Marketing is a science.
It’s a careful balance between theory and innovation; a harmony of emotional and analytical intelligence; mixed with a tinge of creativity and methodological rigour.
With so many elements and interactions to consider, it can be difficult to know what will work when it comes to marketing (not to mention overwhelming when it comes to knowing where to start). Everyone seems to understand the value of marketing for their business but, in our 15+ years of experience, you better believe we’ve heard a lot of complaints about how challenging marketing really is.
So, what do we do differently?
At Kika Marketing & Communications, we employ a straightforward methodology to effectively develop, implement and manage marketing programs. It’s an agile approach that enables us to be simultaneously creative, adaptable and successful marketers in the ever-changing landscapes that define modern businesses.
In this post, we share our tried-and-true methodology–which we call Plan, Build, Activate–in an effort to help quell the anxieties of those pursuing marketing excellence. Whether you’re looking to build a marketing program from scratch or simply want to optimize an existing one, our approach will guide you on your way in 180-days.
The First 30-Days: Plan
“It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations, if you live near him.” ― J.R.R Tolkien
When it comes to marketing, you’re not going to go very far unless you have a clear roadmap to guide you there. Hence, the first step to marketing excellence is having a plan. In the first 30-days, the goal is to build a foundation by defining your overarching objective; the tactics you will use to achieve it; any potential roadblocks you may encounter along the way.
At Kika, the Plan phase is when we’ll begin to develop your marketing strategy. Our approach is grounded in research (that “rigorous methodology” I talked about before). After having a discovery meeting with our clients to understand what they’re hoping to achieve, we then analyze a variety of key internal factors and external factors, including audience demographics, industry trends, and internal operations.
It’s only once we have a solid understanding of the context that surrounds our client’s business that we can propose a solution. By researching the full environment, we can then develop a personalized strategic marketing plan that will help their business thrive.
The Next 60-Days: Build
“Creativity takes courage. ” ― Henri Matisse
With a roadmap and a renewed sense of direction, it will be much easier to identify what has previously prevented you from achieving your goals. In the next 60-days, the goal is to identify gaps and build the resources necessary to fill them.
In our experience, the Build phase is absolutely crucial to the success of your campaign. Having an incomplete toolkit is the number one roadblock to being able to manage a marketing program with ease. You need to have a solid foundation before you can walk on it.
At Kika, this is when we’ll start building our client’s brand through engaging positioning, unique core messaging, and a compelling visual appearance that will help them stand out from the crowd. These components are the bread-and-butter of any brand and will be used to create a cohesive, distinct brand identity.
After this brand foundation has been constructed, we focus on copywriting; graphics design; template creation; website development; editorial calendar creation; and other supportive collateral like stationery; press kits; apparel; merchandise and more.
Every 90-Days: Activate
“Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there someday.” ― A.A. Milne
There’s a reason why we encourage people to take the 90-days to plan and build their marketing strategy before launching any marketing programs whatsoever. It takes time to develop a marketing strategy that is both manageable and successful–moving too quick often comes at the expense of quality.
If you’re not confident you have everything you need by the end of the first 90-days, we suggest extending the timeline to ensure you’re well prepared. This is where the real work starts.
Now, we have a plan. We have built our marketing toolkit. It’s finally time to activate your brand and engage your audience.
For the next 90-days, our goal is to start launching your marketing programs including, but not limited to, social media, search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising, content marketing, event planning and more. The platforms you use will depend on what you learned about your audience in the Plan stage. Expend the most effort on platforms where your audience’s attention is most likely to be.
At the end of the 90-days, it’s vital to analyze the performance of your marketing campaigns and adjust your strategy as needed to ensure its optimal performance. Your strategy needs to be dynamic, adaptable and responsive to the everchanging business environment. This agile approach to marketing is what will ensure your efforts will be successful.
From there, this cycle of activating and analyzing then repeats every 90-days.
Activate. Analyze. Activate. Analyze. Activate. Analyze.
You get it!
I hope you’ll find the Plan, Build, Activate methodology to be a useful way to build and elevate your brand. Kika offers a full spectrum of services to meet each of our client’s unique needs and objectives. From strategy development to content creation and marketing management, we’re excited to take on any marketing challenge that’s thrown our way. Reach out if you’d like to learn more about what makes us unique.