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7 Marketing Milestones You Need To Hit Before Year’s End


Let’s face it, with business people hoping over to Hawaii or Europe for their social media photo ops, I mean vacations, August is often a tough month to increase sales, launch a new project or sign new customers.

You know that Q3 conundrum when you invest a lot of time writing and finally fire off a well-crafted proposal or eye-catching social media post and then….crickets.

Hello? Anybody? Oh yeah, it’s August.

Personally, I love August. It’s a great time of year as a business owner, to slow down, crank up the AC, grab a cold one (I'm referring to Fosselman’s ice cream here. Really.)  and take a day to assess my business, my brand and my end of the year marketing goals.

With that in mind, I’d like to share 7 Marketing Milestones You Need To Hit Before Year’s End as a guide to check-in on your marketing progress to date, and hopefully help you finish strong.

An Example of Marketing for an Upcoming Conference

Think of a goal you have in mind, and these are things you need to do to get there. For example, I am going to plan for an upcoming conference in say, October, and that will get my business more leads and ultimately more sales.

1) Review Brand

In this example, I'm going to reach for my "branded" marketing brochure. Does it represent my business and what it stands for? Is my identity to date? Am I positioned distinctly from my competitors? Has my business evolved so that the messaging in the booklet needs to be re-defined?

2) Refresh Buyer Personas

Am I clear on my audience? Do I know what their pain points are? Am I using the same language that they do when describing my business to them? Have I asked them recently what social media sites they visit to get information that helps them in their job?

3) Assess Digital Marketing

At my conference in October, I will be looking to capture leads. Have I defined my growth goals? Am I clear on my marketing objectives? What gaps do I have in my marketing arsenal? Are their new opportunities that I should take advantage of? We put together a checklist that you can download here.

Assessment Checklist - Download Button, See Gaps

4) Review Strategy

In an earlier step, I took a look at the buyer personas that are likely to come in contact with me at my upcoming conference. Do I see their "buyer journey" through their eyes? We know that they have 3 phases, Awareness >  Attraction  > Decision. It becomes much clearer when I map out their "buyer journey," once coming in contact with me at the conference. My strategy will be all of the ways I will help them with information that address their pain points and provides a solution.

5) Build The Foundation

Now that I have my buyer journey mapped out, and have a strategy on how you I'm going to stay in touch with my potential buyers, I'm going to take a look at the tools that I need to have in place for this process to happen. I'm going to make sure my web pages are optimized. My CRM, marketing automation tool is set-up so that I can capture leads and that I can analyze the results to determine what is working well, and what isn't. I'm going to refresh my keyword research and be mindful of those keyword phrases as I write my blog posts. Then I'm going to amplify the work of writing those blog posts by re-posting them on other social media platforms. I'll use the same social media that my Buyer Personas use to tell them about the blog post that will help them solve their problem. Then I'll monitor social media response to engage with my audience.

6) Campaigns For Converting my Leads

At the top of my funnel, I'm going to want to use marketing campaigns to convert strangers into visitors of my website, this could be in the form of Videos, Infographics, White Papers and Podcasts. I'm going to use a conversion path consisting of a Landing Page, a Thank You Page, and a Follow Email, once someone downloads my White Paper.  

Visitors will turn into leads in the middle of the marketing funnel when I use tactics like Calculators, checklists, and worksheets, Again I'll make sure I have these offers connected to a set of Landing Page, a Thank You Page, and a Follow Email.

At the bottom of my funnel, my qualified leads become opportunities when the buyer persona that I have nurtured along is ready to take a step to solve their pain point. I'll provide them with an appropriate offer that brings high-value to them with minimal risk. The following activities work well, Consultations/Audits One-on-One Demonstrations, Free Trials, In-person Seminars/Events, Estimates, Samples and Physical Books. Then I'll be sure to capture my leads with a Landing Page, a Thank You Page, and a Follow Email. Finally, I'll remember to convert & close (Social Inbox Management)

7) Optimizing My Marketing Efforts

Now that I've done the work to get leads and nurture them, it makes sense that I'm going to want to get the most out of my hard earned effort by gaining the most transactional value that I can out of each one. I'll do this by evaluating my results for the following activities and refining my campaign as a result. This includes Blogging, Keyword Research, Website Design, On Page SEO, Link Building / Off Page SEO, CTA & Conversion Path Building, Email Marketing, Lead Nurturing and Automation, Integration Management, Monthly Strategy / Review Meetings, and Campaign Performance Reporting.

Wrapping Up the Marketing Refresh

The example of a trade show was a useful vehicle for examining where I am on my journey to hitting my objectives by the end of this year, and what I need to do to get there (even if it requires having a cold one in the middle of August). You can also follow this journey on our website here. I hope you'll take this example and apply it to your own business.


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