It’s hard to believe 2021 is almost over and we are putting another wild year in the books. If you haven’t already finalized your 2022 marketing plan, there’s still some time to get the new year started on the right foot.
As always, you need a plan. Before you start from scratch, review your 2021 marketing plan and make any needed adjustments. Look at what you did well and what you would like to change. What worked? What didn’t work as well? Were your goals realistic and were you able to meet them? If you are already using your resources effectively and you are happy with the results, continue with what works. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel. But don’t forget to consider ways to improve.
Here are a few steps that will help you create a plan that will give you the most value.
1. Get to know your audience (again). You may already have a good idea of your audience and what motivates them. Now is a good time to look at them again. Revisit your audience personas to see if anything has changed. Look at demographic information, behavior, pain points, and preferences to see if you are still marketing to the right audience. If your target audience’s motivations change, you may need to adjust better reach them.
2. Set (new) goals. Some of your goals for 2022 may be the same as 2021. Once you have reviewed your existing marketing plan and re-assessed your audience, you will be better equipped to renew goals or set new ones. Either way, SMART goals—specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely—will help you accomplish both short and long-term priorities.
3. Review your budget. Your marketing budget has probably already been set, but this is a good time to review it. Consider costs for marketing personnel, tactics, and any additional expenditures including outsourcing, events, advertising, or marketing technology. With rising costs and inflation, you may need to allocate additional resources or make other adjustments.
4. Monitor trends. It’s always a good idea to look at trends to see if you want to incorporate anything new into your marketing plan. Hubspot recently published a survey that detailed marketing trends for 2022. Here are a few we will be watching:
Mobile optimization will be very important
SEO will be used by more companies
Video will remain a top format, but content will be short
Live social media content will still be the most popular
Infographics will be a great way to share information
Blogging will be around for a while
Third-party cookies will begin phasing out in 2022, which will require some changes to marketing and more focus on privacy
Businesses will use more automation and artificial intelligence (AI)
5. Consider your tactics. With your existing plan, budget, and trends in mind, choose the tactics you will use for the new year. Tactics can be flexible and adjusted if they are no longer effective. This is a good time to change if needed. A few examples of tactics could be:
Send out a regular email newsletter
Target social media campaigns
Incorporate more short form video content
Add live content to social media channels
Focus on search engine optimization (SEO)
Blog regularly (a great way to set establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry)
6. Determine how you will measure success. You won’t know if your marketing is effective is unless you define and measure success. Success needs to be based on your goals, objectives, strategies, and tactics. Consider both short-term and long-term results. You may experience some quick results, but there is no one-size-fits all button that will immediately solve all your problems or achieve all your goals. If you aren’t already using analytical tools, this is a good time to implement a diagnostic program to show various factors and results of your marketing efforts. Because the marketplace is constantly changing, your marketing plan needs to be flexible and easily adaptable. You will need to continually measure success to make sure you are able to meet your goals.
Try incorporating some of these steps to approach the new year with a solid marketing plan in place. If you feel overwhelmed and have questions, we are here to help. The Social Bullpen can create a custom plan to provide value, not just activity.