Elevating Your Marketing Plan - Episode 3 "The After Plan"
Happy fall! Thanks for tuning in to episode three of our e-miniseries, "The After Plan." If you haven't read episode one or two yet, you'll want to go back and do so before you continue reading this article. At this point, you should have most of your plan in front of you. You've outlined your goals and objectives, your research is spot on, your strategies are broad and inclusive and your tactics are fresh and engaging. You are well on your way to a successful marketing plan. There are only two things left for you to do. Join us as we explain the final steps to any successful marking plan - implementing and evaluating your plan.
1. Implementing the Plan
So, there's that brilliant plan you've worked hard to create. We know what it goes in to creating a strong marketing plan. Bravo to you - this is no easy feat! We're guessing you'd like to put it into action, right? But where to start?
We recommend creating a monthly marketing calendar and road map with specific dates to implement each tactic. Make sure to include specific start and end dates to ensure that your tactics are performed at a time that makes sense to your business's structure. A marketing calendar and road map also helps you think realistically. For example, you know the holidays are a busy time at your restaurant. This may not be the best time to kick off that ticketed dining experience of yours. Additionally, your calendar & road map will visually show where you're lacking marketing efforts throughout the year.
Keep in mind, while it's best to follow your monthly marketing calendar as closely as possible, nothing is permanent. Be open to changes in the calendar. Inc. Magazine Magazine emphasizes, "A whole host of variables could come into play that you never considered in the beginning, such as changes in consumer demand, channel expansion, customer contracts, competitive responses, and supply costs."
We recommend reviewing your calendar monthly and adjusting as necessary.
2. Evaluating the Plan
Congratulations! You've made it to the final step in the planning process; now is the time to gauge the effectiveness of your plan. This is quite simple if you look at your plan section by section.
As you may recall, we mentioned that your objectives should be S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely). Our previous example of a strong business objective was:
To increase awareness of our Sunday brunch special among Placer County community members by 30 percent by Jan. 1, 2018.
Therefore, it is important to be specific when creating your objectives. Your goal is to increase awareness by 30 percent and the date represents your deadline to accomplish the goal. So how exactly do you measure if you've met this goal? A straight-forward method to measuring customer awareness would be to conduct a pre and post implementation survey with consumers during your research phase. Make sure you send your surveys to the same pool of respondents to ensure accurate results.
Tactics are even simpler to evaluate. For example, you can easily track the number of patrons who sign up for your VIP rewards program or attend your ticketed dinner through your CRM database. Note how your promoted each tactic and adjust your approach pending on your results.
And there you have it. Thank you for tuning in to the final episode of our e-miniseries, "Elevating Your Marketing Plan." We hope you learned a thing or two. You now have the tools to create a top-notch marketing plan that aligns with your business's goals and objectives. Don't forget that you can always count on the Elevate team for all you marketing needs if you'd like to take your plan to the next level. Happy planning!