Can you believe that 2020 is literally around the corner and in six days we’re going to jump into a new year and a new decade?

Now is the time of year where you’re probably going to get tired of hearing about the new you, new choices, brand new start and all those wonderful cliches about January starting. 

But to be honest, it’s true. And I love this time of year because it does allow me to wipe the slate clean, start all over, start fresh, and really just take a deep breath, you know, aside from all the things that happened in 2019, even if 2019 was amazing.

There’s something about thinking about what possibilities exist for me in 2020.

So, what I want to walk you through today is how to map out your 2020 marketing plan in a weekend. Actually, probably in a couple of hours, to be honest.

For all my people who aren’t on vacation and are figuring out this weird and funky time between Christmas and New Year’s… it really is a great place for you to kind of hunker down, write out your thoughts and plan for what you want to happen next year.

I want to teach you a simple framework to really get a glance and a quick filter of:

–       Where are you going?

–       How are you going to get there?

–       What are the tasks you need to happen?

–       And how do you stay really laser-focused?

If you listened last week to the episode where I talk about “Why Is No One Buying My Stuff” I mentioned at the end, the quote by Brendan Burchard that I heard at the Influencer Conference in San Diego this fall, where he said, 

“Your randomness is stealing from your greatness.”

Brendon Burchard

Ah, that was such a dagger to me because, like so many of you, the shiny object syndrome is a real thing. And I can jump around from thing to thing so much.

It’s why I put so much emphasis and believe in the power of focusing and streamlining your efforts because you really are going to see so much more growth that way.

So that’s what this whole system is kind of set up to be. 

Now the backstory behind this actually, of how I came to is to teach people this system and walk them through it is because I’ve been doing this all year going through a process with my church. 

I’ve been on the vision team with the church since it’s a new church plant of figuring out where are we going, what are we doing? 

You know, we don’t want to be just like everybody or the church down the street, right? So what does that look like for us?

It was so interesting because the experience we walked through borrowed so many principles from business and corporate and kind of put them in a new light that I was like, “Oh, I am so adapting this for all of my clients because it’s such a great and simple and different way.”

Now, if you have listened to the podcast for any length of time, you know, last year, I did a whole month of episodes on the #Goal Crushing System, which I still also use; but I love teaching people how to really look at their businesses, and I don’t believe that one method fits all. 

So some of you are going to latch on to this and run with it this weekend. And some of you are like, Oh, I kind of wanna go back to the goal crushing one. That’s totally fine.

If you’re actually going to sit down and do this, make sure you have your calendar out because I want you to be able to look back at 2019 and see all the things you worked on. 

Make sure you have access to your social media. I want you to have paper and pen where you can write down Yes, I know, we’re so digital, you can type and write really fast.

Okay, if you have an iPad, an Apple Pencil like I do, you can do that as well. But there’s something magical that happens when you put pen to paper or pencil tablet, where you can write it out. It just really makes things stick and kind of come to life for you in a way that doesn’t happen when we’re kind of robotically typing. 

Click here to snag my bonus download of my actual worksheets that I took my clients through at my retreat this fall at the beach. Below is a sneak peek of 4 of the 12 sheets inside!

A few pages from inside the 2020 Marketing Planner Workbook you can download by clicking.

For this process to work, we are going to go through three kinds of exercises. 

Instructions for drawing this sheet: 

If you didn’t grab the worksheets from the download, create three columns on a piece of paper, and then draw five lines across these columns in rows. We’re drawing a pretty chart here. 

Evaluate the Backbone of Your Business

This is where you’re going to evaluate your visibility, your clarity, the processes you have in your business, the people in your business and the tech. These are all things that are happening more behind the scenes, as opposed to like active marketing things. But they’re going to be really important and helping you figure out how to move your business along so that it can support the growth that you want to have in 2020. 

The columns are going to be labeled: what’s going right, what went wrong and what’s missing?

We’re looking at your brand as a whole and asking the questions we usually don’t stop to evaluate on: What’s really working well, or what do you love? 

