At least once a year, better yet, every six months, and ideally, every quarter, it’s time for each of us to pull back the curtains and take an honest and deep look at our business–Take our pulse so to speak and gauge precisely how we’re doing. Then, it’s time to reflect on what’s working as well as what’s not working, set refined or new sights, and make the necessary course corrections for our respective businesses.
So with that being said, here is a simple 5 step formula to help you reflect, refine and realize your marketing success.
“Marketing Success Timeline”
Directions to Get From Point ‘A’ to Point ‘B’
Where you are you
Where you want to be
➊ Clearly Define Point ‘A’ – "Where You Are Now"
Take a clear snapshot of your business’s current state of affairs, and then examine that snapshot by determining what’s working and what’s not working.
➋ Clearly Define Point ‘B’ – "Where You Want To Be"
It’s time to do some soul searching. Ask yourself the point-blank and often avoided questions of “What exactly do I want?” and “Where do I want my business to be in a year/ 3 years/ 10 years/ etc.?” Being honest and thorough here is the key to true success because this will focus you on your desired destination and should dictate how you market yourself to your target audience.
➌ Map out Directions to Get From Point ‘A’ to Point ‘B’ (HINT: This is Your Marketing Plan)
Like when you’re driving a car, where the clearer and more direct your driving directions are, the faster and easier you will get to where you are going; the same holds for your business here, except in this case, the driving directions are your marketing plan. If you don’t have a marketing plan, put on the brakes and create one immediately, you just might be driving your business in the wrong direction.
If you already have a marketing plan, it’s time to refine it by doing more of what’s working and less of what’s not–it’s that simple! And remember, the fastest path between 2 points, as illustrated in our timeline example, is a straight line – don’t allow yourself to get sidetracked. Stay on the path.
➍ Start Traveling Your Path to Success
A key concept for you to grasp here is that any plan, no matter how comprehensive it may be, is useless if you don’t take action. So guess what? It’s time to take massive action and start traveling the path to success!
➎ Track Your Progress along the Way
Now, while you’re traveling along your marketing success timeline, there will be many luring forks in the road and turns that you can take that could drastically alter your direction. Worst case, if you’re not paying attention, one wrong turn can take you in the opposite direction of where you want to be, getting you lost just enough to put you out of business. So it’s critical at regular intervals to check your course and make sure you’re still on track.
Additionally, know that as you progress along your path, you will grow wiser every day, so you may be able to sharpen or shorten your path by applying other or more streamlined marketing strategies and tactics.
Remember, though, that the fun is in the journey, not in conquering your destination – so enjoy the ride.