With 2021 now upon us, many of us are looking forward to a fresh start. Whether you’re the type to make resolutions or not, now is a great time to hit the ground running with an effective, yet simple marketing plan for the year ahead!
As digital marketing experts, the Elevation Marketing team specializes in creating tailored digital marketing plans for each of our clients that maximize engagement and boost brand visibility. While each marketing plan is unique in its own way, there are a handful of components that are integral to developing a cohesive digital strategy for your business. In this blog, we’ll take a look at five key components you can combine to create a simple, yet solid digital marketing plan bearing in mind that your comprehensive marketing plan may include key components outside of digital marketing.
Every good plan starts with analyzing the problem you’re trying to solve and taking note of the challenges you’ll face. With a marketing plan, the problem is increasing business—and one of the biggest challenges is outshining the competition.
Before setting your simple marketing plan in motion, it’s important to perform a competitive analysis to understand what your competitors are doing. Take note of both the good and bad. Where are they finding success, and can you emulate that success somehow? On the flip side, where are they clearly lagging behind, and how can you take advantage? Analyze their online presence however you can, from their social channels, to reviews, to news mentions and more. At Elevation Marketing, we invest in a wide variety of research tools that help us piece together a clear roadmap of your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses in the online space. Interested in learning more? Request your marketing audit today!
Next up, you want to identify exactly who you’re trying to speak to with your marketing efforts. Thus, it’s critical that you establish your target audience early on. What kind of buyers are you looking to attract? How do you want to be viewed by them?
Positioning is important here as well. While it’s always helpful to be one of the top businesses in a given industry, you may also find success by targeting specific groups of buyers within that industry. For example, if you’re an electrician, you may want to focus on a particular type of electrical work (such as residential or commercial) or on a specific service (such as upgrading electrical panels).
Now that you’ve laid the groundwork, it’s time to set some goals. Be careful in laying out your goals, however; they should be neither too vague nor too specific, and they should present the right level of challenge to your business.
A good technique to use here is the SMART goal system. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Bound. By setting goals within this system, you put yourself in a better position to succeed in a meaningful way. For example, a goal such as “Grow website users by 15% in the 1st quarter” meets all of these requirements and represents a clear marker for success. Be sure to set both short- and long-term goals as you plan.
As you begin to kick off your marketing efforts, make sure analysis is an ongoing part of your operations. You should be analyzing the success of your plan through a variety of methods, making sure to do so regularly. Analyzing your marketing efforts monthly or quarterly will help you understand how successful your marketing plan is. And if you aren’t seeing as much success as you’d like, don’t be afraid to make changes! Being able to easily assess and refine your strategy is part of the beauty of creating and executing a simple marketing plan like this.
All the while during your marketing efforts, you should be establishing and sticking to a specific budget. We’ve seen companies err in both directions on this—some paying large amounts for digital strategies that weren’t bringing any results, and others hesitant to invest much of anything in marketing for their business.
A budget helps take the guesswork out of the financial side of your marketing plan. Take a look at your company’s current expenses and determine how much you can dedicate to marketing as a whole, and to each of your specific goals. It’s also very helpful to understand the expected ROI of all your planned marketing activities. When you can expect a solid ROI, investing in your marketing plan becomes a much easier decision.
In-house marketing can be a challenge. Even with a simple marketing plan like this, sitting down to perform analyses, establish metrics for success, and understand the ROI of various marketing efforts can be difficult without experience executing digital strategies.
At Elevation Marketing, we understand how difficult it can be to run your business and develop a digital strategy at the same time. That’s where we come in! We’ve created tailored marketing plans for small and mid-sized businesses in a variety of industries, successfully boosting brand visibility through our targeted digital strategies. Start your 2021 by partnering with Elevation Marketing. Contact us today for a consultation!