Welcome to the conclusion of our marketing miniseries! We talked about building a foundation, then we talked about that next layer of marketing. Now we’re going to put it all together and finalize our marketing plan.
The following are some questions and action items for you. If you haven’t read part one and part two of this miniseries, do so now because they really set the tone for what we’re going to discuss today.
1. Choose the top five marketing vehicles you’re going to focus on this year.
This could be networking, internet marketing (Facebook ads, SEO, etc.), direct mailouts, and so on. I’m talking about a variety of different methods when I say vehicles. This is the time to choose the top five that you want to focus on.
In the previous post we discussed reviewing the past year in terms of marketing. That’s going to help you here, because you’ll ideally know what your top performers were last year. But there might be one or more new lead generation methods that you want to tackle moving forward. So decide on your top five.
Now, if you’re in a larger company with many different product lines to worry about, you might think five vehicles aren’t enough. In that case you can choose a few more. Just keep in mind that oftentimes we try to do too much, and five is the sweet spot for most businesses. Be sure to mix older methods that worked great last year with a new one or two moving forward. If you always stick with the same methods every year, you risk letting your lead generation engine run stagnant.
After picking your top five, the next part is execution. What are three to five bite-sized steps that need to happen for each of your chosen marketing vehicles? For example, if you want to create a blog, what are the steps you must take to get the said blog up and running? Step one might be to ask someone who already has a blog for advice. Or perhaps it’s to create an outline of some blog articles that you plan on writing, etc. So outline the steps necessary to make each marketing vehicle happen.
Finally, how do you plan on testing and measuring the results? Going back to our blog example, how do you know you’ve succeeded at blogging? What does winning look like? Is it a certain amount of traffic to your posts? Or a certain number of qualified leads generated? You have to know the purpose of this blog and what you’re trying to do with it. And as you go through the year, how can you measure and test to make sure you’re on the right track?
2. Designate necessary time on your calendar to execute each marketing activity. Daily/weekly/monthly time slots need to be reserved! It’s simple to create a marketing plan, but when are you or your marketing team going to execute it? Planning is nice and all that. It’s great to be creative. But taking action is key, and the best way to make sure you do that is to put it on your schedule. Be specific also. Is it going to be every Wednesday from one to five? Will you delegate the work to someone else on your team? How do you track their performance?
3. Have you considered a process or way to convert those qualified leads into new clients? This isn’t directly related to marketing, but it’s just as important. You have a plan, and you’re going to execute it. You’ll create more qualified leads than ever before. Great! What’s next? What is your proposal for turning those leads into paying clients? What I’m alluding to here is this: now that you have your marketing plan, do you also have a sales system in place? If not, that’s definitely the next thing to consider.
All right, that’s it for our marketing miniseries. Thanks for sticking with me through the three posts, but remember that it’s all about execution. So go out, take action on these ideas, and have a better than amazing day.