Success doesn’t happen overnight or by magic. Small businesses need planning, especially if they want to take it to the six-figure bracket. Stephanie Walters, founder of Blue Top Marketing and author of “6-Figure Marketing Blueprint,” says a lot of success has to do with planning. She should know, she took her own business to the six-figure mark.
The 6 Figure Marketing Blueprint gives business owners the eight marketing tactics I used to build my businesses to over $200,000 revenue in less than two years. I own a retail business, wholesale business and a digital marketing agency. This blueprint gives the detailed steps, right down to the resource and how that resource was implemented for one or all of the businesses I own. Really, it’s the no-fluff, tell-me-what-I-need guide that many if not all small business owners are looking for when it comes to marketing their businesses, both online and offline, explains Walters.
Small businesses especially need a marketing plan. Small business owners are generally so busy running their business that they forget to look at the big picture. They have their hands in every aspect of their business and are often simply too busy putting out fires and running their business that they forget to step back and take a 30,000 foot view. A marketing plan is helpful in realizing that there may be aspects of your business where help is needed. For example, a plan to grow a specific demographic group might make one realize they have no experience or knowledge of how to accomplish this growth, adds marketing consultant Debbie Lamb of Lamb Consulting.
There are many pluses to having an actual blueprint–first and foremost you stay on point. Having a blueprint keeps you on track….basically keeps you from contracting ‘shiny object syndrome.’ You have a document, workflow or picture to look at on a regular basis to remind you of what you’re suppose to be working on in your business. Additionally, you can record the effects of each tactic. From visitors to your website, signups to your email list, registrations to your event, phone calls to your business, referrals, and so on. If any one tactic doesn’t produce effective results, then you can dump it and add a new one. But without a blueprint to follow and a place to record, you would just market aimlessly and waste a lot of money, Walters points out.
Its not hard to draw up your own blueprint. Every business should have a blueprint or strategy, if not a couple. This particular one is all about marketing your business. When putting this together, you want to look at all the marketing options that are out there for your industry and narrow them down to a manageable number, but make sure they will make an impact, explains Walters. The center of the marketing blueprint should always be your website. Many people ask me why? You have to be able to send people somewhere and you always want it to be your own online property. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and the rest of them are fine, but you don’t own them. So when people want to learn more about you or read more of your content, you always send them back to your website. You want them to get lost on your website. Think about yourself. When you click on a link, then you check out the site and 20 minutes later you’re nowhere near where you started? That’s what you want people to do with your links and content, but on your website and not someone else’s.
In all you marketing blueprint should include a website, company email, social media presence for your company (Twitter, Facebook, etc.), as well as video marketing.
Public relations should also be included in your blueprint. Get positive publicity…being featured in a magazine (online or in print), mentioned by an influencer, or interviewed on TV, is the fastest way I have seen businesses reach six figures over night. This opens doors for opportunities that small business owners dream of, suggests international public relations and prosperity coach Ashley Steinmetz, founder of Perfect Wave Marketing.
Having a marketing blueprint is a win-win, concludes Steinmetz. To put it simply, when you are not prepared, you miss out on opportunities that can be major catalysts for your business. A large amount of small businesses that close or get burned out comes from a lack of planning. If 12 months of planning seems to much, at least do six months. A marketing plan shakes up static offers and circulates fresh energy (for you and your customers) keeping you excited and your head in the game. Think of a marketing plan as a blueprint for capitalizing on holiday, seasons, trends, and causes important to your business and as a treasure map to get to six figures, she says.