Marketing Your Business: Why Planning Ahead is Key

At Shooting Star, we often get asked: “What should I be doing to market my business, and how can I do it quickly and effectively?”

These days there are lots of ways you can market your business – and some will be more effective than others. But they all should be considered as part of your planning preparation. So, whether you’re using social media, direct marketing, targeted search engine optimisation or news stories for the trade media and press, make sure you understand which channels will work best for your business and consider them as part of your overall marketing strategy.

An integrated approach

While we love the results you can generate with PR, we also strongly believe that it’s more effective as part of a comprehensive marketing strategy.

When you work with Shooting Star, our team of creative marketing and communication specialists will help you to understand your business objectives and create an effective marketing plan which encompasses all the essentials to market your business.

Here’s what to consider as you start to plan your own marketing strategy:

1.         Keep things simple: it’s very easy to get carried away when creating your plan. You have high hopes for everything you’d like to achieve, but your time is precious and so you need to set some SMART (smart, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely) objectives.

2.         Define your target audience: by doing this you can determine who, how and when these people hear about your product and, by use of effective targeting and relevant channels, in turn increase your marketing ROI.

3.         Plan ahead: it’s important to plan ahead but be flexible too. If something isn’t working, then don’t be afraid to change your plan and try something new.

4.         Review your plans and adapt if needed: take the time to see how things are going for you; look at the press coverage you’ve received, your Facebook and Twitter analytics. Don’t be afraid to stop doing something that’s not working for your business and refocus your efforts.

5.         Shout about your success: you’ve heard that saying ‘success breeds success’ and it’s true. The more news people hear and see about your successes, the more likely they are to (a) have heard about you and (b) trust your brand. Make those wins count and shout about your success.  You can read more about how to make the most out of your success in our blog Trophies, titles and talking up your success.

There’s no time like the present!

It’s very easy to put off the promotion of your business – the never-ending list of priorities, engagements, staff appraisals and invoices can often take precedence, but making sure you set aside time to think about what you want your business to achieve will pay dividends.

Once you’ve got your plan in place, make sure you work marketing your business into your day to day life. Marketing doesn’t just have to take the form of a rigid plan: be flexible, think outside the box and consider everything as an opportunity to promote your business.

We’ll leave you with these thoughts and some ‘added extras’ to consider…

  • Create your elevator pitch! This is a bite-sized summary of who you are, what you do and why you do it. The average attention span is about 6 seconds! If you can successfully engage someone in that time, then you’ve bought yourself a little more time to talk to them about your business!
  • Network – get out there, mingle and talk to people at events and meetings, you never know where your next lead will come from.
  • Give a talk – you’ll be surprised by how many people want to hear what you have to say. Lots of event organisers look for industry experts to talk to their delegates on certain subject matters. The power of public speaking is enormous!
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback and testimonials. These are extremely effective ways of advertising your business, and first-hand referrals are one of the best forms of marketing!
  • Utilise existing resource – using employees to promote your business can be very successful.

That all sounds quite straightforward on paper, but if you should need any support with your marketing please do not hesitate to contact us or check out our services page.