“50% of our marketing is wasted – we just don’t know which 50%”.
Variations of this old advertising quote are truer than ever. Because of the shifting definitions of marketing success and the fact that nobody in marketing ever acheives a 100% success rate, many businesses procrastinate on their marketing strategy indefinitely. This has become particularly true in recent years as the complexity of the technology and sophistication of marketing channels increases.
What you need to understand is, there is not necessarily one perfect marketing solution for all your business needs. It’s true – there is no “magic wand solution”. It’s possible there are several strategies that would benefit your organization, based on your industry, company size and resources. However, without committing to growth, quite simply, your business will not grow. The trick is, once you have thoroughly parsed all the marketing strategy options and select the one(s) you want to proceed with, COMMIT.
- Commit to change.
- Commit to learn.
- Commit to act on what you learned.
Once you truly make a decision by committing dollars and resources, stick with it.
The worst thing you can do is “nothing”. Change is hard.
Change means creating a series of processes that differ from what you’re used to. Change means asking your team to do things differently and likely having some uncomfortable conversations with people who want to continue doing things the “old” way.
The key takeaway for effective marketing strategy in 2016 is: whatever you do, do something.
Following are several steps to take to get started on building effective marketing strategies for your business.
Essential Steps for Effective Marketing Strategies in 2016
1. Acknowledge that growth is a choice – so make the choice to grow.
Growth comes through learning and improving upon previous activities. Rather than building your business plan around a perfect idea, make the choice to act this year, to learn something new about marketing, and put it into practice in your business. As you take the time to act and to review your actions, your marketing plan and results will improve. But you must expect and accept mistakes as the fuel for growth as you start. Commit to grow, today.
2. Get a consultant or business coach or neutral 3rd party to bounce ideas off of and help document your strategy.
When committing to act and grow, you do not need to do so alone. Help from a neutral, experienced 3rd party will help you see your blind spots, avoid common mistakes and set you up for success from the start. Act now, but do so with the experience of those who have gone before you. Once they vet your ideas and assist you with crafting a strategy, they can also help you draft a plan and stay on target.
3. Get a consultant or business coach or neutral 3rd party to hold YOU accountable – so you don’t just talk about the plan, you actually execute it.
Couple accountability with action and outside experience and you have a great formula for your individual success. Accountability reduces several areas we are prone to error: perfectionism and permissiveness. One the one hand, many marketers are driven to get things right, but on the other hand there is a temptation to let things slide if the only person you are accountable to is yourself, as the team leader. An accountability partner not only helps you plan and avoid blindspots but keeps you centered in your action and planning.
4. Recognize your strengths and weaknesses. Build a team appropriate for your strategy and whose talents complement (not compete) with each other.
Take what you are learning in your marketing planning and action and build a team with it. Build your marketing team with individuals who are willing to commit to action and growth. Take time to assess your strengths and weakness as individuals and as a group and use the advice of independent consultants to help you maximize your strengths.
For more information about marketing consultants or other aspects of marketing, please contact us today and come back to our blog for two more effective marketing strategies for 2016.