I’ve drawn up a marketing strategy for my business, which is a handmade arts and crafts retailer.
I think I’ve identified the best way to market my business, but how soon should I tweak this plan? How long do you give a marketing strategy to work before you need to change it?
Get business news first
Sign up to SmartCompany’s daily newsletter
Congratulations! This is such an exciting time for you, and your business.
It’s great to hear you have a marketing plan in place. Not all businesses do at the start, and I think it’s brilliant that you have documented plans and are giving your business the best start you can.
A marketing strategy is not a set and forget plan, it’s a living plan, one that constantly evolves.
I don’t believe that there is a set time limit for giving a marketing strategy time to work before you need to change it, as it’s all about ongoing measurement and review.
Set measurements for each of the marketing tactics in your plan – and then monitor and measure how you are tracking against them.
Monitoring and measuring should be ongoing, and allows you to reduce, increase, stop or introduce marketing activities based on performance (if they are working) – this is where the “tweaking” comes in to play.
For example, if you have a particular marketing tactic in your plan that aims to reach xx amount of your target audience, sharing xx key messages by xx date, review this each week or month to see if you are reaching the right amount of people each week to achieve your goal target. If you aren’t, you can then tweak your plan and activities to ensure you are.
In addition to this, as time progresses you will start to get to know your customers more and more closely, and therefore the more you will understand their needs and their motivators. This will help when you review and tweak your marketing strategy.
I also think it would be great if you wrote a financial plan to go with your marketing plan so you can keep your eye on the key financial aspects of your business.
Together these documents will give you confidence you are on track and allow you time to respond should things be changing against the plan. Remember in small business the most important thing is to always manage your cash flow!
Good luck and best wishes for much success to you!