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5 Stages of an Integrated Digital Marketing Life Cycle


Clients generally have unrealistic expectations of a integrated digital marketing campaign.  They expect results immediately or within the first 3 months. We prepare our clients for real expectations by reviewing a Digital Marketing Campaign Life Cycle.

During an Integrated Digital Marketing campaign, the campaign will experience five stages in the life cycle. During each time period the number of touchpoints,  client marketing efforts that  touch the customer, are expanded. These touchpoints build on each other and grow exponentially.  As your network expands the media (traditional advertising, PR, online, social) begin to synergize with each other. In the future a successful campaign will be self generating and grow virally.  The goal is to convert your network of touchpoints to actions that  support your campaign objectives. Here are the expectations projected for the five stages of the Digital Marketing Life Cycle.

Campaign Life Cycle

SETUP   (0-3 months)

  • assess touchpoints
  • build online environment
  • establish baseline
  • setup digital media infrastructure
  • establish listings on search engines
  • gain followers
  • initiate relationships
  • develop content strategy
  • assess digital footprint
  • increase member interactions
  • begin gaining new referrals/leads
  • initiate brand mentions

TRACTION   (4-9 mo)

  • transform touchpoints to conversation points
  • gain traction on social media sites
  • integrate mobile with social media
  • gain responses to call to action
  • place on search engines
  • gain new sales/members
  • gain initial thought leadership interactions
  • build member satisfaction/feedback
  • increase customer service  

POSITIONING   (10-15 months)

  • convert conversation points to conversion points
  • gain positions on search engines
  • gain thought leadership interactions
  • gain new sales revenue
  • develop brand loyalty

EXPANSION   (16-27+ months)

  • stabilize position on search engines
  • establish some recognition as a thought leader
  • gain brand  power
  • gain consistent stream of revenue


  • expand networks exponentially through fan/follower networks and social communities

Touchpoint Analysis

Join The Conversation

  • IraKaufman1's picture
    Aug 17 Posted 6 years ago IraKaufman1

    Great comments

    Yes the Planning stage is built into the Setup under "assess touchpoints".

    In the post  I address Touchpoint Optimization. I agree that Planning and reserach are keys to a successful Digital Stratgey. Maybe it needs to made clearer.

    As far a content strategy, I agree and will adjust it .

    BTW I love your diagrams . we need to chat

  • IraKaufman1's picture
    Aug 17 Posted 6 years ago IraKaufman1


    Thank you for your comments. Yes, Yes, Yes Numbers and ROI are the essense of a social  media program. 

    I have addressed this in another post--5-steps-to-evaluating-social-media-roi

    "The last step in the Touchpoint Optimization Strategy is to evaluate relative value of each action in terms of developing brand loyalty, thought leadership, reducing operating costs, optimizing marketing budgets, and increasing profits. This evaluation will determine a social media ROI and the most cost-effective mix of traditional, online, PR and social media to achieve the company’s goals."

    I am in process of devloping a new metric for Digital Media Marketing that incorporates all these added values to the company resulting from digital media.

    Welcome your comments.  ira





  • Aug 16 Posted 6 years ago Eric Brown (not verified)

    Ira, Hello

     Your post does a nice job of laying out and defining the process and a client timeline, but what is missing, (not to be critical) are numbers, number, numbers. How many followers, How many relationships, How much will the parent web site traffic increase, How many leads, How many more sales. (I get there are determining factors, by client, but we need to include numbers) 

    At the end of the day, it really is about the last point, Businesses, and the folks who write the checks really care a lot about, How Many More Sales, and What is The Cost per Sale. Social Media is just another marketing conduit, and we all need to start attaching numbers, which will quickly separate the Slick Willies from the Performers, as currently the water is pretty blurred, at least for now. 


  • imjustmike's picture
    Aug 16 Posted 6 years ago imjustmike

    It's a really interesting post and I agree largely with what is written. I personally would have added a separate planning stage, before the set up. After all, shouldn't you develop a content strategy before you build an online environment?


    I do very much like your diagram, it's interesting to see where you've placed various things on the scale. Given me a lot to think about

  • IraKaufman1's picture
    Aug 16 Posted 6 years ago IraKaufman1


    Thank you . Please visit my website

    You will enjoy an application of touchpoint analysis to patient care.

    If I can be of other assistance please let me know.



  • Aug 16 Posted 6 years ago Lyn Bicker (not verified)

    Really helpful and clear article, thank you. The touchpoints principle is just so important to smaller businesses. I'm relatively new at social media, but I am building fans for my blog, at . I'll be paying close attention to the points you raise!

    Thanks, Lyn

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