Short vs Long Term Marketing Tactics

When it comes to marketing, how do you balance short vs long term tactics?


When it comes to marketing, how do you balance the short vs long term?

This is a challenge we face every day for ourselves and our clients…

And I think it’s a challenge that anyone who has a marketing budget that needs to drive growth faces as well.

Here’s my two cents…

First, let’s quickly define what a short-term vs a long-term marketing tactic is.

A short-term tactic is anything that you can implement immediately to drive a result. Short-term tactics are usually advertising based these days, but it can also include email marketing (if you already have a database) and sharing on social media if you have an engaged audience (except for Facebook, that doesn’t have any organic reach).

A long-term tactic is anything that requires an investment of time in exchange for growth opportunities that are not available using short term tactics. This includes building up an email database, implementing a content marketing strategy, growing organic rankings, building up your social media following, and so on. It also includes optimising the conversion rate of your website so you get more out of your advertising spend.

Long-term tactics are the key to ongoing, sustained growth because they reduce your reliance on advertising as the key to growth. Short-term tactics are key to ensure your short-term business requirements are being met. But the best approach is a combination of both.

At Web Profits we use short-term tactics like Adwords and Facebook Ads to generate enquires and build up our email database. And then we use long-term tactics of content marketing and email marketing to build a relationship with our audience so they consider us when they are in the market.

So how should you allocate your budget between short and long term tactics?

It’s all about what you need now.

There’s no point investing in the long-term if you don’t have enough new business coming through the door to pay your staff and overheads. So start there.   

Figure out what you need on a monthly basis to sustain your business requirements from a lead or sale perspective and then focus on generating that volume of business for as small an investment as possible. This usually includes running advertising campaigns to landing pages if you’re a service-based business, or shopping ads if you’re an ecommerce business.

From there, I would focus on building up your email database, because it means you can drive traffic to your website on demand… and invest in content marketing, because not only does it generate organic traffic from Google, but the right content will drive a lot of new customers for your business, as well as growing your online footprint through your readers sharing it with their social network.

What you should really be considering is how to build a growth machine – a marketing system that is designed to deliver new customers to your business on a monthly basis, and grows each and every month.

Here’s what I would be tracking:

  1. Traffic to your website
  2. The number of leads or sales
  3. Your conversion rate
  4. Your advertising spend
  5. Your cost-per-lead and cost-per-sale
  6. The size of your email database
  7. And the number of social media followers across each channel

And then focus on improving each of these.

The key to growing a business fast is to get the most out of your marketing budget each and every month, and that requires both short-term and long-term marketing tactics.

About the show

Web Profits is a full service online marketing agency with over 80 data-driven specialists. Built on a culture of innovative, strategic and intuitive thinking, Web Profits focuses on achieving successful, performance-based results online.

Web Profits TV is our way of helping business owners, C-level executives and marketing professionals grow a business using online marketing, with a particular focus on social media, online advertising, content marketing and conversion rate optimization. You can use this information to implement the strategies yourself or to help you know what to expect from anyone you hire to do it for you.

Subscribe to our channel:

Connect with us


Alex Cleanthous

Alex Cleanthous

Chief Innovation Officer at Web Profits

Alex Cleanthous is Chief Innovation Officer at Web Profits. With more than 10 years experience in online marketing, Alex is always on the lookout for smarter, faster and more scalable ways to achieve maximum growth with minimum spend.

One comment

  1. Will Egan says:

    Thanks for this Alex, very clear and succinct.

    September 15th, 2016 at 3:53 pm