Marketing is often overwhelming for small business owners. There are too many tactics, types of media, expert opinions, and industry terms being thrown at you from every direction. It’s exhausting, and it’s far too much information. To add to the chaos, those tactics, media, opinions, and terms are constantly changing!
When you try to execute marketing from a place of overwhelm, it’s easy to get distracted and feel as though your efforts aren't impactful or can’t be measured.
The problem is that you’re building your marketing plan without a foundation. Your Marketing Foundation consists of the processes and tools you need to work through and create before doing any other marketing.
These pieces will fuel and guide everything else you do. They become the solid, or foundational, base from which you’ll decide which tactics to try and how to plan your campaigns. While those tactics will continue to change as technology and consumer needs and behaviors shift, your marketing foundations will stay constant.
This foundation is critical because the underlying principle of marketing is fairly simple and unchanging - connecting with people and letting them know how you can help them.
When you have a really clear picture of who you are serving and how you provide value to them, everything else is just about delivering that message.
After creating your foundation, the right strategies and tactics will be much easier to identify and deploy, and they’ll produce better results. This isn’t to say that delivery is without a learning curve and some trial and error, but it is always built on the same set of principles.
Many business owners are get-it-done kind of people. They want to take action and move things along. I get it; I’m one of those people, too! However, this often leads us to start throwing stuff against the wall just to see what sticks. While testing different tactics is helpful in marketing, it’s not good to go in blind. This leads not only to wasted time and resources but also missed opportunities.
Preparation is necessary in marketing. It’s like sanding and taping the edges before painting the walls. The little bit of extra work up front saves you a lot of headaches down the road, and you end up with a better finished product.
Building your marketing foundation will prepare you to be proactive, creative, and relevant in all your marketing efforts. You won’t be blindly guessing and hoping, but setting out on a clear, focused direction. Will you need to make adjustments? Of course. But they will be fewer and smaller than if you had started without this solid base.
So then, whether you’re writing a social media post, creating an ad, or delivering your 30-second pitch at a networking event, the work that you do on your foundation will help you execute marketing efforts that fuel your mission and guide your clients to you.
Your Marketing foundation includes developing your Persona Profile, mapping the Persona Journey, and crafting the conversations that you’ll have throughout that journey. Learn more about the Marketing Foundation by reading these posts in this series: