When considering the success or failure of museum digital marketing campaigns, key variables such as graphic design, media buy, and campaign design are often brought up and analyzed as they should be! But equally important to a successful digital marketing campaign is having a sound digital setup.
In this post, we’ll cover the key components that go into a comprehensive digital setup for your museum marketing campaigns.
In short, your digital infrastructure is the sum of the programs, applications, and technology used in your organization and how they communicate together. This could be in regards to your network or the front and back end of your website. For this post, we’re talking about digital infrastructure as it pertains to your digital marketing efforts. Here are just a few examples of optimizations that you may be able to make in your organization:
- Ensuring that your museum store inventory data is automatically synching with your digital shopping campaigns on Facebook or Google.
- Having the pertinent form or visitor data automatically ported to your customer relationship management tool (CRM) or email campaign system for seamless integration with your ongoing campaigns. A detailed setup here might include a scenario where a customer would automatically drop out of your email campaigns when they bought a ticket within 60 days. Another example might be where website visitors that have been on a particular page for over a certain amount of time might be automatically placed into a ‘warm leads’ email audience.
- Linking analytics from all of your platforms in one central reporting hub. Spending hours a week culling data into a spreadsheet is an activity of the past. Programs such as Google Looker Studio allow you to import data from your various advertising platforms, in real-time, on one central report.
Within your ad platform accounts, you’ll see little snippets of customized HTML code, and in order to get your money’s worth with your digital ad spend, that code needs to be placed on your website. These snippets of code allow for things like audience building and the serving of retargeting ads across various websites, both of which are key elements to a successful digital marketing campaign. While support docs will have you believe that placing tracking code is an easy procedure, there are some important things to consider when you’re implementing your next piece of tracking code:
- Utilize tag/code containers: Programs such as Google Tag Manager allow you to place what’s called a ‘container’ on your website. Once this code is placed and the container implemented, you can add any future code to your website by simply going into your Google Tag Manager account and adding the code. No more bothering your web developer with each new code snippet!
- Website content management systems (CMS) like WordPress utilize themes that need to be updated regularly. If your tracking code is placed in an area that will get updated during theme updates, you’ll need to employ a child theme and make updates to that theme moving forward. That way, any code you’ve placed (as well as any CSS adjustments, etc.) will remain unaffected.
- Standard tracking code likely won’t track particular data that might be important to your campaign analysis and health, such as purchase price, quantity sold, and so on. To do that, you must customize the tracking code with the parameters you need or add additional pieces of code.
- Utilize browser extensions to analyze how your tracking code is firing and what data is being captured. Most big-name browsers should have extensions for each ad platform.
Search engine optimization is the process of optimizing your webpage content for search engines. Over the years, search engine optimization has changed quite a bit. In the past, search engine bots had more rudimentary methods of detecting what they hoped were high-quality web pages for a given topic. One could optimize a web page by ‘keyword stuffing’ or using the keyword as much as possible throughout the page. In its extreme form, sometimes a keyword was pasted hundreds of times in white on the bottom of a white page so that search engines could detect the words but human eyeballs could not. Nowadays, search engine bots are much more analytical (and successful) in truly determining which web pages have the best-tailored content given the query in question. Besides writing clear and professional content, there are many other SEO optimizations you can make to ensure your page is optimized to reach its fullest potential.
- Do plenty of keyword research. There are many paid and free programs available to help you determine which keyword or keywords your page should be optimized for. Obtaining search volume estimates, CPC estimates and competitor research are just a few of the multiple insights available when optimizing your web pages.
- We recommend having at least one image on a page and ensuring that your key image(s) has alt text containing your keyword(s). Also, ensure that your keyword is used in the meta description in addition to the title and subtitle.
- Make sure that your page has at least one internal and external link.
- Higher word counts are your friend! In the past, the recommended word count for a standard blog post was 500 words. Nowadays, it is recommended for a standard blog post to have at least 1000 words. You are a pro in your field, and here is the spot to elaborate on what you know. But keep in mind that search engines still prefer quality over quantity! Write on your topic as long as you can, but only so long as you are providing new, quality content.
- Do not optimize more than one page with the same keyword. Your main business focus might be “Spacely Sprockets,” if you optimize every page for that term, they will be competing against each other for that query. Instead, optimize each page for a different keyphrase, which describes the content on that particular page.
By addressing these key digital areas before your next campaign, you will ensure that your digital marketing infrastructure is optimized to maximize efficiency, communication, and exposure in your museum’s digital marketing efforts. These steps are quite detailed, and take diligence and significant time to complete. We’ve completed proper digital marketing setups for dozens of museums, traveling exhibitions, and other businesses of all sizes, so please reach out if you’d like us to help make sure your digital infrastructure is set up properly for your next campaign.