5 Steps to Create Your Visibility Plan for the New Year
December 13, 2017
This is the last part of my series all about goal setting for 2018. In the previous posts, you looked at your finances and set savings and income goals for the new year. You brainstormed your business goals and got clear on how you’re going to take action for the first quarter of the new year.
This is the final piece of the puzzle where you’ll work on your visibility strategy for 2018. An effective marketing plan ensures that your audience will actually see all of your hard work. Plus you’ll be able to meet your income goal by attracting enough customers or clients throughout the year.
At the end of this post, you’ll find my 2018 Strategy Workbook. Which, combines all of the worksheets and checklists that were found throughout the series, Planning for the New Year. This workbook makes it easy for you to work through the entire planning process, in one place. It also includes a couple of new pages to brainstorm your visibility strategy.
Now, let’s get into the post!
Take a Look at your Current Strategy
Before you can move forward, you need to look back at what you’ve been doing to market yourself. Then, evaluate what worked and what didn’t go so well. Start by jotting down a list of everything you’ve done in 2017 to increase your businesses visibility. Here’s an example of a few things you might include:
- Social Media Platforms
- Email Marketing
- Youtube Videos
- In Person Meetups
- Facebook Groups
- Scheduling Pins on Pinterest
- Content Marketing – Blogging
- Direct Mail Campaigns
Take a look at your analytics and see what your top 3 traffic generators where. Which strategies actually lead to getting a new client or customer? You’ll likely want to include these things in your visibility strategy again. Think about how you can improve these strategies even more, in 2018.
Do a SWOT Analysis + Take a Strength Finder Test
A SWOT Analysis covers 4 basic things: Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. The end of the year is a great time to do a SWOT Analysis because you can get clear on where your business stands. It will also help you to brainstorm new ideas and opportunities that you might not have considered before.
Here’s a quick breakdown:
- Strength (internal): What are your business’s strengths?
- Weaknesses (internal): What are your business’s weaknesses?
- Opportunities (external): What opportunities do you have?
- Threats (external): What are your threats? Who are you competing against?
For more information, check out the workbook at the end of this article. It includes a SWOT Analysis brainstorming page.
This part isn’t 100% necessary. But, I personally found it helpful to take a strengths finder test to better understand what I’m good at and what I need help with. A strength finder test will help you to fill out the strengths and weaknesses section of your SWOT Analysis. CliftonStrengths makes a great test that is very detailed. If you’re looking for a free test to get a little insight, try High5Test or the RichardStep Aptitude Test.
Connect with your Target Audience
Start by taking a look at your Google Analytics to see who you’re currently attracting. You’ll get a clear picture of who is landing on your website and if they line up with your ideal audience.
To get even more information, you can send out a questionnaire to your audience. This will allow you to get insight from the people who follow you on social media and who are on your email list. Try asking questions about how you can better serve your audience. Ask them what they like to see from you? Now you can create content and products that your audience already wants.
If you find that you’re not attracting the right people, or that your audience is all over the place, then it’s time to niche down. Start by creating an audience persona to help you get crystal clear on who you want to attract with your visibility strategy. Here are a few questions to help you along the way:
- Who is your audience?
- What is their personality like?
- What are their values?
- What do they do for fun?
- What are their favorite books, movies, music?
- What is their personal style like?
- What is their job title?
- Where do they work?
- Where do they live?
- What’s their yearly income?
- What are they struggling with?
- How can you help them?
- What are some of their fears and stressors?
- What keeps them up at night?
- What’s this person’s name?
- Where Does your Audience Hang Out?
Now you have a really clear picture of who your audience is and if you’re currently attracting them. You also know what forms of marketing have worked and which ones haven’t. Now consider where your audience actually hangs out so that you can connect with them.
A good place to start is on social media. Look at people who you want to work with and see what platforms they like to hang out on. These are likely the places that you’ll want to put some serious strategy into.
Take a second to scope out your competition to see what they’re doing to market themselves. Don’t copy them! But, do take note of what they do and what has been working for them.
If you’re trying to attract a new niche then a Facebook Group is a great place to start. The reason being is that you can connect on a more personal level then you can on other social media platforms. You can ask questions and give you valuable insight in a one-on-one way.
Try doing a poll, inside the group, to find out what your audience is struggling with. Ask them what their pain points are and start creating content that will help them to solve these problems.
Write your Visibility Strategy
Now, simply combine everything together into a visibility strategy. Divide everything up into 90-day quarters so that you can align your marketing plan with your business goals. I went into more detail about 90-Day goal setting, right here.
It’s sometimes all too easy to stick to what we’re good at. If you find that your visibility plan, looks really similar to last years, then try to push yourself to do something new and out of your comfort zone. For instance, maybe you’re great at writing content on your blog but want to push yourself to get on video and share some of your valuable content on YouTube.
Now you know what actions you want to include in your visibility plan for the New Year. You’ve separated everything out into quarters and just need to schedule everything so that you actually do it. Put your action steps in your project management system and schedule those due dates.
Unfortunately, marketing doesn’t often lead to overnight success. At least in my experience. But by creating a clear strategy and being consistent – you will start to see growth. So stick with it!
Make sure to grab your copy of the 2018 Strategy Workbook below. This workbook is jam-packed with ways to plan for the New Year and goes over how to create a visibility strategy. You’ll also get my tips from all of my other posts in this series. By the end of the workbook – you’ll have an income goal, savings goal, your business goals, and a visibility strategy for 2018.