2016 Marketing Plan - What You Should Be Focusing On

2016 with the zero replaced with a globe made up of marketing terms

2015 was the year to have your website redone or updated, incorporate a social media strategy, recognize the importance of constantly posting content, and SEO optimization. If you haven’t done those 4 things – you have about 2 months before it’s time to start focusing on what’s going to be important in 2016. (No pressure!)

For those of us up-to-date on our marketing and ready to get going on a plan for 2016, here are some things you need to keep in mind.

B2C Businesses:

PERSONALIZATION & CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE

Today’s customer wants to feel special. They want to feel like your product was specifically designed for and will be hand delivered to them. Coca-Cola’s “Share a Coke” campaign is hands down the most ingenious example of this. The personalized names on bottles, helped Coca-Cola achieve the largest year-over-year growth in 20-ounce packaging in it history—more than 19 percent. This campaign demonstrated the most valuable lessons to marketers – understand your target market, connect with your audience on a personal level, and let customer experience drive your success. Coca-Cola gained 25 million Facebook followers and more than 500,000 photos were shared using the hashtag #shareacoke as a result of this campaign.

Understandably, most of us don’t have the capabilities of Coca-Cola. But that doesn’t mean we can’t come up with a creative way to be more personal and improve our customer experience.

MOBILE

Americans spend almost three hours per day on their mobile devices and 61 percent of millennials prefer to use mobile over desktop. The biggest growth in mobile use has come in lifestyle and shopping – up 174 percent between 2013 and 2014, followed by utilities and productivity up by 121 percent and messaging and social up 103 percent. (Source) If your website and content is not mobile friendly, you better do something about it now!

B2B Businesses:

INFLUENCERS

Your customer’s business (AKA their livelihood) is likely somewhat dependent on the service you’re providing. That’s just that nature of a B2B relationship. So naturally, they want to know they’re working with someone at the forefront of what’s going on with that industry. If you’re not already an industry influencer, then you need to be following them on Twitter and LinkedIn as well as visiting their website and blogs regularly.

CONTENT

Speaking of Influencers from your industry – USE THEIR CONTENT. Whether it’s to share it directly or to get ideas for creating your own content, the place to go are those that have the largest impact and the most followers. When potential customers are in the “research” phase of the buying process, your content could be valuable in helping them make a decision. Distribute your valuable content and expertise through blogging, emails, and videos.

RELATIONSHIPS

It’s critical that you realize your customer has access to a world of knowledge at their fingertips. And, more importantly, your competitors! Utilizing and/or becoming an industry influencer is only enough to GET the contact. But building the relationship is where you win the customer. So therefore, you need to have a system in place for you and your sales team to consistently nourish the relationship with your customers.

Don’t risk getting left behind in the fast-paced and hugely aggressive digital marketing race.