The end of a year inevitably means planning for the New Year ahead. Among all the plans and goals you have for your business in 2014, marketing is also a crucial but often overlooked aspect. Finding the time to put together a year-long plan can be overwhelming, especially if you are focused on billable hours. However, it’s important to start thinking about your plan now and consider how you can segment it so that it’s more manageable. Consider the following tips for putting your marketing plan together.
- Segment the Plan – Think about dividing the plan into four-month increments. It’s much easier to plan in shorter increments, and this will help reduce the burden of having to plan for the long term.
- Play to Your Strengths – Chances are you will only engage in marketing activities that play to your strengths. For example, if you’d rather give your left arm than speak in public, consider focusing on other tactics such as writing articles. Compile a list of activities that you wish to pursue so you can focus your time of those.
- Set Your Goals – You could spend your entire billable day on marketing. In order to manage your time, set goals for what you want to achieve. For example, distributing a form of communication to clients on a monthly basis or authoring two articles per month. Setting goals that work within your schedule will help you manage your marketing efforts.
- Measure Results – Marketing results are notoriously difficult to track. The ideal outcome from any marketing effort is when it translates into new business. However, a published article, speaking engagement or even positive feedback on your newsletter all count for results, just a different kind.
By laying out your ideas for your 2014 marketing plan ahead of time, you can reduce the stress of planning for an entire year in just one day.