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Written by The Mezzanine Group
on August 28, 2009

Now that the world is coming out of its recessionary doldrums, it's time to take advantage of the opportunities to grow your business. Here are 5 simple steps to make sure your marketing will achieve your goals:

1) Validate your understanding of your customers. A lot may have changed with them over the last year. Spend some time this fall finding out:
- what are their biggest challenges
- how are they making decisions about what you sell
- what sources of information are they using now (and what do they trust)

2) create a profile of your target customers
- define what their characteristics and needs are.

3) create a clear strategy.
- what types of clients do you most want to attract (your target market)
- what do you offer to them (your value proposition)
- why should they buy from you (your competitive advantage)

4) identify the tactics you will use
- what specific tactics are you going to employ to reach your customers and generate awareness of your company. your tactics should relate to your priorities - is it to create awareness, generate leads, enhance perception of your brand?

5) identify new tactics and tools and experiment with them
- spend 10 - 15% of your annual marketing budget on new tools and media you haven't used before. the marketing world is changing fast. you have to innovate or in a few years you'll find your company badly out of date.

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