Putting 2018 in the Books and Setting the Foundation for Your 2019 Marketing Strategy

Fact: 93% of marketing leaders are under pressure to deliver measurable marketing ROI.  So, given that 2018 is almost over, it’s likely that you’re facing some tough questions.  With less than two months left, it’s time to evaluate where you stand vs your 2018 goals and determine how you can finish strong. Of course, the next step is to set a plan to set your organization up for success in 2019.

Strategy without Action is a Dream. Action without Strategy is a Nightmare
— Japanese Proverb

Review your 2018 Goals and Determine Your 2019 Plan

November & December are ideal to review the previous year’s results and look forward. Here are a few questions to ask as you finish 2018 strong with an eye towards building a good foundation for 2019:

  1. How did 2018 results compare vs your original goals?

    Where did you meet or exceed your goals? Where did you fall short?

  2. Where could Marketing provide the most overall business impact?

    Marketing leaders at small and big companies don’t live in a silo.  Reviewing the overall goals for the company, and consider where Marketing can make an impact. If it’s a goal to generate new business, how can Marketing align with sales to create an effective lead generation strategy?  If a company goal is to recruit and hire new talent, how can Marketing work with HR to create interest in the company and open positions? If its to increase innovation, how well is marketing providing data and insight to market and customer trends? The more closely aligned Marketing is to overall business goals, the more valuable your department becomes.

  3. What were the root causes of your successes or shortcomings?

    This provides an excellent opportunity to evaluate and update marketing tactics. What drove the most engagement with your audience(s)? What tactics missed the mark?  (Website analytics, Paid search, email marketing, social media; or was it offline activity such as Trade Shows or Direct mail?) Taking a hard look at what tactics you implored to reach your audience and measure it up against the goals you laid out for the year.

  4. Which audiences/segments engaged with you the best?  Least?

    Can you break down your success or failure to a specific segment?  Industry? Demographic? Location?

    Determining who within your target audience will convert most helps shape not only your targeting but also your overall positioning and marketing efforts

  5. Are you using data to the best of your ability to gain audience insights and accurate reports?  

    It’s no secret that Marketing has difficulty presenting the value it creates, but now more than ever, a deep dive into your analytics (online and offline) can paint a full picture of how you engaged your target customers and how interested your audience was in you, your content, ads, etc.

Get Outside Perspective As You Prepare for 2019

As you’re going through your 2018 plans, sometimes an outside, unbiased view helps tremendously.  &Marketing can provide an Initial Marketing Analysis that will:

  • Evaluate your current SEO presence: For the key terms that you believe are most important to your business, where do you rank?  Do you only rank high for your own company name and a couple of key executives? This data provides a baseline view of how the digital world sees your company.

  • Evaluate your website and social media:  

    • Your website is your digital business card. How well is your website communicating your company’s message?  Provide valuable information to help buyers choose you? Or is it full of dated information and broken links?

    • Your social media presence.  Do your key platforms communicate your message?  Are they regularly updated? Do they link back to your website?

  • Identify key opportunities: What are some ‘low hanging fruit’ that you can easily execute?  What are some longer-term options?

To get started, we’ll spend 20-30 minutes to understand your business, and within about 1 week, we’ll provide an unbiased analysis that reviews your website, your social media, and your competition.  No strings attached, no commitments! For more information, click below.