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When you first launch your business, and start taking steps to make it grow, you’re going to be short on two things; time and money. Because of this, it’s integral that you approach every single move with a solid plan in place. One thing that simply can’t succeed without planning is your marketing, especially in this day and age. To simplify the whole issue, here are some of the most important components to any marketing plan.
The first thing you need for a good marketing plan is effective positioning. This is essentially the way your brand is perceived by your target market. Let’s say you were running a restaurant. Does your target market see you as a place to get healthy gluten-free meals made with organic ingredients, or a greasy spoon joint to grab something when you’re in a rush? The difference between these two kinds of businesses is known as the positioning, and it’s essential to pin down if you want to understand the future course of your marketing campaign. To make sure you have positioning that’s going to be a benefit rather than a hindrance to your campaign, you need to develop some excellent marketing and branding messages that get across the way you want your target market to perceive you.
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Another important part of your marketing strategy is going to be competitive analysis. You need to do some thorough espionage work into your closest competitors and how your products or services differ from them. What’s the average price point your competitors are selling at, and how practical would it be to undercut them? Which demographics in the market are they trying to reach, and what tactics are they using to do it? Obviously, you’re not going to get every last detail about your competitors’ marketing campaigns. However, a little research can tell you a lot about what their game is. When you find out as much as you can, it can make it much easier to assure your business is standing out from its competitors.
Finally, a differentiated plan of action, or the strategy itself. This is where you use the information you’ve gathered to set out a specific, measurable plan of action to take your business from point A, the current state of affairs, to point B, your sales goals. Set yourself targets on specific dates, and break them down into various marketing tactics. Look at direct mail firms like DMM or SEO services like Sticky for the things you want to outsource. Aside from that, you should be considering tactics like content strategy, social media, couponing, and all sorts of other marketing moves which could make a difference. It’s also important to bring some metrics into all of this. After you launch each phase of your marketing campaign, try to measure the impact it has. This will point out what works and what doesn’t in an easily digestible format.
If you’re currently not getting enough leads, then your marketing probably needs work. Start drafting a plan today with all of these components.