3 Ways to Focus on Marketing Success in 2020
Marketing managers are working harder than ever to keep up with an ever-evolving menu of marketing tools and tactics. Putting all the pieces in place for effective campaigns, testing content, and coming up with new ways to engage with your audience means you’re tracking countless details. As a result, your attention gets divided and a feeling of overwhelm can leave you anxious and fractured.
“I just don’t know what to focus on” is a phrase we hear time and again from people managing their own business marketing or from managers who don’t have enough support. They start this or that initiative, but don’t feel like their efforts contribute to any success. There are too many details involved in any one project to allow them the time and space to move ahead.
Sound familiar? A fractured, unfocused work life doesn’t have to be your reality. You can set up expectations—even with your boss—that will clarify your work and help you feel more sane.
So how do you do it?
We’ve supported enough overwhelmed marketing leaders to know that not everyone has an innate sense of how to organize their agendas and remain clear on their goals. That’s why we’ve focused so much on creating processes that we can easily implement in our clients’ work too.
First thing, take a breath. Let 2020 be the year you slow down a bit and maybe even let go. You have to accept you can’t do everything.
Second, let’s talk about how to take a macro perspective so your goals remain in view. By focusing on the bigger picture, the smaller tasks will fall into place. Here are three ways to keep your thinking clear and your task management organized:
1. Focus on being responsive to your audience. Understanding your potential customers’ needs—which are always changing— will give you insight into how to execute your marketing. How can you talk to them in ways that build trust? Offering valuable (not necessarily numerous) content, highlighting your expertise, and talking about successful customer case studies can help you hone in on your audience’s pain points and drive them to seek a solution.
It’s also important to understand your customer’s journey. By taking the time to investigate the choices they make along the way to finding a solution, you can make sure your brand or company is speaking to them at critical points. This will open up opportunities to engage with them in new and creative ways. (Note: this part is fun, but notice we didn’t say easy. It’s hard work.)
2. Audit your efforts and determine what’s working. It’s ideal to have goals and milestones in your quest for conversions. For example, how much of your website traffic converts and if they don’t, look for potential pitfalls. What are the AOVs (actions of value) that are most successful in building quality leads? Perhaps meeting a company rep, via a Messenger conversation or watching a company video, helps build a foundation of trust. So what combination of creative can help you open up that conversation?
Determining what kinds of content (and on what platforms) work at the top, in the middle, and at the bottom of your sales funnel will help you determine where to spend your time and budget.
3. Make sure you build the support you need. Clearly, you need support under you—so take the time to build the right team or find the right tools. But what about support from above? Have you clarified goals and objectives with your stakeholders? Have you laid down clear parameters so everyone understands their roles and how they can contribute?
While it may be the most important thing you can do to carve out the space and time you need to do your work, setting up parameters can feel like a risky move. What if you alienate your colleagues or have to stand up to your boss? Keep to your plan and clarify your objectives. This will keep the conversation at a professional level.
By circling back repeatedly to what your objectives are, you can keep your decision-making process to a minimum. Asking yourself, “what should I post next month on social” is an open-ended question and takes time to answer. Asking yourself instead, “what is the theme this month that will address an important audience pain point?” immediately puts your efforts in focus.
The ultimate goal is to give yourself the necessary time to do your job and do it well. By staying focused on the bigger objectives and clarifying how to get there, you’ll be well on your way to a sane, simple, and successful work life. Enjoy the journey and here’s to your best year yet!