You may already be deep into planning for next year. In fact, you may have a budget, a set of detailed objectives and some early prep work already in motion too.
Whether you are that far ahead or not, one thing we see frequently in even our most evolved client’s planning tends to be high-level, and they miss many opportunities to do their best work by waiting until it is time to produce it. By looking well ahead at the whole year, you can be more prepared and more opportunistic during the year.
Today we’ll share six steps to getting yourself set up for making video a successful part of your 2019 marketing planning.
1. Know Your Brand – And How to Communicate It
What is your comfort level with your own Brand? It’s quite common for many businesses to lack a common culture about their Brand. And it is something that can happen in both big and small companies. A document called a “Brand Guideline” isn’t the same thing. While they can be a good creative guide for standardizing fonts, colors, logos, etc., they rarely talk about what makes your Brand different, or what your customers love about you. Ask yourself these questions because we will too!
What are your brand’s most important values?
What is the driving force behind what your Brand does?
What do your customers love about your Brand?
What do your employees love about your Brand?
What makes your Brand different?.
Finally, if you are with a very large business that has various sub-brands or divisions that are known as Brands unto themselves as well, it’s important to determine at which level you intend to be working in.
2. What Are Your Marketing Goals?
What are your goals? Video marketing needs to align with the bigger picture you are setting for yourself. Before jumping in and deciding what kind of video you think you want or play around with concepts, identify your goals. We can help you determine how video can support them and what kind of video might best provide that support.
Goals that you might want to consider as something we can achieve with video include
More engagement with prospects or customers (via email or social channels
Improved conversion rates on landing pages
Increased Brand awareness
Deeper Brand comprehension of your products or services
3. Knowing Your Audience
Though we are saying it anyway, it generally goes without saying that successful marketing requires insights into your audience and desired customer. If you’re like a lot of large businesses, you will already have large volumes of customer research that provides a view of demographics, personality, preferences, etc.
For smaller businesses, a set of interviews with existing customers or involving some of your frontline people could be a good way to get up to date on what is currently on the minds of your customers too.
Finally, if you have a large and diverse audience who buy across a diverse line of products and services, dividing them up into personas is a good way to narrow your focus even more and tailor your project to generate more impactful results.
4. Catalog Your Current Content Offering
What does your current content look like? How will some new video fit into what you already have, or fill some of your gaps? Good content does not always have to be a one-off campaign-driven project. Good content will last and remain relevant and eventually be a source of traffic and conversions for you.
How about the industry itself? It pays to take a look at the competition and see where the gaps are that your audience is not getting from them either. This is often the source of unrealized opportunities that you can benefit from.
5. Choose Your Place in the Buyer’s Journey
This goes back to your marketing goals again, but it’s also important to not only target your audience, but to target which part of the buying cycle they are in. Whether you use a traditional sales funnel model or some other approach for mapping your buyer’s journey, you may already know how to map your current content and campaign efforts to your sales process. Video is very flexible in that something can be tailored to every part of the funnel.
6. Line Up Your Resources and Partners Early
One thing that is easy to forget in the planning process is to include your agency partners. While most marketers recognize their agency partners regularly for the quality of their execution, they don’t often include them early enough in the planning process. Of course, it is not always easy to do, especially if you are in a culture that forces a competitive bid on every execution project. Businesses have learned to think of their agencies as a “source of ideas” rather than an “execution vendor.” The first is more strategic; the other tends to be treated as a commodity.
For planning for next year, bring in your favorite agency partners NOW, and have an open discussion about next year, even using these points as a guide for whiteboarding out what is known and unknown. Send them home with some homework. A good agency is usually very willing to be your scribe and put together the brief for you too (which, unfortunately, is not a strength in many corporate cultures).
Planning for 2019 Has Already Started
Like most typical years, we are already seeing clients reach out to talk about next year, which means if you haven’t yet, you may be risking access to your favorite agencies, or the timing in their schedule that you might need.
Need some ideas?
We are available to help, even for the most preliminary planning. We can help you think out loud about questions you need to ask as part of the planning process.