The Smart Way to Market
The stages I see that work:
1. Set up your strategy and vision: Effectiveness first , Efficiency second
Think about where and what before how.
Think where you want to be in the long term first e.g. your longer term goals. Then think short term goals.
Think about what you will provide for people in your market first.
Too many people ask me “How do I do that?”
The question clouds the thinking. Ask where and what questions first.
There may be no right answers and there may be an overwhelming set of choices. But choose and move on.
Better done than perfect.
2. Align your website design with the strategy and vision
Have your tools including your website align with the strategy and vision that you set.
This may require some deep introspection. A lot of people resist this. As the great Fernando Flores implies, this is where the growth lies –
confronting what you resist and rebel against.
One of the greatest lessons I learned from being an engineer is to always find out exactly what customers want before designing the product.
Design must follow intentions. And intentions must be clear.
The tendency for all of us including myself is to try to do everything we can for everyone.
This spreads us too thin. Life is too short. Settle on one big game at a time. Build your ability to handle more than one game. But start with one game.
Clarify your intentions. Select the best intentions including the best target markets to focus on. Be extremely selective. Focus your attention and have the website represent that focus.
3. Build your long term strategy: content organic marketing
This can be done from day one. You write content or you get someone to do it for you. But write and make that content.
That accomplishes two things:
1. Build your brand
2. Get people to come to you and your site.
You need to do both; build the brand and build the traffic coming to you.
This can be done in parallel with step 1 above or earlier.
4. Set up smart dashboards and experiments to build your target market profiles: Build efficiency
Efficiency can only be built upon smart experiments and smart ways to measure accurately the game you are scoring.
In being effective, you select the game you want to play. To play the game efficiently, you have to set up the way you measure the score.
5. Set up smart dashboards to measure efficiency
This is the actual game being played. You look at the score, you develop a feel for how the game is going but you balance that intuition strongly against the numbers showing up in your dashboard. That will keep your mind straight and your business sane. It will also most importantly, keep you on track.
6. Expand strategies
Allow your natural ambition to expand once you have traction and cashflow coming in. Cashflow gives you options and takes away some of the basic anxieties that plague us.
Once you have your bread and butter strategies paying off, then expand your strategies – take a little bit more measured risk and look to upgrade your knowledge all the time in the changing landscape of
technology and marketing.
7. Look for the paradigm shift
Keep your eye on the business and on the horizon. As the captain of your ship, you must do both. Your family, employees, your partners and your team.. they are on the ship with you. Learning to be a good captain of the ship requires some changes internal and external; it is the internal determination to stay clear minded and open minded to information and new distinctions that keeps businesses like yours afloat and unsinkable?