Stop The Marketing Fire-Drill: How to Overcome Common Marketing Department Challenges
Do you ever feel like your marketing efforts aren’t as buttoned-up as they could be? Maybe you’re feeling a bit scattered with responsibilities and roles and marketing “fire drills” are the only way things are accomplished. This makes long-term planning a struggle. Most days you look back and wonder: does it all hang together? What’s our plan?
We hear you. In fact, we hear these concerns from a lot of our clients. It’s why we created a marketing guide (the Marketing Strategy Playbook), that helps marketing professionals bring clarity, cohesion and consistency to their marketing efforts. We took the best practices we’ve used with numerous clients and compiled them in an easy-to-understand guide that can help you rally your team to form a strategic and effective marketing plan.
How can the guide help you? Consider these scenarios or roadblocks. If any of them sound familiar, our playbook can help you overcome them.
Problem 1: You’re wasting time and resources.
Our clients often come to us with this problem: their marketing efforts feel wasted. The culprit is usually the same: no one on the marketing team is working towards a clear, common objective or goal.
It’s an easy problem to have because marketing resources are often scarce, and everyone has a different opinion on where precious dollars should be spent. That leads to missed deadlines and half-complete projects because everyone inside your organization is prioritizing something different.
A common, well-defined strategy is the solution. It serves as a North Star that guides every decision at every level – from what projects take priority to what words should be used in your call-to-action. Not all strategies are created equal, and the first step to success is evaluating what you have and determining if it’s the right one for your brand.
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Problem 2: Your efforts are tracking as ineffective.
All that precious time you spent planning and strategizing; you seemed to have a solid direction. Yet, in execution, things fell flat. The culprit is often the message. While you may think it’s on-point, your audiences may be on a different page.
The solution is to clearly define and understand your audience’s direct needs and speak to those. If you serve multiple audiences, it’s also important to message accordingly. When you lump your messages together and try to speak to the masses, you generally end up speaking to no one.
Problem 3: A lack of consistency is hurting your brand.
Trust is one of your brand’s greatest assets. If your customers and stakeholders start to no longer trust your brand and your messaging, it’s a hard hurdle to rebuild. The only way to build trust is with consistency. That means speaking with one voice and a common look, feel and language. Imagine buying a bottle of Coca-Cola and the packaging is the wrong shade of red. Would you trust that it is truly Coca-Cola? Probably not.
Every detail matters, and ignoring this rule is a problem we encounter often – especially if a marketing team has many new or junior-level team members. Logos are not always applied correctly, stock photos feel random and disjointed, and no one is using the right PMS color. You might recognize these problems, but not know how to fix them.
Not everyone can be a senior-level employee. And marketing is a great department for fresh ideas and energy that young employees bring to the team. But, without the right foundation, there’s nothing stopping your team from following trends instead of your brand strategy. They may think it draws positive attention, when, in fact, that attention isn’t always authentic to who you want your brand to be.
Problem 4: You are constantly trying to come up with a process to get things done.
How often do you think, “We need a better way to track projects?” or worse, “No one is using the process we spent months researching and putting into place.” Analysis paralysis is real when it comes to project management software, protocols and other efficiency tools. But a lack of process can lead to the same request resulting in a different output every time. It can also mean countless days/weeks spent planning the process each time a request is made. It becomes exhausting and inefficient.
The way forward is to identify what you want to track and measure, then establish one process (or small set of processes) to collect and house the information.
Your free marketing guide: Gain the clarity & consistency to fuel marketing success
Not having a clearly defined marketing strategy and support tools can lead to many problems like these. If you’re worried this might be you, our free Marketing Strategy Playbook can set your team on the path to consistency. Learn more and download your copy here.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Megan Factor is a Content Manager at Muse and a passionate creator, both professionally and personally. She developed her content marketing skills working in a wide range of industries and pulls inspiration from her diverse experiences. Her keen eye for design, penchant for writing, and love of good storytelling work together to create meaningful content that provides value to clients.
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