Develop a Strategy

What steps do you take to achieve your goals?

We touched on a basic Twitter strategy in our kick-off article but there are a lot more details that go into creating a multi-tiered strategy. Instead of focusing on a single element of marketing we’re going to step back and take a broader look at a range of possible options for steps of a campaign.

First Quarter Benchmark goals for marketing collateral:

Magazine Ad: You should have run at least two ads. Using these ads build a baseline level against which you can measure the success of the campaign. As a rule of thumb it takes at least three “touches” before a consumer will start to respond.
Newspaper Ad: In a single quarter you should have run at least a dozen ads if not more in a newspaper. Because of this, at some point in the first quarter you should have a solid up-tick in lead generation. By tracking this information you can determine who you are reaching and whether or not your ads are reaching your chosen target.
Leave Behinds: In three months you should have some indication if the locations you have left behind collateral are being effective. If you do not have any measurable response to your leave behinds you should analyze the locations where you have left your collateral.
Sales Kit: If you have not heard back from people who have had three months to respond you need to analyze to whom you are giving your sales kit.
Direct Mail: First quarter you should ensure you have had at least three touches on a potential customers. It is also reasonable to expect a modest up-tick in response.
Twitter: Your objective in the first quarter is to build your following and connect with potential customers. Social Media is a long term and on-going solution, not a quick fix.
Facebook: Establishing an effective Facebook presence should be the only goal in the first quarter. Ensure all the information you need is on your page and that you are making regular contributions to its content.
LinkedIn: A combination of Twitter and Facebook is the goal when it comes to Linkedin. Get involved in discussion groups and build a following. Also while your doing that fine tune your Linkedin profile page and company profile page.

Second Quarter Benchmark goals for marketing collateral:

Magazine Ad: This should be the first quarter you see a noticeable increase in traffic to whichever portal you are driving the customers. Whether it is your website, social media pages, or even to your sales phone number.
Newspaper Ad: This is your second quarter of running newspaper ads. You should see a significant increase in qualified traffic. If you haven’t then you need to not only reevaluate your message but whether or not a newspaper ad is a proper source for lead generation.
Leave Behinds: If you changed the venues where you were placing leave behinds and do not have consistent response then you need to reevaluate your material. Change your collateral and compress the same locations you have used into one quarter experiment.
Sales Kit: If you still do not hear back from your new list of people with who you are leaving your collateral you need to reevaluate your collateral.
Direct Mail: By the end of the second quarter you should know whether your direct mail campaign is working. If you experienced an increase in lead generation but it was the wrong audience evaluate your material.
Twitter: Your objective in the second quarter is to start pushing and selling yourself. Start talking yourself up.
Facebook: In quarter two you should start driving traffic through your Facebook page form other social media and presenting more in-depth content designed to drive traffic to your website. You should see an increase in web traffic.
LinkedIn: You should start actively engaging connections as well as be entirely entrenched in discussion threads and conversations. At the end of the second quarter you should be almost ready to start your own discussion group.

Third Quarter Benchmark goals for marketing collateral:

Magazine Ad: Your lead generation should continue to increase through quarter three. If it plateaus you should adjust your campaign accordingly.
Newspaper Ad: Lead generations should continue to increase in the third quarter, if it flattens out adjust your messaging accordingly.
Leave Behinds: Leave behinds should get consistent results from the first quarter on. If you have changed your collateral and getting negative results similar to QTR 1 & 2 then you should stop your leave behind campaign all together.
Sales Kit: Your sales kit should be effective and you should be giving it out consistently to qualified audience.
Direct Mail: Your direct mail piece should be consistently working at this point and moving forward.
Twitter: You should see an increase of people actively promoting your tweets as well as your feed in general. If you’re not you are not using Twitter effectively.
Facebook: You should see an active increase in Facebook follows and traffic through your accounts. If you aren’t then you are not using Facebook effectively.
LinkedIn: The high end connections on Linkedin should start being self fulfilling by the end of quarter three. You should also start being regarded as someone to be heard in your field. If these aren’t happening by the end of quarter three then you are not using Linkedin effectively.

Fourth Quarter Benchmark goals for marketing collateral:

Magazine Ad: By the end of the fourth quarter you should see your print campaign reaching it’s apex as well as starting to plan your next campaign.
Newspaper Ad: Your newspaper ad, if you are still doing it, should be actively driving leads to your business.
Leave Behinds: These should be in maintenance mode by quarter four.
Sales Kit: Your sales kit should be effective and you should be giving it out consistently to qualified audience just like quarter three but you should start thinking about your next sales kit design.
Direct Mail: Your direct mail piece should be consistently working at this point and moving forward.
Twitter: Twitter should be in self fulfillment mode by quarter four, your team should be humming along, engaging potentials and your active audience at this point should be very active! Also you should see consistent effects on qualified lead generation.
Facebook: Facebook like all social media should be in “rolling down hill” mode and basically working like a well oiled machine impacting qualified lead generation.
LinkedIn: Your company should actively be generating high-end qualified leads as well as actively making connections.

These are of course not set in stone guidelines but should give you an idea what kind of benchmarks you should expect when performing basic marketing campaigns. No matter what you do you should have realistic check points throughout the process to gauge how things are working.