DIY Your Digital Marketing Strategy In 30 Minutes Per Day


If you’ve spent any time looking for ways to DIY digital marketing for your business, it’s easy to feel intimidated by all the great information out there. And, it can feel overwhelming wondering when you’ll have time to do it all.

I know it’s hard to believe that you could take focused action in just half an hour a day and see results, but I know firsthand it can be done.

In this guide to digital strategy, I’ll show you exactly how to DIY your online marketing in just 30 minutes a day.

This time-tested, comprehensive guide cuts through the noise to provide proven strategies for effectively marketing your business.

I’ve implemented these strategies since the early days of my business, and now our team maintains these efforts in even less time each day.

Plus, I used this method with our Local Rockstar training program with about three dozen local business owners over the course of 3-4 years. Each one got results and discovered more time for joy and ease in their day-to-day.

This resource will walk you through budgetary considerations, components of your DIY digital marketing strategy, and how to be consistent over time with your efforts.

Though your digital strategy will require ongoing work and attention, don’t be overwhelmed. I’ll cover each step with you and even give you a downloadable checklist to get started.

To DIY your digital marketing, you must understand your website’s purpose and how to make it work for you.

It’s common for people to refer to a website as your home on the web. However, I’d argue that your website is much more like a car—it’s a functional, moving thing that needs regular maintenance to get you where you want to go.

You wouldn’t expect to buy a car and then never think about it again, but you’d be surprised how many people do this with their websites.

You have to regularly maintain and tune up your website over time; there is no “set it and forget it” here.

A woman mechanic holding a wrench and looking under the hood of a car.

Like a car, your website requires fuel, maintenance, and upgrading in order to serve you well. 

Just like you put gas in your car to keep it running, your website uses regular, fresh content. Content can include copy, photos, videos, and more. We’ll cover more about this as we get further in the guide. 

Your car will also need regular maintenance like oil changes; likewise, your website will undergo updates and structural maintenance. You’ll want to check often to make sure there aren’t any hidden issues. Your website should be evaluated at regular intervals for content optimization opportunities, as well as technical updates, which we cover below.

And eventually, your car will wear out, or you’ll be in the market for a new model—just like with your website. Your site will likely need to be overhauled around the three-year mark. Technology changes fast these days, and you’ll need to keep up.

An illustrated person holding a jumbo pencil and drawing on a gigantic screen.

If you’re a brand-new business, think of yourself like a teenager getting your first car.

The first car I ever bought for myself was a little red Cavalier. It wasn’t fancy, but I loved it. It got me where I needed to go, and it taught me how to take care of a vehicle. I can’t imagine having gone out at that age and looking for a fully loaded Mercedes. I wasn’t ready for that responsibility yet, and I couldn’t have maintained it.

This applies to our businesses, too. 

If you’re a brand new business, your website is going to be more like a used Cavalier than a top-of-the-line model. With this first model, you will learn what it takes to maintain and care for it, and there will be a learning curve at first.

Your first website probably won’t have all the bells and whistles you see on big companies’ sites—and that’s perfectly fine.

You don’t need a big fancy website yet. The amount of money you’d have to pay for a site like that isn’t worth it for you right now; there are far better ways to use your budget.

Average Cost to Outsource a Basic Website Build in 2024

not including professional copywriting
$ 0 +
DIY digital strategy in 30 minutes a day with Realign Consultings DIY Digital Marketing tips

Expect to spend at least $5-10K to outsource your website build. If that’s outside of your budget, then consider using affordable, easy-to-use site builders like Squarespace, Shopify, or Google Sites to create your own website (for domain name registration, I highly recommend NamesCheap).

You can pocket the money saved and invest it in other areas of your business. Then, when you’re more established a few years down the line, you can look to improve your website to get more reliable lead flows or provide a better user experience. 

Your first site is your workhorse, and you may discover after using it for a while that you want to stick with it, even if your budget increases. 

Some businesses never upgrade their websites because the ones they have are functional, and that’s fine too. You don’t have to be the flashiest site on the web to attract business. 

If you’re just starting out but don’t want to DIY your digital marketing completely, consider outsourcing for professionally-written copy.

There’s nothing wrong with having a limited budget; most of us have been there in the early days of our businesses. However, a common mistake in this situation is to spend the money you do have on web design and write the content yourself.

Based on 2024 costs and the current capabilities of generative AI, I recommend doing the opposite:

Get the most from a tight budget by prioritizing human-crafted messaging.

As business owners, we form sustainable connections with our customer base through our unique messaging. When your budget is limited, focus on honing that message. That could look like…

Enhancing your own basic copywriting skills through strategic use of AI.

While we don’t recommend using AI for all of your marketing needs, ChatGPT and other similar tools can help you streamline some copywriting tasks.

