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Reviewing Your One Page Marketing Plan For 2016

Image of a marketing planIn an earlier article, I introduced you to the simplicity of the ‘one page marketing plan‘. This can be a highly effective marketing tool, providing much needed clarity when it is so easy to be lost with the numerous marketing platforms you are expected to utilize in your business today.

Of course, one of the biggest challenges facing business owners and their teams is time management. With streamlined teams, there is so much focus on meeting customer service levels, or various other deadlines, that it is easy to lose track of your performance.

What the smart business owner knows…

It is important to take stock of your historical activity and learn the lessons from the results you achieved, good or bad. Yes, you need to continue working on the latest revenue streams and activities that are required, however without analyzing your past results, you could be missing vital data that will impact future results.

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The smart business owner is constantly evaluating data to understand and plan for success. They do not accept a failure in one area of the business will lead to future failures. All this means is that one element did not work as expected. It then becomes an opportunity to learn. So a smart business owner will review their marketing plan and ask the right questions such as…

  • Why didn’t that campaign work?
  • What assumptions were made that have subsequently been proven to be incorrect?
  • What was happening in the market at that time that nobody could predict or we as a business did not appreciate would have a bigger impact?
  • What has changed since then and how has this impacted on the business?
  • How has the business responded to this?
  • What do we need to do now to secure our place in the next quarter/half year?
  • What changes need to be made for the next three months based on the knowledge we now have?
  • Should we re-write our marketing plan because so much has changed or continue with the existing plan?

Consequently, a review should also be undertaken if you have achieved great results. Perhaps these results change a lot and therefore you cannot simply run out the next quarters marketing in its anticipated form. Perhaps there needs to be a repeat of the first quarter because it was so successful?

Whenever you are marketing your business, you will always obtain results. These may be good, bad or indifferent.  No matter what, it is important to learn from these results. You can only do this by undertaking a review and asking as many questions as possible based on what you now know compared to what you forecast.

Hindsight can sometimes be a wonderful teacher. Knowing what happened allows you to retrace your steps and understand if there were signs, good and bad that you failed to see. Or was it they were there but you decided to go with your gut instinct, for better or for worse? A review also allows you the luxury of taking a broader approach as there are clues in the results you achieved. Use this data well and you will grow as a business.

Summary

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of reviewing past performance is that the results allow you to understand where you may be missing expertise. It could be that your marketing to attract new business was very good, but marketing to existing customers simply didn’t work. This may tell you that more needs to be done to retain the customers you have which is invaluable. Perhaps there is a requirement to establish focus groups to help you understand what’s happening with existing customers?

Whatever the data you uncover, ACT on it! Adjust your marketing based on what you now know and this will help you achieve better results in 2016 and beyond.

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