An agency discovery checklist for digital marketing projects
A. Project purpose, scope and timelines
- What is the reason behind the project?
- Who is the sponsor?
- What are main goals of project? Challenges and opportunities to be addressed?
- What is success?
- Timescales – when do recommendations need to be completed?
- Who will be involved in the final workshop – for training or recommendations?
- Who will be involved in the discovery
B. Audience and marketplace
- Summary of target breakdown vs actual breakdown target and demographics. E.G across age/gender/ethnicity/religion/geography
- Any relevant market research about audience demographics or motivators?
- Audience – share personas you have?
- Brand – about the company offering and Go To Market plans. For strategic projects, more detail will be required on this – see the Smart Insights brand and marketplace analysis audit.
- Competitors – Who do you see as direct/indirect competitors in your main target market we can learn from, need to compete against. If benchmarking is a key part of the project, a more detailed competitor benchmarking grid and other tools are useful.
- Partner marketing – who are local and national partners you work with.
- Influencer marketing – Summarize use of influencer marketing, e.g. with publishers/event organizers or individuals, e.g. National and local Media, Journalists, Bloggers or YouTubers
C. Key 5 investment areas
1. Planning and governance
- Marketing resources and team structure
- Do you have an org chart for marketing and wider teams?
- Share business / marketing / brand plans and priorities
- Send annual/quarterly/campaign plans that summarize main organization priorities that digital marketing must align with?
- Branding summary, tone-of-voice/mission
- Aim: to understand channels referring visits to the site – volume, quality, value
- Aim: to understand your goal set-up
- Aim: Review campaign types across search and display network for targeting against investment response
- Aim: To check you have this insight for a keyword gap analysis
Other insight tools – for example SEMRush or AHRefs for search marketing
- Covers both operational tools to manage customer interaction
- Use a tool like Wappalyze Chrome extension, Similar Tech or Built With to review technology
- Content management system, e.g. WordPress
- Marketing automation / Cloud platform e.g. HubSpot
- Separate Email marketing system
- Search insights tools, e.g. Ahrefs, SEMRush or Moz
- Recent media or campaign plan for offline/offline media? Forecast and actual results
- Summaries of Google, Social Ad, programmatic campaign performance
- Target keyword list for search marketing – if relevant – ideally, this should be a structured keyword list with a gap analysis as defined in the Smart Insights gap analysis template this should be structured by:
Different consumer behaviours
Different products or services
3. Digital experience
- Main domain:
- Other domains or sub-domains
- Any other domains active, perhaps created in past?
- Key site outcomes pages (macro and micro-conversion pages):
- Summary of activity of Email and SMS marketing, e.g. list size, importance, challenges
- Access to email platform if possible to review performance, targeting and creative