Hiring a junior-level copywriter to fine-tune your messaging using marketing best practices.

When you’re starting out, it’s okay to hire someone for digital who’s also new to the field. You’ll save money and help someone get experience, which are both great things. However, it's best to temper your expectations. You won’t get the same level of output as someone with more experience—but that’s okay. Depending on your business, this could be a great way to outsource on a budget.

Please note I did not recommend having AI write all of your content for you.

My team and I have been pretty excited to see what tools like ChatGPT are capable of. But while it’s tempting to use AI-generated content for your business, there are many reasons to avoid complete reliance on this technology right now:

Maximize the value of $4-5K by focusing on strategy to support your messaging.

If you have several thousand dollars to spend, consider investing in a keyword strategy, a copywriter, and a self-builder website—and skip on the digital designer for now. We always use a copy-first marketing strategy with our clients because the words companies use—and how they use them—determine if the right people see the right message at the right time to connect with your brand.

The advantage of a strategic piece like a keyword strategy is that it can amplify and direct what your copywriter creates. The right keywords connect your company with the needs of the communities you want to serve. In other words, they help the people who are for you, find you.

Outsourcing on a Limited Budget Do's and Don'ts

Consider hiring for...

Don't hire or wait to hire for...

How to Use This Guide to DIY Your Digital Marketing

I suggest working through the Stage Building and Search Foundations sections before you look at the other material. 

This layout is intentional. You need to understand your audience, keywords, what your current site does—and doesn’t do—well, as well as how to set up things like your Google Business Profile before you move on. These are the things most people skip when marketing their business and then have to go back and fix later on.

Most business owners go straight into setting up their social media accounts and posting away, and that’s understandable. You’re excited about your business, and you want to spread the word and connect with folks. However, it’s much easier to start correctly than to clean up mistakes. 

If you’ve already started and made some mistakes, don’t worry. This guide will still help you. Take a pause from your current activities, read over the sections in the order I recommend, and then go back to your strategy armed with new knowledge on how to proceed.

What you spend your 30 minutes each day working on will be different, depending on where you’re at with your business.

I believe in values-driven digital marketing, which means how you spend your time looks different for every business. It’s all dependent on what phase you’re in and what your values are. There’s no one-size-fits-all advice here.

Here’s my general advice for working through the rest of this guide:

First Things First: For DIY Digital Strategy, Start With These Foundational Components

There are many parts to an effective and sustainable DIY digital strategy. You’ll start by building the foundation that all other activities will rest on.

Prepare Your DIY Digital Marketing Strategy With Stage Building and Design

You may be tempted to jump right in, but you have some systems to put in place first. You always want to build the stage before you put on the production, right? The staging and design phase is where you get prepared. Here you’ll be gathering information and putting a plan in place before moving forward with specific tactics.

This phase consists of looking at four components:

Step up your DIY Digital Strategy to boost business growth.

Personas (aka Raving Fans)

Personas are the first step in building your digital strategy. Identifying your personas is how you meet your raving fans—the people who appreciate your business and want to connect with you in genuine ways. Everything you do to market your business should be centered around them.

Keyword Strategies

Keywords are an often overlooked component of your digital strategy foundation. Before you create any content, you need to do basic keyword research. This will help you find words your site can rank for in search results, which translates to more people being able to find you on the web.

Website Audits

If you already have a website, you’ll want to take stock of what you’ve done well and where you can improve. Auditing your website consists of reviewing your content and formatting, evaluating your design and functionality, and checking everything for search engine optimization.

Content and Production Plans

Creating content and production plans helps you to see how all of the pieces fit together and how customers move through their journey with your business.

While I do not recommend relying on AI for your digital strategy, it comes in handy to streamline some of the tasks mentioned above. Using ChatGPT for marketing requires understanding its strengths and limitations, but it can help with things like brainstorming content ideas, generating a list of possible keywords to jumpstart your research, and creating survey questions to help you better understand your audience.

Now that you have your persona descriptions, keywords you want to target, and actionable items to improve on, you can create a brief one-page plan for your DIY digital marketing to move forward. Why do I want you to keep it brief? It’s more important to get focused on a few small areas than to think of every single thing you might want to do with your marketing.

Help Those Who Are Looking for You Find You With Basic Search Engine Optimization

Search engine for your DIY Digital Strategy with Realign Consulting

Search engine optimization (SEO) can do a lot for your business. This is how you get free, organic traffic to your website and how new people find out about you. While your raving fans—who you met during persona development—are always your first priority, SEO is also a valuable tool to connect with new people and grow your audience. Fortunately, there are several great resources available to help you with this part of your DIY digital marketing.

