Less than 18% of businesses have a documented marketing strategy. Essentially, that means they’re creating blogs post, social media posts, and other content, desperately hoping it’s going to do something for their business. That’s like shooting an arrow blindfolded and not even knowing if there is a target out there for you to hit. That’s why this post is all about building your marketing strategy. A great strategy produces remarkable and measurable results. And we want to help small businesses create BIG success.
Here are the steps you need to take to build a great marketing strategy.
- You must have a clearly defined brand. Everything flows from your brand, and everything you do impacts your brand. Your brand sets up the tone and style of all your marketing efforts, in person or digitally. (We have a great blog post that can give you a hand with that if you need it. Click here to read Does Your Brand Story Give Value or Just List Facts?)
- Clearly outline your core offer. Your core offer is the one thing that you want to sell the most. You will, of course, look at things to add onto your sale that add value for your client, but it’s your core offer that you want to zero in on. Since you are part of the white label program (at least we hope so!), websites would be a core offer. If you have more than one core offer, you will need to segment your audience, and create specific marketing strategies for each one, because each one has different needs.
- Define your Target Avatar. Truly understanding what your Target Avatar wants, and combining that with your brand voice, outlines the way you approach all your marketing. It will give you a clearly defined style and approach to use in all your marketing initiatives.
- Outline all the reasons your Avatar would want or need to purchase your core offer. By doing this, you will get a bunch of different ways to create content, and talk to your prospective client in a way that truly engages them. (Click here to see 25 reasons someone would want a website.)It also gives you the perfect angle to lead back to your core offer. For example, there are a lot of different ways to talk about lead generation, you just have to make sure the way you talk about it leads back to selling websites. Making sure you have a way to lead back to your core offer is one of the key elements to building your marketing strategy.
- Select your Inbound and Outbound Marketing initiatives. Choose the ones that will best support your business, with the resources you have, or have the ability to purchase. (See our Inbound and Outbound Marketing infographic here.) The most important part in this step is making sure you have the resources to support the initiatives you want to put in place. If you detest writing, starting up a blog isn’t going to be something that you will accomplish easily, unless you contract someone else to do it. Focusing on networking to generate leads, might be a better option for you, in this particular case.
- Set up your assets. Once you take all the reasons someone wants to purchase a website from you, consider what you can create to give your prospective client enough value that they will want to give you their email address to get that asset. These are called Lead Magnets. Case studies, checklists, cheat sheets, ebooks, expert guides, video tutorials, and white papers, are just a few of the things people might be interested in getting from you in exchange for their email. Your email list is golden! It’s still the number one way to generate sales digitally, IF you have a great email marketing strategy.
- Select your platforms. Digitally, and for any traditional types of advertising, you want to decide which platforms will work best for your business. This will include social media platforms, syndication outlets, television or radio stations, and so on. You don’t want to try to be everywhere. That takes a lot of energy, and it will really dilute your focus. This is also something you want to do for your in-person marketing efforts as well. Not all networking groups, speaking events, tradeshows, etc. are going to be a fit for you. Select the ones you feel will have the most impact on your business.
- Create an editorial calendar. This is such a huge step toward creating consistency in your marketing. Each month, pick your blog and article topics, choose the resources you want to share, and create posts to support this. All of the things you write, or share, need to support your business goals overall. There is no point in sharing recipes (no matter how delicious they might be) if it doesn’t advance your business specifically. Preschedule wherever you can, that way when you get busy, you won’t forget to send out your posts, or upload your articles and blogs.
- Create an outbound marketing schedule. Just like your editorial calendar, you want to pre-schedule your networking and speaking events, email campaigns, and advertising campaigns too. What gets scheduled gets done! Make sure you put these things into your calendar and schedule your meetings, and other events around them.
- Measure your results. This is a must do! Otherwise, you’ll never know if your marketing is actually working for you. If it can’t be measured, it’s not worth doing.Track everything that will make an impact on your leads, conversions, and sales. Online or offline, you have to know exactly how effective your efforts are. Not only does it help you focus on the places where you’re getting the most traction, it will also help you save time and money, by not wasting it on initiatives that aren’t working, or aren’t working as well as others.
- Adjust. Once you start measuring your results, you can start to adjust slightly to see if you can get better results. A change of headline, the color of button, revising a call to action, or coming up with a new elevator pitch, are just a few of the things you can do to adjust your efforts. Then you measure and adjust again to keep getting better and better.
- Be consistent. Consistency builds trust. Sometimes it can take a while to get the traction you want. Be patient with it, and stick to your strategy.
Now this is a very generalized overview of a marketing strategy. The best strategy will be tailored to your business specifically. If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed by it, or just want a little help, we would love to assist you. Just sign up for a FREE consultation to get going.