It’s the 3rd quarter. Do you know where next year’s marketing calendar is? If it doesn’t exist yet, now is the perfect time to start planning your marketing efforts. Yep, you heard that right. Ideally, your marketing plan for the upcoming year is planned out no later than September each year.
Sound a little early to be planning for next year? Well, not really. We know the marketing and promotional activities you do today, will start to pay off in about 90 days or so. That’s why every year in August, we roll out the Marketing Planning Calendar, so Member firms can get a jump on their planning. This year, we rolled it out an entire month early! We know certain opportunities will come up that you can’t plan for that far in advance, but your standard activities, workshops, client events, holiday offers, yearly mailings, etc., can all be calendared now with plenty of notice.
Having your activities planned well in advance allows you to be selective about other opportunities that pop up. It creates an intentional, balanced plan that eliminates the pressure and anxiety to bring money in the door NOW because another activity didn’t perform as well as you had hoped. That doesn’t mean you set it and forget it though. Once it’s drafted, you’ll want to look at it regularly and finalize next quarter’s activities, so you’ve got a concrete plan to implement. Plus, looking at your prior activities’ ROI, will empower you to make informed decisions about where you’re spending your dollars and time.
The following 4-step system can make an immediate difference in your firm’s marketing efforts and results:
1. Set your revenue goal
Identify how much revenue you want to generate in each revenue category for the year. Then using your average fees in each category, determine the number of clients you need in each. Add them up for the year, and then break them down as your monthly and weekly revenue goals for tracking.
2. Determine your body count
This is where tracking the results of your marketing activities is so critical. Your batting averages are key in determining how many people you need to be in front of every month in each revenue category. This is the body count that your marketing plan should be putting you in front of every month.
3. Hit all your marketing channels
You need multiple marketing channels to create a balanced plan so you are not dependent on just one or two efforts or types of activities every month. Make sure every month has a balance of activities from all of these channels.
- Networking and community outreach
- Online and digital marketing
4. Track results and revenue, then adjust your marketing plan accordingly
Your results and revenue should be tracked weekly and monthly to know whether you’re on track or off track with your goal. You can’t make adjustments if you have no idea how close or far off the mark you are. Waiting to review your numbers at the end of the year is the quickest way to come up short on your target goal.
It’s also important to pinpoint which activities are working and worth repeating, and which efforts are not yielding the results you need. Before making any changes or eliminating an effort, be sure to identify if it is a systems issue or the actual marketing effort that’s yielding poor results.
We have a number of marketing resources available to help you create your ideal marketing plan. Academy firms also have access to our Marketing Activities Checklist and Planning Calendar, Direct Mail Planning Calendar, and the Financial Goals and Body Count Worksheet. Your Practice Building Coach can walk you through using these helpful planning tools anytime.
Not a Member yet? No problem. Simply email email@example.com to request your personal Marketing Strategy call to get a jump on next year’s planning!
Practice Building Coach
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
9444 Balboa Avenue, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (858) 453-2128
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