When you’ve got your marketing plan for the year all laid out, ready to go, it’s tempting to jump right in and start checking off the boxes of your to-do list.
But before you do, there’s one last step I’d like you to take.
And it’s one that many purpose-driven entrepreneurs tend to skip:
Review, assess and evaluate your choices so you’re confident that your plan actually suits you. I know that might seem odd – it’s your plan after all.
And ask yourself some questions.
I know that spending a little bit more time in the planning phase – when you’re itching to move into action – may be a bit much to ask.
But investing this time upfront will help you avoid working harder than you need to this year.
Follow my way of thinking with an example
Let’s say one of your business priorities/goals for the year is to double the number of clients you work with in the next 6 months.
You might set a marketing priority/goal that says you’ll work to increase the number of sales conversations you have each month.
To do that, you might choose networking as your main marketing strategy.
Some of your marketing activities might naturally be to find networking groups, get your introduction ready, sign up, show up, share, and follow up.
Seems like a pretty good plan, doesn’t it?
Maybe it is. Maybe it isn’t. You won’t know until you ask yourself some questions – like:
Will doubling my clients in the next 6 months move me closer to or farther away from what’s important to me in my life?
>> if you’re aiming to slow down and spend more time with your family, or you need to free up your time because your ailing mother is coming to live with you, then ramping up your business with more clients likely isn’t going to fit the bill. Re-think your business priority/goal and pick something that’s in line with where you’re moving personally.
Is doubling my clients in the next 6 months actually what I want? Or is it what I think I *should* do? Or, has someone else told me that’s what I *have* to do to be successful?
>> if it’s not what you really, really, want – throw that priority away. Start again, tuning in to you and the kind of life you want to create for yourself. Maybe what you really, really want is to take the summer off this year!
More questions to ask yourself
Does increasing the number of sales conversations I have in a month feel heavy or light to me? How does my body react when I think about it?
>> if it feels heavy or contracted in your body, that’s a clue that it’s not the right choice for you. You’ll probably find reasons to put it off, or if you do get started, you likely won’t be able to sustain the action over time. Choose another marketing focus that feels light and expansive.
Is attending networking meetings regularly for the foreseeable future the most natural way to accomplish my marketing priority/goal?
>> if the thought of that feels complicated or you break out in hives just thinking about it (maybe you’re more of a cat-person) then it’s not simple or sustainable for YOU, now is it? Choose something you feel more inspired to do – something that feels more like a natural extention of yourself.
Does the time, energy and focus required to show up, share, and follow up with people (some kind of an elaborate spread sheet comes to mind) match the time, energy, and focus I have available to give right now?
>> if the investment of time, energy, and focus time required exceeds what you have, or isn’t available to you right now, then networking just isn’t a feasible option. Find another way that’s kinder to yourself.
Now it’s your turn
What are your business priorities/goals for this year? What marketing priorities do you have? How will you achieve them?
Chances are they’re different from the examples I used here. After all, marketing plans are a unique expression of your individual wants, needs and aspirations.
Never-the-less, once you’ve drafted your plan, assess it. Revise it. Ask yourself some questions. And don’t be afraid to scrap any part of your plan that you discover doesn’t suit you. There’s always another possibility available to you.
To make it easier for you, I created this list of questions where you can [INSERT YOUR OWN IDEAS.]
More resources to help you keep it simple + sustainable
If you want to organize your thoughts into something that makes sense, but you don’t know where to start, download A Purpose-Driven Entrepreneur’s Guide to Creating a Simple + Sustainable Marketing Plan for 2021. I walk you through the basic steps to create a plan that’s tailored to you. There are some helpful definitions in it, too.
And if the idea of keeping your plans for the next 12 months simple + sustainable appeals to you, here are 5 more ideas to help you do just that.
If you need help to create your 2021 Marketing Plan
Rather not figure it all out on your own? Need some support to make the best choices for YOU?
Reach out to me.
You can send an email to [email protected] and let me know you might need some help. Or, book a Clarity Call so we can talk through your situation. At the end, I’ll make a recommendation to you – it could be that we work together – or it could be a referral to another resource.
CREATE A SIMPLE + SUSTAINABLE MARKETING PLAN FOR 2021
Set yourself up to make an impact with a tailored-to-you-and-your-business marketing plan – that’s easy to implement.
・a 30-ish day private coaching experience・