Creating a marketing campaign is a very tricky thing. Not that long ago social media was all the rage. At times, it seemed like it was made out to be the only marketing tool worth utilizing. While social media still is one heck of a valuable tool, there is so much more to creating a successful marketing plan and I think fledgling professionals and startups forget that. When you are getting ready to kick something off, make sure you consider the following in order to help ensure its success.
Research – I know this isn’t always the most exciting part of any project or campaign, but it’s always a contender for the most important. You can have the coolest ad or social media campaign ever, but if you don’t have a thoughtful approach of how to execute it and who to target, it’ll get lost and never given a fair shot. The key thing to remember is, it is really hard to please everyone – in any life scenario, so why would you try to target everyone? It makes no sense. Research will help you find a niche to start and thrive within.
Goals – This might seem like a no-brainer, but I find it somehow gets overlooked. By using your, research, you’ll be able to decide on attainable goals. Everyone wants to go viral with a million views, but the numbers of videos, which aren’t music videos, which go “viral”, are very few when compared to how many videos are uploaded. It’s quite simple really. Set your goals and then blow by them!
Online Presence – Notice it wasn’t the very first thing? You need to know what platforms to leverage before positioning yourself in the digital world. If you run in with your head down, at full steam, you can quickly find yourself needing to update your blog, your Facebook page, your Twitter account, your Pinterest, your Instagram and your YouTube channel before you even know what to do. Managing all of those different accounts can be a very daunting task and can take a lot of man hours. I’m going to sound like a broken record, but you need to do your research, set your goals and then create your online presence. No sense in creating and maintaining accounts if you find out your target market isn’t using that platform, right? Time is priceless; use it wisely.
PR – Who doesn’t love “free” exposure? I say “free,” because while you don’t pay for the print space or TV time, it takes a heck of a lot of effort to earn it. Also, keep in mind that unless you are a household name public a figure or a catastrophe, your story will probably not make The Today Show out of the gate. Think local and let your story gain attention organically. If you’re in a major metropolitan area, you can try the big newspaper, but I would even go more local than that. Think community newspaper and trade blogs/periodicals. Get it some early success and watch it blossom.
SEO – Once could argue this is more important than social media. SEO lets you be found on the Internet. Think about that. You want someone to find you on the Internet, which has billions and billions of pages for them to choose besides yours. Don’t blame not being a web developer on having crummy SEO. There are numerous ways to enhance your visibility without extensive knowledge of what goes on behind the scenes of your website. You can click here to view a post I wrote about a few simple things you can do.
Creating a marketing plan is difficult, but there’s no need to set up for failure by not having a pragmatic attack. While social media is the flashy thing right now, don’t overlook everything else. Research, goals, PR and SEO are immensely important to being successful nowadays. They all help each other and build on one another.
“Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” – Abraham Lincoln