This was originally started to be a new year type thing and got delayed, then thought it would be great for during a pandemic when things are totally different than we planned, but thought, who cares, it doesn’t matter! Is there ever a wrong time? Is there ever a wrong time to create goals and plan for a better business? Stuff happens, things shift, we gain and lose customers (for whatever reason), our lives change… so we should always keep our business goals in the forefront.
Undoubtedly, there are high points/pains and low points/struggles in your marketing plan. It’s always good to know your strengths, weaknesses, pains, struggles, objectives, goals and put it all out on the table to better assist you with a successful business. Remember to be sure to be your authentic self, set realistic goals, keep the customer at the front of your sights but keep your competition in mind so you are sure to be setting yourself apart from them – the right way. Take a look at some of these marketing plan ideas and goals to help propel your business into growth.
Review the prior plan and results
The first thing to focus on with your business marketing plan is to understand where you did things right, what worked and what you might have missed the mark on. From there, you can “trim the fat”. Some things may be poorly constructed marketing, networking groups that didn’t meet your expectations (or aren’t meeting any more) or even products or services that you thought there was a market for, but there wasn’t.
This will help you start off on the right foot for your next set of goals. Cut what didn’t work and move forward with what did. Don’t get stuck by holding onto something you do for the sake of money or doing it. Ensure that you love what you are doing and doing more of it versus the crap you just don’t want to do. Your business and its success will thank you for it.
In business, SMART goals are very specific. As you might recall, SMART goals stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely. This allows you to create and keep your goals more effectively and efficiently. By making sure that your marketing plan adheres to SMART goals, you’ll be more accountable by having the means to measure those specific goals thus being able to have a more successful year than it would be without SMART goals leading the way. If one of your ideas doesn’t hit SMART, than adapt it so that it does. You will thank me later. 🙂
Don’t be afraid to throw a plan out the window and start over
In reviewing your last plan, whether it was last year or last quarter, it’s possible that you may find that there is nothing worth keeping from your marketing plan. This could be equal parts liberating and terrifying. The thing to remember, however, is that you may simply need to throw the plan out and start over. This could be the best thing possible for your next marketing plan, and if this is the case then rip up the old plan, throw it out the window (metaphorically speaking), and start over with a blank piece of paper (or screen) and, thus, start over on your plan.
Planning for your next marketing plan and/or goals
Figure out your big goals
Your business could benefit from a big goal that you would like to achieve. It could be 1 or several. I like to have goals in various areas of my life – business, family, spouse, my shooting, health, spiritual, etc. Start with each big goal and don’t be afraid to spread your mind to the great unknown of hopes of dreams. Write it all down, brainstorm, and then use these ideas to help you formulate your big goals for each area of your life that you are wanting to create a plan form.
With your big goals and ideas written down, now is the time to figure out how you’re going to get there. This means picking and designing mini goals that act as steps to get you to that big goal by whatever that deadline or timeline is (remember the T in Smart goals – timely). After all, your progress is going to be marked by success with these mini goals, whatever they may be. It will help you to see your progress instead of simply “winging it” and hoping you hit your goal along the way, This, of course, goes back to the SMART acronym above.
I’m sure you’ve heard this analogy before but let’s say one of your big goals was to travel the world. Would you just get in the car and go? Not likely, how would you know where you are stopping, what you need to pack, etc? Typically you would plan out when you are leaving, where you are stopping (in general), what activities you want to explore (part of the point of the traveling), how you will get there and etc. Create a plan for those mini goals. These are your Measurement pieces of your SMART goals and put them into action.
Because let’s be honest, looking at that one big goal all at once can be quite overwhelming, right? How do you eat an elephant… one piece at a time!
Business goal ideas
Thinking of business goals can sometimes be difficult other than the typical – make more money, or get more clients. Those are kind of obvious, right? But how will you do that? For example, what strategies are you looking to use? Does your business use social media? Which platforms do you prefer? Have you put focus into search engine optimization (SEO) for your website? How are you expecting to be seen? Do you have valuable content on your website? Do you blog to keep that content up-to-date and relevant for your consumers and your business? Have you explored the option of email marketing? These are all important facets in your monthly (and yearly) marketing plan to consider. Knowing how you are going to tackle it, and which strategies to get there, may help with this.
Business is about relationships
You have no business if you have no customers. And you can build a better business if you have a team. Whether you have a team who gets paid to work for you or you have a networking group who keeps an ear out for your business – that is your team – you need to build that.
While forming your business plan, don’t forget to focus on making worthwhile business connections that are relevant to your business. For example, what various marketing channels are available to you? Do you have connections to help you out with digital and print advertising? Do you know someone that can help boost your PR? Do you have business partners that you can refer to and who would refer to you – a complimentary business? Do you have the proper connections in place to help propel your business? What about tools to make your business easier to do? These might be the things you consider important in your business plan.
Listen to your customers
While often neglected in marketing plans, focus on the customers and understanding your target market is important to factor in. What are their needs? What products/services matter to them? Does your target market respond to your advertising? Are you even accessing the right market? Understand how your customer factors in and make them a key part of your marketing. Hopefully you have a business relationship with your clients and you can reach out to them to see what their needs are. If not and you know your target market, see what those people need and want. And lastly, you can see what your competitor is doing for their customers and make it work for your business.
Give it time
The last big thing in your marketing plan is to be patient. (said no Kristen ever) This will take months – yes, really – to put into action in all of its aspects and details. As such, seeing whether or not its succeeding won’t be instant. Stick to your plan, remember your goals and reevaluate each day/week/month or however often it is necessary. Rome wasn’t built in a day and your business won’t either. If you want to succeed, you have to work for it, you have to sweat, you have to put in more than everyone else. Remember, if it were easy, everyone would do it. And they try, but do they last? You will if you work for it.
Regardless where you are in your business journey, don’t lose sight of your goals and your end game. As you know, it takes work. Don’t forget to consider that some things work, some don’t, but just as long as you learn from them. Be sure you are networking with a community that supports you, as much as you support them. Find a few businesses that compliment you so you can share referrals between each other. Your customer is your end user so never lose sight of that and keep them in mind when creating new products, services and etc.
Should I be able to help you with your online visibility – to get you in front of your target market, to get your website up to date or in front of your peeps with Google Ads or SEO, please contact me. I would be happy to help however I can, even if it is a brainstorming consulting type session!