THREE TRIMESTERS: THE LIFE OF YOUR MARKETING STRATEGY
Starting a business is like bringing a new life into the world, and with any life-changing experience, it takes time. A marketing strategy will help you give birth to your dream business. Many small businesses fail because they don’t consider a marketing strategy before diving into the market. The market is always changing, and the competition must adapt around it. Content marketing has become an essential part of consumer engagement, and you need to think strategically to attract the attention of the right audience online. As a mumpreneur, you have to be creative and think outside the box to get noticed, and it’s getting harder to stand out. To help you through some of these difficulties here are 6 solutions for scary business situations.
Evaluate and analyse the health of your business with this easy checklist. Simply follow three easy steps and get a diagnostic on how your marketing strategy is at the moment.
But for now, I will explain the three “trimesters” of your marketing strategy, the beginning of your business’s life.
FIRST TRIMESTER: GOALS AND TARGET
During this period you are adjusting to the idea of running a business and will be hit with a lot of information. Here is where you will develop your business’s core values.
A well-developed marketing strategy is the foundation of a marketing plan and is what will attract potential clients. It will sustain your dream business and achieve maximum profit. Marketing strategies also provide direction for active promotion. During the phase of this first trimester, you need to have a solid business idea, your goals outlined, and your market niche defined. If you need a little bit help on how to start a business from home, get my free guide, where I take you through 6 easy steps to follow to give life to your dream.
During the first trimester you will:
- Solidify your business idea: It’s time to analyse the marketing environment for your business.There are external forces (legal, competitive, cultural, social, economic etc.) and internal forces (resource, access, skills) that can affect the performance of your unborn business. Your challenge is to identify and use your internal strengths to capitalise your opportunities and overcome your threats. To do so, you should do a SWOT analysis to identify your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to give a solid base to the start of your marketing strategy.
- Outline your primary goals: How will you turn your dream into a real business? Where do you see yourself in the short and long term? Your dreams business can become a reality with solid goals in mind.
- Define Target Market: Who is your ideal customer? You need to be able to understand the market you will be moving towards, and where your business will be situated. Why is your target market important? A well-defined target market will help you develop an effective marketing strategy and you, as a busy mother, won’t waste time, money and effort.
SECOND TRIMESTER: DEVELOPING STRATEGIES TO SUPPORT YOUR MARKETING GOALS
During the second trimester, you will analyse how your business will evolve. By now you should feel more secure with your business idea because you have solid goals and a potential target market in mind.
You will now consider three important aspects:
- Marketing Budget: Yes, you need a budget for your marketing! It’s essential to put some money aside to be able to get the word out there and put your big plans into action. A Marketing Budget is a guide to make sure that you stay on track with your costs. Keep in mind that the size of your marketing budget will depend on how much you have available to invest, and how quickly you want to see results.
- Platforms: There are two types of platforms. The first is a Content Marketing Platform which is kind of like your virtual office where your target market can find all your information in one place. The second type of platform is a Social Media Platform, a communication channel between you and your target market. For business platforms to move in the right direction, you must create a Digital Strategy Plan. This is an outline of how and what you are going to do on each of your platforms. A strategy will help your digital presence integrate with your overall business goal, so plan!
- Branding: Creating a consistent brand is key! Many markets are jam-packed with products already, and you need to think how you will be different. Make sure you highlight these differences in your brand. Visual marketing plays an important role, and businesses only have 30 seconds to capture the eyes of their potential target.
THIRD TRIMESTER: EVALUATION AND ADJUSTMENT
During the third trimester, you may feel a little under pressure as your business starts taking shape. Don’t stress, as this is just the time where you see the big picture.
During this stage you will have to do four critical reviews:
- Review your goals: Make sure your goals (short and long-term) are aligned with the overall marketing strategy. It’s important to have them clear from the start.
- Review your niche: Make sure you are focusing on one small and specific segment of the market. It’s an effective way to provide a service that satisfies the needs and wants of your potential customers.
- Review and organise your marketing collateral: Make sure that your marketing materials are designed to attract your ideal client and communicate your business’s unique qualities.
- Review your online marketing: Take a look at your site and social media channels to make sure they’re designed to attract and educate your visitors. Do a Content Calendar and a Social Media Plan to help you to make sure your branding and messaging are clear, consistent and on time.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking that after developing your marketing strategy the process ends. Marketing strategies are not created and then left to run on autopilot; they must carry on in a state of constant growth, just like a human. It’s an ongoing process that requires continual evaluation and adjustment, depending on the environment. If your market position moves up or down, your marketing strategy will have to change along with it to guarantee that the enterprises you created are relevant to the current market environment.
After three trimesters, you are ready to give birth to your dream business and run it on a solid base. But like a new mum, you will always be learning…