Woman jumping from a rock with 2017 on it, to a rock with 2018 on it

As 2017 comes to a close, we’re doing the typical reflection on the past year that everyone does and planning for a larger-than-life 2018.

Looking forward, as the world becomes more and more connected, and as people are becoming more and more mobile based, businesses around the world, including ours, are competing for customer attention. Marshall Communications is always looking for ways to define and communicate what makes us unique and we bet you are, too!

Imagine if your favorite football team had no playbook, and each player just did what he thought best at the moment to win the game? Well, they wouldn’t be bringing home any championship, that’s for sure. You might think you need to go a trade show, or create a blog or brochure just because everyone else is doing it, or create a Facebook page without determining what kinds of posts will most appeal to the types of followers you want. Implementing a standard laundry list of tactics with no thought behind their selection is just not going to work. You’ll waste precious time and money by forging ahead with no strategic goal or strategic plan that is written down, specific, measurable, and agreed upon by everyone on your team.

The smarter, more effective approach is to first determine what differentiates your location, what your unique brand story is, who you are targeting, and what, exactly, you are trying to accomplish. The next step is to decide what tools in the marketing arsenal present the most effective means of reaching your goal.

As a first step in our Marshall Plan® process, we sit down with our clients for a brainstorming meeting we call a Discovery Session. We like to invite a broad spectrum of stakeholders to participate. This meeting is our opportunity to learn about the inner workings of your business. In order to produce an effective playbook, it is imperative that we gain a thorough understanding of your history, challenges, growth or development goals, and competitive positioning through this process.

The intelligence we gather from the Discovery Session, as well as additional research gleaned from a variety of methods including surveys, focus groups, secret shopping and competitor analysis, creates the basis of your custom Marshall Plan®.

You can read more about our Marshall Plan® process on our website and feel free to try out our new live chat feature if you have any questions. As an agency, we end each year by going through a refresh of our Marshall Plan® to help plan for the next year and we have a great announcement slated for the first quarter! Stay tuned…

Take a peek at our top blog posts from 2017

Advertising vs public relations – what’s the difference?

Message mapping helps define your key messages

Top 10 marketing tips to learn from yard sales