With the holidays behind us and New Year’s resolutions fresh on our minds, now is the time to really take a look at your marketing goals for 2015. If you haven’t sat down with pen and paper yet, don’t worry. There’s still time to put a plan into action.
In this post, we’re going to unveil three key components for a successful marketing plan to help set you on the right path. Developing your marketing strategy for the coming year may seem like a daunting task, but with these essential components, you’ll start the year off right.
What can a strategic marketing plan do for your business?
We’re guessing that if you’ve found this blog post—and are still reading—you likely already know a thing or two about marketing plans, but you’d like to get a few pieces of advice to take your plan to the next level. As such, you probably already understand the many benefits that come from mapping out your marketing goals and processes for the year.
It’s important that you understand, however, that a successful marketing plan includes everything from understanding your target market and your competitive position in that market, to how you intend on reaching those folks and your plan for differentiating yourself from the competition. For many small businesses, this includes drawing up your marketing budget and laying the foundation for the types of marketing projects you want to take on in the coming year.
When properly formulated, your marketing plan can be your road map to success—keeping you focused on your goals throughout the year.
With that being said, here are three things that every marketing plan needs:
A Clear Message
A clear message is the key to all marketing communications, and your brand should be at the heart of the message. Throughout the year, you’ll likely have a variety of messages to deliver, but you should always strive for a common theme.
Writing down the main message you’d like to convey is perhaps one of the most important steps to the marketing plan. As you develop this message, be sure that it supports your brand identity and your position in the market.
Are you an expert in a particular neighborhood? Maybe your clear message focuses on your ability to provide exceptional service and unparalleled knowledge of that market to buyers and sellers.
Do you have a knack for negotiation? Perhaps your clear message lets potential buyers know there is no better agent in the market to help you get the best deal on your next home.
A Consistent Message
Consistency goes hand-in-hand with a clear message. After all, how can your message be clear if you’re being inconsistent with your delivery? Having a consistent message across all marketing channels should be a priority for any business.
There are many benefits to a consistent message. A consistent message, for example, offers clarity through repetition. Ultimately, if the keywords are repeated enough, you will become associated with your desired message.
Consistency builds attraction, clarity, and loyalty. But how do you keep the message consistent? Hopefully, in the step above, you’ve decided what your message is going to be. Once you’ve done that, stick with it! If you have multiple people that will be communicating your message, be sure that you’re all on the same page and that the messages being conveyed are the same. Reference your marketing plan throughout the year to ensure you’re on track.
A Relationship with the Audience
When you take the time to establish a clear and consistent message for your marketing plan, the next key component is building rapport with your target audience. We talked about this before in our recent blog post, How to Earn Trust and Build Rapport with Your Clients in 2015.
Having a good relationship with your target audience allows you to not only build trust, but to open the door to repeat and referral business.
When you sit down to make your marketing plan for the new year, be sure to include specific opportunities to reach out and build relationships with your clients. And they don’t have to be hard sells either. Sending out a neighborhood newsletter with information about recent home sales and upcoming community events establishes you as a market expert, but doesn’t scream, “Buy a house with me!”
An effective marketing plan balances a clear and consistent message with strategic opportunities to build relationships with your audience.
At American Lifestyle magazine, we take great pride in being a key component in many of our clients’ marketing strategies. Filled with exciting content and personally branded to deliver a consistent experience to your clients, our magazine is a great way to stay top-of-mind and to build valuable relationships.
Want to learn more about integrating American Lifestyle magazine into your 2015 marketing plan? Take a tour of the magazine today, and connect with our team to learn more. We look forward to hearing from you soon and to helping you make a statement with your marketing in the coming year.