As the last of 2020 winds down, it’s the perfect time to finish planning your 2021 marketing success. If you haven’t reviewed your 2020 marketing, the final days of 2020 offer a good opportunity to spend some time doing just that. By analyzing marketing elements your company used in 2020 and even years prior, you can finish preparing for marketing success in 2021. This December, put an eye on your brand’s branding and marketing strategy, outbound marketing, inbound marketing, and custom photography and video.
Branding & Strategy
If you’re looking to finish the year strong and prepare your company for 2021, the first step is to review your brand identity and brand guidelines. Are you happy with them? Do you feel they represent the company well and have contemporary style? If so, great. Retire any materials that have outdated branding and order refills of your current-branded staple marketing materials: promotional items, letterhead, business cards, etc.
While looking at your brand identity and guidelines you decide you need something different, the end of the year is the perfect time to start a rebranding process to have a new look for Spring 2021. Bold Entity has an in-depth, proprietary brand strategy methodology that can help you capture the essence of your company and appropriately represent that through custom design.
This is also a good time to review your website. Does your website look contemporary, not outdated? Visit your website on multiple devices to see if works smoothly across platforms. Because technology advances so quickly, even a relatively new website (2018 or newer) may be supported on the latest computer and phone technologies. And, check the information on your website for accuracy. Is all the information updated and correct? This includes updating legal information like browser cookie disclosures, and the copyright date. Bold Entity offers website services to help you change, update, or replace your website with a new version.
Do your buyer personas represent your ideal current prospects? Review your personas annually and speak with people in your organization to see if the people they serve match up with your buyer personas. You may learn you’ve lost favor with a specific demographic or seen an unanticipated increase in clients and customers who fit a different persona. If so, it’s time to consider doing more research into refining and developing new buyer personas. This can help you tap into new audiences or recover any lost ground.
The end of the year is also a good time to review your market research. In the past year have there been any changes to the company, competition, or marketplace that would impact your company’s offerings position in the marketplace? Is your positioning correct for your market position or do you need to adjust to meet what has changed over the past year? Along the same lines, now would be a good time to complete or update a company SWOT analysis.
Look back at what you accomplished in 2020. Did you meet your annual goals? What was key to you achieving or failing to meet your 2020 goals? While COVID-19 was an obvious factor, review what happened in the year and try to pinpoint specific moments that defined marketing success or missed opportunities in 2020. Use the information to define your 2021 goals and challenges. Start thinking about what you can do different to meet your goals and overcome challenges next year.
If you haven’t already, define your marketing budget. An experienced agency, like Bold Entity, can use its expertise to help you define your budget for maximized return on investment. The earlier you involve your marketing partners in your planning the more help we can be in reaching your 2021 goals.
Outbound Marketing Success
Despite a change in philosophy in marketing and selling that focuses on inbound pull methodology, outbound marketing should very much have a place in your 2021 budget. Sometimes you need to get your company, brand, and offerings in front of people who aren’t aware there is a solution to their current challenge. A growing way to access this audience is through influencer marketing. Does your company have offerings that can easily be explained and marketed online? If so, partnering with the right online influencer can help you reach an untapped audience while using the influencer’s audience popularity as a spokesperson for your company.
At the end of 2020, you should also review your sales materials. What downloadables and collateral are you using? See if you need to reorder collateral materials for 2021. Sit down and read through your materials. Are all the graphical elements, images, and information correct and current? If not, now is the time to get started with an agency like Bold Entity on refreshing your digital and physical marketing materials so you’re ready for 2021. This is especially important for content pieces being used to tempt website visitors to fill out a form with their information and consent for further marketing communication.
Did your company go through any large changes in 2020? Publicizing changes at your company can help you gain awareness and attention from your target audiences. Look at your goals, challenges, and plan for 2021. It’s possible some of what you have planned for 2021 is newsworthy. Bold Entity can help companies looking to get their name in the news. We can help you put together a public relations strategy to highlight your company’s charitable contributions, community service, new offerings, even new hires. Each exposure in the news media is an opportunity for your brand to build recognition with your audience.
This year many companies started or expanded their online advertising initiatives. While digital advertising can seem daunting, it can actually be a simple way of advertising that often provides significantly higher ROI than traditional advertising at a fraction of the cost. And it’s not just for large, national brands. Any size company with any size service area can benefit from online advertising. Especially new companies, or those looking to introduce new branding or product/service offerings. Search advertising is particularly good for companies looking to build brand awareness and interest prospects actively searching for the types of solutions you offer. Ask Bold Entity about including search advertising into your marketing strategy.
Social media advertising is the other side of the search advertising coin. Where the latter focuses on active searchers, the former allows you to fine-tune your advertising to target only people who match your buyer personas. Social media advertising can help with lead generation, brand awareness, and building your online reputation as a complement to native social media posting. Advertising on social media provides a great opportunity for you to retarget prospects who visited your website but did not complete a purchase, contact you, or fill out a form. Bold Entity can help your develop a retargeting strategy to reduce the number of lost prospects who leave your website without converting.
Tradeshows and industry events were canceled for most of 2020. While many events were put off until 2021, some changed to virtual industry events and overwhelmed many people. Bold Entity can help you get an early start on your planning for 2021 in-person events, including booths, freebies, collateral, and more. We can also help you prepare for marketing success with virtual events.
