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2021 Marketing Survival Guide

Written by Jeremy LaDuke

If you’re reading this, it means that the internet is still working and hasn’t been swallowed up by the black hole that is 2020, and that means there is still hope we will see 2021!  So, I put together a brief marketing survival guide for 2021.  Below are 4 things that, if you do them consistently, will help you crush your marketing in 2021.

Determine Where You Need to Go

With so much uncertainty that has rocked our communities in 2020, the only thing that is certain for 2021 is uncertainty. In light of this situation it makes it even harder to take abstract concepts (like marketing goals!) and think of them concretely.  Yet, having goals is vital to your survival in 2021. It might be beneficial to make small, monthly or quarterly goals.  Being able to adapt quickly to changing markets will be a skill more valuable in 2021 than it has ever been.  Determine which mountain you are going to climb. We recommend establishing SMART goals. These are goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. 

Determine The Best, Safest, or Quickest Route You Need to Take

Sometimes, there is a safe and fast route to reach your goals.  Sometimes you might have to choose between safe and fast.  With uncertainty, most local businesses will need to lean stronger towards safety when faced with that choice.  Look back at your marketing over the last 2 years.  What tactics have helped you the most?  Which of those things can you still rely on in 2021? One way to get a good understanding of your current situation and which route is best for your business is to conduct a SWOT analysis. In a SWOT analysis, you need to be as honest and brutal as possible and take an inventory of your Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. 

Pack Your Bag

In marketing, this is often the step that people start with.  And when you think about packing your bag before figuring out where you’re going, you can quickly realize that this is not a great strategy.  If you are climbing up an icy ledge, it won’t help you to have shorts and bug spray in your bag.  Your goals and the route you’re taking to get there will determine what sort of equipment need to go in your bag.  This is where working with someone you trust that has a good understanding of marketing tactics can save you a lot of money and headache.  Understanding how Google Ads work, how conversion rates on your website can affect your goals, or even what newspaper or billboard ads are worth can help you determine which of these tools need to go into your pack. 

Don’t Get off the Trail!

When you are ascending your marketing mountains in 2021 there will be distractions. That’s why it’s good to have a marketing survival guide.  I can almost guarantee you that there will be a new social media platform that will be all the rage and you will feel that existential marketing dread because you haven’t leveraged it for your brand yet.  That’s ok.  If it doesn’t help you reach your goals, don’t do it.  If it does, then it’s worth looking at the map and planning a new route that includes it.  When you’re hiking, an occasional diversion to a waterfall or overlook is ok, but too many may mean the sun goes down before you reach your destination.  

And don’t forget to celebrate the wins along the way!  Enjoying those moments where you succeeded in the midst of all this chaos is a key part to not burning out before you reach the mountain top.  Celebrate the wins, big and small.  And more importantly, celebrate the people around you as you work through this next year.

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