Last week, I wrote a blog about the best approach to marketing as we all began our COVID-19 “Shelter in Place.” This week, I’m expanding on this because I’m getting this question from so many – clients and others – about how to work on their marketing efforts.
Don’t have a marketing strategy? NOW is the time to make one
If you’re one of those businesses that’s “too busy” to focus on a marketing strategy, now is the best time to create one. I compare a marketing strategy to a blueprint for a house: would you build a house without a plan? Buy flooring because it’s on sale before you have a room for it? Invest in appliances before you have anywhere to put them? Of course not. Marketing is exactly the same. Before you decide you “have to” buy Facebook or LinkedIn ads, or start an email campaign, create a plan for the next few months, or year. What are you trying to achieve? What’s the goal? Give it a number to make it real and to measure against – are you looking for 10% growth? Maintaining sales? A 20% increase in website traffic?
For every person who asks me if I do any type of marketing (social media, SEO, pay-per-click, websites, etc.), my response is always: Why? What do you want to achieve? What’s the goal? Without a goal, how do you even know if you crossed the finish line? (And the answer is yes, I do all of the above tactics, and much more, depending on what you want to achieve.)
Why is now a good time?
Now is the perfect time because you’re not distracted by a million other things. You have a moment – a rare, and precious one – to think about the big picture. Now is the time to work on your business, not just in your business.
One of the best ways to do that is to look back at 2019 and compare it to where you are now in 2020. Are you on track to exceed last year’s revenues? What will this year’s recession (yes, we’re in one now!) mean for you? How will you differentiate yourself from your competition, once everyone is back outside again, ready to buy, with all those weeks full of “pent up demand?”
This is the time you should be preparing all the marketing tactics you will want to deploy as soon as we’re out of our homes again. If you’ve put together a marketing strategy, get all your tactics ready to roll.
What do you mean “starting the marketing now” – what should I be doing?
When it comes to tactics (once your marketing plan is done), now is the time to:
- Create amazing content: photography, videos, artwork, etc.
- Formulate your message: work on the messages/copy for your campaigns and website.
- Put everything into place to start with the push of a button: this means all email campaigns should be set up, for example, with lists in place and automated sequences set up.
- Ensure you have goals in place, so you know what success looks like.
- Establish baseline metrics and data, so you can measure results on a weekly or bi-weekly basis.
Here’s what I’ll be doing in the next 30 days, to give you an example of what you can be doing now:
- I’m starting to work on my next book. I’ve already created an outline – now the writing and research begins!
- Creating a marketing plan for my ADA (American with Disabilities Act) program, to get the word out that everyone should have an ADA-compliant website. We’re offering a special deal now so that, when we update your website to be globally compliant, it will also be updated for the next three years, at no extra charge!
- Reviewing data from my own website and marketing efforts, to assess what’s been working and what hasn’t.
- Writing a job description for the assistant I’ll be hiring shortly.
- Once I hire an assistant, now is the time to train her/him, so that s/he will be “up and running” when I need her/him most.
Still not sure how you can be working on your marketing to maximize your results as soon as the COVID-19 “shelter in place” is over? Contact me and let’s talk about it. I want to help you be as successful as possible when all this is behind us.