Have you noticed that a business plan asks for a marketing strategy? A marketing strategy consists of a series of ongoing activities you plan to implement over a period of time to achieve a particular goal in your business.
Planning your marketing strategy lets you know the actions you will take on a regular basis to keep your business growing. Most people think of marketing as something that is done on an occasional basis without a real plan, usually when it seems convenient. For example, you might have a Twitter or Facebook account. When you feel like it, you make a tweet or put a post on Facebook. But with a marketing strategy, you pre-plan when you’ll do these activities on a regular and consistent basis if it feels convenient or not.
By designing a marketing strategy you take your business to a whole new level of preparation. Here are 7 top tips to help you design a marketing strategy to build your business.
1. Overall Goal Marketing Strategy.
Start by determining the overall goal you want to reach through a marketing program. Do you intend to increase visitors to your website or storefront? Do you want to increase the amount of programs or services you promote? Do you want to increase the income for your business? Do you want to do all of these things?
2. Select the time period.
Over what period of time will you pursue these goals? Designing a year-long marketing strategy gives you a good period of time to create a plan of action. It gives you time to develop consistency in placing your business name in front of the public which will only build your business.
3. The Target Market Marketing Strategy.
A specific target market is needed to effectively design a message that speaks directly to the heart and mind of your consumer base. If you don’t know who you’re marketing to you waste time, money and effort trying to promote to everybody which is an impossible task in business.
4. The Message Marketing Strategy.
With the target market identified you can create a marketing message that makes them pay attention to your business. Design an overarching slogan or theme for your marketing program that enhances your brand and places you in a positive position in the mind of the target consumer.
5. Chart Your Path.
Get a calendar for the year and chart out the important marketing activities that you will do on a regular basis each day, each week and each month. Be consistent with these regular activities. This can include writing and publishing a weekly web article or posting to your blog and social networking sites on a daily basis.
6. List Periodic Activities Marketing Strategy.
Next identify the activities you will do periodically such as once each quarter, twice a year or annually. These could include a special live or Internet based event, getting published in a newsletter or online ezine of a joint venture partner or writing an article for a magazine.
7. Chart Special Opportunities.
Find opportunities that offer special opportunities to promote your business. For example, will you purchase a booth at a women’s conference, be a speaker at a networking group, or offer a door-prize for a school fundraiser? These opportunities might come up only on special occasions or be annual events you decide to participate in during this marketing year. Chart these on your marketing strategy plan.
This is a simplistic way to get started on a marketing strategy.
You can see that it gives you more than one way to do your marketing. It also means you have to sit down, think things through ahead of time, and plan a whole year’s worth of activities. You won’t be caught off guard about marketing activities. You’ll also start to develop an ongoing presence with your target group which helps to build trust while building your business.
Consuelo Meux, Ph.D. is a Certified Creativity Coach. She works with executives who want to improve their leadership and professional skills and with employees who want to enjoy what they do. She also provides non-fiction book coaching and business coaching.