Having a plan for your marketing is an essential ingredient to long-term success, but creating an effective plan needs insights that reach below the surface. You’ll need to ask (and answer!) a wide variety of questions to help ensure that your efforts hit home with your audience and get your business where it needs to go.
In this post, I’ll share seven essential questions that can help you build a strong laundry marketing plan for your business — and help you stand out from competitors in your area.
#1: What Do You Want to Accomplish — and Why Is It Important?
With any laundry marketing plan, you need to start with the end in mind. This two-part question allows you to clearly define your mission from the beginning and set a firm foundation for the rest of your marketing plan.
Some ideas of what you can accomplish might include:
- More website traffic
- Increased brand awareness
- Increase sales
- Improve customer satisfaction
- Launch a new service
- Retain customers
- Acquire new customers
- Generate leads
And that’s just a sampling — but the message here is simple. If you have a clear idea of what you need to accomplish, you can set up your strategy appropriately.
The second part of this question is also good to clarify though: why is it important that you accomplish your goals? This may seem a bit self explanatory (especially if the answer is along the lines of “to make my business grow!”), but I encourage you to dig a bit deeper here as well. Everyone wants more customers, so look beyond simple growth. Solidify your ideas with an attainable goal, such as:
- Open a second location across town
- Provide raises for your employees
- Upgrade your facilities
- Offer additional services and amenities
- Give a percentage of profits back to your community
These are a step beyond simple marketing goals and get to the heart of why you do what you do. This can help you develop the tone of your marketing strategies and even potentially increase buy-in from potential customers.
#2: Who Are You Trying to Reach? Are They Listening?
Next on the list of questions you need to answer revolves around your audience. With marketing, you can’t simply promote into a void and hope for an answer — you need to have an end user in mind that needs to hear your message and can act on it. Otherwise, why are you spending time creating your message?
Try to keep these aspects in mind when developing your target audience:
- Who is your ideal customer?
- Where do they frequent online and in real life?
- What is important to them?
- What problems do they need solved?
- What do they need to hear from you?
Again, the second part of this question is essential. You may know your audience, but at the end of the day are they actually listening to you? Do they take your advice, or are they coming to you for help or a service? If not, then you’re likely doing something wrong. You may have the wrong tone, or potentially be offering the wrong advice with your content and marketing plan. Listen to your customers and use their feedback to dial in your message.
#3: Who Are You Competing With? (And Who is Winning?)
The next step in building a strong digital marketing plan for a laundry business is to assess your competitors. Like it or not, there will always be someone else in your area who’s trying to knock you down — you likely know that, but it’s always good to be reminded of what you’re up against.
Take time to step back and see who in your area is taking customers away from you. It may be a chain, another local laundry business, or even a big box store that sells washers and dryers for in-home use. At the end of the day, anything that takes a customer out of your store is a competitor.
But what can you do about that with your digital marketing? A few things:
- See what content they’re producing, then do it better.
- Assess their sales and promotion strategies. Can you offer something more enticing?
- Are your competitors offering a higher quality service? Can you improve?
- What are your competitors strengths and weaknesses? How can you compete in those arenas?
- Are there other threats that your competitor can pose to your business? Shore up those areas!
The more thorough your analyses are, the better off you’ll be when developing a marketing plan for your laundry business.
#4: How Are You Unique?
Now that you know what you’re up against, take time to identify and solidify for yourself how your business is unique. This is called a unique selling proposition or USP, and it helps you highlight how and why your business is different. The end result helps you communicate how you’re a better choice than a competitor, and thus why customers should come to you. Every plan needs a USP.
#5: What Can You Spend to Get Where You’re Going?
Nobody likes to talk about money, but we’re going to have to talk about money. Marketing, unless you go with all-free options (which isn’t advisable and is very limiting), is going to require you to put skin in the game.
Building a website, crafting content and imagery, and amplifying your efforts will require a budget. You likely don’t have the time or energy to create all of that yourself, so something will have to give. That’s why it’s important to define your marketing budget upfront. Know how much you can afford to spend, and then apply it strategically to help you meet your goals.
#6: Do These Plans Support Your Business Goals?
Gut-check time! You can have the most fool-proof marketing plan ever, but if it doesn’t circle back to the goals you outlined in the first question, then are you really moving in the right direction? Probably not. Always take time to see if your plan is truly helping, because if not you can reassess and change course.
#7: What’s On Your Checklist?
Last but not least, it’s always good to periodically step back and ask something along these lines: What do you need to do to get where you’re going?
In fact, I would recommend making this a regular part of your marketing plan building efforts. When you look at the big picture all the time, it can be hard to take the steps necessary to build success piece by piece. For instance, if you’re looking to create a blog post, you can break it down into something like this:
- Set a budget for content creation
- Determine a topic
- Align the topic with an end goal and CTA
- Hire a writer to complete the task
- Edit and give feedback to writer
- Finalize the piece for publication
Knowing what you need to do and when you need to do it helps you break the process down into manageable (and repeatable) steps. Over time, you’ll develop a system that helps you keep everything on track for your marketing efforts.
These questions are meant as a helpful guide to get the wheels spinning for your laundry marketing plan efforts — but they’re just a start. Answering these questions will set up the framework that helps you be effective, but you still need to utilize a wide variety of tools (like social media, your website, and email newsletters) to effectively win customers.
That’s where a service like Spynr’s can help. We do digital marketing for laundry businesses, and can help you grow your business with the right plan. Click below to learn more about how we can help you!