With businesses looking to adapt to more challenging circumstances, it's never been more important to address your marketing objectives for the coming year and beyond.
These are challenging times for business owners. Economic uncertainty has come hot on the heels of Brexit and Covid-19, sewing seeds of doubt in peoples’ minds and once again placing the business community under duress. We’ve seen it first hand, with a cautious climate hindering project progress and proposals lingering in email inboxes. We’ve received several requests asking for team members to be removed from website team pages due to redundancy. It’s an uncomfortable time for many. But, as we have seen in the past few years, brands that roll with the punches and move with the times are the ones that emerge from adversity, often in better shape than they were to begin with. With challenge, comes opportunity.
So how do you move the dial from ‘survive’ to ‘thrive’? Don’t, under any circumstances, do nothing! This is a time to be brave and invest in your market position. What do you want your brand to stand for in 2023? Will your current brand and marketing carry you there? In times of crisis, marketing is often perceived to be expendable, when in fact it plays a vital role in pulling a business through challenging periods and providing a solid platform for growth. We saw some client brands get left behind during the pandemic because their competitors had grasped the opportunity to restrategise, reposition and refresh their proposition to meet the demands, concerns and motivations of their target audience.
So here are a few things you could address to ensure your marketing is growth-focused in 2023…
Monitor customer behaviour
How are your customers accessing your services? Customer behaviour and buying trends have changed significantly across many sectors in recent times and it’s more important than ever to keep your finger on the pulse of their habits and expectations. Use this knowledge to tailor your brand experience and you’ll see higher levels of engagement and sales. One practical step you can take is to update your website with Google Analytics 4 (GA4) and start benefiting from the expanded data on offer. More info on that here
Review your brand proposition
Does what you say, and the way you say it, still ring true? Branding is the foundation on which all marketing should be built. Is your existing logo and brand portraying the business in the right way or could it be time for a refresh? A stale brand won’t inspire your customers or your staff. Create a value-driven brand identity that pitches your product and services with passion and precision. On a practical note, putting effective brand guidelines in place will make life easier for your team and help to promote best practice when it comes to applying your brand to any marketing communications.
Update your website
Face it, your website is your primary form of communication with the world and your customers. There has never been more scrutiny on a company’s online presence and this is where people are forming opinions about your brand and service, so making a good impression is vital. Is your website old and dated? Does it meet usability standards and provide an engaging experience for the user? Does it have the infrastructure and content to perform well in Google? These are all questions that can help drive your site forward and help you to reach and engage a wider audience online. Whether you’re a recruiter looking to post jobs more efficiently, a law firm looking to build authority through your blog, or a fashion retailer looking to sell more product online, a well designed and developed website that focuses on user experience can be a powerful tool in helping you achieve your goals. Need some help putting a website brief together? Try this
Comfortable and easy are short-term friends but long-term enemies. If you're looking for growth, choose the challenge. ” — Steven Bartlett
Review lead generation
With the current economic climate, new business may be harder to come by. Putting effective sales funnels and inbound marketing strategies together can help ease the pressure and increase sales. Have you tried Google Ads before? Could your SEO strategy do with being reviewed and improved? This leads us on to…
Finding new routes to market
The pandemic accelerated the move towards digital and customers in the majority of market sectors are searching for services online. How can you embrace the power of digital and drive demand for your product? A good place to start is evaluating your current digital footprint. Is our website in a fit state to receive visitors? Do we have any data, such as Google Analytics, that we can analyse? Try Googling yourselves and seeing what comes up. You need a thorough understanding of your target audience and their search patterns. What motivates them and how do they search for your kind of services? Planning and market research is key, otherwise you’ll be burning through cash with a rudderless Google Ads campaign before you can say ‘cost per click’!
Your proposition may be more suited to content-driven SEO, social media advertising, Google Ads, or a combination of them all. The important thing is to get good advice that focuses on strategy and your individual circumstances. What works for one company, may not be right for you. So avoid anyone selling a ‘one size fits all’ package.
Have you been struggling for social media content? Do you even have a strategy in place for the year? Now is a great time to create content and show the world that you have something to say.
Good quality content can help raise brand awareness, boost your search engine ranking, bring your social media presence to life and generate, qualify and nurture leads. There are a multitude of content options available, from blog articles and infographics to podcasts and Instagram posts. But it needs an underlying strategy and achieving a good mix is key. Time and resource are often an issue with content creation, so make sure you have a good plan in place and the right partner to support you. Putting an editorial calendar together will give you structure and nicely branded templates can help save time and give your in-house team ownership.
The most successful brands in 2023 will be the ones that embrace the challenge and invest in their marketing, channeling fresh energy in to their proposition and demonstrating a clear understanding of their customers’ needs and drivers. As the saying goes, the biggest risk is to take no risk at all. And if we can help you realise those marketing goals for 2023 and beyond, just get in touch