Whether your 2017 started a bit quietly or completely crazily, you are bound to have come across numerous opportunities to make a plan. What can I say, it is the season to be planning…
I therefore thought it was fitting to look at your sales and marketing strategy plan and why it is useful. I am a fan of planning and strategy but I am aware that many business owners are not. I guess when you have had everyone from business coaches to various advisors and marketers constantly on your case to create a plan, you must get a bit sick of it.
Still, I like to think that I offer useful strategy and moreover having created one, we tend to get better results for clients when following it. So, this week I would like to make the case for creating a strategy to improve your lead generation and increase your sales in 2017. To help you consider it better, here are my answers to the top arguments I come across:
- We need to get going ASAP and a plan will hold us up
What a great attitude to have, nothing like a client who is keen to start. When it comes to lead generation strategies, I agree that they should be short and sharp and certainly not take too long to produce. However, if your consultant is able to provide you with a plan within two weeks it is time well spent.
- With respect to strategy, the proof is in the pudding so why don’t we just get started
I completely agree that until you send out your first campaign, you cannot predict the outcome. I have seen some great strategies fail and some stupid ideas work really well. Having said that, if you have a strategy in place which includes your goals broken down to sensible KPI’s you can at least measure your outcome. This means you can then make small adjustments until you get it right rather than starting again.
- We know our market best and so we already have all the answers
That again, is very true. If you have been in your industry for a number of years you would have tried and tested many methods of lead generation and approached all sorts of target markets. If your business is successful you should absolutely have a handle on what works for you. However, new methods and approaches are developed all the time, some of which can be useful for your business. In addition, many businesses do well on word of mouth for years only to find that they need to do more if they want to achieve significant growth. In any case, I would recommend that you take a big part in creating the strategy so you can impart your valuable knowledge and experience.
- It is very well putting together a plan but what about implementation?
I come across many business owners who had a strategy provided before, in the form of a detailed plan that was never executed. This is very often due to the fact that the implementation requires as much knowledge and inclination as writing the strategy in the first place. To make sure you get most out of your plan be clear on how it will be implemented, by whom and at what cost, first.
- Can you guarantee it will work?
Most definitely not, especially when it comes to marketing and sales strategies. However, a good plan will guarantee two main things:
- You have a much better chance of making things happen
- You will be able to measure your results against your goals which will give you an opportunity to improve
I hope this gives you some food for thought. Let me know if there are any questions I have left out and share if you found this useful.
If you are looking at getting a strategy created for 2017, why not check out our website for more details.