We make plans ahead of time, but times change. If we learned nothing else during the COVID-19 pandemic and shut-downs, we have learned that. If your 2021 marketing plans were made before the vaccine was widely available, you made plans before in-person meetings and events were options again. It might be time to re-evaluate your 2021 marketing plan. It might be time to change some plans from digital to in-person. It might be time to adjust your spending.
While a yearly marketing plan helps you keep a strong focus on goals, quarterly check-ins keep the plan on-track. However, keeping the momentum going may require something more than a simple check in; it may require a reset. July is a great time to do a mid-year reset to achieve your goals.
Even without the dramatic changes of 2021, you may not have had fresh opportunities when you made your original marketing plan. Perhaps now you are offering a new service. Or perhaps you contacted a new advertising opportunity that fits your goals to a T. Or maybe a big sale has changed the budget, making video marketing a feasible option.
What does a reset mean? A marketing reset means looking at what is going well, what is going poorly, new opportunities, and expired opportunities, and adjusting your plan to accommodate those changes. It means reviewing your current sales pipeline -- Are the numbers of leads what you expect? What is the close rate? What improvements can be made? Are there any impediments to purchasing? Etc.
Pro-tip: One million website impressions is not a goal. In B2B marketing, goals should be more sales-oriented. The number of viable leads. The number of closed sales. Everything else is just tracking. Tracking is good… tracking allows you to adjust… but it’s not a goal.
The market changes. (Look no further than the current pandemic. Six months ago, we did not have a vaccine.) What do you need to do to meet those changes? What do you need to track? Do your marketing or sales goals need to be adjusted?
Start your reset by looking at your current plans and goals. Then ask yourself:
Is it time to adjust your website? Improve load speed? Add metatags? Create landing pages? Reevaluate the text on the homepage to clarify or tell a more compelling story?
Is it time to run an ad set in another publication or digital venue? Is it time to refresh the visuals of the current ads? Is it time to increase the frequency or size of ad placement?
Do you need to track another metric? Pre-site traffic from Google My Business? Details on qualified leads? The weekly pattern of web traffic? Review email open rates and determine if any keywords or concepts improve the rates?
Is it time to change your marketing materials? Perhaps add sales support? A case study? Improve your testimonials? Create a demo video?
Is it time to start customer research? A satisfaction survey? Or, a brand evaluation survey? A feasibility study for a new product or offering?
Marketing is often a series of projects. In the course of achieving the project, it can be difficult to keep sight of the larger business goals.
The mid-year reset is the perfect time to look at what is feasible in the six months or so left this year. Look at your budget, what you’ve spent and what’s available to spend. Look at your resources to see if you have enough or if you need to reallocate. Reset for maximum goal achievement.
Alexandria Trusov is the Director of Marketing at Euthenia Manufacturing Group and a B2B marketing consultant to manufacturers and other B2B companies. Contact her at [email protected] or visit www.truinsightsconsulting.com.