Building A Marketing Plan: What Version One Should Look Like (Part 4)

In this next blog, to give you an idea of where we are heading, we will explain how to maintain your marketing plan. Before you adapt and work with it, you still need to have some sort of product. Hence, we want to give you all the tools you need to build Version One of a marketing plan. Version One will be complex for many people, so we wanted to make it easier. 

What Marketing Are We Going to Be Doing?

As a quick side note, categories make answering this question easier. If you are a business owner or run a law firm, choose the categories that make sense. It’s that simple. Because we can already sense the pushback from that comment, remember that you can change these categories months later. This is Version One, which is merely scaffolding. 

First, write down everything you plan to do in the next six to twelve months. If the list looks somewhat meager, it means one of two things. The first is that you don’t have enough marketing going on. In that case, think about what kinds of marketing you would like to do. And if you cannot answer that, put in placeholders! You know you may want to do something, so use empty placeholders until you can determine what it is. Sure, finding a tangible answer becomes a task for you or your team, but you’re still building momentum. Especially when considering the alternative of staring at a blank document and getting frustrated. 

Traction from quarter one could answer what you will do in quarter two. Just get moving. A lot of marketing is ongoing, so assuming you may have carryover from quarter to quarter is not out of the question. For instance, if you figure out how to start doing Facebook and Google Ads for your firm and find they’re working, you might pencil that in for Q2.

If your list is small, the second thing to consider is that you aren’t thinking about everything you are already doing. Looking at the referral category, you may realize you do birthday or holiday cards. You can do things to stay in touch with your network. You may be part of Bar Associations, Chambers of Commerce, or other networking organizations to build relationships that could evolve into referrals. You may not even realize this is a form of marketing. We have talked with clients who bashfully admit they do no marketing. That said, we dig deeper and discover they are doing many of the things we just mentioned. 

Here’s A Pro Tip

Here’s a straightforward way to get marketing ideas: Ask yourself where your current clients are coming from. When you know where your clients have come from, you can reverse engineer that to get more clients from the same avenues. Have you gotten people from referrals from past clients or other professionals? (As a bit of a throwback to a previous point, these could be one or two categories, but this is up to you.) 

The idea is that now you realize that you have existing tracks for getting clients, and then you begin thinking about what you can do proactively to get more out of them. This is about capturing everything you have going on while also looking for opportunities for things you want to try in the future. The ideas you come up with can now go in the slots you previously left blank. 

It Can Be Messy

This is how you create Version One. Frankly, even if the categories are messy, you’ve gotten started. Now that you’ve built Version One of your marketing plan, the next step is learning how to maintain and adapt it. Our next blog will discuss strategies for keeping your plan dynamic and relevant.

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Spotlight Branding

Spotlight Branding is a content marketing and branding firm for lawyers and other professionals. Our goal is to help you create an online presence that positions you as a credible expert in your field, keeps you connected with your network in order to stay top of mind and increase referrals, and to become more visible online so prospects can find you!