By now (hopefully) you’ve read, downloaded and already implemented a lot of our suggestions from Part One and Part Two of our $0 – $20K per month sales challenge article series. If you haven’t had a chance to read through them, definitely check them out because these free marketing plans are jam-packed with strategies you can implement immediately.
In this – our third article in our series, we’re focusing on something that may sound simple, but has the power to dramatically change your business results right now – your marketing plan.
DOWNLOAD: Entrepreneur Insider Series Part Three $0-$20k Per Month marketing Sales Challenge PDF Then, continue to read online below & leave a comment.
Here’s an interesting stat – 50% of companies are using digital marketing, but they don’t have a plan!
Yup, I just heard you say, “oh crap!”
Hence why, I wanted to give you…
Our Five Secrets to a Bullet-Proof Marketing Plan. These 5 secrets that I’m sharing with you today are based around a specific outcome – driving sales immediately to propel you even closer to your $20K per month in sales.
For the purpose of this article, I’m assuming that you have an existing business, a website, a social media presence and an existing customer base.
One quick note before we begin…
Regardless of where you’re business is at right now, or what industry you’re in – creating $20K in sales per month, consistently, takes time and it takes a well thought-out strategic marketing plan.
A few years ago I was in a meeting with Toyota when I discovered something really unnerving – and something you may relate to.
Their parts suppliers were experiencing a massive in hit in sales due to the GFC at the time – they were not working to a plan that didn’t create a single point of failure in their business. Which meant, they could have gone broke almost overnight!
Since then my team and I have discovered a lot of businesses run on the “no-plans-plan”.
For me, the no-plans-plan is plain reckless and it leaves you in a very precarious place. And if you’re currently in the midst of a no-plans-plan then I bet you’re feeling really vulnerable.
Can you relate?
Feeling a bit nervous right now?
Good, let’s light a fire under you to fix this immediately.
The thing is – without planning, strategy is haphazard and often disastrous. The sales results you want aren’t achieved because the marketing activities and the entire business are being set up for failure.
We can start turning that around sooner than you think.
These Five Secrets to a Bulletproof Marketing Plan are designed to ignite fast growth in your business so you can quickly work towards the $20K per month sales – and maintain it!
Secret One: By establishing a marketing plan first, you can be more flexible and creative in the long-run.
If your business is absolutely cranking without a marketing plan – congratulations you are one of the lucky few. You also might find that success is not sustainable for very long…so keep reading closely.
But first, I have some questions for you, and if you can answer “yes” to all of them, you can stop reading this article now and come work with me!
1. Are you generating cost effective leads from social media?
2. Have you set your content marketing calendar for the next 3-6 months?
3. Are you confident that there are no ‘holes’ in your sales process? (Do you have a clear sales process?)
4. Is your branding and messaging well defined, clear, concise, makes sense and appeals to your target audience?
5. Are you naturally attracting publicity that results in sales?
6. Do you have multiple revenue streams in your business that are all creating results and new sales opportunities?
7. Are you measuring relevant metrics and reacting accordingly?
If you’re looking at these questions and answering “no”, don’t worry you’re not alone.
Each of these points are designed for you to ask yourself: “what is happening in my marketing and business right now?”
Once you actually review the current situation, and see which opportunities you’re missing out on, you can move into planning and then implementation mode – and that’s where things get really fun!
The beauty of establishing a structured marketing plan is then being able to easily translate new ideas into profits really quickly; giving you back time that you can be spending on other things in the business (or even take a break)!
Secret Two: Your business should rest on the strength of multiple plans, not just one.
You’ve decided you need to move away from the no-plans-plan (awesome) and you’re not sure where to start. Then you develop one master marketing plan and pour all your love and attention into that one shiny, golden play.
Stop right there.
Ask yourself – have I created one singular point of failure in my business?
A single point of failure (SPOF) is a part of a system that, if it fails, will stop the entire system from working.
- If you stop your facebook ads tomorrow, what would happen?
- If your best sales-person resigned today, what would happen?
- If your email list disappeared (I know, don’t even say it), what would happen?
- If you were sick for a month, what would the result be?
- If your free download, which is the start to your whole sales funnel, fails to sell, then what?
You get the idea….
