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The start of the year is always a good time to refocus your marketing activity.  Whilst you might wait for Spring to do that big clean and de-cluttering of your home, January is a good time to do your marketing spring-clean. 

Here are five questions you might want to ask yourself and your marketing team to get everyone involved in your marketing spring-clean:

1. What’s changed for your target audience? What will be in their “spring-clean” and why?  This is a good way to focus everyone first on what’s happening outside your organisation and remind yourselves that your marketing activity isn’t for your own benefit, but for your current and prospective clients.

2. If your marketers had to cut 25% of their activities, which would they cut and why?  This is a good way to get a discussion going around which things they’re doing are either serving a political/vanity need for someone else, or that they don’t understand the impact of.  It’s always good for efficiency and morale if you can stop doing some things rather than just adding more to the marketing to-do list.

3. Which key messages most resonate or get best traction?  Are they still relevant this year?  This is a good way to pare down your messages to the core of what you’re trying to say and remind everyone of that.  That will then allow them to go away and find new creative ways of saying it.

4. Which collateral or presentation slides are the ones sales really use?  Why is that?  This can build sales & marketing alignment and also gives your marketers a view of the end to end conversation that they start.  Great sales people will sharpen your messages in the market.

5. Which 3 daily tasks, and 3 key projects are the “big rocks”?  Whilst every little task or interaction builds a brand, planning your day, week or marketing calendar around the biggest impact items first, and then fitting all the smaller tasks around that – just like the Stephen Covey video here – can be an effective and practical way to spring clean activity based on capacity and impact.

None of this is about weeks of analysis.  It’s just a way to come together and give everyone a chance to de-clutter their minds, their calendars and their to-do lists together so they maintain awareness of interdependencies.

It might not be Spring outside, but your marketing spring-clean will give your team energy to re-engage with some common goals and give them permission to drop what isn’t working.

Before we get to Spring…

Jill Pringle is a brand marketing consultant and author of the book The Brand Symphony.

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