Posted on 8/29/2018

10 Steps to Marketing Success: A Checklist for Small Businesses

Nicole Kampe

Creating a solid marketing and promotional campaign to accelerate your business is no easy task. Whether you’re launching a product, selling a service, or promoting an event or program within your organization, reaching your target audience has become harder than ever in the modern era of social media and automated ad technology. In fact, a recent survey found that 76% of those asked felt marketing has changed more in the past 2 years than in the previous 50. 

Between limited budgets and noise in the marketplace, how can small and medium-sized businesses break through to deliver their message in a meaningful way? Remember, no matter what trends come along, the fundamentals of good marketing haven’t changed. 

Below, Automation Alley has created a handy 10-step checklist to help you overcome your marketing challenges.

  • Time to define! 
    Before you even begin a marketing campaign, it’s absolutely critical to define your target audience and create a consistent voice for your brand. Companies can have personalities too! 
  • Create unique messaging to help your campaign stand out. 
    Words are powerful! Ensure your campaign’s messaging is concise, engaging and consistent across all platforms.
  • Produce impactful visual content to help illustrate your message. 
    High-quality images, graphics and video content that stick and resonate with people will take your campaign to the next level.
  • Position your company leadership as industry influencers and thought leaders.
    Create a brand blog or podcast on your website and update it regularly with original content from the leaders within your organization, submit regular op-eds to local media outlets on topics that align with your industry, or consider speaking opportunities for your top executives. The key is to soft sell your product, service or technology through education. Becoming a trusted source of knowledge within your industry pays off in the long run. 
  • Plan a media outreach strategy. 
    Are you newsworthy? Create a buzz around your campaign by reaching out to media outlets with embargoed press releases or a unique story pitch that will gain you coverage or reviews. 
  • Email marketing is key.
    All highly effective digital marketing strategies start with targeted emails. Find an email marketing service that’s easy to use and create templated messages to send to your email subscribers. Engaging emails are a sure-fire way to convert prospects into customers. 
  • Step up your social media game.
    Boost your marketing campaign with regular social media posting. Consider a hashtag for your event or product launch, post original content, encourage follower engagement, give livestreaming a try or post daily Instagram story updates.
  • Digital advertising = bang for your buck.
    To reach an audience online, it is going to cost you. The days of businesses reaching people’s news feeds organically are numbered. However, Google, LinkedIn and Facebook have recently pioneered some of the most precise ad targeting tools ever! 
  • Try something new!
    Billboards may seem like old-school advertising, but the digital transformation has enabled companies to run more personalized and easily changeable marketing campaigns.  
  • Gather analytics and reflect. 
    Collect that data! It’s key to your future marketing success. How many times were you retweeted? How many people opened your emails? Who viewed your website and for how long? Hold a post-marketing campaign meeting to discuss what worked, what didn’t and how to improve. 

About the Author

Nicole Kampe | Automation Alley

Nicole Kampe is Automation Alley's communications and media manager. In this role, Nicole is responsible for the strategy and development of all messaging as it relates to Automation Alley's brand and image. Nicole writes and develops content related to promotion, marketing and social media efforts on behalf of Automation Alley. This includes speech writing, creating content for corporate marketing materials, e-mail communications, press releases, videos, Automation Alley's website, blog, podcast, and annual Technology in Industry Report. Nicole is also responsible for the development and execution of Automation Alley’s overall media relations strategy.


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