A strong marketing strategy is one that supports business goals and direction. Each year in business we look to improve on how we went last year. This may not necessarily be improve profit it might be to gain a higher rate of customer satisfaction, get a greater return on investment of our marketing efforts or it may be find new markets or to successfully introduce a new product or service. To set yourself up for a good new year it’s important to start the year with clear goals for moving forward.
The best marketing plans underpin a strong business plan. You need to know where you want to go before you can determine how to get there.
We need to look back before we look forward.
One of the key success indicators for business is the ability to continually improve. Without a review process it is pretty difficult to systematically improve. To improve on our marketing we need to review how our marketing went in the previous year. This requires us to look a little deeper than the profit and loss statement.
Like anything in business, the easier you can make it (and the more enjoyable), the more likely you are to do it. Often we avoid a review because it can be a demoralising experience bringing you face to face with your unfinished to do list, or re-living the tough times when things didn’t work.
By not taking the time to review we miss out on the opportunity to improve.
You need to have a simple review process which is fun and easy to do and doesn’t get you bogged down in what didn’t work or what you didn’t do. Seth Godin developed in 2011 a quick and easy review process as part of his Pick Four program he based on Zig Ziglar’s Goals Program. His review questions as part of the program are:
- What are the highlights?
- What got in the way of achieving your goals or what didn’t work?
- What did you learn from what didn’t work?
These questions can be super helpful when reviewing your business at the end of a period and your marketing after a campaign or at the end of the year. They help you to focus on the positive and not get bogged down with negatives but to consider learnings so you can take that knowledge and improve in the next year.
I strongly encourage you to ask yourself these three questions before setting your business and marketing direction for the next year. If you need assistance working out the best marketing for your business this year please feel free to make contact with us.