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4 Steps to Creating Your Marketing Plan

1) Find Clarity

The human brain can only contain so much information and sometimes we feel overwhelmed which can create confusion and paralyze us from taking action. Thus, before starting any project, you need to document the steps needed in order to achieve your goals. Your document should be simple, able to be flexible and adaptive.

There are some aspects of these document that you need to add in order to find clarity. Those are your goals, your ideal customer avatar, the channels of communication, and the posting frequency.

Goals

The whole purpose of setting goals is to motivate you, to measure your progress, and to achieve them so you can set new goals. But goal setting can only be done based on previous performance. If you don’t have one, then you need to allow yourself a timeframe to get some data in. 90 days is a good timeframe to measure; it’s not too short or too long. But if you do have some data to base on your goals on then you can try achieving 15% improvement on the next 90 days. If you pass over it, then increase the goal just a bit to 20%. But if you fall short on it then it’s a good idea to reconsider your strategy. Most importantly you need to align your social media goals with your business objectives.

Ideal Customer Avatar

Understanding your customers is imperative to your business’ success. You need to know their dreams, goals, pain points and challenges. Your ideal customer avatar is this fictional character that reflects the key attributes of your audience. You should go as in depth as possible when creating your customer avatar, which should include job title and description; demographics; psychographics; goals, challenges and pain points; objections; and media use. As you create your customer avatar, you also should keep in mind what kind customer you DO NOT want to attract. You don’t want to spend your money to market to those who is not your ideal customer. Below is a great video about how many personas (avatars) you should need:

Channels of Communication

Although it would be great to be in ALL channels of communication to get the most exposure, it might not be feasible due to time and resources. Also, each channel requires a different approach. Thus, you need to identify what channel is performing well right now, be it Facebook, Instagram or even Snapchat. It will all depend as well on your customer’s avatar. If they are older then Facebook might be better than Snapchat. Snapchat is usually used by younger generation.

Posting Frequency

Again, not all channels are alike. Posting on Facebook once a day is preferred instead of 15 times a day, but in Tweeter 15 tweets a day is pretty common. You need to test out what is working but here is a guideline to start with:

  • Facebook: 1 post a day
  • LinkedIn: 1 post a day
  • Instagram: 1 post a day
  • Pinterest and Twitter: 10 – 15 a day

2) Organize in order to Prioritize

Before starting a new campaign, it’s a good idea to write a project or creative brief so everyone is on the same page. If you are working by yourself or with a team, it’s a good idea to have a one-page brief of what the project is about and how to proceed with it.

The brief should include a summary at a high level, details (who is aimed at, its goal, and technical requirements), process (what needs to be completed in order of importance), who will be working on the project (if you have a team, who will be working on what?), timeline (due date), and resources needed to complete the project.

3) Plan to Post

It’s a good idea to have a calendar with dates of when you should post and which platform. Trying to come up with creative posts on the fly is not the best way. If you can plan a week or a month worth of posts and then schedule them using an automatic posting software or manually posting them, you will be free to focus on other matter of your business.

4) Assess and Report

Now you need to assess your efforts and report your findings. The whole point of organizing your tasks is to improve your business and marketing efforts, thus we need to use metrics to see what’s working and what’s not. This should be done on a regular basis, weekly or monthly. Most social media platforms have their own built in analytics and reporting functionalities. If you have a website, you can use google analytics.

Conclusion

Although it takes some time upfront to creating your plan, it is totally worth it. It’s one of those things that you do it once, then you just need to replicate instead of creating again and again. Have a process in place and it becomes much easier. It will give you more clarity in your approach and you will be able to see what’s working or not in your campaigns.

Did you like it? Do you have another way or method to creating a plan? Share with me and others below!

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Felipe

Felipe

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Two topics I love to talk about are Online Marketing and the Financial Market.

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