Marketing campaigns are a vital feature in many a marketer's day to day role and we are often prone to pore over results and analyse how our campaigns have performed. But ask yourself this, how much time went in at the start to plan the campaign and how can we ensure success step by step?

Typically, a marketing campaign is a planned sequence of activities and events which promote an individual product, service, or resource. A variety of channels are used and when supported by comprehensive planning and research, a successful campaign can yield the results you are looking for. Simply creating a couple of ads or sending out one or two emails won't make for a successful campaign. You need to be joined up, integrated, and have a dedicated plan in mind when creating your campaign.

Keep these essentials in mind and consider them a checklist when starting to plan all your campaigns.

1.       Construct your campaign in detail

This is essentially your strategy and should be built from the bottom up. Why are you doing this campaign? What is the purpose? What do you know about the market that can help inform your campaign idea and messaging? How does the campaign align with the overall business objectives? While each campaign may be unique, it needs to keep your central marketing plan and goals in mind.

2.       Define success

What do you expect to gain from your campaign? How will success be measured? Setting your key performance indicators is essential and understanding which different metrics to measure is critical. There should be a balance between hard metrics such as landing page visits and email click throughs, and soft measures like social post likes, shares, overall web traffic and anecdotal mentions online.

3.       Know your audience

Define your target audience. What do you know about them? Why would they be interested in your product or service? How can you help them? Addressing a real need or common problem will make your audience feel like you are really talking to them by demonstrating you understand their issues and are able to offer a solution. Insight into your customers can be a valuable asset and set you apart from your competitors.

4.       Determine your marketing channels

What channels are best for your audience, your budget and your product or service. Don't apply a scattergun approach in the hope one channel will work. Look at where your customers are going to do their research, what channels influence them, what appeals to them. And then adapt content and messaging to suit each channel. Whether you are looking at emails, direct marketing, or social media there is significant planning involved in each element in order to make it count.

5.       Be authentic and true to your brand

People buy from people and believe in content that is genuine. Do not try and be something you are not.

6.       Map out your marketing timeline and be adaptable

Creating a robust timeline is essential when planning a campaign. This doesn't mean the plan can't change. During the course of your campaign, be prepared to be agile and adapt to changing market conditions and customer insights based on how your audience is engaging with your campaign. Adopt a test and learn mentality; look at what your audience is doing and evolve your campaign over time to optimise results.

Leading a well thought out campaign such as this will save you time and money as a company as well as boosting your chances of conducting a successful marketing campaign.