Have you had a chance to check your marketing progress for the year? We’re already flying through third quarter, so it’s a good idea to see if you’re on track with your goals, and determine what needs to change to ensure you meet your financial goals for last quarter to finish the year strong.
Compare Benchmarks to Your Real Numbers
Bring together all the benchmarks you set for yourself and all the results from any campaigns or experiments you ran that have finished. Are you on track? Did some exceed your expectations? Did some fail miserably?
Maybe you made your goals too vague like “increase brand awareness”. If this is the case, here are some guidelines to make specific goals that can be measured more effectively, SMART goals:
Define as much is possible, eg. who is involved, what needs to be accomplished, where it will be done, why it needs to be done (reason, purpose), and any constraints or requirements that exist.
Can progress be tracked and the outcome measured? How much, how many, how will it be known that the goal is accomplished?
Is the goal reasonable enough to be accomplished? How so? It should not be out of reach or below standard performance.
Is the goal worthwhile? Will it meet the needs of the company? Is it consistent with other goals established and does it fit with immediate or long term plans?
Include a time limit. “I will complete this step by 1 April 2018”. This helps to establish a sense of urgency and prompts better time management.
Adjust goals and strategies accordingly, figure out what problems need solving and solve them before you spend any more marketing budget! Then continue on your way to growing your business.
Collect Some Qualitative Data
It’s important to know if your customers are happy, if salespeople are hearing specific complaints, and/or compliments on anything in particular. Same with customer service. What types of reviews are people leaving on your Google My Business or social media channels?
Are people saying nothing at all? If that’s the case, reach out and ask for reviews, send out surveys, put a short easy survey on your website to answer questions you’re curious about that could help the business move forward.
What to Do Now
Once you have some diagnosis for what you’ve done well and what you need to change, start doing it! But if you begin changing things, make sure to only change one major thing at a time if you’re experimenting, so you know what’s really working and what isn’t.