Are you working in or on your business?

Written by: Mick Donohoe

We’re all guilty from time to time of “working in the business, not on the business,” but the start of a new year is a great time to break out of the shackles and focus on your Business Model and Strategic Marketing Plan.

Small business owners often get stuck in the here and now and don’t take the time out to look to the future and focus on longer term goals, anchoring their marketing plan to business strategy.

I’m not just talking about day to day marketing and sales tactics like building a new website or increasing sales but a strategic plan outlining where your business is heading, why you’re going in that direction and the topline actions you need to take to accomplish it.

Your strategic plan needs to address the big three questions every business, large or small, should be able to answer:

  1. Where are you now?
  2. Where do you want to be?
  3. How are you going to get there?

Looking for a little more inspiration? Check out my guide: How to write a great vision and mission statement.

What should a good strategic marketing plan address?

  • Why you started your business and what you want your company or brand to stand for
  • Key revenue streams and essential costs related to your business model
  • Your typical customer segments and why they buy from you instead of your competition
  • What you do better than your competition and what value you deliver to your customers
  • How you are perceived by your target market (what your name, brand and logo represent) and if this perception reflects what you are trying to communicate.
  • How you influence your market to include you in their consideration set when they are thinking about buying your products and services
  • What key activities, resources and partners help you achieve your goals

Like all good chefs, here’s a little something we prepared earlier: 10 Step Marketing Template For Small Business

Do you know what your business is ‘known’ for?
Positioning means establishing a unique position in the market that helps you stand out from your competitors. Read my blog: Positioning your business for success. 

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By addressing these issues and getting your whole team on board you will improve the effectiveness of your marketing, present a unified brand to the marketplace and, importantly, provide a reason for the market to buy from you.

Take the time now to define you strategy and direction. If you need help, the team at Capstone Marketing can walk you through these steps.

Mick Donohoe is the founder and Managing Director of Capstone Marketing, a Wollongong-based full service marketing agency.