It’s the end of June, and we’re halfway through the calendar year. Remember those days back in January when the months stretched out before you, and your calendar had almost nothing on it?
I don’t know about you, but my calendar is pretty full now. Is all the activity getting your business where you want it to go? Does your marketing plan need a course correction?
Time for a Mid-Year Review
Mid-year is a perfect time to sit down and review your marketing plans. You still have many weeks ahead of you, and this time of year often has a few slow work weeks you can take advantage of.
You now have six months worth of information about what customers are buying and what’s happening in the market. Using this information, you can make adjustments to your plans. Back in January you didn’t know how it would play out, but now you have a better idea. Use it!
A Four-Question Checkup
Spend some time answering these questions to get a handle on adjustments you can make so that your marketing plan will help your business finish the year strong.
1. Has your target market changed?
You may have started out offering a product or service to a specific group, but find there’s another group of customers who loves your product or service. What can you do to cater to them? How can you build on this bonus group of customers through the rest of this year? Read more about honing in on your target market here.
2. Which marketing efforts paid off?
Look back at everything you’ve done to promote your business over the first half of the year. Think about the marketing efforts you’ve invested in. Add up your time investment, too. What got results?
Look at the ads you placed, the website updates you did, the trade shows you went to, and even the networking events you attended. Which activities netted new customers for your business?
Many businesses have focused on the social media arena over the past year. Have Twitter and Facebook worked for you? Are there things you can do to make them work better?
3. Which marketing efforts fell flat?
Sometimes your marketing plans look great on paper, but the reality doesn’t measure up. Are there projects you’d like to eliminate?
Albert Einstein said “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Getting rid of projects that aren’t giving you a good return on your time and money investment will free up energy to spend on projects that pay off. Don’t feel like you have to continue with something that’s just not working.
4. How can you budget your time and energy to make the most out of the rest of the year?
You’ve refined your target market, and examined what worked and what didn’t. How will you adjust the time you spend and the money you invest in your small business marketing?
Will you take time now to make plans for the rest of the year? It’s a great way to see the calendar as half full, instead of half empty. I want to hear about your year in the comments. How has it gone so far, and what are your plans? Any tips to share?