What do you want? Why do you want it? How will you get it? The chances are, you know the answer to the first two questions, but the third may be more elusive… In this article we’ll look at seven steps to establishing a marketing plan that will generate what you want. This is the ‘how’.

1 – Outline your vision and objective

Get your main objective clear and concise so it can be easily shared. When you speak to your team, your network, customers, supply chain or friends and family, if you can clearly state your vision and objective, then it will be more clearly understood by those who can help you achieve it.

2 – Set some secondary goals

This is essential to any plan – you have to know what you’re aiming for. So, the end goal is already set, but there will be smaller steps along the way. These secondary goals may look like increasing referral partners, growing your team, expanding your product line or something else.

Then we’ll consider what you can do to bring you closer to your secondary goals.

3 – Get tactical – How will you deliver?

Detail specific actions to be accomplished in the current timeframe. This could be a year, half a year, 3 monthly or it could be a month, weekly or even daily, whatever works for your business.

Think about who, will do what, by when. Which platforms will they use, how often will they use them? What is already working? For example, downloadables from the website, event attendance, PR etc… Can these be added to or extended somehow?

4 – What resources do you have?

Digital, face to face, a team of staff, just you, networking groups, telesales experience, copywriting or social media skills. The first step to carrying out those tactics is having a concise inventory of what resources are available to you.

Are you happy networking, or would you rather send one of your team out to do it? Can you maximise on that and go out as well? Use what you know best and are most comfortable with in the first instance. We’ll come to challenging yourself later.

5 – Make time for marketing

Plan time to take the actions that will generate the highest pay-off. Maximise your available time by using effective diary management and stick to your need-to-do list, rather than getting hijacked by firefighting. Are there regular or mundane tasks that can be automated, delegated or outsourced?

Time management is the focus for improvement in my article, ‘Poor time management leads to poor business performance’.

6 – Challenge yourself

Outside of the comfort zone is where we grow! Challenge your comfort zone and the limiting beliefs you hold. In other words, try not to say, ‘I don’t enjoy that’, ‘I can’t do that’, or ‘it can’t be done’, and try replacing with ‘I’d enjoy this instead’, ‘I could do that if/with’, ‘if it can’t be done, what else is there?’

7 – Celebrate achievements

Creating positivity around successes make you more likely to repeat them. Take the time to recognise and celebrate the achievements of yourself and others in your business, then tick it off the list and move on to the next goal! I have a one-page planning tool that will help you in many areas of your business, but especially with marketing. Download yours here (no catch!) And as ever, if I can help with any points in this article, or something else along your business growth journey, please do get in touch. I’m available for 1:1 networking chats so we can get to know one another better, and offer free business mentoring time slots.

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