Archive for marketing strategies
Today we’ll cover part 2 of our 3 part series on, “What Is Marketing?’
In the last post (What is marketing part 1) we covered some of the basics of what categories fit into marketing and talked a little bit about PR and Sales.
Today I want to start a list of marketing strategies you can consider when you start to build out your marketing plan and marketing calendar.
I say ‘start a list’ because there are as many marketing strategies as there are creative people in the world… and there are new possibilities for marketing coming up each and every day.
An example of a completely new area of marketing in the last few years is social media. Until the last few years social media didn’t even exist and now it makes up a large portion of many entrepreneurs marketing time, energy and sometimes budget.
I invite you to add any of your favorite marketing strategies to this list by adding them to the comments below. :- )
(Also, if you are looking for a big comprehensive list, I happen to provide one in my Marketing in the Morning™ program – if you want to learn more about that, as well as my single most important tip on marketing, you’ll want to check out my upcoming FREE webinar. You can register here.)
So here’s the ‘start’ of the list:
- Google Hangouts
- Online Forums
- Online Advertising
- Business Cards
- Hotel Keys
- Magazine Ads
- Editorial Coverage (PR)
- Sidewalk Art (the legal kind :- ) )
Getting the drift? The list simply goes on and on and is only limited by your imagination. What would be fun for you to do in your marketing today?
In our next post we’ll continue to dig into What Is Marketing as we talk about your compelling message, so be sure to check back!
We all struggle with not wanting to work sometimes… hopefully you enjoy what you do and want to do it most of the time, but even when you do, there are days when all of us just don’t want to get busy with our work.
This becomes a bigger issue when you are working on an aspect of your business that you may find more challenging. You might really LOVE what you do – say hypnosis or coaching – but when it comes to sharing about it – say, by doing marketing or planning out marketing strategies, you struggle and avoid doing that work.
There are a few different ways you can approach this problem. You may have to experiment to find what works for you – and you may find that something that worked before isn’t working this time, so you have to switch things up and try something new.
1. Give Yourself a Break
As entrepreneurs we tend to work really, really, REALLY hard. Sometimes we just need a break. I think a lot of people are afraid if they stop, they’ll never want to start again… if that’s you, breathe. If you take a break, it will be ok. You’ll want to dive back in, and chances are, you’ll find you have new inspiration, new energy and new ideas.
Take a walk, listen to some music, plan an upcoming trip or vacation, chat with a friend, go to a movie, sit in a park – do whatever you WANT to do in that moment, let go of not working (really LET GO – you can’t decide to take some time off, then beat yourelf up for not working – that won’t help and you’ll stay stuck). Do something for you that is replenishing, relaxing and restful.
2. Use a Timer
If you have a task at hand, like creating marketing strategies to launch a new product, and you are avoiding it, use a timer. Set it for 25 minutes and agree with yourself that 25 minutes is all you have to do. Now here’s the most important part – when the timer goes off STOP. You need to honor that agreement with yourself. Take a break, get a coffee/tea – do something different for at least 5-10 minutes or longer. Once you take the break, if you feel inspired to continue, dive back in. You’ll be surprised at how often you WANT to jump back in and continue. Sometimes just getting started is the biggest hurdle, so this can help you jump over it with ease.
3. Do Something Related
In our busy lives as entrepreneurs there are always about 1,000 things we can focus on – and from that list there will always be some we don’t relish. It’s ok… if you aren’t in the mood and you have the time, focus on something you really do enjoy, but that is related to the task you don’t really want to do. After you give yourself some time to get your juices flowing, approach the other task again. Sometimes you’ll find that by opening up your creativing and getting into the flow of work when you are ready to do the parts that aren’t always as much fun for you, they will become much easier.
If you have any strategies for dealing with procrastination or simply not wanting to do certain tasks in your business, share them below. We can all help one another so much just by sharing a few tips we use – it can be something so simple you think, “Everyone knows this…” You’d be surprised how many people either don’t know or just haven’t thought of it that way – so please share.
And, if you find you are struggling with marketing strategies – coming up with them, knowing which ones will work for you and your business, creating marketing strategy templates (that you can plug and play and use over and over), you might want to click here. I’m working on something new that might just be exactly what you need.
