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5 Steps to Streamline Your Marketing for More Impact

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Small business owners spend on average 20 hours each week on marketing tasks. It seems like a never ending jumble of stuff that just needs to get done and often you don’t have a clue whether it’s worth your time and energy. Combine that with misleading and contradictory information online about what the latest “must do” marketing tactic is and you’re in for a long list of tasks to complete that don’t leave you much time to focus on anything else. 

Keep reading for a streamlined way to organize your marketing efforts so you can spend less time doing it and more time in your zone of genius.

  1. Goals. What are the goals for your business? Know them. Write them down. Look at them daily. These are the goals that your marketing should be helping you achieve. Everything else is just a distraction. The clearer you are about your goals, the easier the rest of the steps will become. 

  2. Tactics. Marketing tactics are the things you will use to reach your target audience. This could be anything from organic social media posting to email to advertising. You want to select a tactic or two that align with the goal you are trying to achieve. If you are trying to reach a broader audience, for example, you need to select a tactic that will put you in front of more people. That could mean you will spend your time and energy creating a bomb advertising campaign.

  3. Topics. Talking with your ideal audience is critical no matter which tactic you’ve chosen to achieve your goals. List out the topics that your ideal audience wants to engage on. These are the topics that you’ll use in your advertising, emails, social posts, etc. Themes can be helpful here. You can also review frequently asked questions for topic ideas.


  4. Tools. Marketing tools can be incredibly helpful is reducing the time it takes you to complete each of the tactics you’ve chosen to achieve your goals. For instance, if your goal is to increase the number of repeat buyers and you’ve chosen to do so by encouraging them to return to your website, then you are likely focusing your time on email marketing. Choose a tool like ConvertKit, Flodesk, or another marketing automation tool and create a killer DRIP campaign for former clients that they won’t be able to resist.

  5. Metrics. Lastly, you need to know if your marketing efforts are working so you can adjust and move on or double down. For each tactic you’ve chosen, select a metric to track that will give you insight into progress towards your goal. In the first example where we start an advertising campaign, you will want to track conversion rates for the ad campaign. You may also want to track the click through rate and bounce rate to see where any issues might be cropping up so you can fine tune your campaign. In the second example of DRIP email campaign to bring customer back for more, you’ll also want to track conversion rate, but your secondary metrics would be email open rate and click through rate from each email. Here is a list of metrics that will help you determine how successful your tactics are at achieving your goals. Check them often and make adjustments where necessary.


Part of the reason that small business owners spend inordinate amounts of time on marketing is that they are listening to the “experts” instead of their own customers. Many experts share tips and “must do” tactics that only pad their own bottom line. They are social media experts that sell automation software, or content experts selling content distribution software, and on and on. You don’t have to do it all. You only need to do the things that align with your goals and connect with your audience. Get clear on that and you’ll spend far less time on marketing but you’ll make a much bigger impact.

Source: Stacy McPhillips workshop, Pencil Point Marketing

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