With 2018 around the corner, you now have a great opportunity to begin the marketing planning for your business. With this new year comes a new opportunity to reevaluate your marketing strategy and to make sure it is in line with the vision you have in place for your small business. Here are some tips to get you in the mindset of planning your marketing strategy for the upcoming year.
Revamp Your Marketing Plan
Periodic evaluation of your marketing plan is key to keeping it relevant to your vision for your business. You may be working with a bigger budget than you were two years ago, have added to the catalog of services that you offer, your target audience has different interests, or a recent trend has changed the competitive landscape, causing you to reevaluate the marketing approach for your business. We recommend an evaluation of your marketing plan at least every 12 – 18 months in which you conduct a thorough review, re-evaluate your marketing strategies, and make adjustments as needed. Check out our past blog post on ways to revamp your marketing plan here for additional details. This can also help you create a new marketing plan if you do not already have one in place.
Evaluate Your Successes and Current Goals
It is always a great idea to reflect on all of the things you have accomplished over the last year. Oftentimes as small business owners we get so wrapped up in the day to day hustle of running our businesses and forget to document what we have accomplished.
Look at your goals from last year and determine whether or not you have met these goals. If you did not meet these goals, document why and how you plan to accomplish them in the upcoming year. For example, if one of your goals was “set up a Pinterest page for my business and post twice a week”, but you actually only posted a few times a month, reflect on why this occurred. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you failed but it may require you to adjust your approach. Perhaps you had a lack of time, resources, or content to post on Pinterest. It is perfectly fine to have defined a goal and then determine down the line that it is no longer in line with your vision to grow your business. It is best to document these decisions so that you may reevaluate down the line as needed. By doing this self-reflection, you will be able to more clearly see potential goals for the upcoming year whether it be to hire additional help or revamp your social media presence.
Set Upcoming Goals
Once you have reflected on your successes, come up with realistic goals for the upcoming year. These can range from those easy to meet to a goal that takes more work, planning, and effort. Setting too many goals can be overwhelming, so work on setting a few (less than 5) and focus on those. if you hit these goals before your deadline, you can always create more, Here is an example of some actionable measurable goals that you can set for the upcoming year.
- Gain 100 followers on Instagram and Facebook
- Increase my Instagram Postings to 4 times a week
- Hire 1-part time resource to help with administrative tasks
- Go to 1 networking event per month
- Land 5 additional clients
- Increase the monthly earnings of my business by “x” amount
- Post a new blog twice a month
Take Steps to Strategize Your Digital Marketing Presence
Managing your digital marketing presence as a small business owner can be a delicate balance. You want to make sure that you are as effective as possible while addressing the wants and needs of your target audience. It can be tempting to make your business presence available on every social media platform you can think of. However, it is important to come up with a strategy that allows you to effectively manage your digital presence with your current resources. Remember that knowing your audience is key to determining where your focus should be on your digital presence. See our past blog post on how to identify and cater to your ideal customer here for more information. Is your target audience more interested in Instagram and not as active on Snapchat? If so, determine if it would be worth the time and effort it would take to keep up with a Snapchat account and instead adjust your focus to increasing your Instagram posts.
Implementing these tips should have you well on your way to having a strategy that will be both beneficial to your marketing strategy and your vision for your business. We are committed to guiding you through this process with our expertise. Feel free to contact us to learn more. Our team at AMW Site Designs wishes you a prosperous 2018!