If you were building a marketing program from scratch …

One of my favorite ways to level up my marketing is by checking out AMAs at sites like GrowthHackers and Inbound. I read as many as I can, and I save the highlights to a Trello board so I can go back and reference my favorites.

Several of the AMAs end up touching on early marketing strategy and how to choose channels, like this one from Anne Fleshman of Autopilot.

I find these to be fascinating thought exercises:

If you were to build a marketing program today, from scratch, what might it look like?

I feel incredibly lucky that I was able to come into a team at Buffer that had already established some really incredible channels: content, community, press, social, etc. And we’ve since expanded that to include partnerships, multimedia (video, podcast), product, email, events, and more.

So we’re in a very fortunate position where we don’t have to start from scratch. Phew!

Still, I think this type of thought exercise can be especially valuable whether you’re part of an established marketing team or if you’re starting fresh. I’ve found particular value in putting myself in the shoes of our Buffer customers. We serve people who are building businesses and who may be at the point of figuring out where to put marketing resources. Recently, I’ve found it very useful to empathize with them. What resources do they allocate for social media? And when?

If you want to play along, I put together a tiny game. In the graphic at the top of this post is a list of channels, each with a point value. The point value is based on the amount of time, people, money, and coordination required to run each channel (points are not based on value or impact).

If you had only 10 points to spend, how would you spend them?

  • What channels are missing?
  • What channels are too many / too few points?
  • Does your answer change if it’s B2B or B2C?
  • What other factors influence your choice?

I feel my answer is different depending on the day or my mood! At this moment, I’d probably go with 3 points for email, 4 points content, and 2 points social (this would be if I was selling a service). If I was selling a good, I’d do 6 points paid 3 points email, with a point left over. :)

Would love to hear from you!

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I lead the marketing team at Buffer, a SaaS tool with a blog of over 1.2M monthly visits. Let me show you how we got there and how we plan to grow.

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