Local Search & Google Business Profile

Imagine there’s a woman looking for what you offer just a couple of miles away from you. She’s typing in a search on her phone and reviewing the results that pop up. Google will deliver her tailored results based on her location and keep it to a nearby radius.

We know that people are likely to visit the top search result given to them within 1-2 days. That means that if you’re the top result, a new customer may be in touch with you very soon!

The way to rank in searches like these is to optimize your Google Business Profile. If you take the time to work on your profile, you will start seeing results.

Google Data & Monitoring Tools

Using Google’s data and monitoring tools is essential to understand how people are finding your site, what the trends in search are, and how well you are performing both against your own goals and against your competitors. Luckily, you don’t have to be a data scientist to use today’s tools! To get started, you’ll need two completely free Google tools set up for your site beyond the Google My Business Profile mentioned above. They are:

google search console logo for DIY your digital strategy
The Monitoring Tool

More and more, Search Console is contributing to reporting data. But for beginners, its key use is as a monitoring tool. Using Search Console will help you ensure your sitemap is properly set up to be crawled, all pages are working as they should, and your metadata is having the desired effect in a search. Get started with Ahref’s guide to Search Console.

google analytics logo for DIY your digital strategy
The Reporting Tool

Analytics can be a complex and infuriating tool, but it doesn’t have to be. If you start with the very basics, you can get an important understanding of how users interact with your site and which pages are most successful. Search Engine Journal has a very helpful guide to help you get started with this fantastic tool.

User Experience Monitoring

In addition to basic Google tools, it’s essential that a site meant to be your primary business driver has deep user experience monitoring. Our favorite monitoring tool for beginners is HotJarThis tool uses heatmaps and interaction recording to help you understand how users experience your site pages, your menus, and more.

Take Time to Experiment With What Works Best for You and Your Business

Now that you’ve done the work to evaluate your website, get to know your raving fans, and optimize your local SEO, it’s time to move on to the next phase: Practice and Growth.

The good news is that most of the heavy lifting for DIY digital marketing is now out of the way, and we’ve arrived at the fun part! I often refer to this phase as the dance party, so put on your party hat and grab your streamers. Practice and Growth is the phase where you get to play around a little. 

Practice and growth will help you DIY your digital strategy

Your Trinity Principle Platforms

For small or new businesses—especially those with limited resources—I recommend against relying on social media to market your business. These platforms require a lot of time (and often money) to see results that are not reliable or sustainable.

Instead, I teach my clients to use the The Trinity Principle™ to better focus and optimize their resources. When companies are choosing their main three platforms, instead of places like Facebook or Instagram, I recommend local and/or niche community-building platforms such as NextDoor, Mighty Networks, or Circle.

LinkedIn Success Plan

LinkedIn is one of our favorite underutilized tools. It’s specifically intended to help you foster business relationships, and it tends to be more organically driven; both of those reasons make it a great place to spend some time as you grow your business.

The LinkedIn Success Plan is a habit tracker. It asks just a few minutes of you each day in order to engage your VIPs and generate some new business. Click here to get your free copy.

VIP Scorecard

Your VIP Scorecard is a way to measure and track how much business you can expect to get, based on the activities you’re doing. This can help you assess the time and energy investment you’re putting into various tasks.

The scorecard assigns a point value to different actions, and you’ll work toward different point goals per week, depending on where you are with your business. Click here to get your free copy.

Create content that resonates with your audience to expand your impact and growth.

DIY digital strategy with Reallign Consulting in 30 minutes a day

The party continues! Creating content that will catch people’s attention and make your customers want to interact with you is the focus of our next phase. How and what you create is largely up to you, and there are pros and cons to each format.


Great copy is pure magic and the easiest way to engage and connect with your community. If you don’t have the budget to hire a copywriter for all of your needs, consider investing in someone who can develop your core pieces, such as your…

Then, repurpose that content by using it for…

Whether you rely on your own writing skills or—as I mentioned above—use AI to enhance your writing, remember to put the focus on your audience first. When you understand your raving fans (from the persona step) and focus on building connection, that’s where the magic happens.

Digital Design

Good design is not always the one that looks the prettiest. What’s more important than form is function; you want a design that works. Your design should be user-friendly, accessible, and engaging. Great design prioritizes user experience, fits into your larger brand design, and, yes, also looks nice.


If you have a natural talent for creating face-to-camera explainer videos, this medium might be something to consider and can have a powerful impact on marketing your business. With the latest phone technology and very affordable microphones, effective video marketing has become more accessible for small businesses than ever before.

However, we don’t believe video is a must for every business, especially those with limited resources. Doing video well can quickly become pricey, and the return on your investment may not be worth it. Click here to learn more about whether video marketing is right for you.

