01.10.2020

Planning basics – six key steps to create a successful marketing plan

Marketing plays a crucial role in achieving growth for every business. It is important to know what you want to achieve and how to maximise the effect of your marketing efforts!

To successfully execute marketing for your business, it is hugely important to create a strong marketing plan. A marketing plan consists of all the details of the marketing strategy you are going to apply. Here are our six key steps to include to make your marketing dreams come true!

 

  1. So, what is a marketing strategy?

Your marketing strategy is your guide that helps you choose, prioritise, plan, and execute projects to influence profitable customer action. Marketing is not just about producing content. Marketing is about producing content that produces results! And a marketing strategy provides the roadmap for you and your team to execute well-planned projects that can be measured against a clearly defined goal.

This process not only helps you target the right audience with the right content and the right level of effort, but helps you understand the impact your marketing projects have upon the growth of your organisation.

If you are still in need of convincing, see what the numbers have to say…

  • Marketers who document strategy are 538% more likely to report success than those who don’t
  • Marketers who document process are 466% more likely to report success than those who don’t
  • Marketers who set goals are 429% more likely to report success than those who don’t
  • Successful marketers are 242% more likely to report conducting audience research at least once per quarter, 56% of study’s most elite marketers conduct research once or more per month – CoSchedule Academy (2018).

MacBook Pro near headphones

 

  1. Setting SMART goals

Your marketing goal should be SMART: a specific, measurable, aspirational, realistic, and time-bound metric that drives every marketing effort.

The 10x growth framework is an example to use in order to focus on the aspirational part of the goal as much as possible. Therefore, you may opt to calculate your goal with this formula:

 

Average Current Monthly Contribution to Metric × 10 = Marketing Goal

 

Marketers who write down their goals and objectives are more likely to make them a reality! So, make sure you are taking notes!

Work out what is realistic, aligned with your business’s overall aims and give yourself a time-frame to achieve the goal by.

MacBook Pro on table beside white iMac and Magic Mouse

 

  1. How to track and measure your goals and ROI

Marketing measurement requires tools to make this a reality. You need to connect the dots between the content you publish and the results it produces towards your goal.

Google Analytics’ Goals function is a great way to help you track the actions that are driving more leads and using UTM tracking links means you can measure the effectiveness of specific channels more accurately.

six white sticky notes

 

  1. Targeting a specific audience

Your target audience is the ideal customer you want to attract to your product or service through your marketing efforts. Your marketing persona is a document that details your target audiences who, what, when, where, and why, in addition to understanding general demographic information such as gender, job title, job function, business size, team size, needs, pain points, and challenges.

A common mistake with target audiences is that you might think you need to target two or three or more audiences. Target one audience to begin with—the one with the greatest potential for growth—so you don’t spread yourself too thin, dilute your messages, and actually hurt your chances of attracting the right prospects to your brand. It is better to target one audience well!

 

  1. Prioritising projects

Project prioritisation is the process that helps you decide which work will influence your marketing goals most effectively. Your marketing project backlog is that list of every idea you think will help you reach your marketing goal most effectively. Our top tip is to take on the projects with the largest potential first! This process helps you prioritise your projects even further.

Maximise your minimal resources by prioritising the projects that have the largest opportunity for growth while minimising the effort you spend on projects that will not dramatically boost your results.

black chair lot

 

  1. Planning project timelines

A marketing project timeline maps the creation process for all of the content within a single campaign over a specific period of time. Brainstorming for all pieces of content to be created in a specific project is a great first step to plan future activity.

Keeping aligned to plans in a timeline with good time management will enhance the chances of success. Organisation is key!

Setting expectations and deadlines in your marketing plan is vital to achieve your business goals; always keeping in mind how you will prioritise each project, how each element will lead to growth, know your audience, and track your ROI!

We hope our six top tips will give you the basics of developing a top tier marketing plan! Success and positive results are right around the corner, just make sure you plan it!

black retractable pen on opened book beside red and white go get'em-printed coffee cup

If you enjoyed this blog, we have something similar for you, with our guide to Marketing Automation, and how to market your business in a post-Covid world!

Marketing and communication is critical to your business success, but it needs a plan and strategy to be effective. If your business needs some help, see what we can offer you by checking out our affordable Confident Communication Planning Package.