Finish Strong: Your End of the Year Marketing Plan

entrepreneurshipNetworkingPersonal Branding

Business Finish Line photo from ShutterstockThe end of the year is busy with holidays, travel and gatherings. Many business owners get caught up in the busyness and become lax in their marketing. However, the end of the year is a great time to finish strong and prepare for a more profitable first quarter in the next year. Here are some tips for marketing during the end of the year:

1) Review what worked and didn’t work during the last quarter in the previous year. Did sales increase or decrease? Where did the slow down occur? For example, were you generating the same number of leads, but converting fewer to sales?

2) Beef up what did work and shore up or get rid of what didn’t work. You’ll spend less time and money during the busy holiday season by focusing on marketing tactics that work and fixing, or eliminating, those that don’t work. For example, maybe your website traffic drops during the holidays, but response to your email marketing picks up. In that case, focus on your list and look for ways to boost traffic.

3) Tie in your marketing with holiday themes. Even if your product or service isn’t something people might give as a gift, you can use the end of the year to maintain or increase sales. You can make sales during the holidays by providing people services or products that will save them time and money, or offer  convenience, all things people need during the holidays.

4) Do something special for your current clients or customers. Offer discounts or special offers to loyal customers, clients or email list subscribers. Being extra kind to your clients and customers not only generates sales, it’s also a great way to get referrals.

5) Use a variety of methods to reach and engage your market. Your market is busy and won’t be seeking you out. Instead, you need to reach out to stay engaged with your market, reminding it you’re ready to help.

6) Get social. The end of the year is filled with events and functions. Attend local networking events, volunteer activities and other in-person gatherings.