December 7, 2016
We have your attention, right? Good. Immediately into this blog post and we have our first point made already. If your marketing plans are achieving f*** all, then your starting point towards a resolution is to look at the content you are basing your plans around. Poor content equals poor reading which, in turn, equals poor engagement. Interesting, different and catchy content – such as our title for this blog post – will result in the opposite!
Simple really. There is no point in making a marketing plan if the words you will use to support it are naff and ineffective. If the title of this blog post was ‘Top 5 Reasons Marketing Plans Sometimes Don’t Work’ you probably wouldn’t be reading this now, correct? Well this leads us nicely into our first reason…
Yes, that’s right, we are going straight for the juggler already. Typical. Okay, it may be cliché and expected of a content writer to dive straight in with a content issue. We could have been a bit more original or playful with it you would presume, perhaps ending the blog with this section instead, as a nice rounding-off piece with a call-to-action. But no, we are heading the list with this because content is the most important element of any digital strategy. That’s the truth.
Your marketing plan itself may be completely full-proof. You may feel you have left no stone unturned and you have every base covered from start to end. But if the implementation of your plan involves shoddy content, you might as well not have bothered.
The most obvious reason for marketing plan failure is a lack of love and attention. In the world of business, love and attention means time and money. If you cannot dedicate time towards your strategy whilst it is in process, then it is sure to fail. Plans should be monitored, analysed and improved upon frequently to ensure the end ambition is achievable.
Nobody gets anywhere for free either. Financial investment may also be required to ensure a business reaches the next level. This is not to say a business cannot grow without capital. Only, a lack of investment usually results in the requirement of more time.
Ah middle management! A professional gear-grinder of ours right here at Content Juice. We have a strong dislike towards such people and make no bones about it! We just don’t see the point in them. When a brief comes into our inbox, we discuss it as a team and brainstorm ideas together. Once we have a clear direction of where the project is going, we elect the most suitable writer (depending on experience) to manage the project. This delegate is then responsible for communication between us and the client.
So, the individual who manages your project is also the person working on the project, and your main point of contact. Makes sense, right? Why would you want to talk to anyone else other than the person actually doing your work? Sticking another third party in the middle of that equation opens the opportunity for miscommunication, mismanagement and a misinterpreted brief. Hence, we have a saying here, middle management equals no management! Even the best laid plans fail when those in charge of execution have no skills or attributes required for successful plan implementation.
Your marketing plan is in full-swing and your team are rolling out bits and bobs of content all over the shop! But are any of your efforts connecting with your target demographic? Is the impact you’re having measurable? How do you even measure the effect you are having on your audience? This is where your overall ambition and all the bits in-between come into play.
The vast majority of marketing plans will have one overall ambition. For example, your end goal might be to double your profit margins come the end of the year. To ensure your plan is a success you will surely require resources, collateral and marketing platforms that require investment. With so many factors to consider, how will you know if your end goal is achievable whilst in the process of your plan? Say you are a third of the way through your marketing plan implementation – how can you be sure that your end goal is reachable and that you are on the right track to achieving it?
The use of Key Performance Indicators or KPIs will help you to define your ambition more clearly, by setting little amounts of feasible goals towards your overall bigger goal. These quantifiable measures are used to compare performance in terms of meeting your strategic goals. They will let you know what’s working well and what has turned into a right stinker. Here is a very basic and juvenile example of a KPI at work:
Finally, on our top five reasons why marketing plans achieve f*** all – failure to include everyone in the team. If you aren’t going to consult or utilise the expertise actually implementing your plan, then you should expect your strategy to have holes in it. Or at the very least, a bit of backlash. How can you be sure your team can deliver your plans if you haven’t asked for their professional opinion first? You may be unaware of the fact that you are creating mountains for your team members to climb.
Over expectation and oversight are two quick methods of screwing up any plan. There are certain team members that thrive on responsibility, and others that need a lot of support. Have you considered this in your marketing plan? It’s common sense really and simple logic. If you involve everyone then you have a much better idea of how things are going to work.
This rather angry and bitter blog post has been written to mark the end of Anger Awareness Week. Struggling with anger issues is a real problem that thousands of people deal with on a day-to-day basis. Often overlooked, the issue is a serious one and does affect people’s health and well-being. If you are experiencing anger problems or simply wish to find out more, check out their website for more details.