Businesses that do not engage in a strategic marketing plan, often find that they are chasing their tail. They fly by the seat of their pants and have no real sales and marketing strategy in place. Instead of being proactive, and placing key performance indicators behind each and every marketing investment, they generally go with 'gut instinct' or what is available at any given time.
While being flexible to invest in marketing opportunities is always a good thing, it can be some small businesses biggest downfall.
It's nearing the end of the financial year or mid-year for those in the US, and its time to start looking back at what you have achieved in terms of building your brand, creating brand equity, increasing your sales performance and improving your customer relationship management programs.
Capitalising on your investment in marketing is not only a no-brainer, but it is also one of the clevest business decisions you can make.
Start the new year with:
1. A marketing budget: big or small, by having a budget you will know what you have to spend and then be able to allocate it to areas that will give you the best 'bang for your buck'.
2. Develop a marketing strategy or marketing communications plan: There are literally hundreds of websites with free templates. If you don't have a marketing manager or marketing consultant on board, then give it a go yourself. Perhaps once you have written it, you can run it past a consultant for a couple of hours, to get feedback. A much cheaper way of ensuring that you are on the right track and giving you reassurance that you money will be well spent.
3. Marketing Tiimeline: Once you have a strategy, don't put it in your bottom drawer. Instead, develop a timeline of activities that is realistic to the resources you have access to. Make sure you tick off the items on the timeline you have completed each week and make yourself accountable by sharing your timeline with others in your office.
4. Engage in a good search engine optimisation specialist: Forget India (did I say that?). By ensuring that your website is search engine optimised, you will be guaranteed that your customers and prospects will be able to find you.
5. Invest in a website that has a content management system: If you don't have money, nor the inclination to get your web developer to update your website, then you need a content management system in place. This will allow you to make changes as and when you need to. By constantly updating your website, you will rank higher on search engines and people will find a reason to come back to your website time and time again.
Tomorrow I will share 5 more ways you can 'stop chasing your tail' when it comes to marketing.
Mellissah Smith is a marketing expert with more than 20 years experience. Having founded and built two successful marketing companies internationally, she is well recognized as a industry thought leader and innovator. Mellissah started her career working with technology and professional services firms, primarily in marketing, public relations and investor relations, positioning a number of successful companies to list on the various Stock Exchanges around the world. She is a writer, technology developer and entrepreneur who shares her thoughts and experiences through blogs and written articles published in various media outlets. Brag sheet: #2 marketer to follow on Twitter (2003), Top 150 Marketers to Follow (2015), Top 10 innovative marketers (2014), 60K+ followers on Twitter with 97% authentic.
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