  • You’re going to ask yourself this about each row, such as “What’s awesome about your visibility?” 
  • And what are you really, really clear on? 
  • What processes are just so streamlined? 
  • Who are the people that are awesome? And when I say people, this came up at the retreat as well, asking, “what exactly do you mean?” It could mean anything from who are the people on your team or it could mean the people who are supporting you, or it could mean people like the actual leads coming in.

    (Your answer can be a combination of all three of those, but I want you to take note of the people because that’s going to help you figure out you know, some other things when we get to exercise two and three.
  • And then lastly, like what’s working really well in your tech, whether that’s a software or a platform or some kind of connection or integration you have working really well?

It’s always really good to just make note of what’s actually working so we don’t change something that was working well. 

The middle column is “What’s not working? What’s wrong? Or what is something I really need to make sure happens in 2020?”

Ask yourself these questions for: Where are you not being visible? And what’s not very obvious, or very clear? You’ll know because you’ll answer in your head: “I really need to fix that, or I need to talk about it differently or I need to word different or I need to change my website.” 

Whatever it is, figure out what needs to be more clear. 

What processes are broken? What’s just not working well because things are falling through the cracks? 

What’s wrong with people? Are you attracting the wrong type of people? Do you have someone in your business who’s slowing you down to you need to bring someone new onboard? 

And what tech is not working? What do you need to upgrade or change?

For the last column, think about What’s missing? This is where ideas for growth happen based on how you answer the questions for what’s right and what’s wrong for each category, you’ll know exactly what to create, change, add, etc.  So this last question is a lot easier to answer because you can see where the gaps are.

You’ve just walked through the first step in the exercise by looking behind the scenes, to see the backbone of your business that makes things run and see how it worked this year. If you don’t have these five things working, it’s going to be really hard to sustain any kind of growth in 2020.

Create Tangible Ideas For What 2020 Should Look Like

The next step to map out your 2020 Marketing Plan is to start to put some depth behind what needs to happen next year.  We are getting a little bit more focused with each part of this exercise so we can map everything out. But it’s hard to plan your marketing if you don’t see your business holistically and look at the big picture of your business.

Instructions for drawing this sheet: 

So if you didn’t grab the worksheet download and are drawing this out as we go, take out a sheet of paper and draw three columns. 

In the first column, the left column, I want you to write “Where are you now?”

In the second column, the middle, I want you to write, “Where are you going?”

And in the third column on the right, I want you to write, “How will you get there?” 

This is where I want you to brainstorm ideas. 

Where Are You Right Now?

Now, this is also where your calendar is going to come into play a bit too, because the first column “Where are you now?” you can look back at the chart you just made and write down some of the same answers. This column is just a list of facts. 

For example, like, I’ve been in business, X number of years, I have this many clients, I made this much in revenue. This was the most popular product sold. All of those things are actual facts. 

Another way to think about this question to ask yourself: “If someone could take a snapshot of your business, what would they see?” 

They can see this they can see what’s working and what’s not working. They can see that you went to X amount of networking events, or you traveled to this conference, or you spent X amount of time doing blank, right? 

So I want you to look through your calendar, whether it’s paper or digital and write down the things that you did, the things you worked on, what you spent time on, like, just tally it up.

It’s going to be really eye-opening. And I promise you, it’s going to help you get a lot of clarity around what not to do and what to do in 2020.

One thing that might help is to warn you, don’t put judgment on the statements you write. They are neither good nor bad. Just write them all out. That’s the first step. 

Where Are You Going?

Next, write out, “Where are you going?”

If you are a dreamer, this section is going to be easy because you can envision exactly where to go next.

If this doesn’t describe you and you like to think linearly, you’ll want to go line by line down your column and answer where are you going, based on your “where are you now” answer. 

So for example, if you said I had X amount of clients in 2019, then where you’re going is that you want to have z amount of clients in 2020, right? You can just literally go line by line and say either where are you going? or what do you want to do differently? or what do you want to do better? 

