It’s that time of year again, time to break out the mistletoe, watch the Christmas parade, marvel at the Grinch and eat too much. It all comes around very quickly and soon, with a couple of hiccups and an Auld Lang Syne, we will welcome a fresh new challenge. This is a season for traditions, to reflect on what is good in life, to cherish our thoughts and beliefs and there is certainly time to give thanks for the past year, however difficult it may have been! But it is also time to look forward to 2010, to take an even deeper breath than normal and to re-evaluate exactly where we are all going.
Tradition is great around the fire with the family, but to survive in this ultra-competitive and challenging environment we need to make sure that our marketing plan is anything but traditional. So much is changing in our world, brought about by a new wave of thinking, hard economic and financial lessons, technological advances and in our case, a shift in the very way that we communicate.
Now is the time to re-evaluate your relationships and to ask yourself what your business is going to achieve this year. Thinking outside the box is a given, now and you must ensure that your organization is flexible, if not able to roll with the punches. Those traditional measurement methods are not really applicable anymore, but the opportunities are even more exciting. Redefine where you are, where you want to be in 12 months and then work out how you are going to get there.
Your customer base is also changing and your dynamic marketing plan should not be afraid to break new ground. Try something different – talk with your customers and ask them what they want! Use the 80/20 rule to best effect. See how you can modify your goods or services and hook onto something that will really sell in 2010. By asking for feedback, you will serve to strengthen the relationship that you have with your clients and they will see that you are being proactive and really interested in serving them.
Although it’s been said many times, many ways, really focus on making a splash in social media. The majority of organizations do not, yet the population of the social media world continues to explode. The folks you are selling to are out there. Learn how to communicate with them.
As you are preparing your new marketing plan, reflect on everything that has happened in 2009. It has certainly been a tumultuous year and you will inevitably find that you can learn some significant lessons from your journey. Use these reflections to help you prepare your marketing plan. This year, make sure that you keep up with the milestones in your plan and if need be, make additional modifications as you go.
Have you prepared your new marketing plan?