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A Process is Key to Implement Your Marketing Plan
Take the first step to avoid overwhelm
Once your marketing foundation is defined with a mission, vision, branding, customer segmentation, and clear messaging, your next step is to revisit your SMART goal to ensure it aligns with your marketing strategy. This is also the genesis for your actionable marketing plan which will lay out the strategies, actions, and chunks (detailed activity to execute), to achieve your SMART goal. It is common to feel overwhelmed at this point, and sometimes you may feel like you don’t know where to begin, or how to start, or who should own certain pieces of the marketing plan (if not all of it).
It’s critical that you take a step to avoid marketing paralysis and overcome that feeling of overwhelm. I motivate my clients by asking, “What is one thing you can do today to implement something we’ve discussed?” It can be something small, but you need to do at least one thing to prove to yourself that you can do this.
Perhaps there is new messaging you can incorporate into your website, an email, or a social media post. Maybe you haven’t touched your marketing tactics in a while, so you create a quick post. Is your company’s LinkedIn page or Google My Business page unclaimed? No matter how much effort you put into your current marketing tactics, there is always something more you can do, or approach in a different way. It may take time to learn a new marketing platform, or write copy that aligns with your brand; making a small change will start you on the path to higher marketing ROI. It doesn’t have to be perfect to begin with, but you do need to start.
Having a process in place can help you take those first steps. For example, your marketing plan will have go-live dates associated with each tactic (event, blog, social media post, email, website update, etc.). Go-live dates are dates when your customers and prospects can engage with these marketing touchpoints. A process outlines the steps needed to make the go-live dates happen, including:
What happens before it goes live (e.g. generate QR codes, creative components, etc.)
Who is involved to implement it (e.g. digital team, printer, agency, etc.)
Who has access to the digital marketing accounts where the asset will live (if applicable)
What the approval process looks like and who is involved
How many reviews occur prior to approval and who is involved
How long does each part of the process takes
What inputs are needed to begin the process
If you don’t have an established process, it’s important to start your implementation; be sure to document each step as you go through the process for future reference. You can also search on Google and find sample documentation to use as a starting point that you can customize to fit your business.
A process not only provides a common understanding of business operations in your company (great for training employees), but also provides opportunities to identify efficiencies. For example, if you are ramping up your social media content, it’s much more efficient to write several posts at once versus writing a post when you want to post something. Better yet, if you have a scheduling tool such as Publer, you can take all of your posts and schedule them at once which saves time because you are in one application. Instead of going to each native platform (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.) to post, you sign into Publer, schedule posts in advance to various social media platforms, and you’re done. Not only do you save time, you know your content is intentional and you can craft a story arch for your followers. One tip (I learned the hard way) is if you are posting a video, be sure to create the post natively in LinkedIn or it won’t autoplay in the LinkedIn newsfeed. You can still use Publer for the rest of the platforms and your video will be fine.
Whether a process is in place or not, taking that first step is key to a successful implementation of your marketing plan. These tips are intended to encourage you to take action, execute against your marketing plan, and avoid overwhelm because you have a plan and process in place. You’ll see that change is possible one small step at a time.
Ready to create your own strategic marketing plan? We still have a few spots available for our upcoming Work On Your Business Retreat where you will immerse yourself in marketing foundations and strategies, tap into your why, and bring it all together in a custom actionable marketing plan that helps you achieve your marketing goals. Once you take that first step, you will see that it is possible to implement your marketing plan and enjoy the benefits of sharing your marketing message with your target customers.
-Written by Alexis Rago, the co-Creator of the Work On Your Business Retreat, and the Big Kahuna at Marketing Mana LLC. Alexis enjoys life as an entrepreneur, while also managing the role of mom to two kids and one fur baby, as well as being a wife, daughter, friend, and volunteer.