I recently finished reading a 2-part blog post by Mary Planding, owner of Inbound Marketing Squad (@inboundsquad) and my editor for this blog. I think you'll find the articles useful as you try to determine which marketing strategies you should implement in your business.
Her first article declares that marketing strategies are a dime a dozen—finding lots of choices isn't hard. But picking the right strategy for your business can be very difficult. Mary's point of view is that a marketing strategy should help you filter out the thousands of distracting (yet enticing) ideas that can keep you from reaching your goal. And she uses a really cool analogy about racing in the America's Cup to explain marketing strategies and making choices. It's a great analogy because in both situations - your marketing and the America's Cup racers - there are limited resources and unpredictable conditions that make it hard to 'cross the finish line'.
Here are some excerpts:
• The world will always be filled with endless possibilities. But in the end, you want to focus on the most effective marketing strategies that help you achieve your desired goal.
• Sometimes Mother Nature can surprise you and then you're scrambling to improvise, drawing upon your experience, knowledge, the conditions and your resources to help you win the race.
• Whenever you try to sail directly into the wind, you're not only dead in the water, you can even be pushed backwards.
• Regardless of which leg of the course you're on, the more often you tack, the more time and distance you have to make up. And you can't change that dynamic. Physics, after all, is physics.
In her second article, which I found even more useful, Mary and her guest experts, share 5 tips for how to sort through and then choose the marketing strategies that are right for your business.
Here are some highlights:
• Understanding why you're marketing is the key to defining a successful path to your goals. (Jeff Mason, Hero Design Studio)
• You can't pick a strategy if you aren't specific about what the strategy is supposed to help you achieve. (Mary Planding, Inbound Marketing Squad)
• You want to pick a marketing strategy that allows you to acquire new customers and still remain profitable. (Dan Swanson, Exit Rich)
• Think about "no" as a personal lifejacket. Taking on certain projects can be like taking on water as you sail. (Ilene Rosenthal, White Space Marketing Group)
• Often people choose a strategy that's cool, neat, hot, but instead of playing to their strengths, it draws unwanted attention to their weaknesses. The result is their efforts negate any potential gains they've made. (Mary Planding, Inbound Marketing Squad)
Go read the articles. It should help you create a stronger marketing plan for 2013.