You may think you don’t need a marketing strategy. You might be relying on intuition or some other gut force rather than an actual, detailed plan of attack.
This is mistake number one. Even if you have a plan, you can’t implement it without a good strategy. A plan is what you’ll do – a strategy is how you’ll do it.
You may be wondering how to create a successful strategy, one that takes you places. To start, make sure you’re asking yourself some vital questions in order to do strategy development right.
What’s Your Marketing Plan of Attack? Ask Yourself These Questions to Find Out
These are the questions you should be asking if you’re starting from square one. They build on each other as you go down the list. If you already have a plan or are further along in the process, skip to numbers 3-7.
1. Who Are My Marketing Targets?
According to Entrepreneur, your target market needs to be narrow. This means a lot of research has to happen in order to find out exactly who you’re talking to with your advertising.
Everything else depends on knowing your audience inside-out. Specify genders, age brackets, occupations, marital status, family size, and income. Get down to the nitty-gritty details. Become so familiar with your audience that you could describe them in your sleep. This will make it much easier to answer the next questions for your strategy development.
2. How Will What I’m Selling Help Them?
Whatever you’re selling, you probably have a unique perspective on why you’re selling it. For instance, maybe you’re selling a backpack that reduces back strain. Why? Because you were a book-laden college student who was at the chiropractor once a week.
You know your angle – now turn it around and make it about the customer. Maybe you want other college kids to be back pain-free. Therefore, your product is affordable for them to purchase on their own steam. In this way, zero-in on your brand’s how and why as it relates to the customer.
3. What Are the Best Ways to Reach My Target Audience(s)?
Once you have your customer-centric approach down, you need to find the best way to reach them. How can you teach, explain, and promote the way your product works for this particular audience? Where are they congregating online, and how can you get their attention?
Is it through digital marketing channels, like search engine marketing or social media? Or, is your audience attracted to newspapers and magazines?
4. What Methods Will I Use?
Maybe you decided that you want to use social media to reach your young audience. Perfect. Now, how will you use it?
Will you get on Instagram and post once a day? Will you share content on Facebook and use pay-per-click advertising? This is the time to dream up exactly what kinds of content and ads you’ll use on your chosen channels. In order for your comprehensive marketing strategy to work, you need to have guidelines in place that tell you how to execute it.
5. How Will I Measure My Progress/Success?
You won’t know if you’re successful unless you set a benchmark in place. Without a goal to aim for on a ladder, you’ll never know where you are.
As such, set measurable metrics that will determine your success – or failure. For instance, maybe you want 200 new followers on Instagram in two weeks. Or, maybe you’re starting an email campaign and want X number of conversions to result from it. Set your own standard, then aim for it.
Don’t forget to acquire the tools you’ll need to do all this measuring. Then, set your starting point and hit the gas.
6. Does the Marketing Strategy Simplify and Clarify My Decisions?
Your strategy is in place to make things easier, not harder. If you find yourself tangled up or unsure of your next move, then you need to either reevaluate your strategy or start over.
When you do come to a crossroads, you should be able to consult your strategy to determine your next step. It should clarify decision-making in general and make it easier to gain momentum.
7. Does It Help My Staff Make the Right Moves?
The final question to ask yourself during strategy development is simple. Does the plan help your organization make the right moves without your input?
Your strategy should keep everyone accountable and on task. It should set forth goals for each member of the team and give them their own objectives to achieve. In turn, each individual aim should contribute toward the success of the plan. In the end, the brand as a whole should benefit.
Your Marketing Strategy Needs to Guide and Propel Your Every Move
Your marketing game plan should guide all your activities. It should also serve as a reference and a tool that pushes you forward in business.
To put it bluntly, if your strategy isn’t working for you, you need to either adjust it to make it work or abandon ship and start over. This can be a difficult reality to face. Maybe you honed in on the wrong target? Perhaps your methods for reaching your audience are off the mark?
One wrong move tends to have a trickle-down effect. But, sometimes your marketing will be better off if you approach it from a fresh perspective. This is an incredibly valuable lesson.
Need more marketing tips and tricks? Or, perhaps you need help honing your marketing strategy. Let the experts at Thrive Internet Marketing come to your rescue.