Is your marketing evolving? Are you allowing it to grow and develop and become more useful to you?
While fiddling with the nuts and bolts of JupiterJasper's new site, I was reminded of the importance of recognising that the marketing of your business is an evolving process. What you were proud of last year seems outdated this year, and even successful marketing campaigns can run their course. You may still be trying to find the right mix of what marketing is going to work for you.
If you are embarking on new marketing for your business, these 5 questions may help you to get it as right as possible, for now.
1. Are you bored? Are you changing your marketing simply because you are bored? This classic error has uprooted many a successful marketing campaign (and helped to create so many bits of marketing that don't look alike). Don't let your boredom be the reason to seek new ideas. Ditch the old marketing if you can prove that it's performance is not as good as a new bit of marketing you are testing against it, or there is a more fundamental reason - you are creating a clearer message, to the right target audience, or you have specific offer time or seasonal message.
2. Did you measure? Amazingly, you can never know how well your marketing has done if you don't know what things were like before you began the marketing, how they changed over time, and what they are today. You can't say the marketing wasn't performing if you don't know what the performance was. Assumptions are never that good really - often a bit of measuring can quickly clear up myths of number of enquires versus how many actually became business.
3. Will this speak to your target audience better? And get them to do, act, think or feel something as a result of seeing your marketing? If you are creating marketing that suits what you think it should be doing (or what a friend or brother thinks you should do), rather than what your target audience wants and needs, then you need to take a second look. Unless, of course, it is going to be you who is buying what you are selling.
4. Who will see your marketing? If you don't know who is going to be addressed by your marketing, there really isn't much point in spending your money. Understand how many people you are likely to reach, how many are likely to be a good customer for you. In the case of email marketing, how you have acquired the email address should be informing the kind of marketing you do - keeping it relevant for the recipient.
5. Does this marketing have a specific aim in mind? Don't do marketing for the sake of marketing. OK. I should rephrase that. If you like holding money out to the wind to see if it will blow back to you, then by all means, market away without an objective. Set expectations for what you are doing and measure whether it holds up to them. Base your judgements on how many of the target audience for the marketing are your ideal customers.
Learn as you go along and apply your learning. Test your assumptions and when something works, look for something that could work better. Don't allow things that simply aren't doing the job to continue.
Bronwyn Durand writes the Marketing Ideaology blog for JupiterJasper, an on-demand marketer service for small businesses.