For the more casual baseball fan like me, October is the month that you start to really pay attention to your favorite team. It’s amazing when you think about how the season is about 6 months long, but many fans only tune in for the last 1-2 months. We tell ourselves those other games don’t matter, but of course they do. Everything your team did up to this point either positioned them for the playoffs or put them out of contention.
Important side note: I grew up in Massachusetts, which makes me a Red Sox fan. I live in Manhattan (aka home of “The Evil Empire”) and I married a Yankees fan, which makes most Octobers “interesting” to say the least. :)
Why is any of this relevant to your marketing? That’s a great question. In this article I’ll explain why right now, the start of Q4, is also the time to “tune in” to your marketing regardless of how good or bad of a “season” you’ve had to date. There’s still a lot of time left in 2015 so let’s make sure we finish strong.
Is Your Marketing Ready for the Playoffs?
At this point in the year, you’re in one of two positions:
- You’re having a good year and you’re on track to hit your marketing goals for 2015. In other words, you’re on your way to the playoffs like my wife’s favorite team.
- You’re not having a good year and there is no way to hit your marketing goals in the 3 remaining months. Unfortunately, the Red Sox are in this position so I won’t get to watch them later this month.
Which position is your marketing in right now? Depending on your unique situation, skip down to the appropriate section below.
#1: Prepare for the Playoffs
If you’re positioned for the playoffs, then congratulations. Now you just need to keep the momentum going to finish the year strong.
First, identify what’s working. This is like how a baseball manager evaluates each players’ performance to determine the best lineup for the playoff games ahead. Keep in mind that it’s possible some players started the year strong, but have since faded, and vice versa.
The key is to identify your superstar marketing tactics that have been driving leads and sales recently. Then focus your time and budget on improving those tactics in Q4.
Next, identify what was working earlier in the year, but has not performed well recently. It’s possible you shifted resources or neglected a marketing tactic so now it’s no longer driving leads and sales. This is like a baseball player that loses his swing and falls into a slump.
Since you know these tactics used to work well, it’s worth investing time and resources to get them back on track to finish the year strong.
#2: Prepare for Next Year
If you find yourself in position #2 above, then don’t beat yourself up and don’t throw in the towel. There is still plenty of time left in 2015.
The goal here is to position your marketing for a stronger 2016. This is what the Red Sox did towards the end of their season. The Red Sox didn’t give up even though the playoffs were out of the question for them. Instead, they used the remaining games to lay the foundation for next season.
That’s exactly what you need to do as well. What can you do in your marketing right now that would put you in position to have a strong 2016?
For example, do you need a new website? Do you need to optimize your website for search engines? Do you need to launch an AdWords campaign? Do you need to set up email marketing?
Make a list of what’s missing in your marketing and focus Q4 on laying the foundation for 2016.
How to Create an Effective Online Marketing Plan
As I mentioned in this article, right now is the time to focus on your online marketing plan.
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