Follow these five steps to make your next marketing campaign a cause for celebration instead of panic. If your product, people, and price are well defined, the marketing strategy will follow suit.
If your goal is sales, establish your desired success metrics upfront, be realistic. If your goal is awareness, decide how many people you need to reach in order to start creating a climate for action among your supporters. Once you establish your key performance indicators, they will guide all of your decisions as you move forward with the campaign. If you have established benchmarks, use those to measure the new campaign against.
Next, you’ll need to define who your audience is. What is the demographic for your product or service? Consumers or businesses who would purchase your product/service/solution may not entirely match your instincts or past experience. If your company doesn’t have this data already, or you don’t have a totally clear picture, use pre-existing market research and consumer data to decide who you should be talking to. See what information your sales or development team can provide for you.
Work with stakeholders to establish a campaign budget that will allow your company to effectively reach your target audience. If you have solid data to back up your plan, the money will flow. Marketing is an investment, and needs to be presented and sold to leadership as such. It is also a long-term investment that needs constant work and attention in order to mature fully.
When it comes time to purchase advertising, select media outlets that closely match your target audience. Every brand wants to be on national TV, or advertise with a big name media group, but if that isn’t your target audience, don’t waste your time. Sometimes a local blog or newspaper can have a bigger impact. Look to your success metrics and defined audience demographics to guide you. Almost every media outlet offers discounts to registered nonprofits (primarily in-kind matches), make sure to ask for those special rates if applicable. Get media kits early and use those to plan your creative.
When it comes time to launch your campaign, be prepared to measure constantly. If you can perform A/B testing, all the better. Focus on what is working and do more of it. Your media partners want you to be successful, don’t hesitate to reach out to them for advice and metrics. Your media partners should also be providing you with full reports from your media buys and digital ads, get help interpreting them if needed. Work with your leadership and sales/development team to ensure that your goals for success and KPIs are being met. Report on your campaign regularly to see what is working, note everything and adjust your plan as needed.
Your checklist for success:
- Set and confirm sales goals, metrics, and KPIs with team.
- Define audience, location, and other key demographics.
- Select appropriate media channels to reach your target audience.
- Create simple, beautiful ads with a clear call to action. Ensure you’re on brand.
- Execute in a timely manner and with consistent branding/messaging.
- Measure and report on a regular basis. Adjust campaign if needed.
- Reach out to media partners for assistance if necessary.
- At close of campaign, review data, metrics and KPIs to evaluate effectiveness.
- Adjust campaign based on data and repeat.
There are many moving parts when managing the lifecycle of a marketing campaign and like any skill, the more experience you gain, the more natural it becomes. Use the infographic to guide you through the process.
Follow me on Twitter for weekly marketing and social media tips. I specialize in brand strategy, design, and cross-disciplinary project management. Passionate about driving businesses and non-profit organizations to achieve their communication and development goals while building and amplifying brand awareness.