Marketing Strategy Framework: 3 Essential Questions To Prepare You for the Perfect Storm

Marketing is essentially a creative endeavor. When you create, you inevitably create a new future, e.g. Steve Jobs created a new future for how human beings could experience computing. This marketing strategy framework will guide you through the creative process, getting help, and preparing to go big (the perfect storm).

This new future is not only for your audience but for you as well – as the entrepreneur.

When it comes to creating your marketing strategy, it pays to get started on the process of clarifying your future and the future that your audience would have.

This future for your audience includes the following:

  1. Solving a problem(s) for them – what problems?
  2. Helping them produce a result(s) – what results?
  3. Creating a new experience(s) for them – what experiences?

The Future for you is the same;

  1. What problems will you solve in your new strategy?
  2. What results could you produce with this strategy?
  3. What experiences could you produce for yourself with this strategy?

The next huge question is: Is it worth your time and resources and the audiences’ time and resources in adopting this marketing strategy?

If the answer is yes, then you have the starting point for a good marketing strategy.
There is more to do and clarify, but that is a good starting point.

Next steps:

  1. Create your offer options – options for your services or products.
  2. The primary benefits of each option for the audience.
  3. Pricing and other details.
  4. The design of your sales funnel.

If you’re looking at these next steps and thinking, “I need help with this,” you’re right. Continue reading to learn about how to get help and free up your time by automating your marketing.

Marketing Strategy Framework: Freeing up your time by automating your marketing

For small businesses, these are the typical stages of developing their business:

  1. Start-up phase: solopreneur – one-person shop.
  2. Transition phase: Hire one to two people.
  3. Momentum phase: Hire three or more people.
  4. Scalable phase: Hire more qualified people – pay them more, expect more.
  5. Break-Out phase: Decision to expand or stay stable.
  6. Exit stage: Business owner exits business e.g. sell a business.

For moving from stage 1 to stage 3: the following will be relevant.

A simple structuring of your marketing could look like the following:

Automate marketing your business
If you want to get momentum in running and scaling your business, it starts with hiring people to support you.

In this system, you fulfill the following functions:

  1. Manage and hold the Admins to account for projects assigned to them.
  2. Refine and Clarify Strategic direction frequently as necessary.
  3. Based on Strategic Directions, select which projects to focus on for the day, week, and month.
  4. Assign tasks and projects to the admins daily, weekly, and monthly.

The advantage of having a business coach is that functions #2 and #3 can be worked on efficiently between a business coach and her/his client.

Most of my clients who are at this level, use me for this work. In one hour to 1.5 hours per every two weeks + email exchanges and short phone calls, this can be very time effective and efficient.

That leaves you with two remaining functions:

  1. Manage and hold the Admins to account on projects assigned to them AND
  2. Assign tasks and projects to the admins daily, weekly, and monthly.

For most small businesses, this can be done inside of about 45 minutes – 2 hours per day (depending on the complexity and size) – with practice.

Using a project or task management software like Smartsheets will help cut this down quite a bit.

The only remaining factors are then:

  1. Your willingness to be graceful, yet effective in your managing and accountability.
  2. Your willingness to learn how to do this – the learning curve can be steep but.. short.

This learning curve is part of the short-term suffering I talk about – it is the short-term suffering that is necessary for long-term joy – the joy of having more free time and time to innovate whilst your team is busy getting things done for you.

Oversimplified? Of course, yes – but if you would like to learn how to make this real in your business with your circumstances, I’m here to help.

The reason you create a marketing strategy and develop systems for automating aspects of your marketing is you’re positioning yourself for the perfect storm.

Marketing Strategy Framework: Preparing for the Marketing Perfect Storm

Storms can be downright bad.
Storms can be downright good.

Storms can be downright good when they involve combining different forces to create expansive, breakthrough results that would never have occurred without these forces coming together.

Today, there is a wealth of marketing forces involving different platforms e.g. Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. There are also a host of marketing tools that can be used to complement these platforms e.g. Buffer, ActiveCampaign, etc.

My point in sharing this article with you is not to explain every detail in the process which involves a lot of explanation – but to share with you the possibilities of the idea of combining tools, platforms, and resources in creative ways that work for your market – Creating perfect storms for your business.

The trouble for most business people is expressed as follows:

  1. Deciding which platforms to pick to best leverage their marketing.
  2. Deciding which tools to pick to best leverage their marketing.
  3. Getting good data to help make the decisions above.
  4. Managing other resources to best leverage these platforms and tools e.g. marketing or social media assistants or other automation.
  5. Deciding how to combine the platforms and tools and other resources in the best way.

And last but not least…
6. How to do all of the above without breaking the bank and spending too much.

This is fairly challenging for all (if not most) of us.

Today, there is a growing opportunity to sensibly combine these tools, platforms, and resources.

The downside is figuring out the best combination.

While I think that this ‘figuring out’ is going to be an ongoing process in your business, I also think that the analysis, design, and implementation should start early to take advantage of the time it takes to test and refine – to create the Perfect Storm in Your Marketing Efforts – where breakthroughs in client attraction and retention are the norm.

Some practical ways to start thinking this through:

  1. Start with an inventory of all your current platforms, tools, and resources.
  2. List them out and identify as best as you can what benefits, cash flow, and expenses they have entailed or produced for you.
  3. Do you have a clear or fairly clear definition of your target market?
  4. If you do have a definition of your target market, are these platforms, tools, and resources feeding your business sufficiently?
  5. Which tools, platforms or resources should you let go of? Which ones should you keep?
  6. Look for new platforms or tools and resources that would be worth trying without incurring too much cost.

One of the platforms we have used recently is meetup.com.

This platform can be used to build and manage a live audience for you. Meetup has been around for a while and has its pros and cons – but it is yet to be fully adopted or adapted by many business people.

So there is still some capacity for creative applications – as long as the policies of meetup.com are respected.

The real benefit of meetup.com is not in the accumulation of live audience – there is a secondary benefit when combined with other tools e.g. content marketing. Doing so can double or triple your results with full integrity – without breaking policies with meetup or any other platform.

When you add the benefits of another platform like Alignable to meetup.com, the advantages can explode in a good, positive way.

Alignable permits connections of businesspeople in a local area. If you create a meetup in your locality and promote it on Alignable you start seeing the power of combining all of these marketing forces – tools, platforms, and resources.

My point in sharing this article with you is not to explain every detail in the process which involves a lot of explanation – but to share with you the possibilities of the idea of combining tools, platforms, and resources in creative ways that work for your market – Creating perfect storms for your business.

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