How Planning the Work (and then Working The Plan) Can Catapult Your Marketing Success
(Published Copywriting TNT International ezine December 2006)
A marketing plan is vital to the success of your business. Without a plan, even the best intentions may never be realized. You must plan the work and then work the plan, or your goals will not be accomplished. They key is to not only have a plan but to implement that plan. Implementation is golden.
Without a plan, even the best intentions may never be realized. You must plan the work and then work the plan, or your goals will not be accomplished. They key is to not only have a plan but to implement that plan.
A strategic plan is something that business owners know they need. At the same time, they may not be sure where to start or they believe it is too time consuming. But, the good news is: The planning process doesn’t have to be painful.
To reach your goals there must be measurable steps in place.
Start with the end in mind.
Before you begin your planning, ask yourself “What do I ultimately want to accomplish?” You may be surprised at how this one question will help provide the foundation for your plan.
Simple as it may seem, this question isn’t always easy to answer. Here’s why…
Overcome mental barriers in the planning process ~
It’s human nature to come up with many reasons why something cannot happen. It’s also human nature to allow these reasons to hinder our progress. But you don’t have to accept that state of mind.
Common mental barriers are based on fear and beliefs. They often include thoughts about financial constraints, time, resources and personal ability. We allow the thoughts to creep in, making us believe we cannot achieve something before we’ve even tried. That’s why it’s important to push past self doubt, clear your mind and be receptive to what you can accomplish.
Mindset really is the key to success ~
A client of mine named Sara wanted to expand her target market to include internet sales. Sara’s product is solid, current sales are strong and there is absolutely nothing standing in the way of this progress, except for self doubt and negative constraints. Once Sara mentioned her idea to expand, she quickly rattled off a list of reasons why she didn’t think she could do it; the website needed to be updated, credit card payment arrangements hadn’t been set up, her fulfillment center was backlogged, and, yes, the list goes on. She was focusing on how to create failure. I listened patiently, then said “Sara, expansion is a great idea. Let’s work on ways you CAN make that happen.” She quickly got her AHH-HA moment. Once she realized she had fallen into the negative constraints trap, she was able to move past her mental barriers. Don’t let yourself get caught in the negativity trap.
Everyone has unlimited potential and we can all find ways to reach our goals by approaching the planning process with an open mindset. It’s important to let go of all negative thoughts when you begin the planning process. Be open to change, progress and success.
ACTION STEPS ~
You’ll be surprised at how easy it is to accomplish your business goals once you’ve written them down. When your goals are outlined and broken down into manageable steps, you’ll reach your goal as long as you implement the steps and follow the plan. Harvey MacKay author of Swim with the Sharks put it best when he said “A goal is a dream with a deadline.”
Make your dreams happen!
What are your dreams? Take five minutes and list as many dreams as you can think of that you have for your business that you haven’t acted on yet. Make sure to think BIG. What would you ultimately like to do? Now pick your favorite three and focus on them. Ask yourself WITHOUT JUDGMENT why you haven’t acted on these dreams. What is holding you back? Pay attention to your thoughts. They hold the key to how you will move past your own self-imposed barriers.
Once you know exactly what you want to accomplish and you overcome your own objections, you will be able to figure out how you’re going to achieve your goals. Start by