Great news! The Marketing Department just got some money behind it and you’re ready to fire on all cylinders with the marketing campaign to end all marketing campaigns. Something that will blow the competition away and cause the boss to shower praise on you and your team every time you strut through the hallways!
Stop. Right. There. Before you punch the accelerator and cruise full speed ahead, check out four things you need to know before launching your marketing campaign.
1. What is the OBJECTIVE of this campaign?
First, consider why you’re even doing this in the first place. While “to boost sales!” is the most common answer, it’s usually not the actual objective. Narrow your focus and be specific on what you want to do. Are you trying to get more leads, traffic or conversions for your website? How many? Do you want to get more likes or shares on your social channels? How will you track it? Need to get more signups for an event? By when?
Start every marketing endeavor with a brainstorming session with the entire team and identify SMART goals. SMART goals are:
- Specific – What exactly do you want to achieve?
- Measurable – How will we measure progress?
- Attainable – Do you have the proper tools/skills/people to complete the objective?
- Realistic – Are you sure you can achieve this goal?
- Time-Based – What is the timeframe?
By determining what the goals of your marketing campaign are first, you’ll be able to identify who exactly this campaign is for and how your marketing will cater to them. It will also ultimately help you define the theme and approach for your plan.
2. Who is the TARGET of this campaign?
Now it’s time to figure out what your campaign’s audience looks like. Also known as a “buyer persona”, this targeted individual is who you would define as your ideal customer for this specific campaign.
Be thorough. Don’t just pick an age range and be done with it. Take the time to get to know this person. Where do they live? How do they spend their time and money? Do they prefer to shop online or in a store? What kind of education do they have? Do they have kids? What’s their average household income? Identify what their preferences and pain points are so you can customize your promotion to be more attractive to them. Knowing specific details about your target audience will help create a more compelling campaign that will appeal to their personality and capture their attention.
3. What is the desired RESPONSE of this campaign?
When considering the desired response for your campaign, you must consider what the consumer will be asked to do and if they’ll think the effort is worth the reward… or in laymen’s terms: “Is the juice worth the squeeze?”
Put yourself in the shoes of your target. Would you participate? You’re a busy person. Would you take time out of your day to complete your task and get your reward? Is the task well thought out and easy to accomplish or are you asking too much?
Here at Cliffedge, when we work on this portion of a campaign, we like to pose the question: “Does this pass the “Who Cares” Test? Will the reward you’re offering activate your target? This is the key to a successful campaign. If the reward isn’t worth the effort, you’re doomed from the start.
4. How will SUCCESS be measured with this campaign?
How will you know if you meet your goal? Arguably, the most important part of your campaign and sometimes the hardest to figure out is determining the metrics that will define success. Metrics are what move marketing forward. They’re the benchmarks that you expect to reach with your campaign.
Did your display ads increase web traffic by 30%? Did you receive 20% more phone calls? Did you grow in-store sales by 10%? These are actual numbers that your campaign should achieve. If you didn’t reach your desired level of success, then you’ll need to reevaluate your plan and/or reassess your metrics.
Speaking of metrics, make it easier on your team (and your stress level) by setting realistic goals. Converting 100% of your website traffic into sales won’t happen. And you won’t get a flood of business because you put a 10% off coupon in the ‘Thrifty Nickel’. By not having realistic and well-defined performance goals, your marketing plan may look like it failed…even if it was wildly successful.
Now You’re Ready to Get Started
Now that you know what you need to prep for a great marketing campaign, it’s time to set your plan into action.