As a small business owner, you know that marketing is essential to your success. Yet creating an effective marketing plan can often seem daunting and overwhelming. Fortunately, there are simple steps you can take to create a do-it-yourself (DIY) marketing plan for your small business. Let’s take a look at what you need to do to make it happen.
Look Critically at Your Current Marketing Strategies
The first step in creating a DIY marketing plan is to evaluate your current marketing strategy. What have been some of the successes? What have been some of the failures? Make sure you also consider what potential customers are saying about your product or service online. This will give you valuable insight into how people view your business and help identify any gaps in your current strategy.
Revisit What Your Audience Wants
Next, revisit who your target audience is and how best to reach them. Make sure that the audience you’re targeting aligns with the product or service that you provide, as well as the goals and objectives of your business. If necessary, adjust accordingly—this may mean researching new target markets or revising existing ones.
Explore Digital and Traditional Marketing Channels
Now it’s time to choose which channels are best suited for reaching your target audience. Coschedule explains that you want to ensure that you select only those channels that will be most beneficial for connecting with customers in an effective way—and not just because they are popular among other businesses. Consider both offline and online tactics such as email campaigns, trade shows, webinars, direct mailings, search engine optimization (SEO), social media campaigns, etc.
Create a Budget and Factor in Your ROI
Developing a realistic and effective marketing budget is an important step for businesses of all shapes and sizes. Deciding how much to spend on different marketing channels, such as advertising, public relations, or direct mail, can be difficult. One approach is to invest heavily in the channels that generate the best return on investment (ROI) and gradually increase the budget for other activities as ROI increases. It’s also important to have a baseline budget allocated for activities like research and market analysis since these are essential components of any successful marketing strategy.
Use a Competitor Analysis to Strategize
Before proceeding with any marketing initiatives, the Chamber of Commerce explains that it’s important to research what other businesses in similar industries are doing. Understanding their own marketing efforts will ensure that you don’t inadvertently duplicate them or miss an opportunity they may have already identified as being successful. Additionally, looking at what competitors are doing will give you insight into what’s working and not working when it comes to certain tactics or strategies—allowing you to make better decisions on how best to move forward with yours.
Establish Realistic Goals and Objectives
Once everything else has been established (i.e., target audience identified; appropriate channels selected; budget developed; competition researched), set clear goals and objectives for yourself regarding what type of results you want from each channel/tactic used by a specified time frame. This helps keep everyone focused on specific outcomes while providing an easy way of tracking progress toward those outcomes over time—which leads us right to our last point.
Expand Your Marketing Knowledge with Training
Finally, if DIY isn’t really something that fits within your skill set yet, you can go back to school for a marketing or business degree. There are many different degrees that can help you to manage your marketing department. For instance, business management can help if you choose to outsource and work with freelance designers. Or, you could pursue a degree in digital marketing. Plus, there are many great programs that are offered entirely online, so you can stay focused on your business while also expanding your skill set.
Put Your Marketing Plan to Work
Creating an effective DIY marketing plan doesn’t have to be difficult if you approach it systematically and strategically. Plus, this method is essential for any small business owner looking for long-term success in this competitive market today. Start by evaluating your current strategies and your understanding of your target audiences before selecting the right channels of communication. Be sure to develop an appropriate budget and ensure that any strategies you use to reach your goals, from going back to school to running a campaign and even hiring a freelancer, fit into that budget. With these tips and tricks, anyone can create their very own DIY digital presence and start seeing ROI faster than ever!
No time to DIY your marketing plan? Learn how Thrive Business Marketing can help your marketing efforts today.