Good question, Timmy. We get that question a lot, since we recommend the creation of a marketing roadmap to all our clients.
First and foremost, a marketing roadmap is a living document that will tell you where your target audience is, what they're already looking for, and the steps you should take to spread the word about your company and make sure your efforts land in front of the right eyeballs.
Different folks might do it in their own way. Here at SBT we build ours from the ground up, starting with a statement of goals for the business. Goals can range from the modest to the freakishly ambitious. Here's some example of some goals you might have for your business, whether or not you've put them into words:
Figuring out your goals is the first step to a focused marketing approach. Once you have those sorted out, it's time to get your hands dirty with a keyword analysis. They look a bit like this:
The keyword analysis is the first big task toward building your roadmap because, like the goal statements, it will inform the following steps. The keyword analysis tells you what keywords you should pursue, and which are just as well left alone. Because the competition for keywords is always changing, it's not a bad idea to update your roadmap frequently to make sure none of your efforts are being wasted.
The next stop on our marketing roadmap, er, roadmap, is to run an influencer analysis. Don't know what an influencer is, or how to find them? Here's a post that ought to help. You should work with your marketing team closely on this step. A truly bad-ass influencer analysis requires some intuitive leaps at times, and more heads are definitely better than one when it comes to separating the low hanging fruit from the stretch goals. When all is said and done(and sorted), your influencer analysis might look a little something like this:
Now at this point, I'm usually raring to get to the actionable part of the roadmap, the editorial calendar, but before I get there, there's one more set that is oh so crucial to define: The Offer.
Yes, you should click that link above. Trust me.
Of course, if you're a potential SBT customer reading this, and you read the article about defining your offer, not only must I congratulate you for your fortitude in reading long winded blog posts, but you've surely realized I'm ignoring my own advice by going into great detail about what I do here in this post.
If that's the case, then shut up and keep reading.
Once you have your offers and goals clearly defined, your keywords and influencer/targets ranked according to value and difficulty, you can put these all to work in glorious concert and fashion your own custom editorial calendar.
In essence, your editorial calendar matches your efforts with the avenues identified by everything else and puts them on a schedule to ensure that the right actions happening at the right time. Efficiency Maximus:
Three months worth of this is really all you should do at a time. After that, you should go through and update your keyword and influencer data with fresh numbers and insight to make sure you're still on the right track.
And that's all there is to it.
Now, supposing that you're the dedicated reader who made it to the end of this post, I'm sorry for telling you to shut up. And for addressing you as Timmy. Unless your name is Timmy, in which case, shut up.
At this point I hope that you know enough to make heads/tails of your marketing roadmap, or have realized how not having one is costing you money, time, and wasted effort.
If the roadmap concept still feels like a frightening hairy beastie to you, you can ask any questions you might have in the comments, or even better, you can pick up the phone and give us a call. We'll help you feel better about your marketing and your business.