31 Jan The First Step of Marketing: Ideation and Brainstorming
By: Julie Goode
We are determined to help you hit your marketing goals and will be focusing on a different phase of marketing each month this year. This blog post summarizes this month’s tips and discussion points for you to implement in your own plan. When asked, “what are the steps to creating a marketing campaign?” the first task is to brainstorm and create ideas.
Read along for some tips on how to accomplish this step.
Create a mood board
Are you launching a social media campaign this year?
Before a new launch, the Germono team likes to start the planning process with a mood board! Mood boards are a way to develop a cohesive visual and drive inspiration. Here is where you can pinpoint color schemes, fonts, and styles you would like to use in your marketing.
Mood boards can be created physically from magazine cutouts, fabric swatches, and colored markers – or digitally. How do you like to create your mood boards?
Visit similar accounts
We find it helpful to review “competitors” within your industry when brainstorming your social media marketing. One way we do this is by visiting their social media accounts to stimulate creative inspiration.
This is important because you can:
- Consider what platforms work for your industry
- See what kind of posts work for your industry
- Look at key hashtags
Remember: you are NOT replicating their exact marketing tactics. You are trying to evaluate their tactics so you can create your own brand identity on social media.
To find inspiration for your visuals, we recommend looking through templates on platforms like Adobe Express and Canva. What’s nice about looking through these templates is that if you choose to want to use them later, you can customize them to personalize them to match your own brand. Hear Bobbie Anne’s take on templates by clicking here and viewing her Facebook video: templates.
Use paper and a pen
Call us old school, but we are big fans of paper and pen for drafting out marketing ideas and brainstorming various concepts. It helps visualize how the campaign will go when you can write it out.
When brainstorming, we’ve also recommended clients use those big fat post-it notes and stick those suckers on the wall or use one of those big dry erase boards.
Goal setting should be your top priority before developing a marketing plan or launching a campaign.
Are you trying to drive sales, build awareness, spark engagement, or gain visitors to a specific informational page? You won’t be able to measure success unless you know what your goals are first!
If you need direction on goal setting, we can help! We’re now reserving hourly consultations for the first quarter. Shoot us a message to choose your time.
Discuss problems and solutions
Right now, can you list 5 problems your business solves?
Next, can you tell explain what those solutions are?
THOSE are your key conversation points in all your marketing steps. Bring it down to the basics. For Germono Advertising Company clients, they either do not have the time, knowledge, or skillset in marketing so they reach out to us. They feel frustrated because they are trying to run their businesses and just need to hand off the marketing to a trusted professional (us). We solve this problem by offering three tiers of services, based on over nine years of business and working with hundreds of clients. Hourly coaching allows us to help in an affordable manner. Our next tier is creating custom content for your business. Creating content and delivering that content to you each month means you don’t have to sit down and write out your posts. And for those who just don’t enjoy social media, but understand the importance of it in their business and need to hand it off fully to someone, our full management package includes all of the above and we are the ones responding to questions or comments that come in on your feeds.
Decide what you are going to document
Brainstorming, mood boards, goal setting… where are you putting all of your assets and how can your team access them?
We use Basecamp version 2 as a designated marketing planning area for our clients. Google Docs, Asana, or Trello are some platforms that could work for your team too.
Many of these platforms offer a free trial, try them and let us know which one is your favorite.
Access to logins
Being aware of everyone attached to your accounts is important for the security of your social media. This will also help with the ease of planning who will be executing your social media posts this year!
Here we’ve compiled all the resources you need to find out who has access:
Google Business: https://support.google.com/business/answer/3403100?hl=en
Facebook and Instagram – Meta Business Suite: https://www.facebook.com/help/187316341316631/?helpref=search&query=how…
Your marketing ideas are YOURS. You spend your time working on them, let’s pause and make sure they aren’t stolen! Put a call out to a trademark lawyer and take the time to chat about your business before watermarking, trademarking, and branding are finalized. It’s important so they can scrub any legalities that may come up along the way.
If you have an idea for something new you’d like to implement into your marketing, get second and third opinions from the different departments or management in your business first. Everyone has their own perspective, so getting feedback before you start can prevent having to work backward or sticky public relations incidents.
Ask your current clients
Creative blocks are real and happen to the best of us!
If you’re stuck during the ideation process of social media marketing, reach out to your customers and ask your community what they need help with. Use that feedback to help develop the direction of your content for the year.
Use social media polls, send an email survey, or use the feedback from your business reviews.
Phew, that was a lot! Now that we covered the first step, be on the lookout for what comes next!! Hint: it deals with researching.
If you have any questions on any of our tips explained above, or just need marketing advice, send us an email at email@example.com.