8 Steps to Marketing Your Business

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Whether you have a start-up or an established business, a complete business plan includes a marketing budget to promote your presence and grow your customer base.  How do you accomplish this to insure you are using your budget effectively? 

Here are The 8 Steps:  

1. Determine your Budget

·      Project your annual income and take a percentage of that to devote to marketing.   A good starting point is 9%+ for a start-up and 5%-6%+ for an established business.

2. Determine your Brand

·      Mission, Message, Logo & Tagline, Colors, Style.

3. Determine your Market

·      What is the demographic of your customer? Where do they live? Local, National, International?

4. Determine Your Strategy

·      Who is your customer?  What are you offering? Why do they do business with you? Lifestyle and interests?  How would they like to see your message delivered?

5. Design Creative

·      Partner with your graphic designer to create the graphics that convey your brand.  Create several ad styles and formats to suit media. Use photos/video, invest in great images.

6. Choose Media

·      A strong media plan includes simultaneous placement over several varieties of media. Ex. Television, radio, print, digital, social, transportation, billboard, direct mail, press.  What are your customers reading, internet, social, lifestyle habits?  Place your ads there.

7. Schedule your Media

·      Annual contracts usually offer savings. Determine the day(s) of the week. Vary ad sizes placing them more frequently to maintain consistent reach & extend your budget. Make a media calendar. Stick to it.

8. Place your Ads

·      Negotiate advertising contracts, submit media.  Change and Update the copy or ad as your business changes and grows and to promote your grand opening, special, announcement.

If you have the time, do it yourself or partner with a firm who will provide guidance in branding, assist you with your strategy, facilitate the creative, and direct your media planning and placement.

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Erika Burke is the Marketing and Creative Director at SCRIBE415.