Choose a marketer that has a mid-senior level of experience to do this work. You need a certain level of business acumen gathered by working in and with businesses to deliver a good plan. This way, the marketing plan is much more likely to align with your business plan and your vision.
Do not cheap out on market research! Marketing plans based on good ideas are just that. Ideas. Not real. Plans need to be based on factual information and be client-centric. Marketing should be based on what your customers want to see and experience, not what you or some green marketer wants to see.
We priced our plans starting at $10,000 mainly because that’s the minimum amount of effort and time it takes to do good research and to pay good people who will “get you” and your business. We realize that this is expensive for new businesses, and that’s why we have a DIY option with coaching help. You can get a plan done for less that $3,000 using that option. Learn more here.
Let’s get our feet wet and see what it would be like to work together.
Pull a project out of your marketing plan and assign it to us. Our project will have a start and end date. We work off an estimate that you approve, and then get started.
We can work on almost anything marketing related along with our colleagues.
Proposals and Presentations
Internal employee onboarding and training
Print design (with partners)
Public Relations (with partners)
Digital advertising (with partners)
And more. Just check out our case studies and portfolio.
You might decide you would like to work on a project-by-project basis. No problem! You own the overall strategy, and as projects come and go, let us know. Just keep in mind whether we can do the work or not is dependent on how much capacity we have.
Start with your business plan. Your business plan should have a marketing plan to support it. Please don’t hate me for saying this, but every serious business has a business plan of some sort. If you don’t have a business plan, get serious, then start there. But if you do, then it’s time to develop a marketing plan to support that plan that already exists.
That’s entirely normal for any organization or business owner that’s entrepreneurial. There’s a whole bunch of shiny objects that are going to come your way or really good ideas that will come across your desk. It takes discipline to stick to your marketing plan. Opportunities will come and go – what you want to do is develop the discipline with the ideas and plan you have already. New stuff can get added to next year’s plan.
This problem has existed since the marketing discipline came to being. The great thing about the day we live in is that most activities can be measured with a little bit of creativity and leveraging some online tools. It would be best if you endeavoured to measure what is important. Don’t boil the ocean, but at the same time, don’t let your marketing team off the hook either.
The reason why your content is a bit fuzzy is that you’re fuzzy on what’s important to your customer. Now don’t be offended! Sometimes it’s a “forest-from-the-trees-kind-of-thing.” That’s why I always insist on regularly doing customer interviews even if you have a solid marking plan, and you feel like you have a good sense of what your customers want. Double-check what’s essential to your customers and talk about those things. Get rid of everything else.
The first option you should consider is whether or not to hire a dedicated marketing person internally. There are many factors to consider if you are hiring, and I’m happy to provide you with some advice for your unique scenario.
The second option is to outsource your marketing function. With both outsource options, you can choose to work with a freelancer or contractor like myself, or you can hire an agency. There are pros and cons to both. Again, I am happy to provide you with some advice for your unique situation.
The final comment that I would make is that try interviewing and meeting several marketing people to decide whether an internal resource will work for you or an outsourced marketing resource will work for you. Chemistry is essential, so spend the time meeting different people or firms. It makes me nervous when someone hires me, and they haven’t interviewed anyone else.
Of course, it depends on the firm and the individual. As a freelancer, I enjoy working with other agencies and other companies. It allows me to contribute to another team and to learn from others. I find the best scenario is to carve out projects or campaigns by resource. So, for instance, my team of subcontractors and I could be working on a new product launch while your current team is working on promoting the corporate brand. It can work in a few different ways. As long as everyone keeps their “ego” in check, we should be good!
That’s the spirit! As long as you have the appetite for learning and you have the time to dedicate towards your marketing program, it’s completely fine to do your own marketing. I have a coaching program that is geared toward small businesses that you can check out, or you can do some self-learning. The first place I would check out? Your library. As you can imagine, marketing is one of those things that you always have to spend time staying on top of because the tools and technology change so fast. A book written three years go that reference social media is outdated. Marketing principles and consumer behaviour are more timeless. I’m happy to share books that I think you should have on your shelf before you embark on your journey!
The first thing that I would say is that if you’re working with an agency right now and you hate it, I would do a little bit of soul-searching and find out how much of the negative vibes are partly your fault. I know that sounds harsh, but these relationships can be very challenging. Take the lessons that you learned and develop a brief for the next outsourced marketing solution that you will interview. Ask precise questions about how they handle things. And nothing is faux pas – ask about billing, ask about creative, ask about timelines etc. of course if you can manage your current relationship that amazing, but sometimes it’s just better to start over again. It’s like a relationship in that way. Sometimes you gotta date until you find “the one.”
Add somebody to the team temporarily or for specific projects. A new face to the project team can help and maybe point things out that are commonly overlooked. You don’t have to commit to anything long-term and perhaps a new blood just raises everybody’s game. Reach out to me if you think I can help you in this capacity.