Eric Clapton became a guitar god by first practicing riffs created by blues guitar legend Robert Johnson. Clapton developed his own style as he listened to other artists, played with new bands, and found the guitar licks that he grew to love.
Becoming a master of digital marketing is no different.
But first, you’ve got to get the right stuff into your brain (Clapton wouldn’t have become Clapton if he’d imitated amateurs). If you want to master digital marketing idea generation, you have to first get comfortable with borrowing things that work elsewhere.
Use this 20-minute daily practice to steal the best digital marketing ideas for your start up or growing company.
Become a magnet for digital marketing strategy ideas.
Set aside 20 minutes a day. Go ahead and block it out on your calendar so you commit to it. Then use the time as follows:
First 5 minutes: Choose the 10 best growth articles of the day.
Skim through the 3 best marketing ideas bubbling up on the internet that day. You can subscribe to company emails that you like to find fresh digital marketing ideas. But I like to use Q&A and user-submission tools to help me identify what’s worth reading and what isn’t. I highly recommend:
During this first 5 minutes, you should simply identify the 5-10 most compelling articles. Identify these by finding the submissions that have the most upvotes, comments, or keywords in the title that indicate the article might be particularly relevant to your business.
Pro Tip: You can do this process even more quickly by hold shift while you click each tab. This will open the article in a new tab without changing windows and allow you to complete this first part of discovery quickly.
Second 5 minutes: Identify the best digital marketing ideas.
Is it worth reading every word of every article that catches your attention online? (hint: probably not)
Get in the habit of good skimming technique by taking the 5-10 articles identified in your first 5 minutes of discovery and forcing yourself to review the article in 30 seconds or less. Do this by reading through the headlines and subheads, bolded words, and key phrases (which generally appear in the first and last sentences of paragraphs).
Your goal here should be to find the best 3 articles for you to dig into and really comprehend. These should be articles that challenge you to think in a new way or learn something new.
Third 5 minutes: Dig in.
Now that you’ve figured out where the gold is hidden, it’s time to put on your headlamp and headlamp. Because, we’re going mining!
In each of your final three digital marketing ideas, look for explicit tactics that are tied to measurable outcomes. As you identify clear tactics, jot some notes on how you might apply those same marketing tactics to your business. Here’s an example of a digital marketing concept:
“Add a live chat function on product pages”
Keep it brief, but descriptive. If necessary, add a couple of extra thoughts on how you could make this marketing idea work for your business. We’ll need that for the final step.
Final 5 minutes: Build out one digital marketing idea.
You should have about 7-10 concepts from three articles at this point. Now it’s time to identify and dig in once again.
Rank your marketing concepts by potential impact to your business or ease of implementation, depending on your current work capacity. Write a number to the left of each concept statement indicating which should be top priority (number 1).
Then, take your number one idea and bullet out a few more notes on that concept:
- What existing campaign or marketing strength would this concept leverage?
- Given your existing marketing strategies, what kind of impact could you expect to your key metrics? Write these down as rough goals.
- How quickly could you expect to implement? Jot down what you think might be a good goal.
Save these notes to review at the end of each week. This is an important step for getting your marketing ideas implemented
Make your digital marketing idea your own.
Using this 20-minute daily practice with allow you to see enough digital marketing ideas to come up with your own ideas. By giving yourself some time between initial idea generation and review at the end of each week, you’ll give your subconscious the space it needs to gestate.
By making this a daily habit, your brain will begin to see patterns in digital marketing ideas. This discipline will help you steal and implement the best ideas, and give our business the biggest opportunities by making them your own.
BONUS: How to Get the Best Marketing Ideas before they hit the Internet
Pssst… here’s a little secret that the best entrepreneurs and marketers don’t want you to know…
The very best marketing ideas are usually shared at industry conferences months before the case studies get shared publically on the internet. This gives you time to capture the market and refine before others start stealing the same marketing ideas.
Join the MBO Digital Marketing Conference and Ideate Like a Boss
Verge HQ teamed up with one of the Midwest’s best digital marketing conferences, MBO. We’re hosting our pitch night this Wednesday, April 29th. We’ll have a panel of marketing tech thought leaders, as well as some of the most innovative software companies presenting their tech and marketing.
But just for you, you can attend the entire MBO conference and get more than $60 off your registration with the code VERGE15.
It’s no secret that Indianapolis is a leader in Marketing and Tech. I hope you’ll join us!