Resolve to trim excess small business marketing weight this year

scaleMost of us are looking to lose weight in the new year and the extra fat in the marketing of many small businesses should be no exception. The strategies that work for successful weight loss also can work for marketing a small business more effectively.

Here’s how:

Weigh in.

Like a person looking to lose extra pounds, a company must look closely at its existing marketing plan. How much is being spent? Include everything, even the incidentals such as an employee’s child’s school program and the company T-shirts for the big picnic.

What have the results been? Are you even tracking results? Results are those things that can be measured against marketing efforts. Did sales increase the week after a direct mail campaign? By how much? Did traffic on the website spike after an email was sent? Most email campaign services offer tracking. Google Analytics, a free service, enables website owners to track how people reach and what they do on a website.

Choose a plan.

Once the weigh in is complete, it is time to choose the right plan for the future. For people losing weight, this means Jenny Craig or Weight Watchers. For small business owners, it means developing an actual marketing plan.

When I work as a small business marketing consultant, I work to develop plans for my clients that include goals of marketing efforts, detailed plans and methods for tracking results. These three components of a plan make it possible to stay on track and track results. Without a clear plan, neither a person losing weight or a small business owner can expect success.

Re-weigh.

These three components of a plan make it possible to stay on track and track results. Without a clear plan, neither a person losing weight or a small business owner can expect success. Weigh-ins for a marketing campaign should occur regularly, but not daily. Once a week or month is the appropriate time to track results, which should include any tracking of efforts, as well as changes in sales, customer inquiries and less obvious signals.

Accept comments.

A great motivator to keep many losing weight continuing their quest are compliments from people. Unlike people losing weight, comments about a marketing campaign must be solicited. If everyone at the business is aware of the efforts, they may ask customers how they heard about or why they visited that day.

I have learned that this information and any additional information it elicits can be the most useful in tailoring future marketing campaigns.

Set a new plan.

Once a person hits a target weight, he or she must create a plan for keeping that weight off. Another goal must be identified, and then new plans must be implemented to support reaching that new goal. A new marketing plan, either building on the last one or one supporting another sales goal, should be developed. Then the steps must be repeated.

 

Bob Graham and Bigger Pie Strategies can assist business owners in creating successful marketing plans, plans that are actionable, affordable and results oriented. For more information, contact Bob Graham at bob@biggerpiestrategies.com.

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