Five Things You Must Know before Starting Any Marketing Initiative

August 10, 2017
five things know before marketing

It’s easy to get distracted – the portfolio of online and offline platforms can be overwhelming – and it’s so tempting to dive into the new shiny “thing” as soon as its available. But a bit of restraint now can make all of the difference later, increasing your odds of success and positive return on investment.

Here are the five things I strongly recommend you know before plunging into any marketing initiatives – online or off:

1. Know Your End Game Goals

You want to grow your business.  What does that mean? Where do you want to be in one year, five years, ten?  Do you want to generate awareness, sales or loyalty? Evaluate where you are currently, know what you want to accomplish in your business, set meaningful metrics, SMART goals, and aim at a clear target. Sticking to a defined strategy will help you make smart decisions about what to do and how, when and where to do it – and will keep you moving towards the outcomes you have set.

2. Know Your Ideal Customer

Clarify your audience’s (customers, clients, stakeholders, influencers) needs, wants, motivations, and challenges.  Understand how and where they purchase your (and your competitor’s) products or services.  This allows you to choose appropriate marketing channels, create content that resonates, confront pain points immediately, increase engagement, better respond to specific needs and become the trusted, go-to source.

3. Know Thyself

What makes you different?  What do you do best?  What do customers come to you for?  What is your “one thing?”  Understanding this and exploiting it will help you stand out and be noticed – regardless of channel.  Your “one thing” will be the voice of your strategy.

4. Know Your Value

Clearly articulate your value proposition. If you can’t quickly and clearly explain why someone should use your services/buy your product, it won’t matter what medium you choose, no one will listen to your message.

5. Know Your Investment Ability

With so many options available, it can be easy to spread yourself too thin – in both resources and budgets.  Be selective and spend your precious resources on what will get you the best return on the investment.  Once chosen, be disciplined about how your time and money is spent.  Set and stick to budgets, schedules, evaluate effectiveness by phase, monitor success metrics – make sure everything that you do and spend works toward your end game and positively contributes to the goals you set as part of your strategy.

For some, the process of gathering this information is painful but ultimately cathartic.  Knowing all of this about your company will enable you to put a strategy in place that has a balanced approach to the channels you choose – both on and offline – where to invest your resources and how to measure your effectiveness.

Not sure where to begin? Contact us for a conversation about priorities for your business.

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