Or where are you going doesn’t have to be a numerical goal It could be: “I’m going to stop going to this,” or “I’m going to only go to these events,” or “I’m going to travel only within 50 miles” or “I’m going to only go networking once a month, as opposed to every day.” You’re going to start to see immediately what you want to do differently in 2020. 

So make sure you do the first column first or you’re going to be writing pie in the sky ideas, which are never helpful. 

How Will You Get There?

Now for the third column, we’re answering “How will you get there?”

This is where my favorite part is because it’s the strategy piece. 

How are you going to do the things in the middle column and make things work? This is also where you look back on your first chart of what’s right, wrong and missing and say, okay, like, how do I fix those things? Like how do i do more? What’s right? How do I fix what’s wrong? And how do I add What’s missing?

I want you to just list everything out. Again, don’t judge yourself. Don’t filter yourself. But really think about How ARE you going to get there? Where exactly do you want to go?

So for example, if I were to say “I have been in business X amount of years and I want to be in business more than 10. Obviously, this is what I want to do forever, like, how am I going to get there?”

Well, to stay in business a long time, I know I’ve got to have consistent action, like actually be doing things and I got to make X amount of money, or continue to make money like that’s just an easy one. That’s not even like a task. 

But we’re going to be able to break that down into what you actually do in a second. 

Another example is if you wrote: “I want to have X amount of clients, Or I want to have three times the amount of my clients next year,” how DO you get there? What’s the first place you could start?

You could break it down by the amount of things/programs/products/courses, etc. you need to sell and how many it would take, and now we could break that down by quarter or month in the next part and start fleshing out how to market that and when. 

Another example is if you want to become a speaker and this year you were asked to speak once, but in 2020 you want to somewhere every month and maybe even get paid?

You probably should write down to apply for speaking things or practice speaking more or meet with people who need events. All of those could be things that fall into that category. 

So I want you to go through and look at what you’ve written down for “Where are you going?”, then go across the columns to figure out “If I want to do this thing, then how do I get there? What is it going to take to get there?”

2020 One-Sheet Plan

It’s time to take out another sheet of paper. So up to this point, we’re at three sheets of paper if you’re drawing it out as you read. (or you can grab the worksheets here) 

Instructions for drawing this sheet: 

I want you to create one long row across the whole page on top. Then create a second row and split it into four columns. Then create a third row underneath that’s all the way across (just like row one), and then create the fourth row on the bottom and split that up into four columns as well. (like row 2). 

We call this the 1-4-1-4  and it’s going to be your one-page action plan, where at a glance, you can see what the things you’re supposed to be focusing on in 2020. It creates a filter of what you said you want to be focusing on and it helps take away the randomness. 

This is why I love this framework so much because it gives so much clarity quickly. Instead of having 900 things to do, like you might feel like you’ve created on your “How do I get here” column, we’re going to actually break it down into when are you going to do them so you can actually figure out what’s feasible to accomplish in 2020. 

Okay, so looking at your chart, let’s put labels on it. 

  • Your very top row is going to be your five-plus year row and what’s happening in the next five or more years. 
  • Your second column, the first one that has four blocks is going to be labeled 2-3 years. And what we’ll add here are the things that are probably going to happen in the next two to three years because it’s going to take that long to get really good or to accomplish that thing. 
  • The third row is our second really long one. This one is labeled 1 year. In this row, we are asking: “Overall, what’s the big thing we’re going to focus on for 2020?” This is the thing that we’re consistently going to be working on throughout the entire year. 
  • And then the bottom row becomes your 90-day plan. In this row, we are figuring out what we can only focus on four things each quarter. 

To fill in this 2020 One-Page Plan, you need to look back at your “How will I get there” column and go line by line and write how long you think it would take to make this happen?

