One of the most important parts of growing a business is knowing how to prioritize and focus on the tasks that matter most. No one has time to do everything, so how do you know which items are worth your time and should be prioritized? You need to choose your priorities wisely to make the most use of your limited time. And of course, everybody will have different priorities. So, let’s walk through a three step process you can follow to choose the right marketing priorities for you.
Step 1: Know Your Audience
The very first thing you need to take care of in order to choose the right marketing priorities for you, is to understand who your audience is. You need to know who you’re talking to in your blogs, who your product is for, and who you want to visit your website.
Your first step is to define your audience. To do this, create a marketing persona. The persona is a fictional outline of an ideal avatar for your business. Though the actual person is fictional, all of the characteristics and demographics are based on data and the actual people your company supports.
Then, determine the channels where you’ll find the greatest amount of your target audience. Understand where your audience spends their time online. This will help you understand where you should focus your time and effort.
Are you targeting business owners that do most of their research with google searches and contribute to LinkedIn and Facebook? Are you targeting a younger audience that gets their information from Reddit and spends time on TikTok and SnapChat? Are you targeting a community that places high value on visuals and spends time on Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube?
Look at your Google Analytics data to see which acquisition sources are your top sources. Likely, these will be the sources you’ll want to focus on. Also, think about those top sources and consider how they align with your customer persona. Do they make sense? Is there possibly a different channel you don’t see in your existing traffic that makes perfect sense for your ideal customer?
Step 2: Set Goals
Make sure to set one primary annual goal. This will be your guiding light. You need to have a clear direction and goal in mind. That is the only way you’ll be able to determine if you are choosing the correct marketing priority. You need to know where you want to end up to know if each step you take is headed in the correct direction.
Choose milestones for your goal if desired. You can create monthly or quarterly goal milestones to try and make sure you are progressing fast enough toward your annual goal. This is completely optional. It won’t make sense for all goals and it won’t make sense for all people.
Your schedule will not be consistent. You will have busy seasons and slow seasons. Plus, you do have a life outside of work and sometimes that provides you with more or less work time.
If you create too many milestones that expect consistent growth it can be discouraging when you don’t meet them all. Sometimes projects have a slow start. Sometimes projects move quick at first, and you feel caught up, then the last ten percent of the project takes ninety percent of the time.
As long as you have an annual goal in mind, don’t stress about quarterly or monthly goals. But, by all means set them if it makes sense for you, your business, and the goal.
Lastly, set a weekly goal that moves you closer to your annual goal. It’s up to you how many weekly goals you want to set. I’d recommend between one to three. And that can vary from week to week.
The important part is that your weekly goal moves you closer to your desired end result. It should help you reach your annual goal. That is how you will understand how to choose the right marketing priorities.
Does the task move the needle and get you closer toward your target? If it does, then prioritize it. If it doesn’t re-evaluate if it’s worth the time.
Step 3: Review Time Consuming Tasks
Of course you will sometimes have tasks that don’t relate to your primary annual goal. That’s fine, it’s normal, and it will happen. Just be aware that the task is not related to your primary goal. Don’t ignore it completely, but instead be aware that it is distracting you from your primary goal. Monitor the time you spend on secondary tasks and if they start consuming more time than you have, reassess and reprioritize.
Think about what takes most of your time every single week. Is it an important piece of your annual goal? If it is, great. Sounds like that is a high priority item and is well worth your time.
If it isn’t an important step towards your goal then evaluate it. Is it a task that is still worth doing at all? Sometimes we get so used to a routine or system that we forget why we were doing it in the first place. Confirm that the task that is using so much of your precious time is even worth a minute of it.
Next, decide if the system you are using to complete the task is the best system available today. Is there a way you can automate the process? Tools such as Zapier can help anyone create automated systems. You can also use the combination of Google Data Studio, Google Analytics, and Google Sheets to automate some reports.
And lastly, do you need to be the one to do the task? Is it something that can be outsourced or is there anyone else that you can train to take over that task for you? Remember, it’s keeping you from getting to your goal. So, it may feel like it’s important for you to do it. But ultimately, your highest priority marketing tasks should be moving you closer and closer toward your annual goal.
Do you have a different system you use to determine your marketing priorities? If you do please share it in the comments!