Developing an effective marketing strategy that consistently drives results is a marathon, not a sprint. Did you know that it can take between six months and one year to start seeing meaningful results from your marketing efforts? It takes time to gain momentum and determine if your strategy is reaching and converting your target audience.

Don’t forget that developing a strong foundation is just the first step in creating a successful marketing plan.

Begin the process with:

  • Defined goals
  • Detailed personas
  • Well-researched SEO and keywords
  • Targeted content
  • An optimized website
  • Key performance indicators

Based on the above directives, you begin to understand why it takes time and patience to see results.

Let’s drill down for a deeper understanding of one marketing component for reference.

Ranking for Your Website and Content

Think of the Internet as a vast global kingdom, and Google as the monarch. You can search for anything on the Internet, but that doesn’t mean every website or blog will appear on page one. Google uses bots and algorithms to rank websites and pages. Just because your business publishes incredible content doesn’t necessarily mean your target audience is reading it – but that also doesn’t mean you should stop.

Part of your marketing strategy should include the “whys and hows” of website ranking. There are numerous factors to consider:

  • Is it visually appealing?
  • Have you clearly defined your target audience?
  • Are you using landing pages?
  • What about link building?
  • Does each website include internal links?
  • Is it easy to navigate?

Paying careful attention to these details will help rank your website, but don’t expect miracles overnight. SEO takes time, particularly when the competition is high. Neil Patel, marketing guru extraordinaire, writes a lot about this subject.

As you begin to produce relevant, high-quality content consistently, you’ll start to build momentum. By linking to other reputable sites, gaining page shares and comments, and targeting the right keywords and phrases, your ranking will slowly improve. Be patient. You may be tempted to halt or dramatically change course after a couple of weeks, but this action can unravel thoughtful planning and positive results over the long term.

Remember, building trust and credibility take time, as well. Once a potential customer visits your site, your content and messaging should leave them wanting more. You need to capture their attention, so they click on other blogs or visit your service pages. Return visitors can be just as important as new visitors when it comes to marketing.

How Do I Know if My Marketing Strategy is Working?

Having patience is only one aspect of the marketing plan. Monitoring, surveying, analyzing, and adjusting are equally crucial to the process.

Set measurable goals. Use data analytic tools to your advantage so you can track how well your marketing strategies are performing. Measuring sales and web traffic are two of the easiest ways to determine if your marketing strategies are working. Use a tool like Google Analytics, which can easily calculate a broad range of data for any business; plus, it’s free. Begin with setting realistic expectations for growth or conversion rates. Aiming for a 50% increase in traffic or 100 leads within a month is likely setting yourself up for disappointment. Be reasonable, remain focused, and start small.

Avoid drastic changes. As noted above, the more changes you make to your marketing strategy in a short timeframe, the more difficult it is to gauge results. Resist the urge to continually pivot when things aren’t going as you had hoped. Remember, it can take several months to see actual results. Give your plan time to work and time to reach audiences and rank across the major search engines.

Make small adjustments. As you monitor progress, you may begin to see trends regarding what performs well, and what is of interest to customers. If blogs with videos or graphics are getting more hits, continue incorporating those features in future posts. If you’re getting a lot of traffic from a specific topic, consider building it out and going more in-depth; on the other hand, if there is another topic that is not doing well, move on for now. You can always readjust and come back to it later with a different approach.

Trust the Process

Our society thrives on instant gratification; people are easily distracted and expect immediate answers to their questions. If not, something must be wrong. Trust the process and give it time to work. Once you’ve done the research and put the pieces in place, you must take the long view. Marketing is a fluid process. As market conditions change and trends rise and fall, there are always opportunities to improve your plan.

If your business isn’t seeing results from its marketing efforts, it’s time to partner with YGL Enterprises. We can audit your current strategies, identify areas for improvement, and develop a plan tailored to your unique needs and goals. With the right tactics in place, positive results will follow. Contact us today to schedule a consultation!

Yvonne Levine, president of YGL Enterprises, Inc., is a strategic marketing consultant who collaborates with professional services organizations and small and mid-sized businesses to develop and execute successful marketing strategies, branding initiatives, content creation, and digital marketing plans. By helping businesses devise a targeted strategy first, this approach creates a strong foundation for tactical decisions, which drives brand awareness and positive results. Follow Yvonne on LinkedIn and Facebook.