In 2014, the impact of marketing grew in new and exhilarating ways. The progress of technology made content more targeted and engaging, and it helped marketers discover worthwhile insights about their target customers; it also made it easier than ever to determine ROI (return on investment). Now with 25% of 2015 history, it looks like that progress is gaining momentum.
For anyone trying to market their business today, it's easy to feel overwhelmed by new progress in the field. Suddenly, data must drive all marketing decisions, strategies must be customized to translate across a multitude of mobile devices and bosses are demanding to see measurable and actionable results.
You can feel as though you're drowning in new opportunities, responsibilities and variables.
If you want to stay ahead of the game, here are some to help you succeed in 2015.
1. Prioritise data
Marketing is now a science, so you need to treat it as such. We are now able to collect date which holds valuable information for your company's operations, including details on how campaigns are performing, whom you are reaching and how they react to your brand, and what you're doing especially well (or not so well).
Take advantage of all that information to reconfigure your strategy if it seems misaligned with the data, and track your results; doing so not only allows you deeper understanding into how your product or business is faring but also keeps you (and your team if applicable) accountable by helping you determine the comparative ROI of your efforts.
2. Combine your strategies
Do you find yourself juggling a digital strategy, a traditional marketing strategy, and even a mobile strategy—all with different goals and outcomes?
If so, make it a priority to amalgamate those different efforts into one cohesive marketing strategy and streamline your operations. Revisit your 2015 marketing plan and think about how all of those different segments feed into your overall goals, and revise planned elements and budgets to mirror your objectives.
The goal is for all tactics to come together around a single strategy and to seamlessly work together.
3. Embrace both amateur and professional content
Do you know what people are saying about your company? How is your marketing received among your target market?
Recognise that people outside of your marketing team are talking about and creating content around your brand. Whether through blog/social media posts, tweets, or even conversations with family and friends, content about your brand is being circulated.
Instead of trying to quash this amateur content or drown it out with professional branded content, embrace it. Learn from it, and use it to improve the authenticity of your communication with your customers and potential customers.
4. Track, report, and actually deliver on your goals and objectives
It is vital to track, report, and deliver on your marketing goals and objectives. Even if you don’t have someone higher up that you are reporting to, you need to be able to see, for your own self satisfaction, that your marketing efforts are directly resulting in sales.
It is important that time spent on marketing delivers results that make a positive financial impact on your company, for your superiors to see or even for your own satisfaction.
5. Communicate with your fellow workers
What are your company's objectives for 2015, and where does marketing fit into those objectives?
You should always communicate what you're doing to the rest of the company and explain how marketing aligns with company strategy. Then, take it a step further and, if applicable, explain what others can do to help out and offer an open door for advice and suggestions.
Having an outside perspective helps you to refresh and realign your marketing objectives and it helps others in the business understand what it is you do and why it's important to the company as a whole. Furthermore, if you are part of a large team, showing that you are holding your marketing efforts accountable to those company goals, fosters appreciation for what you do and encourages acceptance from the rest of the company.
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Every year sees tremendous challenges and innovation for those responsible for marketing. It is important to learn lessons from the past and commit to keeping up with changes as they occur in the future.