Even in the 21st century there is still marketing success to be found in traditional ads media for the right type of company and the right type of target audience. Bold Entity can help you reach prospects through traditional media such as direct mail, transportation, print, radio, and television advertising. We can help your review your buyer personas and see if traditional media makes sense to reach your prospects and how to help you make that happen.
Inbound Marketing Success
Outbound marketing is a useful tool for companies, but it is not the only way to try and reach your best prospects. Inbound marketing focuses on helping a prospect find their way to your company’s offerings as the right solution, rather than telling them it’s the right solution. Inbound marketing also has a more permanent impact on your business because it is not subject to being visible for as long as you continue to buy advertising space.
One such example is social media content. Your company’s native social media posts are logged on the platform and can be viewed by users with a quick scroll on your profile page. Working with an agency like Bold Entity, we can help you create a social media strategy and schedule that builds online posting consistency. This can help your brand increase awareness, build engagement, and support your lead generation efforts with a mixture of sales and non-sales content.
Because of the permanence of your brand’s digital footprint it’s important to manage your online reputation. If you haven’t looked at your company’s online reviews, messages, and social media comments, do so now. This is a task you should do regularly. Leaving unanswered questions in the public and not responding to negative reviews can make your brand look uninterested and uncaring. An agency like Bold Entity, can offer to assist you with reputation management. We can regularly survey your brand online for new comments, messages, and reviews and forward them to your team as necessary for resolution.
Another way to keep in contact with your prospects and clients is with a regular email newsletter. The end of the year is a good opportunity to refresh the look and feel of your email newsletter template for 2021. If you’re not already building an email list to send out email newsletters, Bold Entity can help you get started. Many recipients look forward to newsletters and it can be a great platform for showing a secret look at what is going on at your company and build rapport and emotional investment with your clients and prospects.
Having a great website isn’t just about looking good and saying the right things. Your website also needs to be constructed to perform on Google. Search engine optimization can help you improve the user experience of your website and help it rank high in Google searches to improve your brand’s online visibility. Bold Entity can audit your existing website or make sure any website changes you make for 2021 are optimized for search engine ranking.
Did you have any notable marketing successes in 2020? Any instances where you really came through for a client in a big way? These are the types of examples that can be turned into case studies with the help of Bold Entity and used as palpable marketing to show measurable results provided by your product/service offerings to prospective clients.
Another way to show off how well you perform for your clients is by adding a client testimonial section to your website. Or, if you already have one, to make sure it is updated with recent, glowing reviews. There is a big difference in potency when the voice saying how great your company’s service and products are current and former clients. The power of social proof is so potent that today people look up reviews of most products and services online before purchasing.
To make the most of your digital marketing you need a way to capture prospect information. Bold Entity can help you develop or revise your landing page strategy to create pages specific for each offering you promote and integrate the prospect information directly with your CRM to seamlessly enter prospects into your marketing/sales pipeline.
While landing pages can work on their own with manual attention, they work best when coupled with a CRM. Bold Entity can help you set up and order your CRM experience to help you keep track of your prospects and clients in a single location. We can also help you develop and refine automated marketing tasks in your CRM to minimize the manual attention required from your team to complete simple marketing tasks like follow-up emails.
Custom Photography & Video
One more thing to consider at the end of 2020, is your brand’s visuals. Do you have updated headshots of your employees on the website? Do your social media, advertisements, and marketing materials feature photographs and video of your company or are they stock footage? Featuring original photography and video is one of the best ways to make your brand distinct in 2021. Custom visual elements look better, show authenticity, and can’t be duplicated by competitors.
Getting custom photography and video for your company has never been more cost effective than it is today due to advances in technology. It’s a great way to improve your website, social media posts, and digital advertising’s appeal. Custom video also provides you with an opportunity to show off your products/services, capture video testimonials, and create inbound content such as tips, how-tos, and technical explanations. This can be a crucial marketing tool if you have complicated or highly technical offerings that need to be explained to prospects. Often considered the new elevator pitch, digital video can convert a viewer into a prospect in minutes.
When you partner with an agency like Bold Entity, we can help you review what images and video footage you have. Then determine what needs to be replaced, updated, and discover opportunities for new and engaging visual elements that can best serve your 2021 marketing.
No matter what your plans are for 2021 you can always enhance your company’s branding and marketing for the new year. If you’re unsure where to start with your 2021 marketing, or marketing budget, Bold Entity can help you get the most from your investment. Bold Entity works as your ongoing partner, an extension of your company as its outside marketing team. We are don’t believe on solution fits all situations and clients, and offer multiple approaches and solutions to your specific marketing challenges. That same flexibility and customization is also reflected in our pricing structure. Bold Entity works to find the right mix of project and retainer pricing that fits your company’s needs. Allowing you to increase and change marketing services as your 2021 needs change.
Partner with Bold Entity for Your 2021 Marketing Success
Bold Entity has been helping brands like yours find marketing success for over ten years. We specialize in brand strategy and digital marketing for local and national SMBs. Contact us now to get started planning your 2021 marketing success.