Regardless of what type of business you own or are involved in, you need to think strategically. This is true for marketing as it is for every other part of your business. The result of a lack of strategy is a flaming death spiral that can be either short-lived, or faster than you can say “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious”. As an example, I had no strategy for my IT business back in 2000, and when 9-11 occurred, it was a matter of months before I had to close my business and figure out how to pay back more than $30,000 in credit card debt.
Here's how you can keep that from happening to you.
Many marketing bloggers will talk to you about tactics. Tactics are sexy. They also keep you bouncing from one idea to the next, never forming a cohesive plan of action that you methodically implement. Tactics are good and necessary, however you need to determine how they fit with your goals and what you've already got going on. That brings us to the point of this post – the three types of marketing you should be using.
Here's a mindmap I made for you:
The three typs of marketing, as I define them, are:
- Passive – you do something and “wait” for the results
- Active – activities that require on-going effort
- Pro-active – you specify who are you going after and go after them, relentlessly
The power of this trifecta is when you use them all together, which you must.
If you're writing blog posts all day and playing a numbers game hoping a certain number of people convert, good luck. Using blogging in combination with building your social media communities while pro-actively communication with your top 100 prospects – now that's a winning combination.
Is it a lot of work? Hell yes it is. But in my opinion it's what you need to do in order to be successful.
So how can you do that without going completely nuts? Two words: time management.
For example, let's say you're using Commun.it to build your Twitter community and identify leads. Each Monday morning log in and give kudos to your top community members. There's three groups you should thank:
- Most engaged members
Be sure to thank all these folks. Commun.it makes it super easy – they create the tweet for you, and you can tweet directly from the app!
Literally open up your calendar, and create a recurring event to do this every week. That's being active.
The bottom line here is that you should look at all three types of strategies – passive, active, and pro-active. Look at the tactics of each, and then weave a strategy for your business that combines all of them. Do that, and you'll be well ahead of your competition.