There is a time of year when it is critical to make key decisions about your marketing plan. Now is the time! Every January offers us a critical time to evaluate the past year’s marketing effectiveness. Even if your business year-end doesn’t coincide with the “New Year” it still offers many opportunities for you to improve your marketing efforts.
The “New Year” offers a psychological reboot to the mind of the consumer. There are predictable trends that happen throughout the year, but a collective thought in January is to get into shape. This also applies to businesses: retail is clearing out inventory, tourism is preparing for the next season and manufacturing is constantly preparing for the next seasonal industry purchase.
No matter what state your business is in, start-up or existing, it is important to reflect on the marketing decisions of the past year, compare them to the actual earnings achieved and evaluate the effectiveness of each strategy. This will also help you to be better prepared for the up and coming year and you can improve your Marketing Plan so it will better serve your business.
Too many times when businesses are looking for ways to improve their bottom line, they panic and fret and react to marketing decisions based on pressured or hurried tactics. Many of these businesses do not have a controlled Marketing Plan. By not having control over your marketing or a system to keep it organized a business will end up wasting a lot of time and money.
People are constantly faced with different tools and methods to market their business and at this crossroads there are more choices than ever.
In the past five years there has been a steady increase and change in the opportunities available online. There are now specialists that preach the domination of this media as the new coming messiah of marketing. It is true that there are many new benefits and opportunities with the development of technology but these new systems are only effective when balanced with traditional marketing.
A wise man once said “The more means there are to communicate the more communication needs to have meaning.” –Anonymous
Online technology is growing faster than any other marketing tool and people are finding it hard to keep up. Business owners and marketing managers are constantly being introduced to and “sold” on the latest trend. This is causing a backlog of confusion and fear. People are feeling slightly overwhelmed by the opportunities now available to them and some find that proceeding down a new path can be intimidating and difficult.
The new marketing opportunities available to us and the beginning of the year make this marketing crossroads more important than ever.
To get started, do it yourself, and have an area, department, individual or time allotted each day to review and plan for your marketing future. Some people are naturals at this but they miss out on organizational details such as keeping good notes, having a logical plan that follows a natural flow and focusing on your purpose and goals for each activity.
Some businesses find that they do not have enough time to plan strategically and usually make reactionary marketing decisions that are not cost effective. If you are having time troubles this is a good opportunity to sit down with a professional to get expert advice on the best uses of your marketing time and budget. The key is to find a Marketing Consultant who has a firm grasp of traditional marketing but is also versed in the benefits of new opportunities/technology. In the marketing toolbox there are so many opportunities that it is important to focus and find the best methods for your business, taking into account the distinct characteristics of each industry.
This January is a crucial crossroads for marketing and no matter what marketing you do, you should have a plan. Take the time this month to get organized and gain control of your marketing efforts. The most successful businesses have a very clear plan that balances what they will implement and what type of returns they will receive from their investment.
Chris Holland is a communications speciality with a diverse work history and grounded understanding of the needs of business, residing in Nelson BC he works with his Juggernaut Marketing Communications providing help to business throughout North America. For more information or some much needed help he can be reached at 250.505.5016, firstname.lastname@example.org or check out www.JuggernautMC.com