This may sound simple, however a good marketing plan is multi-dimensional; it’s made up of a few varied mini-plans. So if one element falls downs, breaks, fails, then you can rest the results of the business on the strength of other elements.
It’s being smart about your planning and adding ‘contingencies’.
Look at your marketing, your social media, your sales funnel today and think of some alternate ways that can be added to your processes and increase your possibility for success.
Review your processes and systems: what’s your biggest liability (sometimes it’s you). If you were to go on holiday for 6 weeks, would the business survive without you? Creating multiple plans and working to ensure all of them are working independently (towards a common goal) is a smart move.
This strategy has saved many an entrepreneur!
They should also be solutions you can quickly and cost effectively turn around – and appeal to your target audience.
Sometimes the solutions will be system-based and team-based, so the front end of the business can keep running exceptionally well and to help…
DOWNLOAD: Entrepreneur Insider Series Part Three $0-$20k Per Month marketing Sales Challenge PDF Then, continue to read online below & leave a comment.
Here are 17 powerful marketing ideas you can start immediately
Print this post off now & schedule them into your marketing calendar;
1. Host a webinar to give value, and gain sales
2. Create a closed Facebook group to share special content
3. Launch a High-Level coaching program designed to Ignite growth
4. Write a new Ebook around a topic you know your audience needs and wants
5. Invest in a referral program for your existing customers
6. Training a team member to have more responsibility
7. Having your sales person/team write out their process so anyone can be trained in selling
8. Systemise your email campaigns so they can work in the background, even when you’re not in the office
9. Then create an email plan to implement – email your subscribers
10. Spend a month focusing on re-marketing
11. Host a VIP night for your clients
12. Build your core client relationships so the business does not rely solely on online sales
13. Investigate hiring a VA or EA so your time is not sucked into admin tasks
14. A free or paid Email Series around a specific topic for your audience
15. A free or paid Video Series around a specific topic for your audience
16. A 7 Day Challenge designed to ignite change
Be sure to download the PDF version of this blog post at the top and schedule these activities into your marketing calendar now!
Creating different opportunities in your marketing plan is something my team and I work through with our high-level coaching clients in Ignite, and it’s a strategy that can quickly see tens of thousands of dollars added to your sales.
Some wise words – when you are creating new ideas and strategies it can be oh-so-exciting, however keep in the mind the main goals of the business, and the core offer/s of your business.
Evaluate if your new ideas can work concurrently with those goals, or if they will take away from them. This comes from knowing your customers really well and your sales funnel extremely well – then you can action new campaigns and ideas really quickly, cutting down your time and costs.
You want to test what works well for the business, your budget, your team, especially your customers and the targets you’re aiming for.
Just one of these ideas, when implemented really well could generate you an extra $20K in sales per month, when you have the plan in place to support it.
Secret Three: Use a template with simple questions and make the planning process easy!
Follow these simple steps so you can invigorate your marketing plan and ignite change for your clients – and your sales.
Using a template also cuts down on your time next time you come to designing a marketing plan.
Some entrepreneurs learn the hard way by constantly thinking they need to start everything from scratch. If you think you will use a plan or idea or format again – create a system and a template for it – your future self will thank you!
Here’s a simple template you can use to get started:
- Ensure that your product or service that you’re about to market solves a real and needed solution for your target audience.
- Understand the benefits and outcomes of the product or service and create benefit-driven marketing messages that are in line with your branding and the core messages of your company.
- Set a sales goal or target and establish your timelines – what do you want to achieve in that timeline?
- Workshop your strategy for achieving this goal – what are all the moving parts that need to work together to achieve this target? What can you do, what can your team do, what can you outsource etc.
5. Outline what you are committing to the strategy – what are the non-negotiables of this strategy?
- Where can you be flexible and what is your contingency plan?
- Set measurable milestones – what are the success indicators of the plan?
And it’s this last point – measurable milestones that is our fourth secret.
Secret Four: Measure your success and cut your time and money in half!
Jayson DeMers says “Measurement is what makes marketing a science, rather than a superstition.”
All the goals you set for your marketing plan should be SMART – that means Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely.
By creating SMART goals, it’s easy for you to gauge the success and the ROI of each campaign and then see what you can improve.
