2 minute read
By Lyndsey Hall
Whatever the size of your business, now is a really good time to evaluate your approach to marketing. We are living in unprecedented times and all businesses need to make sure they are up with—and preferably ahead of—the competition.
Many businesses put marketing barriers up: “I don’t have time, customer service comes first, I have family commitments and that’s not what I do!” If you have a clear focus that you want to grow your business then you need to make some time to action your plans. Here’s what the most successful businesses do.
Seven steps to a great marketing plan
Step One: Get focused – set targets for growth over the next 12, 24 and 36 months.
Step Two: Appoint a full time or part time marketing person or create some time to do the marketing yourself.
Step Three: Get a marketing plan to meet your growth objectives. Ask yourself:
- What do we need to do to keep our existing customers coming back?
- How do we sell them additional products and/or services?
- How do we get them to buy more often from us?
- How do we get them to refer us new customers?
- What do we need to do to let potential customers know we exist and that we have products/services they may like?
- How do we differentiate ourselves from similar businesses?
- Have we got a database of existing and potential customers? If we have, sending letters, emails and offers becomes a lot easier.
Step Four: Write down your plan – then decide how you are going to action it. How are you going to do it? What marketing materials do you need?
Step Five: Gather your marketing materials together:
- Develop a brochure of products/services information
- Keep up to date information on your website
- Consider letters, postcards and emails
Step Six: Adopt a distribution plan. Decide when and how you will let existing and potential customers know you are here and what offers and products/services you have.
Step Seven: Manage Feedback – review how effective your marketing activities have been. Be flexible and be prepared to try out different ways of marketing.
In conclusion, if you want to grow your business, invest in your marketing activities. Create time or hire someone to make it happen. Remember: wishful thinking is not an option! What are your tried and true marketing methods? Which of the above tactics would you love to try? Let us know in the comments or join the conversation on Linkedin.