Because someone who is looking for something that specific is probably a much more qualified searcher for your product or service (presuming you're in the blogging space) than someone looking for something really generic. And because long-tail keywords tend to be more specific, it's usually easier to tell what people who search for those keywords are really looking for. Someone searching for the head term "blogging," on the other hand, could be searching it for a whole host of reasons unrelated to your business.
Marketing plans and strategies are often used interchangeably. This is because a marketing plan should not exist without the overarching strategy as a framework. In some cases, the strategy and the plan may be incorporated into one document particularly in smaller companies that may only run one or two major campaigns in a year. However, the plan outlines marketing activities on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis. The marketing strategy outlines the overall value proposition.
" Their level of sophistication in terms of design profile is strong, and it’s definitely a distinctive factor about Crowd, compared to other designers and agencies I’ve worked with in the past. They have a good sense for sorting through the clutter and figuring out what’s right for my project. " - Director of Marketing, San Francisco commercial development
Your tactics section should include all the actionable steps you plan to take for advertising, public relations, direct mail, trade shows and special promotions. You can use a paper calendar to schedule your tactics or use a contact manager or spreadsheet program--what matters most is that you stick to your schedule and follow through. A plan on paper is only useful if it's put into action.
There’s a culture in today’s age of startups that extreme growth is the only marker of a successful business. There’s a lot of pressure when it comes to taking on more clients and you may discover that you can be financially satisfied with a certain number of great clients. You may ultimately decide that rapid expansion is not what’s best for you. Unless you have outside investors breathing down your neck, the ability to live a financially stable (if not better) life on your own terms may be more enticing to you.
In the new world of inbound marketing there are a handful of strategies that are paramount. These strategies can also be useful when researching competitors. Using email and social media, and surveying the content landscape, will give you an immense amount of knowledge about your competition. Here are some quick tips on understanding who you’re up against:
BBDO is the biggest of the three main advertising agencies in Omnicom Group’s portfolio. They are considered the world’s most awarded and effective advertising agency with 15,000 employees in 289 offices across 81 countries. BBDO’s reputation domestically is well documented but their international offices are also strong examples in their local market. The agency’s list of clients include Macy’s, Visa, GE, Mountain Dew, Airbnb, Ebay, Samsung, HP and much much more. Learn more about BBDO here.
Plan, organize and direct daily operations, Establish and implement policies and procedures, Assign, co-ordinate and review projects and programs, Plan, develop and implement communications strategies, Establish distribution networks for products and services, Plan and direct publicity or media events, Plan and direct advertising and marketing campaigns, Plan and direct market research studies, Oversee the analysis of sales data and information, Oversee the preparation of reports, Prepare re...
Mass media was hot on the telephone’s tail, of course. Print, radio, and television enabled (and continue to enable) advertisers to communicate their messages to millions of eyeballs and eardrums at any given time. What’s more, with the rise of mass media emerged the capacity for cross-channel marketing: the advertisement of the same brand or product across different media outlets. That’s more exposure to more consumers who are more likely to convert and spend their money.
If you're struggling to think of more keywords people might be searching about a specific topic, go to Google.com and take a look at the related search terms that appear when you plug in a keyword. When you type in your phrase and scroll to the bottom of Google's results, you'll notice some suggestions for searches related to your original input. These keywords can spark ideas for other keywords you may want to take into consideration.
In Keyword Planner, formerly known as the Keyword Tool, you can get search volume and traffic estimates for keywords you're considering. Unfortunately, when Google transitioned from Keyword Tool to Keyword Planner, they stripped out a lot of the more interesting functionality. But you can make up for it a bit if you take the information you learn from Keyword Planner and use Google Trends to fill in some blanks.
When you’re just starting out this may not be the best option as you will want to grow your network, but over time you will realize that having larger clients is far more beneficial to you for a number of reasons. The downside is if you decide to conduct business fully on a percentage of spend model because there are many internal factors within businesses that are going to dictate budget. Some of these factors are within your control (results) but many others are not (internal decisions, seasonality, other costs). You don’t want to get into a situation where your client is spending a very small amount per month and you are only getting 10% of that with the expectation of being on calls and putting the time into it.
If you're a regular blogger, these are probably the topics you blog about most frequently. Or perhaps they're the topics that come up the most in sales conversations. Put yourself in the shoes of your buyer personas -- what types of topics would your target audience search that you'd want your business to get found for? If you were a company like HubSpot, for example -- selling marketing software (which happens to have some awesome SEO tools ... but I digress ;-) -- you might have general topic buckets like "inbound marketing," "blogging," "email marketing," "lead generation," "SEO," "social media," "marketing analytics," and "marketing automation."
The benefit of managing clients is that a lot of these aspects are taken care of before they get to you. However, having the experience of working on these things allows you the added value of actually knowing what you’re talking about when something they give you isn’t working. It also helps you deal with the pressure to deliver quality results because you have been there before...many times.
The above performance analyses concentrate on the quantitative measures which are directly related to short-term performance. But there are a number of indirect measures, essentially tracking customer attitudes, which can also indicate the organization's performance in terms of its longer-term marketing strengths and may accordingly be even more important indicators. Some useful measures are:
The plan should cover one year. For small companies, this is often the best way to think about marketing. Things change, people leave, markets evolve, customers come and go. Later on we suggest creating a section of your plan that addresses the medium-term future--two to four years down the road. But the bulk of your plan should focus on the coming year.
Paid search is another crucial tool of digital marketing. Take, for example, Google AdWords, the dominant platform for pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. Basically, you get ad space on SERPs, and Google gets paid whenever someone clicks on your ad. It’s a great way to complement search engine optimization (SEO) tactics, especially if your business is new and you want to see instantaneous returns on your marketing budget. AdWords is a highly flexible and measurable tool, and you can expect profits to outpace costs as you continue to increase your budget.
Another aspect to managing clients as a side gig is that it allows you to become experienced in building contracts. You’ll have to become accustomed to the process of putting a proposal together, then a contract, and then sign the necessary documentation (NDA’s etc). It’s a part of the game that you’ll want to streamline so that the time spent on onboarding new clients is reduced.
To bring some clarity to the global agency marketplace, Agency Spotter has put together the 50 largest marketing agencies according to estimated yearly revenue. This list represents the 50 biggest agencies and not the agency networks or groups like WPP, Publicis Group, Dentsu Inc, Interpublic, and Omnicom Group. If you’re looking to find your next marketing partner, keep in mind that the most helpful agency may not be the biggest or most well-known one your budget can afford you… Thankfully, Agency Spotter allows you to search for an agency by size.
"They've significantly improved our ranking on Google in previously challenging markets...Other agencies we've worked with haven't been able to budge our online position, so we're very happy with the results thus far. It's helping our leadership team overcome issues involving prospective employees or purchasers of our products." — Director of Digital Marketing, Skincare Company
Changes in the environment mean that the forecasts often have to be changed. Along with these, the related plans may well also need to be changed. Continuous monitoring of performance, against predetermined targets, represents a most important aspect of this. However, perhaps even more important is the enforced discipline of a regular formal review. Again, as with forecasts, in many cases the best (most realistic) planning cycle will revolve around a quarterly review. Best of all, at least in terms of the quantifiable aspects of the plans, if not the wealth of backing detail, is probably a quarterly rolling review — planning one full year ahead each new quarter. Of course, this does absorb more planning resource; but it also ensures that the plans embody the latest information, and — with attention focused on them so regularly — forces both the plans and their implementation to be realistic.