5 Steps to Remodel Your Marketing Objectives
I have friends that are going through a remodel of the first floor of their house. And when I say “going through it,” I mean that after eight and a half months, they still don’t have the master bedroom completed, and half the kitchen doesn’t have a backsplash.
They confessed that they had tried to get bids, but never really followed up with any of the contractors. They then decided to do it “cheaper” by DIY’ing the entire project themselves. Um, well, I guess that didn’t go as planned. Wait, what plan?
While they had the basic idea of a floor plan and pricing from random online shopping, my friends seriously failed to create a Master Plan, and their dream turned into an overwhelming nightmare.
You might be asking yourself, how does this affect the marketing of my business?
I’ve been in marketing for nearly 15 years, and I consistently see small business owners try and market their companies in the same way. As I illustrated by my example above, it’s not unlike trying to DIY your remodel your house without Master Plan.
So, if you want to see a return on your investment of time and money, the following five steps can help you create a profitable business.
#1. Clarify Marketing Objectives to Meet Business Goals
First and foremost, let’s start with clearing some confusion on Marketing Objectives vs. Goals, as these terms can be confusing. These are as different as peanut butter and jelly when it comes to online marketing.
- Marketing objectives are explicit, measurable objectives designed to give detailed instructions and targets to reach. Think of Marketing Objectives as the concrete foundation on which to build your business. Objectives help meet goals.
- Marketing goals are waypoints designed to outline how your business can gain traction from online marketing & sales endeavors. Think of goals as the 5000 ft view of your business marketing.
Question 1: Do you have a vision of where your business will be in three, five, and ten years? Have you written it down?
If not, then please use the following link to get started!
Question 2: Have you defined how your plan suits the market opportunity for your particular business? To appropriately reach company goals, you must make sure that your marketing plan is well-defined.
#2. Design Your Marketing Master Plan
Ok, so now that you have defined your objectives, it’s time to create the Master Plan to meet your goals.
The master plan should start with a solid foundation and always maintain focus on the objectives you have created. Please understand that this will be a “living document” for your business, and you will have to tweak and adjust it along the way, but with all directions identified, your marketing team can execute with certainty. It’s important to anticipate as many pitfalls as possible at this stage.
#3. Build Your Master Plan
There will be some keep factors to include in the building of the master plan. Do not get started before these are appropriately identified.
Your marketing team wants to see progress and accomplish tasks. They won’t get excited until they start to see the walls go up, but ignoring the actions that provide a solid foundation for your master plan will result in imminent failure. The master plan (aka the foundation) has to be in place before you execute the marketing of your business.
Marketing tasks take time, and as a business owner, you will grow impatient. Nevertheless, when you follow your Master Plan, you’ll spend less time guessing and more time gaining ground and reap the rewards of a solid return on your investment.
Your Master Plan must contain these critical elements:
- A full market analysis
- Market Size, Deman, and Trends
- Distribution Channels
- Profit Potential
- Business Cycle, Seasonality, etc
- Who is your audience? Also known as a ‘Persona.’
- What pain points do you intend to alleviate?
- Define resources and budgets to deliver on the plan
#4. Function OVER Form
Remodeling a house requires that you start by fixing any underlying issues like plumbing or electrical. You probably would NOT just paint it and call it good if you wanted it done right! RIGHT?
Please don’t build a website, design graphics, and signage, formulate online ads or develop email messaging until you know how you want them to function within your Master Plan. The old idea of if you build it, they will come doesn’t work here.
Instead, create an encompassing approach with linked activities and managed, consistent messaging with an end metric in mind. It will generate function over form as a priority of events.
#5. Alignment, Focus, and Consistency
Alignment: Clarify how each component in your plan integrates and aligns with your objectives. My grandfather taught me to “Measure twice and cut once,” which holds true here. Plan your direction, get it in motion, and avoid deviation unless necessary. Making changes can derail your efforts, push you over budget and drive you off course.
Focus: So now you are asking me, but wait, you said before that this is a living document… well, yes, but when you over-correct your marketing, it can get out of control. Stay the course until you must react to things like market shifts, the marketing persona (Customer) didn’t respond as predicted, or the marketing objectives change. These items should be like an “if / then” statement. If this happens, Then do this. You may not be able to plan for everything, but you can decide how to react to outside forces.
Consistency: While marketing is not as permanent as the remodel we mentioned above, without a Master Plan, you’ll find yourself constantly diverting and not making good marketing choices. Or even worse, like my friend’s remodel debacle, you’ll have lots of marketing “activity and fluff” but a big fat ZERO IN THE BOTTOM LINE!