Marketing’s Nucleus – Establishing Goals

nucleus is considered to be the core of something, with other parts or objects gathered around it.  When doing email marketing (0r any marketing for that matter), it is critical to remember the core of why you are doing, what you are doing.  This is a three part series in which I discuss elements I consider to be the core of most marketing.  Many of the marketing techniques applied in today’s society are centered or based on elements of these topics.

Earlier this year, I was was speaking to a  VP of Sales and Marketing for a small manufacturing company in Northern Illinois. He looked at me and said, “Adam, do you know what the goal of marketing is?” DUH! I thought, I went to college, and took multiple marketing classes. “The goal of marketing is to make money,” I responded with a bit of uncertainty in creeping into my voice, as I was beginning to feel like this was setup. I was right! “No” he said, “the goal of marketing is to gain market share.  Making money is simply the result of that.”

To some of you this might be the answer you would have come up with, but for me it was not obvious.  So, often, in the fast paced world of marketing, it is easy to get caught up in glam of new technologies, and, to strategize about which marketing tools will give you the best ROI (Return on Investment).  However, sometimes (I would be willing to argue MOST of the time), it is appropriate not to focus on the dollars initially and instead focus on the core of what makes marketing successful.

Over the next several blog posts, I will explore three keys I consider to be monumental for marketing success.  The nuclei of marketing as it were.

  1. Establishing goals
  2. Understanding your target
  3. Ensuring the quality of your marketing

These ideas are based on my personal experience and what I have seen work in the marketplace. These tools are presented in the context of email marketing,  but I certainly believe they can transcend into many aspects of your business strategy. So, with that being said, lets jump into it.

Key # 1: Establish Goals

As you develop your lists, create campaigns, and, email your subscribers, I challenge you to set goals for your business.  Do not let a goal’s primary target be focused on the ROI.  Instead, let the ROI be a result of meeting your goals. Why do I keep pressing this?  If you only focus on a monetary figure as a goal, it is incredibly easy never to develop a solid plan of how you are going to reach the goal.  Many of the top CEO’s and CMO’s around the world are great, because they are able to pull the details together, as opposed to simply focusing on the potential for profit.  They are willing to dig into the details of reality, rather than place hope in a dream.

So, how do you create goals for email marketing?  What goals are best for you? To an extent, these are questions which only you can answer. However, here are some tips that might help

  • Start by asking questions about your email marketing strengths, weaknesses, and, what it will take to close the gaps between the two. By building upon strengths and removing weaknesses, increases market share will be a natural reaction.
  • Have your goals be focused. No opened ended goals. Examples: NO : I want to bring in more customers YES: I want to increase subscribers by 15% in 3 months.
  • Lay out a road map for accomplishing your goal. What are all the steps of the process which will make you successful? How will you know if each phase is successful?

My goal for this blog post series is to give you tools to evaluate your current email marketing strategy. The concept was created from a conversation with a customer telling us we needed more marketing content (a weakness). My desire is you will find these tools useful, put them into play, and realize ActiveCampaign is an email marketing solution that provides great customer support (a strength) though the quality of the content we supply. If this happens, because of the immense satisfaction of the product, you will increase the longevity of your subscribership to ActiveCampaign, and provide my boss with ROI of my salary. Monetary gain is an aspect of this (of course), but it is not the driving factor behind writing the blog. The driving factor is to help you become more successful and trying to improve upon our weakness.

As you create goals, I STRONGLY recommend finding ways to track your success. With the reporting tools ActiveCampaign provides, it is not unreasonable in any way for you to find a metric providing data detailing if you are reaching your goal or not. Data is God’s gift to business. Its already there (most of the time), you just need to learn how to utilize  it, and make the information valuable to you. I truly believe, as society becomes more and more technologically driven, the companies who use data to their advantage will out perform their competition. Out performance, means greater market share. Thus, you are accomplishing the goal of marketing.

In order to wrap up this post, I leave you with these thoughts. There are many different aspects to email marketing. However, I believe most, if not all of these variations can be traced back to a few key elements which establish the core or marketing. The first element, which was discussed in this post, is “Establishing goals” for your email marketing strategy. Goals should be focused and have the ability to be tracked. This will help you know if  they are successful or not. The data gathered, should be used to help determine if goals need to be modified or reevaluated. You are the master of your own marketing success. I encourage you to constantly be looking for new ways to approach your current marketing methods, strategy, and goals. Find tools that will make you more effective in your marketing and that will help you consistently reach the target you are aiming for.

To read part II of this series click here: http://www.activecampaign.com/blog/marketings-nucleus-understanding-your-target/

 

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