No doubt you started this year with some big ideas about what you wanted to accomplish. I know I did!
Maybe it was how many new clients you wanted to get, or how much money you wanted to make, or how many products you wanted to sell.
In the world of marketing, these “big ideas” are called goals and objectives. And, they are what dictate your every move, when it comes to marketing, that is.
If you don’t have a marketing plan or you aren’t familiar with the process, it goes something like this. You establish your vision (that’s where you sit down and picture in your mind what your business will look like in one year).
If you haven’t tried visioning, try it. It can be VERY powerful. When you work through the questions given in 99 Questions to Self you walk through a question-and-answer exercises every day to create your own vision for success.
I encourage you to write your vision down because it’s like a magnet, pulling you toward success. And, it’s great to review it periodically throughout the year to keep it fresh in your mind. (It reminds you WHY you’re working so hard!)
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Once you’ve created your vision, write down a few goals (specific things you want to achieve) that reflect your vision and write at least one, measurable objective. Measurable means you can easily measure whether you’ve achieved it or not, so think numbers when writing your objective.
For example, “I want 15 new clients by the end of the year.”
Once you have your goals and objective, you can create a plan to achieve them. This allows you to focus all your time, energy and money on achieving your goals, and to NOT get distracted by spending time or money on other activities. This is what I LOVE so much about having a plan. It absolutely keeps you on track to success!
So how do you guarantee your success?
By checking to see how you are progressing toward your goals and objectives AND by making adjustments as necessary. Yes, it really is that simple, but it does take some discipline.
June is a great month to do a “check-up.” You’re half-way through the year and you’ve given your marketing time to work.
So are you ready to give your business a 6-month “check-up?” so you can get back on the path to success (in case you’ve fallen off?!).
Take my 5-step Business Check-up and see how your business is doing.
(1) Update your tracking numbers
The best way to know if a marketing activity is working is to track response. I recommend keeping tabs on your tracking on a monthly basis. If you haven’t kept up, update your tracking now.
Create a simple spreadsheet to track the results for each marketing activity you’ve undertaken. For example, number of leads they have produced, or number of new clients or sales generated by each activity.
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(2) Evaluate how well each marketing activity is performing
Sit down and review your tracking report. Prioritize your marketing activities, putting the most effective ones at the top of your list and the least effective ones at the bottom.
If you’ve found activities that aren’t producing results, you may want to consider dropping those activities. Make a decision to spend more time, energy or money on the activities that are producing the best results. You may even want to try new activities to replace those you drop.
(3) Check your progress toward your vision and goals
Review your vision and goals. How close are you to achieving them? If you’re at least half-way there, that’s good news! You’re on track and you can probably continue doing what your doing to achieve them by years-end.
On the other hand, if you aren’t close to half-way yet, you’ll need to evaluate why and make any necessary changes to your marketing activities, how you’re spending your time, or other aspects of your business to help get back on track.
(4) Measure your progress toward your objective
If you said you wanted to get 15 new clients this year, how many do you have so far? If you have between 7 and 9, congratulations! You’re on track. And if you continue to do business and market as you have for the past 6 months, you’ll likely achieve your goal of 15.
If however, you only have 3 or 4 new clients so far, and you don’t have a bunch of prospects in the pipeline, it’s time to re-evaluate your marketing activities. Have you been consistently implementing your plan? Or have you fallen off track a bit? Answer honestly. It’s important to distinguish between marketing that isn’t working and marketing that just isn’t getting done.
Once you determine which is the case for you, you’ll be in better position to make decisions about what you need to do to get back on track toward achieving your objective.
(5) Adjust your marketing accordingly
Once you’ve evaluated your current situation, you’ll need to make some decisions about how to move forward. If you’re on track, then keep on doing what you’re doing.
If you’ve determined that several of your marketing activities simply aren’t generating the results you had hoped for, then consider revising or dropping them from your plan, and trying something new.
If you’ve simply discovered that you haven’t stuck to your marketing plan on a consistent basis, re-commit right now to stay on track.
The good news is, you’ve still got 6 months to achieve the success you set out to achieve. Make changes NOW to guarantee your success at the end of the year. It’s in your power to achieve!