A few of our customers have now asked us about how to set up specific, actionable goals for taking their marketing strategy to the next level. Being of the generous holiday spirit, we decided to deliver, by giving you a 10-step, kick-ass, finally-do-something-about-putting-your-company-out-there kind of post. The rules are simple: do these and you will meet your customers like you never have before.
1. Brand Voice
Before you do any actual communication with your potential customers, you have to decide what your product brand is all about, and what voice you want to adopt to communicate this brand to the customer. Brainstorm and get some ideas on paper. Do you want to be fun or serious? “Fun” morticians usually don’t go over well, and neither do angry clowns.
2. Identify your value
To communicate effectively, you have to figure out how your business provides customers with value. Presumably, you are not the only business in your niche, and you will have competition. What makes your product/service unique? Why should the customers choose your business over your competitors? How are you going to communicate this?
3. Competitor Research
Although you want to be unique and stand out from the competition, studying your rivals can prove incredibly beneficial when starting out in the marketing game. How do your competitors communicate with their customers? What do they do successfully (which you can copy), and what could be done better (by you)?
4. Set up / Rework Your Website
Once you figure out these basics, it’s time to develop or update your website. If you think the quality of your website doesn’t matter, repeat after us: Your website is your home base and the place every social media link ultimately leads to. A quality website projects quality, reliability, and vision.
5. Identify Which Social Media Channels to Use and Why
The social media channels you choose will be determined by the type of business you have. Sites like Facebook are staples for pretty much every company, but from there, you pick your own path. If your business has a visual aspect, we at Little Jack are big fans of using Pinterest. If your business is dynamic enough for multiple updates a day, you better get a Twitter.
6. Set up social media accounts
Now that you’ve decided which social media sites you want to use, you have to set aside a few hours and set up all the accounts. This is a one-time task, so make things look nice and personalized. Once you’ve done this, you won’t have to worry too much about set up and you can focus on posting content.
7. Optimize Social Media Channel Integration for Ease of Use
Also a boring, one-time, setup sort of task (unless you’re a tech geek like us). Linking everything together enables blog posts to show up on Facebook, Facebook updates to also cross-post on Twitter, and customers to comment on your blog via their Facebook, thereby sharing your content with all their friends. One action counts for three — there’s no excuse not to do this.
8. Post Regularly and Hold Yourself Accountable
This step is the most straightforward, and also the hardest to follow. Once the excitement of setting all this fancy stuff wears off, you’ll have to stick to a schedule and post on a regular basis. Even when you’re busy. Even when you don’t feel like it. The easiest way is to get an outside person (or your marketing company) to hold you accountable.
9. Track Your Metrics to See What Works and What Doesn’t
Now that you’re putting out all this sweet new content, be mindful of which of your posts garner attention, and which go unnoticed. There are various ways to measure these things, from Google Analytics for your website to counting how many comments you get on a particular post.
10. Rework Your Strategy Based on the Metrics (and start again at Step 1)
This one’s simple: Do more of the stuff that works, do less of the stuff that doesn’t. The results might surprise you. If customers are particularly receptive to a certain type of content, you might have to rethink your brand and go in that direction. So you start again at Step 1. And you thought you were done, huh? Such is the entrepreneurial life. Love it.