A successful marketing campaign can help you reach or go beyond your sales goals. It can help you find customers who might not have considered your products or services before. Here are six steps to a winning marketing campaign.
1. Choose Your Objective
Pinpoint what you plan to accomplish through your campaign. Do you want to increase sales this quarter? Are you planning a long-term strategy for the end of the year? Are you trying to convert leads into customers? Do you want to create a loyalty program? The answers to these questions help you narrow your focus and avoid wasting money on a campaign that doesn’t meet your goals.
2. Determine Your Budget
You probably know what you can spend if you already have a budget outlined for the quarter, year or designated period. If you haven’t budgeted yet for this campaign, you need to determine what you will spend. You can estimate a competitor’s budget, choose to pay a percentage of sales, or budget by the task.
Your company’s age often determines your marketing budget size. A newer company, between one to five years old, needs to get the word out. Your budget may need to be 12-20% of your projected marketing revenue. Companies that have been around for more than five years may only decide to spend 6-12% of their projected revenue.
3. Develop a Message
What do you want your marketing campaign to “say” to potential customers? The answer to this question determines your message. This step can be fun, so enjoy using your creativity.
You need to know what your customers want and require from your business. It helps to know a lot about them to target your message appropriately. You may benefit from doing marketing research such as what Hanover Research does. It is a company founded by Peter Dodge Bridgehampton.
Show your customers that you understand their needs, and then tailor your message to explain that you can assist. This step helps you get your audience’s attention. An emotional appeal often works well.
Any references or credibility points you can add help build trust. Your audience knows you understand their problem and have a way to solve it. Now customers need to know why they should choose your business.
4. Decide How To Deliver the Message
Once you know what to communicate, you can determine how you reach your audience. You have a lot of choices. Finding the right avenues depends on your budget and customers.
Online media is an excellent place to start. Most people use social media and websites to do their shopping, so you can meet potential customers where they already are. Study what platforms they use and begin advertising there.
Email campaigns can be effective, and they are often a low-cost/high-return option. Remember that traditional advertising channels can also reach your audience. Television, billboards, newspapers, brochures, signs and posters definitely have a place in today’s advertising world.
5. Begin Your Marketing Campaign
Now the time has come — roll out your campaign and let your efforts do their thing. This step can be the easiest part, especially if you’ve done your homework. Keep an eye on your expenses as the campaign moves along.
6. Analyze Your Results
The marketing campaign is over. How did it perform? Did you meet your expectations? Did the audience respond as you predicted, or did you meet some surprises along the way?
The more data you have about your marketing campaign, the more information you can gather to help you now and in the future. The results may surprise you. You will learn:
- What channels were the most profitable
- Which targets were the most responsive
- How much you spent on the campaign
- What not to do next time
You won’t find any magic methods to create a successful marketing campaign. However, you can plan, budget and analyze carefully to ensure it has the best possible chance for success.