What Questions to ask when Creating a Marketing Strategy
It’s that time of year again and a new Marketing Strategy has to be completed to enable budgets and forecasts to be prepared.
What are the questions when preparing a new Marketing Strategy?
It’s always important to go back and have look at how the last Marketing Strategy went – successes and failures. The most important is for the last year but given the drama of 2020, it would be wise to look at previous 5 years to get a picture of what might happen in 2021.
Next look at the goals for the next year. Increase in sales, of course. But will there be a revamp of products – will there be new products, will older products be discarded. What about ROI. What about extending reach of your client base or are marketing channels to be revised.
Once these have decided at a general top level, the detail can be examined. Looking at the detail may lead to a change in goals.
What are the new products that are coming down the line. Do you need more new products. What new products can be developed in the coming year? Are there new vertical products that would support you’re existing base.
What products need to be retired? What are no long making a positive ROI. But be careful to ensure that a losing product is not actually support another winning product. Sometimes it is just better to modify a low or negative ROI, because it brings in customers that then are up sold to another product.
What current successful products need to be refreshed to ensure they continue with their positive ROIs.
4. Know Your Customers
Get full pictures of your exemplar customer. Know what are your exemplar likes and dislikes, how they like their stories told, where they hangout in social media, what shapes their buying decisions.
What types of experiences are you providing your clients. Do they want to keep coming back. What are your costs of obtaining customers from different marketing channels and what additional products do they acquire at what cost.
5. Marketing Channels
For the next year, where are you going to focus your limited budget (it’s always limited no matter how much your budget).
Are you going to extend your channels include more social media or reduce them. Are you going to change the type of influencers you use. Are you going to change to micro-influencers or try different influencers.
Are you going to change your approach in print, video, streaming, TV, email. Where will the advertising funds be focused.
Have a look at your competition. Identify the changes in their trends and where they are likely to head in the coming year. Where are their weaknesses that you can take advantage of and what strengths of your competition can you learn from.
7. A/B Preliminary Test
As part of creating your next marketing plan, do a small about of prototype testing on some way-out and eccentric ideas. They may lead you to a new approach.
You then need to get your plan together and identify what, when and where you want to do things.
And, last of all, when you have the basic strategy put together your budget for the strategy. This will, of course, lead to some changes in the strategy when full costing is done.
Now the long process of refining the plan starts with showing stakeholders the strategy and absorbing their changes. And, of course, when the budget round finally finishes and you know how big is your portion, the process of modifying the strategy to meet the funds available begins. Then its the final approval by all.