I’m a big believer in having a marketing plan, especially when it comes to being clear on your number one goal and your key target audience. It’s also important to have a vision for where you want your company to go, so that your marketing can help you build toward that dream. Being clear on the big picture is important so that you can make sure your efforts are all building toward a common end point.
But in other ways, marketing is a one-day-at-a-time activity.
When you attend a marketing event and chat with the people you meet, you’re making a marketing impact. The same is true when you send out an email, write a newsletter, or make posts on social media. Yes, your message should align with your big-picture goal. But at the same time, at a grassroots level, your marketing adjusts with the needs of each person you talk with or interact with online.
You’ve got to keep your balance between now and later in order for marketing to do its best work. Without keeping your eye on the long-term goal, you’ll never get where you want to go. At the same time, achieving that goal will come as the result of the accumulation of day-to-day achievements, messages, connections and proposals.
Planning is important, but a single day can upend the best of plans. A major announcement by a large company in your industry can completely change the playing field. Natural disasters can wreck supply and distribution lines, manufacturing facilities, or retail outlets, forcing you to re-think what you say and how you say it—and whether you can deliver your product at all. A scandal or crisis can hijack your news cycle, or, if it’s your crisis, completely derail your marketing message. What a difference a day makes!
On the plus side, inspiration strikes when it will, not according to plan. Tomorrow might be the say you get your million-dollar idea, or an insight into a brilliant marketing approach. On any given day, you might meet a new client who places a huge order, discover an amazing new online marketing tool, or find a new supplier who can make magic happen. So make your plans, but be open because marketing is always a day-to-day adventure!