Digital Marketing

5 Steps to Creating an Effective Digital Marketing Proposal

The world has turned into a close-knit digital village. Everything is online and powered by endless opportunities and possibilities through the internet.

As a business, you aren’t just competing with the brick-and-mortar business next to you or the established e-commerce or affiliate marketing company in your niche. You’re up against hundreds of other similar businesses in your locality and beyond.

To grow your business and stay ahead of your competition, you’ll need a comprehensive digital marketing proposal to guide your online marketing strategies.

This article outlines 5 steps you can follow to create an effective digital marketing proposal, or plan, for your business.

What is a Digital Marketing Proposal?

A digital marketing proposal is a comprehensive internal document outlining a business or company’s digital marketing strategy and objectives. It includes the necessary actions to achieve the set objectives.

A good marketing proposal acts as the roadmap or blueprint your business follows to inform your daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and even yearly marketing activities and goals.

Digital marketing proposals contain business goals, competition analysis, ideal digital strategies, timelines, channels to be used, budgets, and other crucial aspects.

As a business, you can have your in-house marketing team prepare your digital marketing plan, or you could hire a digital marketing agency like Canopy Media.

Using a digital agency has its advantages. First, you’ll be able to tap into the agency’s vault of marketing resources. You can benefit from its digital marketing proposal template or sample proposal, among other items, to help you see what should go into yours.

If your internal team can’t design the proposal, or you can’t hire a marketing agency because you are a one-person business, consider taking a digital marketing course.

It will help you enhance your digital marketing skills and develop a working marketing plan.

5 Steps to Creating a Digital Marketing Proposal

Now that you know what a digital marketing proposal is, here are the 5 steps you should follow to ensure you develop an effective marketing proposal.

1. Analyze Your Situation and Define Exactly What You Want

A comprehensive situation analysis is crucial in understanding your business. It also helps you define exactly what you want to achieve with your marketing efforts. You should perform a SWOT analysis to gauge your strengths, weaknesses, exploitable opportunities, and potential threats.

Another important thing to consider is your current marketing strategy budget. Each marketing campaign should be assigned a realistic budget if it is to be actualized and provide good returns.

Once you have identified your strengths and weaknesses and have determined how much you want to spend on your digital marketing campaign, you should then define what you want to achieve.

That will depend on various factors. Generally, you can target aspects such as:

  • More brand awareness
  • Larger social media following
  • Increased website traffic
  • Increased sales

2. Understand Your Target Audience/Customers

Once you know where you stand in the business chain, you can then seek to better understand your target consumers. Who are they? What problems can you solve for them? Why would they pay for your goods or services?

Where do your potential customers spend most of their time? Where are they in the customer journey?

The above questions help you approach your target audience and utilize the necessary platforms or methods to reach them easily, effectively, and cheaply.

The questions also help you create buyer personas for your target audience. A buyer persona is a representation of your business’s ideal customer as informed by research and data insights into your target audience.

When developing buyer personas, you should consider the demographics of your prospective client, such as:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Interests and hobbies
  • Disposable income, how they spend it on what you offer, and in what quantities
  • Geographic location
  • Lifestyle
  • Family composition
  • Challenges/pain points
  • Industry 
  • Where they hang out, especially on social media
  • Goals and objectives
  • Job title
  • Priorities and preferences
  • Products or services they prefer

Some important methods and platforms to reach every potential client include:

You might need a separate proposal or strategy for each of the above methods. For example, content marketing requires a detailed content strategy outlining what type of content you wish to produce for various channels.

A social media proposal comes in handy when you make social media one of the main ways to reach your target audience. If you opt for SEO, you’ll need a detailed SEO proposal.

Making all these proposals may sound like too much work. You can rely on your digital marketer or agency to provide a reliable proposal template in each case.

On a limited budget, you may not be able to pay for extensive digital marketing services. In such a case, you can check the internet for a free or paid template, such as an SEO proposal template, if you choose to reach your target client through organic traffic. 

3. Identify Your Competitors and Determine Market Share

At this point, you already know your business and the target audience better. But you also need to know your competitors.

A competitive analysis done by an agency or an in-house digital marketing expert can help you identify your main competitors and find exploitable gaps or areas to focus on.

The analysis should also help you gauge your current market share and give insights into what you can do to expand your reach and increase the market share within a given timeframe.

Your competitive analysis should consider certain aspects of the competition, such as:

  • The digital channels they use
  • Their strengths and weakness 
  • Their positioning in the market and how they differentiate
  • Their target audience segments
  • Their brand personality
  • Their sources of traffic, whether owned, paid, or earned
  • The type of language and messaging they use

4. Set Achievable Marketing Goals

It’s crucial to set up achievable digital marketing goals. Your marketing service provider or internal marketing team should develop both short- and long-term goals to be achieved within given timelines.

As always, the aim is to design SMART goals that are:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Realistic
  • Timely (given a defined time frame)

A smart goal should be precise, detailing what you seek to achieve and by when. For example, you can seek to double your social media traffic within 12 months.

A great digital marketing proposal should show how the goals and objectives will be achieved. You can point out what exact actions will be taken by who, when, and why.

For the “when,” you can develop a marketing calendar using a tool like Google Calendar. Each stakeholder can access the calendar and mark on it when their action is complete or their goal has been achieved.

Also, you need to measure your results. What would be the purpose of setting up goals if you don’t measure their success or failure?

Some helpful tools for measuring your Key Performance Indices (KPIs) include Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Facebook Page Insights, HootSuite, FeedBurner, Social Bro, YouTube Analytics, Google Data Studio, and Frase, among others.

Depending on your goals, you can measure KPIs such as:

  • Landing page conversions
  • Social media engagement
  • Website traffic vs website leads
  • Response time of your sales team
  • Number of visits to your videos and blog posts
  • Number of leads and how many of these turn into buying clients
  • Number and quality of inbound links
  • Customer lifetime value
  • Performance of your email marketing efforts

5. Define Your Marketing Strategies and Techniques

When drafting your digital marketing proposal, don’t forget to identify the marketing strategies, tactics, and techniques you’ll use to reach your pre-defined customers and achieve your goals.

The temptation to use unscrupulous methods or strategies can be strong, but you should resist since the digital world is often unforgiving to those who seek to use unacceptable shortcuts.

You’ll want to be unique but remain true to your brand, so using agreeable techniques and strategies is essential. You don’t want the internet and angry service providers or clients to be on your neck with sanctions or bans.

Depending on the method or platform you choose to use, several strategies or techniques will be at your disposal, including:

  • SEO keywords
  • Success stories/case studies
  • Short videos for video marketing
  • Written text like blog posts
  • Newsletters for email marketing
  • Ads like Google Ads, banner ads, Facebook ads, and Amazon advertising
  • Affiliate links for affiliate marketing
  • Mobile marketing
  • Influencer marketing
  • Social media marketing
  • Local SEO/local search marketing
  • Voice SEO/voice search


Your in-house marketing or marketing service provider can help you develop a workable digital marketing proposal to help you reach more target customers and achieve your goals. 

Once your business or company follows the above 5 crucial steps, you should be able to develop an effective online marketing proposal that will make achieving your goals easier.