As we move tremendously close to 2015, most firms are in the midst of planning. And this planning is getting much more exciting for many as the key indicators of the economy are generally improving.
I will recap the many strategic planning sessions I have participated in over the last six-plus difficult economic years…”We are going to wait on that”….”Let’s wait”…”We’ve decided to wait for now.” Let’s dust off the list of the most commonly mothballed marketing projects that are in desperate need of activation in most firms:
Strategic Marketing Plans—Focus is essential and how do you get focus without a documented plan? The process of authoring this plan is the best part because it is a time to build consensus, energize the activities that will differentiate your firm and dream a little. The structure of this plan includes trends that impact your firm, competitor analysis, baseline measurements, and measured and tracked goals. This is the foundation of any healthy company and the best marketing ideas result from this process.
Client Surveys—Forget the bad economy as a reason to “wait” on client surveys; firms in general are in desperate need of tracking and internally communicating the client experience. There are a variety of ways to measure how your company is performing—it could be based on projects, from a strategic perspective or a perception survey to give insight to better refine their organization or processes.
Website—The average “shelf life” of a website is 1.5 years…Yours is out of date; very out of date! Now that we have established that, you can move forward with creating a fully mobile responsive, fast, social sharing, contemporary website that serves as a resource for clients and prospects.
Photography—These past years afforded many firms the opportunity to diversify and expand their services and your prospects might not be aware of the markets you serve or all of the services you now provide. It is time to schedule your project and people to get photographed and post these in your office, in eblasts, direct mails and websites. Go ahead, appease the visually-oriented society that we are now—don’t just tell them, show them!
Social Media—You have waited long enough, and nope, it’s not going away. Even if the 20-something in your office has “got it covered” a firm’s full engagement is essential. Are you going to create a social culture or not? This requires a policy, training, a plan and consistent execution. It is not difficult and very inexpensive…but it is overdue.
If you are gearing up for a great year and want to shed a few things, we recommend looking at all of the marketing projects that are long overdue and yet so beneficial to the continued success and growth of your firm.