If you're like most business owners on Instagram, here's what you're doing now:
When you get on Instagram, you're being reactive and making it clear that you have a case of the shiny object syndrome.
For example, you see someone else's post, think of something in response, and post your response. You see something that amuses you, and you repost it just because it's funny.
And there's nothing wrong with any of this except that you're doing this on your business account, and it has nothing to do with a specific goal you have for your business. Or it is somewhat relevant to your business but has no real purpose for getting you the results you want.
That may not be entirely wrong, but —
It might seem difficult to believe this, but marketing is not as easy as it looks, and it's also easier than some of you might think. But that's only true once you know what to do and how to do it.
It's possible to post less frequently and still get great results. The magic ingredient is for you to act with intention. So, let me explain.
When I say intention, I mean an action tied to a long-range strategy. It means that there's a plan you've created with specific, measurable outcomes. There's a process, and there are steps in that process.
When marketing, you must set clearly defined goals and be intentional with your actions to get there. Let's call this intentional and strategic marketing.
So, let's talk about what that looks like. Let's talk about what you should be doing — if you want better results.
Marketing, by definition, is strategic and never random. Strategic marketing is intentional and never happenstance. It's never reactive.
Marketing begins with becoming aware of your ideal buyer's needs and then developing an authentic connection.
Your ideal buyer must feel that you understand their challenges, feelings, wants, or needs.
Marketing is not creating a post, whether fun, funny, or beautiful, and then crossing your fingers and hoping to get the results you want. If you're unclear on the results you want, you aren't marketing. If you don't have clarity on your ideal buyer, then you're not marketing.
Being present (on social media, having a website, in someone's inbox) is only one part of marketing. The way to be present with a purpose is to show up with intention and offer a message or a solution that connects you with your ideal buyer/client.
If the marketing channel you choose (IG post, IG story, IG Live, IG carousel, marketing email, IG Reel, or website) … if that channel doesn't have content created to serve your ideal clients intentionally and is in alignment with your business goals, you're not marketing. You have the marketing channel. The channel is a tactic, but you aren't marketing until you have a strategy.
What you're doing when you create that content is creating art. Your beautiful graphics or comical videos are all art. And there's nothing wrong with pretty pictures or fun videos if that is your intention. If you're selling art, this works but even then, having a strategy will improve your results.
So, it's 365 days later, and you've spent money, time, and energy creating and posting away, but you are now frustrated by your lack of results. And you might wrongfully assume that you should throw in the towel, that no one wants what you have to offer, or that you don't have what it takes when the problem is that you need to be more informed about how to market effectively. You mistakenly thought that just being present and posting was enough.
Marketing is intended to be strategic action taken to move prospects down a path where you first earn their trust and ultimately lead them to buy your product, enroll in your course, or choose your service. Marketing strategies are created by aligning your prospects' challenges, needs, or pain points with your business offerings and goals.
Effective marketing is accomplished by developing a plan with specific intentions and every piece of marketing content (post or email) or marketing action aligning with those particular intentions.
Ultimately your goal is to make prospects aware of your brand, so you can earn each prospect's trust, get them to consider your products, and gently convince them to complete a transaction.
The beauty of brand evangelism —
But that's not where it ends. You will also want to make your future marketing more effortless, and you do so by having the customers — whose trust you've worked hard to earn — joyfully become brand evangelists.
Having brand evangelists means these customers are so thrilled with the product and service you offer that they're chatting it up with everyone they know (especially if they share their love online). All this praise gets you more customers without you having to start at the beginning of the marketing process — we call this the customer journey (opens new window ➚) — making new prospects aware of your brand and toiling away, trying to earn their trust. Now you can spend far less time prospecting and more time nurturing your relationship with the buyers who already love your offers.
This approach is what intentional and strategic marketing looks like. Taking this approach is bona fide marketing. And it's why you cannot reactively post if you expect impressive results.
Being intentional allows you to post less and get tremendous results because each post will have a more powerful impact.
Do you have questions or a thought to add? Comment below!
If you need help developing a strategic marketing plan, send me a request, and I'll follow up to discuss how we can work together.
Good luck out there. No reactive posting. No shiny object syndrome. Let's get strategic and market away.
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