This article was originally published on Start it Up.
These days, picking a marketing strategy to focus on isn’t easy. There are so many choices out there, and so much to consider — Do I want to be stuck on social media all day responding to DMs or creating video content, or would I rather be more behind the scenes, writing blog posts instead? And is this strategy even sustainable in the long run?
To add fuel to the fire, many business coaches push their “proven four-step system” like it’s going out of style, making new entrepreneurs believe that the only way to be successful is to follow their exact marketing plan down to the very last detail. (Full disclosure: I’m a business coach too, but telling my clients what to do in their business is NOT my style, keep reading to find out why.)
Here’s why that approach won’t work for everyone.
You are unique and so is your business. And thankfully, you are also the expert on your business. So your strengths and personality should be taken into consideration when building your marketing strategy so that you have the greatest chances of success.
Read on for my top tips for creating an intentional marketing strategy.
1. Pick your marketing strategies based on your personality type.
Maybe you’re a huge introvert, so going out in public and talking about your business or speaking on stage makes you feel like you’re going to vomit. That’s okay. You can still have a successful business.
You just have to pick channels that are more aligned with your personality. Perhaps you’re a good writer, so maybe blogging is a better fit for you. This way, you can stay safe behind your computer screen but still connect with people online. Or if you do better with one-to-one communication, you can talk to people individually instead of trying to broadcast your message to a larger audience.
2. Determine your strengths and let them shine.
Similar to the point above, it is important to figure out what you’re already good at. Let’s say you love talking to people and sharing your story, so maybe going on podcasts or creating videos are things you’d enjoy.
The key here is: whatever you pick should be aligned to your strengths and something you don’t mind doing. Because you may be relying on it for a long time, so it should be something you’re not only good at but want to continue.
For example, marketing and lifestyle expert Marie Forleo loves creating video content, and she’s really skilled at it. She developed MarieTV, an award-winning weekly show with hundreds of episodes. It’s what has allowed her to share her message with people in 195 countries around the world and sell multiple online programs.
I really believe that it doesn’t matter what strategy you pick, as long as you stay consistent and keep showing up. And let go of thinking you have to be an expert at everything. Pick one or two strategies to start with and really master those.
3. Create a marketing plan.
Look, it’s not sexy, but in order to be intentional and also strategic, you need to focus only on the things that will grow your business. So, take the time to build a plan. Include content pillars, or themes, you can talk about in your marketing. So, when it comes time to creating content, you already know what you’ll be talking about so you’ll be way more efficient.
Make sure to establish your point of view — or what makes you different from everyone else. What do you want to be known for? Or what opinions do you have about your industry that you could share?
Ideally, these things are bold ideas, and even better if they’re a bit controversial. Because you don’t get known for being exactly like everyone else, but for being an individual with your own ideas. Think of some myths you want to break or things you see people doing wrong that you could bring light to.
4. Track your results so you know what's working.
Here’s one a lot of newer entrepreneurs forget. If you’re trying out different marketing strategies, as is common when you’re just getting started, you need to also track your results. Because if you have no idea where your best clients are coming from, you won’t know what to continue doing and what to stop focusing on.
I think there’s a misconception that you have to do everything in order to be successful as an entrepreneur. I don’t really think it’s true. You just have to be smart about what you spend your time on, and having a system to track your results is the best way to do that.
Whether it’s just a simple spreadsheet where you document how your clients found you (for example, through a question on your intake form), or you take a look at your Google Analytics data so you know where people are finding you online, it doesn’t really matter. As long as you do it.
By following these tips, you should be able to create an intentional marketing strategy that gives you the results you’re looking for. So, you can spend more time working in your business vs. feeling overwhelmed trying to grow it.
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