As the most hectic time of year approaches, one thing all businesses are going to be looking at is marketing. Whether it's looking at marketing strategies before or after the New Year, there will be a lot of preparation to do and very little time. Every year, some businesses find themselves short on time when it comes to marketing, and as a result, end up missing out on the many opportunities that come around at Christmas and in the New Year.
Why Is Planning So Crucial?
There are so many aspects to consider when it comes to marketing, it can take months to plan for a single campaign. When planning a campaign, it's not just about getting organised. You have to think about what approach suits different situations. Whether it's planning the best strategy to use on different platforms, what tone you are going to use when writing the content or what your prospects might be expecting to see, you are unlikely to have much success without the time to fully consider all of your options.
So, in short, without good planning, campaigns are unlikely to gain much traction and could end up wasting time and money.
With the New Year approaching rapidly, businesses need to begin their planning their marketing strategies for 2019. Most businesses will have already begun their planning, but there will be some who are leaving their planning to the last minute. This of course is a risky way of running marketing ventures for the business, as there will not be enough time for analysis, comparison and evaluation of different strategies and how they will fit in with the business' plans for the New Year. Not to mention, all of the work that must go into these strategies to make them effective.
How Far In Advance Should I Plan?
The answer to this question relies on a multitude of factors such as, what type of campaign you are running, how much work there is to be done, how long the campaign will run for, how much needs to be organised and more. Smaller campaigns could take a month in the planning, but for larger ones, you could be looking at needing 2-3 months to ensure you have considered all the options to increase the success.
To put this into context, you might already have a preferred strategy and all you need to do is create content or a script and source good quality data. If you're a veteran marketer, you may have done this hundreds of times and might not need months to plan. However, if you're relatively new to the world of marketing and haven't had much experience creating campaigns, you will need to give yourself more time. You might need to take on more staff to manage the campaign, and recruitment can take months. You might need to conduct research on which marketing strategies will best suit your business, products or services and goals. You may need to find a supplier of regulation compliant data, or even find an appropriate alternative such as outsourcing.
So, to answer the question "How far in advance should I plan?", you need to consider experience, workload and resources.
What Should I Do If I'm Short On Time?
If you find that there is far too much work and planning to do in a short amount of time, don't panic, there are ways to sort it. Instead of running yourself into the ground trying to put something in place in terms of marketing, look for an alternative marketing method that isn't just a fall back.
If you know you won’t have the time to put a good marketing strategy in place, outsourcing becomes your best option, this is especially true for newer businesses that may not have an abundance of marketing experience.
By outsourcing your marketing strategies to a more experienced company, your campaigns are more likely to be successful as they will have been planned and executed by marketing experts that can tailor campaigns to fit your requirements. You will also have more time to focus on and perfect other marketing ventures, improving your overall marketing efficiency. Not to mention making the busiest and most stressful time of the year, a little less busy and stressful.
With all the uncertainty and negativity surrounding Brexit at the moment, many people are forgetting that there will be many benefits for SMEs and large businesses inside and outside of the UK. Without getting too political, this article will be highlighting some of the key benefits and new opportunities that Brexit will bring to businesses, and ways to capitalise on some of the changes to come.
How Will Brexit Impact Businesses?
So far there has been a lot of uncertainty whether the pros of Brexit will outweigh the cons for businesses. At the moment a lot of businesses are wondering what the future will bring and whether their business is likely to take a hit or flourish in Post-Brexit Britain. All we can do for the time being is take a look at the possible impacts and how it affects businesses in both positive and negative ways.
One impact many business owners know about is a possible skills gap. It is believed that employment is going to take a hit due to Brexit's impact on immigration. However, many employers will be using this as an opportunity to up-skill existing employees which can only have a positive impact on a business whose employees are diverse and committed to the company.
A positive impact that Brexit could bring an increase in jobs. Despite there being a lot of businesses reporting staffing cuts and store closures recently, there could actually be an increase in jobs created by companies outside of Europe expanding into the UK. For example with Amazon's new investment into the UK markets, they will be creating around one thousand two-hundred permanent jobs in a warehouse equipped with advanced robotics. With many more businesses expanding into the UK, there will be a lot more opportunities in the future.
What Opportunities Will Come From Brexit?
Despite some of the negative impacts that Brexit will bring, there will also be a lot of opportunities for businesses to grow.
One opportunity that will arise from Brexit is the chance to widen your target market. With Brexit comes the creation of the UK's own independent trade deals and legislation. Currently, it is unclear what these deals and laws will look like, however, it is likely to give businesses more freedom when it comes to international trade which will give SMEs the chance to grow their presence in international markets.
There have been some unconfirmed reports that exporting could become cheaper post-Brexit. If this is the case, it would be the perfect time to expand your presence in international markets. With less red tape and lower export fees, you could grow your business presence internationally in no time.
The benefits are not only pertaining to British companies either. In fact, a lot of international companies have been pouring investments into the UK since the result of the referendum. According to an article from 'The New York Times', large motor companies such as Nissan and Toyota have said that they will be making large investments in their UK presence, with Nissan building new vehicles at their plant in Northern England and Toyota also upgrading their plant in the UK. Other businesses making sizeable investments include Amazon, Google, Apple, Wells Fargo and more. Qatar has also stated that they will be making investments of over $6,000,000,000 ($6 Billion) into multiple British sectors.
How Can Businesses Engage With International Prospects?
Expanding into new markets is easier said than done, especially when you're expanding into international markets that you're not familiar with. There are many ways of reaching your target audience in different markets, including various forms of marketing, advertising and more.
One method of reaching your target audiences in international markets can be email marketing campaigns. Email campaigns are a really good starting point when it comes to the first engagement with a new audience. If you know what type of audience you want to reach and how to create engaging content for that particular audience, you can create a solid foundation on which you can build a relationship with your international audiences. Not to mention the low-cost options that email marketing offers.
Another simple way of marketing your business in other countries is social media marketing. Social media marketing is one of the most used forms of marketing in today's digital world. With billions of users worldwide, it's a good place to start your engagement with clients.
One of the most successful methods is telemarketing. Despite the stigma surrounding telemarketing, it has been proved to be an effective method of contacting your prospective clients across the globe. The reason that telemarketing works a lot better than other methods for increasing your presence in international markets, is because you are able to directly speak to your target market. With email marketing, you can be sending emails to your prospects for weeks, even months before they make an enquiry. But with telemarketing, you are actively seeking out new opportunities rather than waiting for them to come to you.
At Inspired, we have a lot of experience when it comes to helping businesses expand into new markets. Having worked with businesses from all of the UK and the world, from a wide variety of sectors, we have extensive knowledge of a range of industries. Our specialised, high-yield B2B lead and appointment generation services help businesses to engage with their prospects and increase their productivity and sales in various markets.