So, what goes into your marketing plan?
Today I want to talk about the marketing funnel that goes into your marketing plan.
Your marketing funnel is generally a visual representation of the steps and stages a potential client (and then client) can travel through your business. It’s often pictured as a funnel (as in this picture below), or turned around the other way, making a pyramid shape.
At the top of the funnel is where you would have any free offers you are putting out to the world. You want to remember, as you put out those offers, they need to be very enticing and they need to connect deeply with one of the bigger wants and needs (if you can do both, all the better) of your target market. You also want to make sure that you are truly serving people – giving them some of your very best stuff. This is your chance to make a stellar impression, so don’t cheap out on this.
The next step in the funnel is something that is also easily accessible, so it may be a well-priced offer that gives a lot of great support and information as well. It lets people try you out in another way and begin to wade into the waters, without having to commit to something huge, or dive right in – which most people are just not ready or willing to do.
On occasion, someone will be ready, though, so you want to make sure that this funnel isn’t a requirement – it’s not set up like pre-requisite courses in college. You don’t HAVE to go through the 101 level to decide you want to dive into the deep end and go big. If you have someone who loves your work and they’re ready for the whole kit-and-caboodle, then let them go for it, and give them an awesome experience.
In the next level, you step things up a notch – both from the standpoint of the level of investment and the level of time and service involved. People that reach this stage have often invested before, they’ve tried you out and they’re ready to go into the waste deep water now. They’re making a commitment.
Then, as you continue to flow downward, you add premium offerings. As the funnel suggests, a smaller number of people will trickle down to that level, but it’s ok. The people that do are your best customers. These are the ones who are generally raving fans (there can be some at every level, but these folks are deeply invested in your products and services).
The idea behind this piece of your marketing plan is that once you get someone who is interested in you and what you offer, you want to make sure you continue to serve them in multiple ways. You want to find out as much as you can about what they want and what they need solved, and you want to create and offer products and services that give them what they want.
When you do, your business has depth, and you can build long-term relationships with your clients, giving them more of what they want, and in turn, building a business that grows and thrives.
I am frequently asked questions about how to develop marketing strategies for small businesses, entrepreneurs and solo-preneurs.
So, in today’s post, I’ll share a few tips with you.
How to Develop Marketing Strategies – Step 1
The first thing you need to do is determine the basics – the 3 M’s of marketing – your market, your message and your media. You can read more about these items in my ‘Marketing Concepts‘ posts and articles.
Once you are clear on who your target market is, what the message is that you want to share and some of the media through which you can reach your target audience, you can start to build your strategy.
How to Develop Marketing Strategies – Step 2
The next step is to take a closer look at the media options you have selected. Now you want to determine, step-by-step, what you will do to get your message out through the different types of media.
As an example, lets say you’ve chosen direct mail as your media. Now you have almost unlimited options about what you can send and when you will send it.
Since most strategies will work best with multiple steps, the process of developing the marketing strategy will really be about figuring out the steps and touch-points you want in your direct mail campaign.
What you include will, in part, depend on the product or service you are marketing. You could include 1 or more post cards, letters, gifts (which could really include anything)…and basically anything from a rock with a message and postage on it to a prescription bottle with a message in it. The more creative you are the more likely it is that your mail will be opened and your message will be seen.
As you plan out the steps, you also should determine the timing for each piece, creating a calendar to follow as you implement.
How to Develop Marketing Strategies – Step 3
Now all you need to do is work on creating the marketing pieces themselves, with or without the support of others – including copy writers, graphic designers, direct mail specialists, etc., and begin to implement your marketing strategy.
If developing marketing strategy for your business is something that challenges you, you can work with a marketing consultant or coach to help you not just create them, but learn how to do it moving forward. Then, you can take what you learn and implement those strategies on your own or with your team.
When it comes to knowing how to develop a marketing strategy, it’s really pretty straight-forward. It’s a step-by-step process, like most other things in business and in life. You have choices and decisions to make, and once you put things out there, you will want to track the results and make incremental changes to continue to make your strategies more and more effective.
If you are curious about building strong marketing strategies for your business, then you’ll want to check out my upcoming Marketing in the Morning™ webinar – it’s live and free – you can register here.