4 Facts You Must Know Before Creating Your 2018 Marketing Plan

4 Facts You Must Know Before Creating Your 2018 Marketing Plan
December 28, 2017 focusdigitalgh

As 2017 slowly comes to an end, businesses and marketers alike are preparing for what awaits them in 2018. Like every year, 2017 taught us many important things. The marketing statistics of 2017 brought many new insights that can give directions for creating successful future marketing campaigns. Today we will talk about the four marketing statistics that we found most relevant (the folks at CoSchedule did a great job here) and what they can teach us about optimal marketing strategies for 2018.

With insightful statistics, we were able to draw concise conclusions and give you a real image of how marketing needs to be done. If you take advantage of these statistics, you will be able to stay ahead of your competition and get better results.

1. Documenting Your Marketing Strategy Brings More Success

Statistics show that documenting your strategies gives you a 538 percent greater chance of being successful in your efforts. A report from Content Marketing Institute revealed that the majority of B2B marketers rely on content marketing strategies for their results—89 percent, to be exact.

However, only 37 percent of them document their strategies. The main reason you need to document your marketing strategy is to provide visibility to everyone. When your team understands how and why your campaign is coming together, they’ll find it easier to communicate and collaborate.

This aligns all the personnel and components of a campaign, helps get the buy-in of senior members, and makes the collective stronger overall. Determining your strategy, putting it to paper, and reviewing it will help you stay on top of your company’s goals. This documentation can evolve and change over time to adjust to your needs.

2. Audience Research Is at the Core of Marketing Strategies

Successful marketers are 242 percent more likely to conduct frequent audience research. Additionally, 56 percent of professional and experienced marketers say that they perform audience research at least once per month. Good content will attract an audience—that’s why everyone uses it—but you don’t need just any audience. You need the right one.

Only the right target audience will connect with your brand through your content and make a purchase because of it. To understand your target audience, you will have to answer these four questions:

  1. Who are your customers?
  2. Who are you competing with?
  3. What do you offer that your competition doesn’t?
  4. What solutions do your services or products bring?

Once you know the answers to these questions, you’ll understand who will engage with your content, why it will matter, why people should choose you amongst everyone else, what are your competitors are doing, and how to beat them. A lot of marketers create their content focusing on only one aspect of their target audience, but you need to combine all of them to get a clear picture.

3. Clear Goals Improve Chances of Success

Marketers who set goals have a 429 percent greater chance of reporting successful campaigns, and 81 percent achieve their goals. Setting clear goals is one of the most difficult tasks for marketers, but this work pays off.

The first step is to make a goal summary. This isn’t as easy as it sounds—you need to be realistic with your resources, time, and create a specific goal. Don’t think about a wide range of results and achievements. Focus on one thing—for example, generating a certain number of leads per month.

The next step is to break down your goal and determine what you will need to achieve it. For example, if you want to generate more leads, then one of the categories for this goal would be to drive more website visitors. Then focus on the important metrics that can help you measure each category, and write them down.

The next step is to set a deadline for achieving your goals. Be realistic, and don’t get ahead of yourself. Make sure you consider your resources and how many people can work toward your goals. Consider potential obstacles, the steps you need to take in the event you encounter these blockers, and how much time you will need to surpass them.

4. Process Documentation Improves Marketing Success

Marketers that document marketing processes have 466 percent higher chance of reporting successful campaigns. Similarly to documenting your strategy, it is also very important to document your workflow or processes. This improves your execution and structuralizes your processes.

Get your whole team together, and talk about all of your workflow stages. Create your content development process, and if possible, make a visual presentation to make it more understandable. No matter if you do this on a piece of paper or with some tool, it will give your team an important reference to rely on whenever they need help.

Prioritization

Process documentation includes scheduling prioritized projects. This ensures all the content you work on is of the greatest importance to your current initiatives and strategic goals. Choose a person to manage your priorities, such as a managing editor or a content marketing manager.

Determine at which point you’ll communicate your priorities with stakeholders and others in the organization. Additionally, make sure to create a calendar for your workflow and determine the methods for when, how, and who will add priority content to the calendar.

Storing

One of the essentials of workflow documentation is organizing your content, which means storing it in one place where everyone can use it. This lends your workflow transparency and ensures there are no mistakes.

Create a structure of folders and name all of them appropriately. This how everyone involved will know what to do with the content, where it goes, who has made changes, and when and where it’s ready for publishing.

Publishing

It’s important to document how you will publish the content and share it with your target audience. This includes determining all of the channels you plan on using, such as social media, email, blogs, and so on. Include all of the options you will be using and what type of content goes where.

Appoint people to distribute content, and make sure they know all the types of content that you create, their purpose, and all of the marketing channels you use to distribute that content.

With these four important insights and courses of action, you can ensure that marketing plan will be effective and well-organized in 2018. Rely on these things, and harness all of the benefits from the statistics that taught us so much in 2017.

 

Writer: Anja Skrba

Credit: convinceandconvert.com

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