There’s more to creating a successful marketing plan in 2023 than simply knowing the basics and following the rules.
Businesses are like people in that each is unique and has its own individual selling points that set it apart.
What works well from a marketing standpoint for one business may be a terrible fit for another and vice versa.
The world of marketing is also constantly evolving, right alongside key factors like technology, social trends, and search engine algorithms.
Choosing the right marketing initiatives can help you stay ahead of the curve.
Here’s a closer look at what you need to know to dominate your goals in 2023 and beyond.
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What Are Marketing Initiatives?
In their simplest form, marketing initiatives are unique takes on longstanding problems, fresh ideas for tackling common issues, and so forth. In other words, they’re proactive solutions a marketing professional or team may come up with to overcome various obstacles and problems.
Marketing initiatives are essential parts of a marketing strategy. However, it’s important to realize that the two concepts are not one and the same.
A business’s marketing strategy is the larger approach to the entire discipline of marketing. Marketing initiatives are individual points of focus that can help guide, define, and strengthen the strategy they’re part of.
Marketing Initiative Examples
The right marketing initiatives can truly take a company’s marketing efforts from “merely effective” to “positively legendary.” They’re also quite flexible, so you can use the ones you try both to meet short-term marketing goals or make steady progress toward long-term ones.
Rock Content’s own vice president of marketing, Giuseppe Caltabiano, has this to say about using initiatives to meet marketing goals:
“It’s marketing that evokes an immediate behavioral response, without necessarily affecting long-term memories or behavior. It’s lead-gen, as we B2B marketers are used to calling it. It’s paid search. It’s limited-time promotion,” says Caltabiano.
“Long-term brand building is when you create memories that influence behavior over the long term. This plan should set longer goals, and it’s built across multiple quarters to reach its ultimate objectives.”
But what does a marketing initiative look like in action? Here are just a few examples to consider when considering your own options.
Retaining Customers with Podcasts
Successful marketing initiatives do more than simply reach target audiences. They also delight them with amazing content that keeps them coming back for more. Blogs are classic examples of this type of initiative, but they’re not the only viable options in 2023.
For example, podcasts have made a massive comeback in recent years and are red hot right now. Try one as an engaging, trendy way to connect with an audience over value-rich topics that encourage trust in your brand.
Sorting Leads with Chatbots
Marketing initiatives can also be used to ensure your customer care and outreach teams focus most of their efforts on the right prospective customers. After all, successful marketing efforts will generate lots of leads, but only some of them will be right for your products and services, especially if you’re in the B2B sector.
Chatbots are simple and effective customer service solutions that can easily be adapted to help you qualify your leads. Set your own scripts and finetune them at will to better meet your objectives. Earmark high-value leads so that your sales team can pursue the next steps.
Fortify Your Reputation with Eco-Friendly Initiatives
Today’s consumer is looking for more in a brand than just another great product or service to buy. They also want to feel good about their purchases on a deeper, more meaningful level, meaning they want to support companies that are helping the environment, not harming it.
That said, green marketing initiatives have been popular for a while now and will continue to be in 2023. You can make it part of your marketing strategy by setting defined environmental goals and looking for areas where you can improve your company’s eco-impact.
Just be careful to avoid greenwashing – fudging the facts to make your business look more eco-friendly than it really is. This can lead to a loss of consumer trust and irreparable damage to your professional reputation.
Top 10 Marketing Initiatives
Ready to take a closer look at some especially hot marketing initiatives to try out in 2023? Here’s a closer look at some key examples.
1. Dive into the minds of your target audience
Knowing which demographics and individual consumers you’re looking to reach when it comes to your marketing efforts is key, of course. But you shouldn’t underestimate the value of digging a little deeper.
Start by keeping track of the types of trends members of your target audience follow and crafting fresh, original, timely content to match. But pay attention to when your audience is most likely to be active online, as well.
Some people are most likely to pop online in the mornings before they head out to work. But others are more likely to be around in the evenings or even during their lunch hours, so use what you know about your audience to your advantage here.
2. Get on board with user-generated content
Digital-age consumers want to feel like they have personal relationships with the brands they buy from, so maintaining a robust social media presence and regularly engaging your audience is critical in 2023. But so is giving your customers opportunities to feel like they’re part of what you’re doing.
Asking your audience to contribute user-generated content (UGC) is a terrific way to do this. It’s also a highly effective way to leverage your audience and the power of social proof in support of your marketing efforts.
