New Year’s Resolutions for Balanced Marketing Strategy

2016 marketing strategy new year's resolutions

Be more hummingbird? ... Or be more sloth!

What will it take to awaken the force in your business in 2016? A more aggressive approach to risk… or a more careful, conservative allocation of resources? Expanded ambitions and scope… or better focus on your core business activities?

In 2016 we're resolving to answer these kind of questions with "why not both!"

A little bit of both sides may help bring balance

  1. Do something risky.
    Do something that enhances security.
  2. Be more local.
    Be more global.
  3. Improve efficiency.
    Be more high-powered.
  4. Create more scientifically.
    Analyze more anecdotally.
  5. Be more hummingbird.
    Be more sloth.

That's it for the TL;DR crowd: have a happy new year - do or do not, there is no SWOT analysis.

photo of a sloth hanging on a branch among the leaves

Being "more sloth" in your business might mean taking more time to understand existing customers instead of only chasing new sales.

By way of explanation, here's what we are going to resolve for 2016, as well as advice for our clients on these headings:

1.

Do something risky.

  • KnowledgePower: we're going to start offering PPC training sessions to our clients. The "risk" is that businesses learn how to do everything themselves and don't need to pay an agency 😀
    What we actually hope is going to happen is that it enables businesses to work more smartly with their agencies and focus on their strengths, especially beefing up website content and interactivity.
  • Our clients: ask your staff for improvement ideas and commit to work on the top two or three for real. Asking "minions" for advice and actually acting on it, is one of the most risky-feeling things for business owners and managers. The potential rewards are great. Remind customer support to keep their list of suggestions to under five pages.

Do something that enhances security.

  • KnowledgePower: in 2016 we are going to get all of our clients' websites https-only.
  • Our clients: browbeat your team (at all levels) about better password security. If your systems require your customers to authenticate, look carefully at how you store this data and what happens if [when] it gets compromised.

2.

Be more local.

  • KnowledgePower: we're going to join up with some other digital agencies in Hampshire. Rather than focusing on what makes us competitors in the local area, we are going to study areas of common values and collaborate on a public manifesto for how to serve clients better.
  • Our clients: improve marketing reach in your local catchment areas first before committing to new geographic area launches/services. For example, if your PPC budget is maxed out for your core geographic areas, it means there is more reach to be gained here before starting up completely new campaigns.

Be more global.

  • KnowledgePower: plan to visit to a pay-per-click marketing conference in the US, firstly because a British accent will make us sound knowledgeable, and secondly to collect some cutting edge jargon to bring back.
  • Our clients: don't forget to look at what similar sector businesses overseas are doing for their marketing. For example if you are the pioneer brand introducing a new medical device to the UK market, the chances are there are already several companies who have already developed websites and content for it, in the USA.

3.

Improve energy efficiency.

  • KnowledgePower: new office policy that nobody can whine about the lack of heating unless they are already wearing an extra layer and getting up to move regularly.
  • Our clients: turn energy saving ideas into a regular competition in the office. It gets everyone thinking creatively, and there are sure to be lots of ideas for making your workplaces less wasteful.

Be more high-energy

  • KnowledgePower: as of 2016, all conference calls will be conducted standing up!
  • Our clients: set aside a fund to upgrade colleagues' PC hardware. Targeted expenditure to improve screens, keyboards and mice, chairs, and desks will all contribute to energy and productivity.

4.

Create more scientifically.

  • KnowledgePower: admittedly a lot of Display ad campaigns are developed with too much reliance on creative guesswork. Moving ahead we are going to add in steps in new campaigns to seek out statistics from comparable previous ads, to inform the design and targeting better.
  • Our clients: undertake to update or expand a certain number of your web pages each month (articles, forms, interfaces etc) based on what your Analytics tell you people are reading (and maybe what they are bouncing off).

Analyze more anecdotally.

  • KnowledgePower: one thing we've got to do more in the new year is pull out customer concerns from our clients' experience. Because we run marketing campaigns but rarely speak directly to these clients' customers, we need more anecdotal analysis such as what returning customers view as the main USP, and what questions prospects ask which aren't being addressed clearly enough.
  • Our clients: not all data has to be big! Look for places where you are already capturing the simple wants and needs of your customers... in their own words. This could be the infamous calls recorded "for quality and training purposes", or just customer enquiry emails… or even complaints. Even without going out to ask questions to your customers (which you should also be doing), you can find out a lot of interesting stories just from analyzing what you already have.

5.

Be more hummingbird.

  • KnowledgePower: too many interesting marketing and technology articles to read - not enough hours in the day! A new year's resolution to skim across a greater quantity of RSS feeds and pause only on the most relevant to our main business.... i.e. pay-per-click!
  • Our clients: look for the places where you are overly controlling about content. This could be in social media, blog article publishing, web page updating, press release writing, and more. Eliminate editorial and review steps and learn to let go: get more published and move faster! Of course this also means you have to find the right talent for content production: which should be a general marketing priority at all times!

Be more sloth.

  • KnowledgePower: we are inveterate tweakers of ad campaigns. It is easy to justify constant fiddling with targeting, bids, keywords, ad variants and so on… but a sensible 2016 improvement will be to set well-spaced review reminders per campaign, so that optimization work has enough data to go on, and not too many variables changing all at the same time.
  • Our clients: instead of only viewing marketing as being about bringing in prospective customers, widen your strategy to include spending time on your existing customers. A slower, patient, thoughtful approach to studying how your paying customers actually experience your products or services will give you a lot of good ideas for improving your business.

Thanks for reading and have a super 2016!!

KnowledgePower is a pay-per-click specialist digital marketing agency based in Hampshire, UK.

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