By reviewing real metrics and specific goals, you can easily see if something is off-track and needs to be changed asap.
Similarly, you can see if a campaign is doing really well and celebrate with your team – you can also use the success of a campaign as a blueprint or template (see previous point) for future campaigns.
“If you’re tracking conversions, you have a huge advantage over your competitors and will be able to outspend them and get more leads because you’ll be getting lower costs per lead and tracking everything. You’ll know exactly which parts of your campaign are profitable and which aren’t.” – Perry Marshall
Here are some key metrics you can start to track:
- Website Bounce rate
- Website Opt-in rate
- Unique Visitors
- Email open rate
- Click through rate
- Cost per lead
- Cost per conversion
- Abandoned cart rate
- Payment failure rate
- Social sharing
- Churn rate
You can set up a free Google Analytics account to start tracking some of these metrics to measure your success. Most can be discovered through simple searches and using the software solutions you already have set up in the business.
Measuring metrics ties in with having a plan and vision as a starting point. If you marketing plan feeds into achieving those metrics then you’re on the right track.
Understanding metrics can save you thousands of dollars, and gives you the ability to act fast and make considered decisions…as the saying goes: knowledge is power!
Secret Five: Collaboration: The difference between you and your competitors.
“Collaboration is no longer just a strategy: it is the key to long-term business success and competitiveness. Businesses that realize this sooner rather than later will be the ones who win the game and succeed in the new global economy.” Bob Mudge, President of Consumer and Mass Business at Verizon
This rings especially true for startups and new businesses!
It can be hard, especially for entrepreneurs who are trying to do it all themselves, to reach out and speak to another entrepreneur and collaborate with them. However, it’s well worth the initial shyness you may have.
Martin Zwilling, contributor for Forbes.com states that a report conducted by Frost & Sullivan shows the ROI on collaborations are four times the initial investment.
“This ROI comes from cost avoidance, cost reductions, business optimization, and faster business decisions.”
Collaboration can come in different forms and through different channels. Mentors, influencers, like-minded business owners or entrepreneurs who have similar values, and your team are all great avenues for collaborations.
And with collaboration comes opportunity. This is where you can see a serious increase in your sales!
At its heart, any team is a collaboration. So foster collaboration as part of your team’s culture from the outset. Give your team a voice to share their insights and opinions – it may be an idea from your least unassuming team member that sees a new winning product developed.
Collaboration is incredibly easy with the use of online team management and project management resources like Asana and Redbooth – this allows everyone in the project to stay up to date, gauge the success and the progression of the project.
Amy Rosen at The Public Private Strategy Group said it best;
“If you’re an entrepreneur — and especially if you’re just starting out down that path — collaboration isn’t just important, it is as important as the idea itself.”
Use your collaborations in the spirit they’re intended – everyone involved get to learn, grow, develop and… increase sales.
Keep that end goal in mind with any strategic decision. Am I learning? Am I contributing? Am I adding revenue?
So what does an extra $20K per month look like to you?
What kind of impact could it have on your business and your life?
What would that mean to you?
By not implementing a well thought out plan, you could be leaving hundreds of thousands of dollars on the table each year… and that’s a conservative estimate!
As an entrepreneur myself, running a performance team with big goals – I want to know where I’m missing out on business. However one thing that my team and I see consistently is this – it’s hard for entrepreneurs and small businesses owners to ask for help.
So I want to tell you this right now – you’re not alone, it’s human to make mistakes. It’s ok to be confused. It’s natural to fail on the path to success.
What you can do about it now is actually make a pact to move past any past failings, and ask for help. Because there is help available.
My team and I work with clients ready to attain a new level of success through our IGNITE Program. Ignite is a 90 Day High Growth Business Advisory Program and it’s completely based around your specific business goals.
As one of our past IGNITE clients says:
“If you are looking for an intense, accelerated learning process I would recommend working with Ben’s team. Be prepared to do the work, it’s an investment in yourself. Don’t expect any free passes. It sets you up to think differently in order to find solutions for your business/life.” (Karen Willis, Working From Anywhere)
For more information on IGNITE click here.
In the meantime, I want you to post in the comments below precisely what you can immediately action today that will help you get your marketing plan up to speed and on the right path to doing $20k plus per month in sales.