Marketing Campaigns don’t just appear out of nowhere. The idea or seed may sprout from nothing, but an effective campaign needs to be carefully researched, well-thought-out, with extra focus on the details on the execution.
Sounds intimidating? Campaigns don’t have to be.
A campaign can be something small such as a list of emails that you are sending to a select group of people over the next few months. Alternatively, a campaign could be a large-scaled approach including multiple channels and multiple hours and dollars invested.
However, each campaign should follow a few basic steps and include a few essential items.
Marketing Campaign Lifecycle – Begin With the End
Step 1: Determine The Goal
The goal of the campaign is the most important part and needs to be where you start. Gather your team together and determine exactly what it is you want the campaign to accomplish. Once you have the goal, put it in a sentence and share it with your team.
For example: The goal of this campaign is to increase site users by 25% month-over-month for the next three months.
Sharing this with your team is almost as important as the goal in itself because in most cases, it will be a team effort. With each person knowing what the goal is, they will evaluate each task and be sure what they are doing will help meet the goal.
Step 2: Perform Research
Research around your goal will vary in time, but it is important to research your product/company/service to understand your position in the industry, who your target audience is, and what is the best channel to target during the campaign.
In most cases you will already have a strong understanding of your target audience is. If so, great. If not, be sure to create a persona that matches your target audience so each decision speaks to their goals, pain points, and which channel would be best to reach this person.
If you determine that it may be on multiple channels, you don’t need to start with all channels at once. Be tactful and execute the campaign in incremental steps to allow for growth based off of early results or not. If you do start all channels at once, scale back if early results show that you should.
Step 3: Strategy
During strategy your team will determine what the meat of the campaign will be. Start with a brainstorm session where your team isn’t hung up on the limitations of your company. That will only inhibit creativity. Instead write down every idea that comes to mind and talk them over with your team. Once the brainstorm session ends, come back to reality a bit and determine what can be done within budget, or if a larger budget is needed.
During strategy your team will also need to walk away with the offer of the campaign, when it will start and end, which tactics will be used that speak to the target audience and will help meet the goal.
If you want to go the extra mile, provide a prediction with the strategy such as a time when the goal would be met or that you will not only meet the goal, but exceed it. But be careful and don’t promise too much.
Step 4: Development
Now that you know what your goal is, who the target audience is, what the offer is, and what channels you will be marketing on, design and developing the assets needed shouldn’t be too much of a hassell. Be sure that you’ve allowed time in this phase for revisions and testing though. This will prevent unnecessary functionality errors or typos within the copy once the campaign has started.
Step 5: Execution
Executing of the campaign seems like it would be the easiest part however, it can be difficult depending on the scale of the campaign, especially if your campaign is on multiple channels.
To avoid a disaster this late in the game, create a campaign calendar and set sprint benchmarks along the way. This will allow your team to stay energized and motivated, and help your team evaluate performance during the campaign process.
Be sure to put all due dates in a project management software (we use our own task management software), and include each member on your team when notes are shared.
Now that the calendar and benchmarks are in place, execution should be simple and allow your team to start measuring the results of your campaign.
Step 6: Reporting
Measuring the results of the campaign actually starts in step 5 when you record the benchmark metrics. However, your team should continue to monitor and report on the campaign throughout the duration of the campaign. This will allow your team to determine if you are on track or if changes need to be made.
Once your campaign has ended, complete the campaign by providing a summary of the campaign, and report on the successes or failures, and what was learned from the campaign. This will help inform the tactics that need to be included during your next campaigns.
Marketing campaigns can be developed on both a large and a small scale. Even on small campaigns your team should still follow these six steps:
Setting the Goal
Every marketing campaign will be a success on a certain level. Each may not meet your set goal, but each will provide insights to apply to future marketing efforts. Be sure to record all the information during each step allowing your team to continue and improve with each campaign.
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