Discover proven marketing planning tips for the first half of the year

Tracy Steffensen

Time flies by so fast. There’s only one more month to go before Q1 ends. How are you tracking against your business objectives? Are you seeing results from your marketing strategy and tactics? If not, now is the right time to do it and make adjustments for Q2.

On the other hand, for those who haven’t started anything yet, don’t panic. You still have time to plan for the first half of the year. Here are some marketing activities you can do to get the year off to a great start for your business.

10 marketing activities that you can start right away:

  1. Review and set new goals or commit to new quotas. Before starting a new strategy, look back at what worked previously – and what didn’t. Evaluate how each performed according to your goals and KPIs, and replace any that generated poor results. Then, come up with new strategies to replace anything that is underperforming. When setting new goals and quotas, ensure they’re realistically achievable within the specified time frame. You can constantly refine and optimise your plan for the next half of the year.
  2. Look at the latest trends and assess their value in your strategy. There’s wisdom in paying attention to what’s happening around you, especially in your industry. Keep abreast of industry trends, the latest in digital marketing, what tools work for others, and what your competitors are doing. You don’t need to adapt everything that’s new, only those you think will deliver the best results for your business.
  3. Know your competitors. You may have done this analysis before, but players change constantly. Like you, your competitors are constantly improving. So, if it has been a whilst since you did a competitor analysis, include this activity as a must-do. Seek and pinpoint your direct and indirect competitors. Comparison charts and graphs will help you and your team visualise your position in the market against your competitors. Finally, identify areas to improve and execute the changes.
  4. Explore new ways to reach a wider or new audience. Whether it’s due to market saturation or a market shift as your business evolves, you will find yourself looking for ways to offer your products or services to a new audience at some point in your journey. Now is the best time to explore your untapped market and expand your market base. It’s important to research your new and existing target audience thoroughly. Research businesses already in the new markets you’re looking to reach. Then create a multi-level marketing strategy that can target the most people whilst remaining cost-effective.
  5. Plan for upcoming promotions. Aside from popular holidays, you can also embrace quirky and less-celebrated holidays. Build campaigns around these occasions. You can look at what others are doing or be totally different. The key is to think outside of the box. The earlier you plan for your promotions, the better chance of hitting your goals.
  6. Do off-peak activities. Some businesses see a dip in sales at certain times of the year. However, seasonality is a fact for most businesses. What you do during this period will determine your survival for more years to come. You should try doing off-season specials, consider early payment specials, and other income-generating activities. Check out some more tips and off-season strategies here.
  7. Refresh your social media assets. Review your social media strategy with your team by assessing your existing social media pages. Have you used the same cover or profile photo for the last five years? Maybe it’s time to have a new one. It doesn’t always have to be a rebrand—just a fresh take on your brand to remind your followers that you still mean business. Little tweaks in your page can create curiosity, attract new followers, and drive traffic to your social media page. Good graphic design will help a business to gain high visibility which in turn can lead to increased sales. Don’t forget about your content marketing strategy. Plan your content calendar based on what content resonates more with your audience. You’ll find this information in your dashboard. Lastly, if you want to create a presence in a new platform, research how to do it and what your competitors are doing.
  8. Revisit your branding. Do all your marketing materials reflect your branding? Develop new brand materials if you need to. Update your web design. Or invest more in a strategy or tactic that’s already working well. If you don’t have in-house people to do these for you, seek the help of a marketing agency in your area.
  9. Track your progress. Identify what KPIs matter to meet your goals (e.g. increased sales volume, leads, or organic traffic). When you have established these KPIs, enable the tools to track your progress to tell if your strategy is working. Choosing the right tools and systems for this job is very crucial. An actionable quarterly plan will make responding to the data easier and adjusting your activities accordingly.
  10. Evaluate your team. Are you feeling in a rut? Then, seek inspiration. Refocus. Build a stronger team by doing a brand workshop. A strong team is essential for businesses looking to succeed in a crowded market. A strong team can help you manage the workload, provide different perspectives and ideas, and bring the skills and expertise needed to grow the business.

A marketing plan doesn’t always have to start in January to be useful and effective. Sure, starting the year with a solid plan is great, but any time of the year is fine. Now hunker down with your team and clearly understand what will move the needle for your business. Your next step could be to schedule a brand and marketing workshop with our marketing agency to redefine your brand, your markets, and your competitors to create your updated marketing roadmap. Engaging with a reliable marketing consultant can help you determine what’s working and what isn’t.

We love to help Australian Businesses get noticed and succeed. So let Marketing Angels handle your marketing strategy as we’d love to do this for you.

Also read: How you can improve sales results during off peak season

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