling recently noted in a Forbes review of The Digital Dollar that “The route to success is not a random walk.” (Forbes, 2012). He further notes that “From a strategic perspective, all the above should start with an overall digital roadmap, where you define your goals, outline the steps required, and articulate your success measurements.”   Click here   to read Martin's review.
This article outlines one proven method of creating an online strategy through the digitalroadmap process found in The Digital Dollar: Sustainable Strategies for Online Strategies. The key components of roadmap building are reviewed together with Insights, Tips and Advice including the “Must Haves” to to review or get started on your process.  
“Must Have” Prerequisites
Successful online strategies are created when you have the following in place:
• An articulated vision, business plan or list of business goals you wish to accomplish. Online programs are enablers for organizational goals, they are not business drivers, so. Without clear stated business goals and objectives, a digitalroadmap has nothing to enable.

• The ability and culture to factually audit your existing online programs, and their performance where necessary. You may find yourself asking questions like, “Is what we are doing now working?” or “How are we measuring it?” or “How is this information we are collecting meaningful”, etc.

• In general terms, a practical and clear idea of the human and budget resources available to allocate to any plans made, so the planning process can make realistic recommendations.

• Not absolutely necessary, but highly recommended, is access to a trusted,, neutral source of information to help answer any questions that may arise around the online products and services you are considering. Knowledge resource(s) are important to the success of any venture.
Building a digitalroadmap
Following a defined process assists you in synthesizing the best ideas into a customized strategy suitable for your situation, business and objectives.
Step 1 – Frame the Objectives and Deliverables
In this step, define the specific goals, deliverables, project sponsors and team members your business wants to get from its online activities. This can be done in a one-page document often referred to as a “project scope”.
Step 2 – Assess Your Current Environment
Current situation analysis and summary – In this step, note and assess your current online channels and how these are performing in relation to your goals, costs, and time taken to maintain them. It’s often helpful to use analytics tools to understand how your organization is found online and who your customers are, as well as their current comments about your products and services.
It is also important to understand how much social or community equity you have during the assessment step. Questions to ask include - Who are your advocates? Who is in your immediate community? Who comprises your indirect community? What is their opinion on your brand, products and services? How do they react to items you request from them? Who are the influencers? Who are the followers? etc.
Step 3 – Option Mapping
It’s time to look at your online product and service (channel) options, once you have defined your goals and how you are doing now in relation to your goals. One of the challenges we all face in the online world are the number of channel options to choose from. The channel options you review and eventually choose should be determined by how they can assist in furthering your business goals - for example Facebook is a great channel to connect and engage with consumers where as LinkedIn is a great channel to connect and engage with business contacts.  
Each channel will consume a portion of your budget and available resources. You will need the ability to deliver meaningful content to your audience through the channel. So review your options and assessments from this perspective as well.  
Step 4 – Collaborative Review
Now that you have developed the basic outline of a strategy, review this strategy within your organization, with all your stakeholders. These discussions form the basis of recommendations and uncover any items not yet fully explored. Include discussions on how services from strategy decisions will be deployed and operated. Examine worst case scenarios to test how you would overcome adversity in your plan.
Step 5 – Recommendations and Communications
Your strategy needs to be documented and reviewed with all parties who will help you implement and
maintain it. The detail within your documentation depends on the culture of your organization. Effective plans should include a one-page visual document outlining what actions you plan to take over time, key speaking points, and resource requirements - see Figure 1. Always include a budget with estimated one-time and ongoing costs and of course state your assumptions about your strategy plan so you can refer to these as your get measurable results, plus new information about your activities and the activities of your competition.
Figure 1 - Example of a One Page digitalroadmap Visual Summary that was used by a financial organization.
Insights, Advice and Tips
Proven experience shows you should:
• Include your team when creating your roadmap. This helps build consensus and galvanize your online plans.

• Carry out regular Roadmap checks; online changes and your roadmap will require adjustments along the way
• Document your starting point in order to create a baseline to measure your accomplishments from.

• Celebrate when you get to each destination (roadmap goals or milestones).

• Post a one-page summary of your roadmap in a location where it can act as a reminder of your goals and activities.
Final Word   - for now - Don’t stop what you are doing online today. Modify and adjust and use the roadmap process as a way of assessing your current activities and, if possible, building on your strengths.

Joe Wozny, author of The Digital Dollar: Sustainable Strategies for Online Success, is a digital and online media thought leader, strategist, author, blogger and international presenter on strategies to improve the reach and success of Internet, social and digital media initiatives. Through Concentric, he helps leaders leverage their businesses using smart, well planned digital strategies. For more information on Joe as an author, please visit , and follow him on Facebook and Twitter


By Alex Wozny 17 May, 2017

From Google’s reliance on artificial intelligence to the much-awaited Google Penguin, the SEO landscape has seen a lot of developments. Our perspective of the top trends and shifts include:

By Joe Wozny 16 May, 2017

Chatbots. We’ve all heard of them. But if you are like most busy people, we’ve given little thought to them. According to Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella “Bots are the new Apps”. And cases for where bots are starting to be used “effectively” to make online interactions easier for customers, are appearing.

By Cheryl Kenny 16 May, 2017

Instagram Stories ads are now available to all businesses looking to reach the 150 million people who use Stories daily.

By Joe Wozny 02 May, 2017
User Experience, Dwell Time, Long Clicks, Time on Site, Bounce Rate, Conversion Rate, Digital Transformation, RankBrain …
By Joe Wozny 27 Apr, 2017

Over the past year the SEO industry is observing a change in how pages are ranked by Google’s core algorithm (including Google’s RankBrain machine learning elements). It appears that pages which have high visitor engagement are rewarded with higher search rankings.  

By Joe Wozny 27 Apr, 2017

For business people, it’s important to keep up with the latest news and changes on LinkedIn. It’s one of the premier business social networks to share knowledge, connect with business colleagues and clients, develop new business opportunities and more. LinkedIn updated their desktop layout in January 2017 … and now after a few months of member input, the feature changes appear to be permanent and will soon apply to all accounts.

By Joe Wozny 27 Apr, 2017

Imagine having access to a large plethora of actual data on how visitors react to landing pages? This information could save you time and contribute value for your digital marketing conversion activities.

By Joe Wozny 27 Apr, 2017
Digital transformation and it’s impact on marketing and sales in your business is important.   This article, (and these practical 3 Steps) share practical methods of supporting digital transformation by creating a “marketing value loop” for your company.
By Joe Wozny 03 Mar, 2017
Are you getting a measurable ROI for from your dollars spent on digital marketing? Well, as reported on Entrepreneur, there's companies in 5 industries are reporting returns of at least $5 in revenue for every $1 spent on digital marketing (March 2017). Incredible and fantastic!
By Joe Wozny 14 Feb, 2017

The Internet has forever changed how retail businesses operate and how consumers shop. I enjoyed this infograph and wanted to share it with you since the stats are well researched and the impact offline to retail is quite astounding. Looking forward to new advertising tools that will allow retailers to track instore visits from an ad click as discussed in the Spring edition of Digital Dollars and Sense . Full credits to the infograph’s publisher and creators are provided below.

More Posts
Share by: