• Kayla Stinnett

Wrapping Up 2020: Four Steps For A Winning Marketing Strategy

Updated: Jun 1

Wrapping Up 2020: Four Steps For a Winning Marketing Strategy


I think we can all agree that 2020 has been one hell of a year. Who’s ready for 2021? We know we are! As a marketing company in Birmingham, it could have been a bad year thanks to COVID-19. We’re fortunate enough to have so many wonderful clients who’ve made this year something special despite all of the crap that’s come our way.


Marketing is an essential part of every exceptional business. Great marketing not only reaches your ideal customer but makes a connection. It's one thing to just market your business without any direction. But when you have a plan? That makes all the difference. 'That's why we're sharing a few tips that we use for winning marketing strategies.



1. Setting Realistic Marketing Goals

It's easy to set lofty goals, but you only end up letting yourself down. It’s even easier to set goals that are too easy and don’t allow your business to reach its full potential. When setting goals, be realistic and intentional. For example, say you want to increase your Instagram followers from 300 to 3,000 over the next 12 months. Realistically, can you dedicate the time to that goal? Do you have the resources available to reach it? Instead of setting such a lofty goal, try setting a growth rate of 15% over the next 12 months as a goal. Remember - don’t commit to more than you can handle.


2. Be Authentic

At Iron City Social, we’re all about authenticity. Why? Because it translates well to our audience and makes us more personable. Ask yourself this - What does your business stand for? What’s your brand voice? Do you have a team, or is it just you? All of these questions (and more) will help develop an authentic persona for your business. And remember, authenticity is the cornerstone of any great marketing strategy or branding, so remember - be true to yourself.


3. Implement the Plan - Ready, Set, GO!

When you have your marketing plan and/or strategy set in stone, it’s time to get to work! Start implementing the strategy and use your goals to guide your marketing efforts. But remember - you don’t know if a plan is working unless you’re tracking progress! Track your success by measuring your progress towards each of your specific marketing goals. Remember, when we mentioned a goal of 15% Instagram follower growth over the next 12 months? In that case, you should track your progress towards that goal each quarter. Did you get 5% follower growth in Q1? Awesome, you’re almost there! But if you achieved an amount of growth that you’re not happy with, try reworking your plan or strategy.


Remember - marketing takes time and a whole lot of patience!


4. Plan Smart

Did we mention that 2020 has been one dumpster fire of a year? Especially for marketing! It’s always been a great rule of thumb in the marketing world to plan out marketing campaigns for the entire calendar year. But what happened in 2020? We had to throw all of that hard work away.


If this year has taught us anything, having a yearly marketing plan is great, but a strategy needs to be fluid. Let’s break that down. A marketing plan is a general overview of your business goals, marketing goals, marketing mediums, a competitive analysis, buyer personas, SWOT analysis, and your brand’s mission and core values. While a marketing strategy is all about the mix of marketing mediums and promotions you plan on using to reach your audience. When we’re writing marketing plans, we tend to give a general overview of our plans for the year. A marketing strategy offers a deeper dive into what marketing efforts we’ll employ for the first quarter of the year.


Pro tip - plan ahead with your marketing plan but plan for the first quarter with the marketing strategy because this pandemic isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.


Have a few questions about marketing during a pandemic? You can check out our freebie, Marketing While Quarantined, and take advantage of our marketing tips through the pandemic.


And that’s it! Four tips for a winning marketing strategy. If you still have questions (or if you just don’t want to do it, no judgment), we’re here to help! You can give us a call at 256-648-3210 or contact us here.