A strategy, a plan, and success for 2015

Smart Marketing with Tish Pierce

Smart Marketing with Tish Pierce

It’s that time of year. The leaves are falling and Santa’s visit is just around the corner. Before getting caught up in the rush of the seasons, take a moment to evaluate your annual marketing. Looking back at the past year to assess the successes and failures. Then look ahead to the upcoming year. Set your marketing budget with knowledge and foresight.

If the political pundits are correct, we may be in for an economically tight upcoming year. With resulting tightened budgets, it’s more important than ever to be smart with your advertising dollar. Only by careful analysis can you maximize your ROI for 2015.

What worked? Don’t forget ROI means Return On Investment. All too often, businesses look at response and fail to see success. For example, say your company spends six hundred dollars mailing out 2000 postcards. Out of the postcards sent, there are 5 responses. Those 5 responses result in immediate sales of $4000. That is your immediate return. But don’t forget the future sales those five new customers may develop. Bottom line, one more customer is one more reason your business will succeed.

What didn’t work? Sometimes business owners get caught up in participating in marketing that leads to a complete dead end. Every business owner has experienced the pain of paying good money only to never receive any return. While some marketing experts say that getting your name in front of the customer is the goal, the better goal is to see that effort result in money in the bank. If your company spent money marketing your business and saw no result, it’s time to walk away from that channel. There are too many economical methods of marketing your business to waste valuable money on non-returning investments. Weed out all the unsuccessful efforts and strengthen those that worked.

Plan for success in 2015. You know what worked, you know what didn’t work. Now’s the time to put that knowledge to work with an action plan for the upcoming year. Once that plan is made, stick to it. That plan should be at the top of your mind every minute of the new year. There’s one Fortune 500 company that begins each internal business meeting with a review of their marketing plan. THEN at the end of the meeting they re-review the marketing plan. And not because their employees have short term memory problems.

When you have a well thought out action plan, everything else that your business does should fall into place around that plan. Some companies even refer to their marketing plan as a “results goal”. Thinking of painting the front door of your business? Review your plan. Want to give employees an extra day off? Review your plan. Every aspect of your business action should revolve around your marketing plan.

However, no plan is set in stone. Unlike the days when my Dad said “be home at 9:00” meant absolutely, positively 9:00, your marketing plan should be flexible. If you run across a great opportunity to market your company, and it’s not on the plan, then it’s time to review that plan. Being aware of what’s going on and adjusting accordingly is the hallmark of success.

Look back, look forward, make a plan, make that plan your mantra.

Tish Pierce, Pierce Creative Marketing Service (www.piercecms.com) Member of the Livingston Parish Chamber since 2006. Tish can be reached at 225-284-8231 or email info@piercecms.com.