When encouraging UGC, you can ask for photos, videos, or success stories. But don’t be afraid to be more creative, as well. The more unique the idea, the better.
3. Use storytelling to strengthen your brand identity
People love nothing more than a good story, and with good reasons. Stories breathe additional life into just about anything from a photograph to a business with products for sale. Consider using the power of personal storytelling to give your brand a face, a heartbeat, and a personality.
What story you choose to tell is up to you, but many brands find success by sharing the story of how that company came to be. What inspired the message behind your brand? How might your products and services fit into your customer’s own personal story?
4. Deep-dive into personalization
Digital-age consumers are used to media and customized online experiences created with their unique needs and interests in mind. That said, they respond best to personalized marketing content that helps them feel seen and valued as individuals.
Personalization also helps dissolve the unpleasant feeling of being “sold to” instead of commiserated with. So focus on marketing initiatives that speak your customer’s language and meet them where they live. Some ways to do this include:
Personalizing by demographic – gender, geographic location, age, etc.
Personalizing by personality – introvert vs. extrovert, family people vs. adventurers, etc.
Personalizing by behavior – whether the person has purchased from you before, what they shop for as a rule online, etc.
5. Embrace long-form content
By now, most digital marketers are aware of the fact that Google far prefers long-form, ultra-helpful content that really digs into the meat of a topic. However, it’s also a given that with so much vying for their attention these days, modern consumers have fairly short attention spans.
The key to striking a good balance between helpful and accessible is to publish high-quality long-form content that’s also scannable so that readers can easily find what they’re looking for.
Aim for a length range of 1,000-2,000 words. Then use elements like headings, subheadings, bullet lists, and visuals to break up the content, as well as make it more organized and easier to skim.
6. Optimize your social media presence
In a changing world that’s becoming increasingly internet-reliant, people aren’t necessarily turning on the television (or even going to dedicated news websites) for their news anymore. Many expect and prefer to find out what’s going on in the world and with industries they care about via social media.
Quite a few also log onto social media for quick news and information fixes throughout their day when they’re bored or otherwise have a few minutes to kill.
So don’t be afraid to use your social media profiles to deliver frequent, timely updates on topics like industry news, hot subjects relevant to your brand, and more. Just make sure you’re also tailoring your updates to suit your platforms of choice.
7. Make mobile-friendliness a top priority
Although there are definitely still people out there who prefer to do their web surfing and online shopping via standard desktop systems, people access the web the most often via smartphones and other mobile devices these days. That said, the more mobile-friendly you can make your website and all of your content, the better.
Make sure your website design is responsive enough that it adapts to a wide variety of different screens. Avoid making users scroll from side to side or zoom in to view your content. Fast load speeds need to be a top priority, as well.
8. Automate your processes where it makes sense
Personally handling every aspect of your marketing campaign can be extremely difficult, especially as your business continues to grow over time. Outsourcing certain tasks or delegating them to other team members can help but may not constitute the best use of labor that costs you valuable marketing dollars.
Automating repetitive tasks that don’t require hands-on human attention – like sorting through leads and qualifying them or sending out marketing emails – can save you a fortune in both time and money. It also leaves your time free for tasks that really need your personal attention.
9. Partner with top influencers
Although you’ll frequently see terms like “content creator” and “influencer” used as if they mean exactly the same thing, they’re actually very different. Both can help you make the most of your marketing strategy but in very different ways.
An influencer likely does create content – especially on social media – but they’re most valuable for the level of respect and loyalty they enjoy from their audiences. Partner with the right influencers, get them to recommend your products to their followers, and you can tap into a special group of highly engaged potential customers.
10. Hire experienced freelance content creators
Content creators can also be incredible assets to a business’s marketing department. Between your website, business blog, outreach efforts, and social media feeds, you’ve really got your work cut out for you when it comes to producing enough content.
It will be nearly impossible to handle it all yourself, but attempting to automate the process or use AI-generated shortcuts will only backfire. Top-tier content that ranks well and attracts engaged, paying customers requires a human touch.
Building a team of freelance content writers, videographers, graphic designers, and other talent you might require saves you money and time. It also allows you to tap into the unique points of view, talents, and skills of other highly creative people.
Adopting marketing initiatives that strike a good balance between proven and innovative is the key to getting ahead in 2023 and staying there. But you’ll need the right team on your side to reach your goals and beat your competition.