Hitting The Mark

Top Three Tips for Your 2013 Marketing Calendar

Around this time of year, most small business owners know that they should spend time planning out their marketing calendars but many are intimidated by this concept or aren’t sure even exactly what to do.

Creating and sticking to your marketing calendar is a cost-effective way to plan out, manage and anticipate the needs of both your business and your clients in the year ahead; it will also keep your business on track for success.

Here are our top three tips for planning out your own marketing calendar today:

1. Break It Down

With your overall business goals and strategy in place, it’s usually most effective to break down the marketing calendar year into quarters, months, and then weeks, and then pinpoint the marketing activities that will take place in each. Too overwhelming? Just highlight three priorities for each quarter or month. A calendar will be most useful if it is specific, spelling out individual promotions or events as well as the estimated costs that come along with each. This will help you see, at a glance, which events and strategies were productive and on target, which helps you in planning your marketing resources in the future.

2. Keep It Simple

Your business will benefit from even the simplest of marketing calendars, so don’t get so bogged down in the details that you get overwhelmed and give up. At the very least, identify the marketing priority for each quarter and what your budget will be; you’ll still be ahead of the game.

3. Be Open to Change

Remember that as your business grows and changes, so might your marketing calendar. So set a reminder to revisit your calendar a few months down the road to see what you might need to modify as your business forecast changes.

*Bonus Tip: If your marketing plan includes social media (as it should!), be sure to check out our tips for creating an effective social media task list here.

Ready to get started? Smart small with a simple template such as this one and set aside a few hours to get the basics in writing:

MarketingCalendar1

Still overwhelmed and want some help developing your strategy for marketing success? Please call us for a free consultation to discuss the variety of marketing services we provide to our clients.