Average businesses have wishes and hopes. Confident, successful businesses have goals and a plan.
I was speaking to a large group of business owners and marketers recently on ways to get traffic, leads and sales with social marketing. One of my first tips talks about planning and goal setting. When I went around the room asking who had a marketing plan in place right now, shockingly, only a handful of the attendees raised their hands.
The lack of a marketing plan and clear goals is like getting in your car to drive to somewhere you’ve never been and not using navigation. Sure, you might get to your destination at some point if you drive around long enough. But without a solid plan to guide you, how will you know for sure when or if you’ve made it to the right place? After all, without a plan, how do you know what social marketing success actually looks like for your business?
In today’s climate, I’m certain this misconception is why many businesses fail at social marketing (and all other marketing too). Why not leverage the processes and the tools available to ensure your success?
There’s never enough time (and money) to do it right but always enough time (and money) to do it over.
After my workshop, a friend said, “You should’ve called more of them out for not having a plan.” He was right. For as important as this is, I let them off easy. While it’s not in my nature to scold, it is in my nature to let people know when they’re destined to fail.
First Punch – A Social Marketing Plan
Ask yourself if what you’re doing today is getting closer to where you want to be tomorrow.
Marketing plans are not easy to construct and I’m guessing that’s a reason you don’t have one. We create marketing plans here at Kruse Control and I have to admit, sometimes it’s painful for our clients. Answering in-depth questions about your business can be uncomfortable but the hard work is so worth it.
Here are the components of a social marketing plan we created recently:
- Core marketing strategy and priorities
- Ideal client persona descriptions
- Value proposition and core message statement
- Competitive overview assessment
- Marketing Hourglass (Customer Journey)
- Content strategy plan
- Facebook Ads strategy plan
- Research and strategic development
- Organizational development – operational change structure, planning and strategy
- KPIs – Key Performance Indicators
- Process development
These components and the details are just an example of what you’ll need to encompass within your business’ marketing plan. Every marketing plan we create and implement is unique and exclusive to each client.
Second Punch – Clear Goals and Objectives
Setting goals is the first step to turning the invisible into the visible.
Once you have a marketing plan in place and all the players have their play books, your one-two punch will be complete with clear, defined goals. Goal setting should be a contact sport – all managers should be part of the process.
Here are some examples of the goals we would include in your process:
- Grow page likes and followers (how many and by what date?)
- Consistent, fresh content on Blog (create content strategy and calendar; publish twice or more each week)
- Increase reach & engagement (how much each week or month, depending on ads budget)
- Drive traffic to your website (design, schedule and launch marketing campaigns)
- Convert fans into customers (determine ads budget, track conversions, establish ROI)
- Improve Online Reviews (define the process you’ll use to capture happy, loyal customer feedback)
A goal without a plan is just a wish.
Social marketing should be at the top of every business marketers To-Do list. Social media is not in a silo (as many seem to think it is). Its tenets are entrenched in all the forms of online marketing now but that doesn’t seem to sway those naysayers unfamiliar with social’s benefits. Make no mistake: SEO, content marketing, online reputation and authority, PR, even advertising are all intertwined with social media.
It’s simple: if you want to grow your business and you don’t want to fail at social marketing, please take these essential two steps. A social marketing plan and clear goals will deliver the knock-out to your competitor and a crowd of roaring fans wanting more.