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Kick off the year with our strategic sales & marketing checklist

Supplier: Industracom By: Jeremy Nathan, Managing Director
11 January, 2017

2017 is here and it's shaping up to be a big year for Australian businesses. As the old saying goes "fail to plan and plan to fail", so we've put together this strategic sales & marketing checklist to help you kickstart your company's success this year.

1. Develop a strategic plan

A strategic plan is a powerful tool that acts like a compass to guide your company to achieve its goals. Putting one together may sound like a big project, but a strategic plan can be a simple one-pager that covers:

  • What do we sell & to whom
  • Where are we at now (Our current market position)
  • Where do we want to get to
  • How will we get there (Your action plan)
  • How and when will we measure our progress

2. Get the whole team involved

With your strategic plan in hand, you'll want to get your whole team involved to make sure goals are achieved. Here are some great ways to get the team involved:

  • Solicit feedback from everyone about the strategic plan
  • Set fun rewards to celebrate milestones along the way
  • Have an exciting team incentive for achieving bigger annual goals
  • Be prepared to alter your plan as new insights evolve
  • Be transparent about how the business is doing
  • Get everyone on the team to pledge how they will contribute
  • Do regular personal check-ins to see how everyone is going
  • Create a fun, energised and goal-oriented work environment

3. Focus on content marketing

As buyers increasingly look for insights and thought leadership from the companies they do business with, content marketing continues to be one of the most important activities companies are working on. Some of our top content marketing tips are:

  • Get the whole team involved in defining & producing content
  • Create a content calendar to plan what will be produced and when
  • Look beyond your own website for audiences for your content
  • Be more informational and less promotional with your content

Read this great article: 46 thought leaders share their most effective content marketing strategy

4. Seek regular customer feedback

The world's most successful companies stay relevant by seeking regular feedback from customers. We suggest making customer feedback part of your company's DNA too. Our top tips:

  • Don't rely on email surveys - the best insights will come from human to human communication
  • Ensure regular customer feedback by integrating feedback strategies into your team's ongoing customer contact processes
  • Don't just seek feedback from happy customers
  • Ask open ended questions that dig out information you may not have thought of
  • Be analytical and look for trends in your data

Read this great article: 10 Game-Changing Questions You Should Ask Your Customers

5. Arm your sales team

Your sales team are your most important weapon to find new customers and sell more to existing customers. But your sales team is only as good as the tools they have. Keep your sales team sharp with these ideas:

  • Run weekly sales strategy and training sessions
  • Arm your sales team with the the right content and collateral
  • Keep things fresh with new offers and tactics to use from time to time

Read this great article: 5 Steps To A More Effective B2B Sales Approach

6. Experiment with new strategies

Achieving new revenue heights is all about experimentation. Commit 10% to 20% of your efforts on new ways to win. Today's experiments become the winning bets of tomorrow. Our top tips for experimentation:

  • Don't try too many new things at once - pick the best ideas and try them properly
  • Set measures of success and be disciplined in how and when you will assess them
  • Keep your team focused by regularly making sure they are spending most of their time on your tried and true methods
  • Record learnings from each experiment to save from making the same mistakes twice.

"A goal without a plan is just a wish." - Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Give you and your team the space and time to work on these important strategic planning ideas and you'll be sure to take your business to exciting new heights in 2017.