Marketing your business is a continuous process. I like to refer to it as a journey because effective marketing can take your business to new places you’ve never imagined!
One of the constant struggles for entrepreneurs is understanding how to make their marketing even better.
This often becomes a question at the end of the year, when entrepreneurs wonder how to improve their marketing for a more profitable new year. To be honest, though, you shouldn’t be asking this question only in December.
Ideally, assess ways to improve your marketing every quarter. This will help you make the necessary adjustments to your marketing strategy as you need them.
So, how can you make your marketing even better? Here are four areas you can evaluate to see where you can improve your marketing:
#1: Measure the results of your marketing plan
Every small business needs a marketing plan. No exceptions. When you’re creating your marketing plan, add metrics to see how successful your marketing efforts are. For example, if you plan on using a Facebook page, create a spreadsheet of key Facebook Insights that you want to track, and evaluate your results at least once a month. Or, if you have a goal of growing your email marketing list, create milestones and dates to achieve them. Then, document your progress against your goals.
The idea is to stop, measure and assess all aspects of your marketing plan. Block out time every three months to look over your plan and track how you’re doing. If you see something that’s working great, amp it up. Conversely, if a marketing tactic is not working, consider how you can make necessary adjustments. And give yourself permission to abandon an idea that isn’t working.
#2: Learn from your wins and losses
Pull out your calendar and review the past three months. Think about your activities – the content you created, the social media posts you wrote, the webinars you participated in – and ask yourself the following questions:
- Where were my areas of biggest success?
- What mistakes did I make? How can I learn from them?
- What activities were not the best uses of my time?
- If I could do something over again, what would it be, and how would I re-do it?
- What networking events can I add or subtract from my calendar?
- What topics do I need to learn more about?
- Am I getting the most out of my team?
#3: Update your marketing plan and calendar
Both your marketing plan and calendar are intended to be fluid documents. While you may have mapped out your entire year, you can always expect to make changes. After you evaluate your marketing tactics and activities, go back to your marketing plan and calendar, and revise accordingly.
You may even consider adding different types of content, such as video blogs, to your content marketing mix. Or it may be time to get started on your Pinterest account. This step is not just about revising what is already on your marketing plan and calendar; it’s also about adding new tactics if it’s the right time to do so.
#4: Adjust pricing, programs and offerings
Every three months, take a hard look at your programs and services. Are you offering items that are beneficial to your ideal clients? Is it time to make any tweaks? Is it time to create a new product or service?
Additionally, evaluate your pricing. The more experience you have, the greater your demand. That means you should be able to raise your prices. Look at your current offerings, especially ones that you made available months ago. Those are the products and services that may be ideal for a price increase.
Block time on your calendar every three months without fail
Now that you know what to assess to improve your marketing, it’s your job to block the time on your calendar for this activity. Go to your calendar, and every three months, block as much time as you need for your quarterly marketing assessment. Do this in one sitting so you know this time is on your calendar. Then, refer to the four areas mentioned in this marketing strategy so you know exactly what to assess and evaluate for marketing improvement.