Is Your Marketing Plan Like a Box of Chocolates?

Box-of-Chocolates_lg-300x200 Is Your Marketing Plan Like a Box of Chocolates? 14 Ways to Avoid the Spray-and-Pray Marketing Syndrome

You’ve heard it a dozen times, “Life is like a box of chocolates.”

However, that’s the last thing you want your marketing efforts to be – a surprise around every corner.

Rather, you want to plan your marketing efforts strategically, all year, not just in the non-busy season months.

Here are some tips.

14 Ways to Avoid the Spray-and-Pray Marketing Syndrome

  1. Begin each business year with defining or redefining your business goals. Keep the high-level list to three to five, achievable goals. For example, increase leads in “this” niche industry by 25 percent by mid-year.
  2. Align your marketing efforts with those goals. Ask yourself how you plan to achieve those goals through your marketing efforts, including email, social media, networking events, conferences, mailers, online advertising, social advertising, traditional media, etc.
  3. Define the marketing calendar at a high level. For example, each month you’d have a blog, send an email to all clients and networking lists, create a social media schedule, etc.
  4. Outline the details for each marketing effort.
  5. Use a RACI mentality – those responsible, accountable, consulted, and informed – for each task.
  6. Create an email calendar with a rough outline for each month, including the email title, lead story, call to action item, e.g., join our mailing list, and top three stories.
  7. Create a blogging schedule with content that only helps you reach your goals. If it’s to increase leads in a niche industry, be sure to create a schedule with 8-9 posts about that industry.
  8. Research keywords and hashtags for the industries you want to be found within. Keep those lists handy as you develop online content and use those terms on web pages, images, videos, blogs, and social media posts.
  9. Identify content you can re-purpose all year, such as tax planning stories, mid-year 5500 checklists, and financial planning tips.
  10. Develop one piece of content that can be recreated in several way, like a blog article might make a good infographic, slide show, and/or video that you can repurpose in several ways, and share in multiple ways.
  11. Revisit your website strategy to make sure you’re offering good call to action content, such as downloads, free and paid webinars, consultations, podcast content, and more.
  12. Look for the influencers in the industry you want to increase your leads within and create exclusives for them using VIP Google Hangouts or invite-only webinars. Leverage high-profile speakers for these events and charge a fee.
  13. Take your networking seriously. Attend and participate in events. Identify online groups to contribute quality content. Share your ideas, thoughts, and information.
  14. Link to reputable resources for content in blogs, video, emails, etc. to help increase your firm’s and personal search engine optimization (SEO) ranking.

Remember, every marketing effort should align with a business goal. If it does not, then scrap the idea or modify it until it does align with a goal.

Your Turn

What type of marketing plan ideas do you have for 2015?