High-quality marketing goes deeper than simply flooding your audience with ads. A good campaign is a process you think through, design and activate. You don’t want to waste valuable resources advertising to people who don’t need your product. A successful campaign involves finding your target market and telling them why they benefit from your business.
If you’ve never considered designing a marketing campaign, here are seven steps to creating a successful strategy.
1. Understand Marketing Campaign vs. Strategy
A marketing strategy is an overarching plan. It is a high-level approach and deals with the “why” of advertising. A marketing campaign is a specific plan of action. If your marketing strategy is a pie, your campaign is a slice of the pie.
2. Learn About Your Target Audience
You probably know your target audience if you’ve been in business for a while. It is the group of people who benefit from your product or services. Say you run a mobile grooming business. Your target audience includes pet owners in your area. It may also include busy families who don’t have time to bring their pets to the groomer.
First party data can tell you more about your target audience. What neighborhoods do your customers live in? How old are they? How often do they require your services? When you answer these questions, you can pinpoint how and where to run your campaign. If some of your customers come from a neighboring county, for example, you may consider advertising there.
3. Set a Budget and Timeline
A high-quality marketing campaign has a specified budget and start and end dates. This step determines how much you have to spend and how long you plan to run the campaign.
Your budget should include your estimated return on your investment. Say you plan on social media ads and newspaper advertising for a month. You’d like to add in a billboard but don’t have the funds to cover it. Once you estimate your ROI, you realize you have enough to pay for an electronic billboard ad for two weeks. It doesn’t cover the entire month but allows you to incorporate all your advertising methods.
4. Set Specific Goals
One mistake that’s easy to make in a marketing campaign is failing to set specific goals. A general plan doesn’t measure your campaign’s success. Here’s the difference:
- General goal: This campaign will bring in more money.
- Specific goal: This campaign will increase revenue by 20% over the next two months.
You can implement the SMART method for setting goals. SMART goals are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound. These parameters ensure you know if your campaign succeeded.
5. Design Your Campaign Content
Now that you know your target audience, what you plan to spend, and your specific goal, you can design your campaign content. It should speak to your target market.
Rather than discussing how fantastic your product is, appeal to your customers’ needs. What are their preferences, experiences and requirements? How does your product benefit them?
Be sure to highlight promotions and discounts you offer and include a call to action. Make it easy to reach you.
6. Launch and Monitor the Campaign
Here’s where the rubber meets the road: your campaign launch. Once your plan is in action, keep an eye on it. Are you achieving the expected results? Do you need to pivot mid-campaign or do something differently next time? Rather than setting gears in motion and forgetting about your campaign until the end, tracking it along the way is best.
7. Analyze the Results
Congratulations — you completed your campaign. Did it go according to plan? What can you change for next time? Did the audience respond well? What action succeeded the most? The answers can inform your next campaign.
Finally, if you come close to meeting your goal, count it as a victory.
A successful marketing campaign requires planning. It might not be the most glamorous step, but it’s vital to your success and ensures your efforts produce positive results.