Your Marketing Plan
A few things, actually – there are certainly common areas of strength and weakness that you see across small businesses as a rule, but today we’re going to focus on marketing.
Yes, marketing. Small business owners tend to spill a lot of gastric juice over marketing, because it’s usually expensive, sometimes the results aren’t apparent for awhile, and frankly, many business owners just don’t know what is good marketing, or if they can recognize good marketing, they can’t figure out what is good marketing for their particular business and the particular kind of customer they want to attract.
Further, when a small business owner is lucky enough, or knowledgeable enough, to land on an effective marketing tactic, they tend to not go any further than that. Because, as mentioned before, marketing is expensive, and it’s frustrating to try to develop different marketing tactics. Even if the other tactics might be more efficient, once the small business owner finds something that works (or mostly works), they stop right there and go on to something else. Like trying to figure out what the weird noise is that’s coming from the ice machine, or why all their clients seem to have waited 150 days before they paid their invoices in the first part of the year.
But, let’s say that you have figured out some combination of things that seem to be working in terms of account/customer acquisition and bringing regular customers back for more. What’s the plan?
What is the plan? We’re boosters of the SBA as a source of information for small business owners, and there’s a very nice piece on the SBA blog that deals with this issue. In the piece, the author talks about the need for market research, developing a market plan, measuring results, etc.
It’s not comprehensive, but rather, a primer from which you can get started in developing a marketing plan. We do much the same thing for our clients that want a marketing plan from our business consultants.
And once, you get started, you just have to have to have the discipline to keep going, to check all the boxes every week and every month in terms of the marketing activities you determined were best for your small business.