Regular Reviews Help Optimize Your DIY Digital Marketing Strategy

As I talked about with the car analogy, digital strategy is never a “set it and forget it” deal. You need constant tuning and upkeep if you want to be able to keep your car in working condition. Be prepared to look under the hood regularly and tinker with things as needed.

Schedule monthly reviews and use our free checklist to ensure you don’t miss the little things.

Lack of consistency is a compounding problem, and little things can quickly become big things if they’re not addressed. Plus, making tiny adjustments each month keeps your DIY digital marketing from becoming overwhelming. 

Get your free monthly website review checklist here.

In addition to going through the checklist, check in regularly with these two areas to keep your DIY digital marketing strategy relevant:

Thinking TRA-Digital

Lately, the digital marketing space has become a much more competitive place to play. There are many changing variables right now thanks to shifts in technology. I encourage the smaller businesses I work with, especially location-based companies, to continue to focus on more traditional marketing tactics. 

Be sure to support your digital efforts with relationship-building strategies, such as networking (via the VIP Scorecard), participating in local events, and even sending out postcards or flyers to current and potential customers. Often, we’ve seen these methods perform even better than digital ads and social media.

Data-Driven Forecasting

Continue to pay attention to what you set up above with Google’s data and monitoring tools. It’s easier than ever before to look at what your customers want so you can add value to what you offer.

Graphs and charts from Realign Consulting's Google Search Console insights.

There is a lot of data you can find using these, but you don’t have to dive deep right off the bat. Just check in regularly on general metrics: Are your conversions going up? Is your traffic rising? Are people leaving the website faster than expected?

Consistency is king. Here’s how to make sure your DIY digital marketing strategy actually happens.

An illustrated person typing on a laptop and sitting on top of a giant calendar with a clock in the background

While a technical review of your website can be done once a month, developing your digital strategy requires a more consistent commitment.

It’s generally better to take just a few minutes each day to work on the things in this guide than to sit down for a few hours once a month. It doesn’t matter how great your content is if you aren’t regularly interacting with people and updating it—and monthly won’t cut it.

Carve out the time in your calendar each day.

Set a timer on your phone and work on these things for about 30 minutes at a time. Don’t be afraid to create boundaries in this way; many people are scared to work on any of this because they think they’ll end up losing track of time, but setting a timer will knock you out of the zone and remind you to move on.

Finally, Celebrate Your Wins. All of Them.

I see a lot of business owners get down on themselves when they feel they only have a few followers or not enough traffic. Something I learned from Tara McMullin that has always stuck with me is the “Living Room Strategy.”

Basically, it’s easier and more rewarding to fill a living room than a huge venue. If you’ve got a handful of people interacting with you, imagine those people in your living room. Now that doesn’t seem like such a small number, right? It seems like a pretty good gathering and a cause for celebration.

Take time to notice every single small win you have along the way. A digital strategy is never really done, which can be hard to understand at first. If you’re looking for an endpoint, you’ll always be frustrated and eventually burn out. The way to build a sustainable business is to celebrate as you go.

Pat yourself on the back when you get ten new subscribers to your community. Show your best friend the blog you spent half a day creating. Engaging in these little moments of joy will help you stay motivated.

Illustrated hands high-fiving

Remember: When you grow past a certain point, it’s time to think about hiring out.

DIY Digital Strategy with Realign Consulting will help you keep growing

When you’ve grown to the point where you can spend a few thousand dollars a month or more, it’s a good time to start looking for outside help. Consistent income like that usually means you’re making headway with your digital strategy, and your own time will be better spent focusing on higher-impact activities. A great place to start outsourcing is with one-time projects, such as our Do Better Digital™ Marketing Solutions.

And, keep in mind that if you are currently spending only a few hundred a month on outside help, you’re probably better off using this guide to do the work yourself. Until you reach that $2-$4K mark, keep plugging away with your DIY digital marketing tasks and creating consistent habits until you get there—and you will get there. 

This Guide Reflects Our Commitment To Do Better Digital™

I’ve been working with business owners who take their businesses very personally for a long time, and I’ve seen a lot of things. Many of them didn’t sit well with me. A lot of marketing companies are predatory. They want your money in exchange for their services and information, and they won’t offer anything outside that. 

I don’t think that’s fair. I think you’re better off saving the money you can, especially when you’re just starting out, until you grow to a place where you really need help and can afford it.

A lot of companies make the same mistakes over and over, and I want to help steer you in the right direction. I am confident that if you do the things listed in this guide, you can absolutely grow your business.

Go further


You did it! You made it to the end of our DIY Digital Marketing Guide. I know this is a lot to take in, but I also know that you can do this.

If you’ve followed the guide the way I’ve laid it out, I am confident that you’ll build a foundation from which to grow your business. And if you decide you ever want to dive deeper, our Digital Marketing Solutions are always available to provide custom support to your business.

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