Sometimes, it's impossible to realize you're heading in the wrong direction until it's too late. In marketing, this is especially true; without an objective way to review and evaluate your performance, it's easy to believe you're on the right track until something goes wrong. By taking an honest look at your marketing strategy, consistency, tools, and techniques, it's possible to see where you're succeeding and what you need to do to move forward where you aren't.
Rating Your Marketing Efforts
An effective, high-level marketing checklist should touch on the major areas of your marketing strategies in a way that highlights where you excel and where you're losing ground. These questions are designed to give you an outside perspective on where your marketing is failing, and what you can do to implement positive changes.
Do You Have a Marketing Strategy?
If you don't know, the answer is probably no. Building a strategy that resonates with your audience goes beyond ramping up social media presence or placing your products on sale; a strategy involves choosing an end goal and building a comprehensive approach supporting how to get there.
How Frequently Do You Advertise?
If you don't advertise a lot, you're probably not making a mark on your audience, but advertising too much can be a turn off. Finding the right balance offers value to your customers without being unnecessarily pushy or overbearing.
How Consistent Is Your Marketing?
Being sassy and witty on social media and prim and proper in your blog posts is only going to confuse your audience. Consistency in marketing is important, and if you're not being consistent, you may be doing more damage than you know.
Do You Make an Emotional Connection?
When you reach for your target audience through marketing, are you appealing to their emotions? Most consumers want to feel a relationship with a company, even if it’s perceived rather than real. By creating an emotional connection, you can develop a bond that cultivates loyalty.
How Strong Is Your Website?
A good website can be expensive, but it's an investment worth making. Your website is a customer's first glimpse into your company, solidifying a perception or tearing down a wall. A bad website can undermine your credibility and drive customers away, no matter how amazing your business may be. Be a good host; have a compelling website that entices people to visit your storefront.
How Strong Are Your Marketing Tools?
Are you posting by hand to social media and collecting customer addresses in Excel? If your marketing tools can't keep up with technology, you may be spending far more time than you have to staying organized while losing out on the advantages modern tools and strategies can offer.
Do You Have Business Cards?
If you meet a potential contact on the street, you need a way to make your presence memorable. While seemingly small and insignificant, having business cards can establish your credibility with those you meet while making sure your meeting is known and remembered. The key to establishing any good relationship is making that first impression, and being prepared to do so.
How Is Your Internal or External Signage?
The signs posted inside and outside your business can make a difference in establishing a brand identity. When you say your name loudly and proudly, others will notice. Maintaining a professional-quality logo posted both inside and outside can go a long way in maintaining a credible perception.
Implementing Effective Changes
By asking yourself these questions and answering objectively, it's easier to see where your marketing is lacking. Take your least satisfactory answers from the above questions, and begin your strategizing there. For example, if your answers brought to light the weaknesses in your website, you can now invest time and energy into a site redesign. If you discovered a poor use of marketing tools, your team can begin to research what technological solutions may facilitate the marketing process. How you go about making changes is up to you, but there's no way to improve without realizing where your shortcomings lie.
Marketing cannot be stagnant while simultaneously constant; it's an ever-changing progression intended to draw in consumers and drive your business. Taking a checklist approach can help you see where you're falling short and where you have room to grow, keeping your marketing strategies moving forward in the best possible ways.
For a complete checklist that covers everything you need to know about marketing and branding, download our Touchpoints Evaluation Checklist.