I refer to it on my website. I describe it to you here.
SIMPLE stands for:
S = scope out the situation.
I = introspect
M = make a plan
P = perform the plan
L = look at the results
E = evaluate and re-scope
Scope out the situation refers to exploring the marketplace and assessing what I refer to as 'digital visibility': can you be found online? Who are your customers? What are they looking for? What issues do they have? What are their conversations about? What other options do they have? What are your competitors doing? What are you doing offline? How do offline and online integrate? This stage is about grounding yourself in what truly matters to your customers and listening to them. Because, if you want to connect with your customers, you want to understand their world and engage them in conversation as Lisa Petrilli explains in Why You Must Rethink Your Marketing. The truth resides in the marketplace, not in our organization, not in our products, but rather with potential users. The more attention we pay to them, the better the insights and the greater the opportunity to successfully connect.
Introspect is how I characterize the analysis stage. Given the insights I've gathered while scoping out the situation, how does what I do add value to potential customers in my marketplace? What do I stand for? How do my strengths match up with the needs I've identified? What about my weaknesses and potential threats? How might I deal with those? How committed am I to customers? Simplifying plays an important role at this stage. So does honesty.
Make a plan addresses the need to develop objectives, goals, strategies and tactics that address the needs observed in the marketplace. A plan takes into account what content you will need to create for which medium and how best to integrate your online and offline activities. It also identifies who does what when and how, what you plan to measure so you can determine whether you have met your goals. It identifies a budget. Keep the plan simple and make it actionable. [You might also check out Minimalist Marketing: How a Marketing Plan Keeps Things Simple and Increases Your Profits.]
Perform the plan is just that, put into action the elements of the plan you have developed. Make sure you pay attention to details.
Look at results at regular intervals, both short-term and long-term. What patterns emerge? Any surprises?
Evaluate and re-scope. Tweak, improve and add more relevance as you gain additional context and perspective so you can start the process over again.
Note how I group them together: Scope out and Introspect; Make a plan and Perform a plan; Look at results and Evaluate/Re-scope.
What do you think of the SIMPLE Marketing Now Framework? What would you add to it?