If you own a business, there’s no doubt you know how important it is to keep your finances under control; particularly when there is always a risk of being audited. Those dreaded men and women in their suits coming in, looking through every single little detail, every single invoice you’ve ever sent, every single receipt… it’s a great way to know (or find out) how your business is really doing in the grand scheme of things.
And let me tell you, marketing is no different.
If you wake up on a Monday morning, head into the office, and you’re 100% confident the marketing you’re doing for your business is so spot on, it would pass any auditor’s test … then don’t bother reading the rest of this article.
But if you head in to work to start the week, and you’re not really sure what’s going to happen over the next few days (ie. Will you get customer’s coming through your door? Will you have enough sales every day to pay all the salaries?), then an “audit” could actually come in very helpful so you can see where you’re at, and where you can improve.
It doesn’t hurt to be prepared, or over-prepared, and when it comes to marketing your business. Essentially, you’re grabbing the bull by the horns – and you can either ride it through every hump and bump; or fall. But you have to be gloves-on, ready.
I was recently considering where marketing is at with The Marketing Project – honestly, even marketers get too busy for marketing (ourselves). And it’s helpful to at least know we’re practicing what we preach (or are we?); so I thought I’d do my own audit on where things stand.
Here are some of the things I looked at:
- The visual design of the website. Is it consistent? Does our brand stand out, and does it properly reflect what we want the business to portray?
- The content we’re sending out to clients and potential clients. Does it all adhere to our brand story?
- Marketing activity. Are we doing the right types of marketing to suit the objectives of our business and our marketing plan?
- Our plan. Are we sticking to our 3 month and 12 month goals?
- Could we be doing any better with particular aspects of our marketing?
Now, I have to be honest with you. There were many things I found that I really liked. BUT there were some I didn’t. Considering we spend all of our time helping other businesses succeed in their own marketing, and actually, as a result of this; we had some actions of our own that had slipped through the net. We’ve been so busy looking after everyone else, that we overlooked some of our own things and there were some marketing pieces we’d used ourselves that I wasn’t proud of.
So what did I do?
- I researched my target audience (again) to ensure we were still focusing on the right people.
- I put my marketing first. I prioritised it as though I was doing the work for a client.
- I went back and took a look at my branding and messaging to ensure there was consistency throughout.
- I opened up my Marketing Plan and made some reviews, updating the information to reflect my business and marketing goals, which had changed over time.
- I built a new website.
What I’m trying to say it that it’s never too late. I might be a marketing professional, but I’m no different to my clients when it comes to implementation. Life gets busy and we spend so much time working for others, we forget to take care of ourselves.
It is time consuming.
It can be frustrating.
But it’s also worth it!
Marketing you’re proud of doesn’t happen by accident; and if you want to see results, you need to make sure you’re on the right path. If you think your marketing might be falling to the wayside, take the time to carry out your own “audit”; and if you’ve done something amazing this week to help your business succeed, let me know. I’d love to see it.