Many marketers start by planning the campaigns and activities they plan to run each quarter. This leads to inconsistent and misaligned marketing because they aren't thinking broadly enough. Instead, start planning by determining what overarching initiatives you hope to achieve. For example, if your initiative is to grow your social media marketing, you might launch a LinkedIn outreach or Facebook Ads campaign. Initiatives, in this sense, are the guiding lights that drive business outcomes.
Though overlap often exists, you can assign marketing initiatives to one of three main pillars. These three pillars are product marketing, growth marketing, and brand marketing. Each pillar has a specific focus and approach, which helps to address different business needs.
Growth marketing is the set of activities focused on growing your audience and finding new customers. Marketing teams are often measured by their performance in this category. Growth activities could include paid ad campaigns, podcasts, email newsletters, and website optimization. As you plan for growth marketing in 2023, focus on the channels that maximize your ROI so you can keep your marketing going as budgets get tighter.
Brand marketing focuses on how your audience perceives you. This includes your voice and messaging, visual appearance and design, and event marketing. Our articles on Marketing During the Recession have discussed how your brand's focus and messaging should change and how the priorities of law firms are changing. They are less focused on bells and whistles than on efficiency and productivity. You should consider how your brand reflects the new priorities in the coming year.
Product marketing primarily deals with product-market fit. It includes segmenting the types of users that use the product, researching their pain points and needs, then working with the development team to better align the product with users' needs. For example, product marketers may recommend new features, changes to the user interface, or other modifications that could improve the user experience. Product marketing teams also review how the product is priced, packaged, and positioned.
We recently published an article on trends in legal tech. Your solution needs to stay ahead of these trends to offer the types of features and capabilities that legal teams seek.
How to make an impact in 2023
In a high-growth environment, marketers can often rely on a high volume of activities to meet their marketing goals because buyers are less picky, and marketing budgets are looser. However, due to economic uncertainty and inflation, we are no longer in a high-growth environment. Legal tech buyers scrutinize their purchases and expect more from the buying experience.
Therefore, plan your initiatives toward business outcomes instead of campaigns and activities. Consider where your business is now. What stage of growth are you in? What challenges are you facing? What strengths and opportunities can you leverage? Choose two to four primary initiatives that work towards your strengths while addressing gaps that need to be filled.