Have you had a chance to map out your marketing plan for the year yet? If not, no worries, since I think this will be extremely helpful for you.
If planning out 12 months in advance seems too daunting, you can start with planning the first 4-6 months. A little planning now can make a huge difference in your business – it can also help you stay more focused and make you a lot more productive and profitable. Sounds good, right?
Perhaps you aren’t quite sure how to go about mapping out your marketing plan, and maybe this task has been done ‘on the fly’ up to this point. Today I am going to share the blueprint that I use in my business that will make things a lot easier (and more profitable) for you.
I remember staring at my gigantic ‘At-A-Glance’ wet-erase wall calendar back in December of 2014. This would be my second year in business with Health Coach Solutions. I was excited about the possibilities for the year, but I also had to admit – I didn’t have a strategic plan for setting up my marketing plan. Luckily, up until that point, I had put some good strategies into place, but I was not yet good about planning out a few months in advance – It was more like I was flying by the seat of my pants. 2015 would be different. I had an overall idea of what I wanted to accomplish, and I had written down my goals for the year. Now I just needed to tie it all together and figure out how to make it happen.
As I went to work to fill up my marketing calendar for the year, I was sure to mark off time for vacations (one thing I forgot to do the previous year – whoops! I’m not making that mistake ever again). Then I thought “Okay, so now what?”
As I thought about what my goals were for the year, I knew that providing value was at the top of my list, so I decided to make that a category to include each month. Providing value would be accomplished via avenues such as my blog posts, guest blog posting opportunities, guest speaking, and in my private Facebook groups.
Since growing my email list would be a big focus for me, I knew that list building needed to be one of the categories too. Now things were starting to fall into place.
I also needed to figure out my schedule for special promotions, such as flash sales or new programs during the year. Mapping this out in advance, helped me put the other pieces into place more easily since I could time other projects around launch time. Since launches are usually time consuming, I know that will be my main focus during that time frame.
Another strategy I wanted to focus on was expanding my circle of influence, reaching out to more people that share a similar niche, and exploring new opportunities (guest blog posts, guest speaking, etc.).
The first step of this process is having a clear idea of who your ideal clients are. Once you have that figured out, the rest becomes easier (I will be covering this topic in a post later this month too).
Planning out 2016 has been much easier with this formula, so I want to share it with you because I think it will be extremely helpful, as well as save you time and frustration.
What I came up with was a formula with 4 distinct strategies to focus on each month.
This made it easier for me to plug in what I needed to do, and allowed me to be consistent with my efforts.
- Provide Value – Focus on giving great content, and building your brand
- List building – Grow your audience so you will have more people that want to hear from you
- Promotion – Offer a solution to your audience’s problem(s)
- Networking/Guest Opportunities – Expand your reach, share your expertise
I like to write up my monthly marketing plan in Evernote first, and then transfer it to my giant wall calendar so it’s always in front of me.
Note: Scroll down to get your own marketing planning worksheet that will make this really easy.
Once I implemented this strategy, my entire marketing plan became much clearer and my business grew by leaps and bounds. No more scrambling at the last minute, and wondering what to do next. I knew where I needed to plug in my marketing strategies each month, so this also saved me a lot of wasted time. A marketing plan, implemented consistently, will yield more consistent revenue. Yes, it takes some time to see results, but each month will build on the previous month, and then a ripple effect will start to kick in.
Each month, I made sure to include strategies from the 4 categories listed above. There were months where I wasn’t promoting one of my programs, and I focused more on list building and networking. Another option for this is to create an affiliate program, and have other people promote your programs to their audience at different times of the year. Implementing an affiliate program is a more advanced strategy, but I wanted to mention it because it can be very effective, especially if you have online coaching programs available.
It goes without saying that it’s also important to know who it is that you want to help, so you are sure you are marketing to your ideal client (and not just marketing to the masses). The more specific you are in who you want to help, the more specific you can be with your message, and in turn, the more people will be interested in working with you. I will be covering this topic in great detail later this month too. If you’re one of my subscribers, you will receive an email about it, so be sure you’re one of my VIP’s (just hop over to the side bar and sign up). If you grab the free marketing planner worksheet, you will be on my email list too, so you’ll be all set.
Without a good marketing plan, you will be dramatically limiting the growth of your business, and you will feel like you’re spinning your wheels without making much progress. Take the planner I am providing for you and start putting some ideas into place. I can’t wait to hear what you think!
If you need help with how to set realistic, achievable goals for your business, be sure to check out this post – Foolproof Goal-Setting Tips for a Successful Health Coaching Practice
Stay tuned for my next post where I will be sharing more ideas to help you put all of this into place.
Oh, and don’t forget to grab your free marketing planner worksheet.