Every business needs to have a marketing strategy and ideally one that is not lead by impulse decisions but instead is planned and well thought out. The beauty of the digital age we live in, is the level of tracking we are able to reach with marketing campaigns meaning for every £1 of marketing spend, as a business, you should be able to know the return you are getting.
My advice for businesses planning their marketing activity for 2017 is to start by looking at the goals that your business needs to achieve. This firstly focuses your own mind, but then also serves as a good starting brief for any third parties you wish to work with.
Once you have your goals you need to think about who your audience is and where you are going to find them. Audience profiling is so often missed in planning a marketing strategy, but is so key! Knowing the likely demographics, this can result in having multiple profiles and means that you can then use these to drive your campaigns.
Once you know the different audiences and have a really clear picture of what they look like, where you might find them and how they may purchase your goods or services you can then start looking at the different marketing avenues.
The first thing you need to consider with any of the different channels is how can you track this channel and what would success looks like. You also need to consider follow up, how can you ensure you have further opportunity to close that business? Can you data capture them and follow up with an email campaign? Can you re-market to them online and ensure they do not forget your business? Or it might be you really need to look at why they did not convert in the first instance, a huge part of digital marketing in 2017 needs to go towards user experience and ensuring you have a website that converts users the best it can.
There have been countless studies on conversion rate optimisation, from radical website changes to changing the colour of a button, by doing this and measuring the impact you can sleep easy at night knowing your website is working as hard for you as it can.
Marketing is crowded these days, there are so many channels and so many options within channels that if you get your tracking right you should over time be able to refine a strategy that you know works and delivers a return. By spending the time working on refining the strategy it will pay dividends in the long run as you will be more confident in future years as to what are the right campaigns to run. This strategy should be multi-layered though and you may have 5 audience profiles so you may have 5 slightly different strategies, but at all times the brand must stay true to itself and ensure you are delivering a consistent message that converts.
Looking to get your marketing strategy lean in 2017? You may be interested in a free 90 day strategy plan tailored to your business goals.