For example, you’re going to see a big shift for me in my messaging and how I talk about things in 2020 to be really focused on local marketing. Why? One because I know it inside and out and almost every single one of my clients are focusing on their local market. And two because nobody talks about it. Nobody is talking about how to do marketing well in a local market, or how to take online strategies and use them online, or how to take an online business and teach them how to also get local clients. 

Nobody talks about this stuff,  so you’re going to see my messages start to change in 2020. Because my five-year plus goal is that I want to become well known for local marketing. Well, for me, that’s probably going to be a thing that’s not going to take me 90 days, right? It’s probably not going to take me a year, it’s probably going to be something that’s going to take me a good two, three or more years to really feel like I am well known for local marketing, like that’s going to become my niche, my thing. 

So that’s something I’m going to just automatically write a five beside because I know that’s more of like a five-year goal than a 90-day goal. 

Go down your whole list like that and itemize off the things here. It doesn’t matter how many you have because you’re going to prioritize it. Once you actually see how many things you wrote down then that’s going to be really obvious of how much you can actually achieve. 

You’re going to have at least 12 projects to work on during the quarter, a focus during the whole year that you’re going to be continually working at, and then you’re going to have some big-picture things you’re moving towards — so what’s really going to matter to you and what’s going to move the needle forward? 

Once you put a time frame beside each one, you can start to plug it into your 1-4-1-

The reason I love this one-pager is that every single week or month, once you have this filled out, you can look at it and say, “Have I knocked off any of these four things for my 90-day goals?” As you cross them off, you get to add a new one to your bottom row.

And of course, it goes without saying but for each 90-day project, you have to assign someone in charge of it and a deadline. If you are a solopreneur, then you’ll obviously be tackling it all, but if you have a team of freelancers, you can assign them projects too and use the 1-4-1-4 to keep everyone on track. 

The magic of this process is that it allows you to think differently about your year than just straight up monetary goals. It really does look at it holistically, but also forces you to really prioritize and focus on what’s going to make a difference in your business, so that you’re not creating these really labor-intensive crazy goals that you’ll never achieve. 

Creating Your Marketing Tasks + Plan 

Now it’s time to start fleshing out the timeline and tasks needed to accomplish what you’ve created on your 1-4-1-4. Here’s my example to walk you through the tactical side: 

If I have a goal, like sales goal of I want to have X women in the mastermind, or X people joining the academy every month, or X strategy sessions happening, I know that I can break that down into sales goals by month. 

This helps me know what I’m selling and promoting and when. Writing out numbers and how I typically sell into these programs helps me break down whether that means I should do quarterly or monthly or annual launches. Or do I just need to have more sales calls? 

Then I can work backward to what I need to do to ramp up to a launch, or what events to attend to find dreamy women entrepreneurs I could talk to in person or on the phone so that I am doing the work that I know works well because of this process to hit the sales goals I’ve outlined I need to hit to reach my goals. 

Well, then that becomes my marketing plan for this step because then I know when I should put these things on my calendar. 

So to do this for yourself, go down your list and write down the tasks and actual work you have to do to accomplish it. 

If I write “I want to become well known for local marketing locally,” then I know that one of my things should probably be to start creating some buzz around local marketing in my own community. So I’m going to do that with workshops. 

So one of my things, honestly on my list of to do’s for 2020 is to hold quarterly workshops locally in my market for local business owners, because I can do that. I love the face to face thing. Maybe eventually I’ll bring them online too. But for right now, what’s one tiny segment of my list is to be known locally as a local marketing person. 

Another example is you know one thing for me is I just love planning, but the downside is there are so many things that I know I want to get done. And I don’t always do them well. So I know I want to get as much as possible scheduled out and planned…. And if I don’t do it well personally, it’s what I need to hand over to a VA. 

By figuring out my tasks and what it will actually take, helps me figure out who to hire in 2020 to do it better. 

The other thing you need to do to finish your 2020 Marketing Plan is to make sure to write out the things that happen in your business automatically, like events you’re leading or attending, or workshops, or promotion weeks, vacation, etc. Put it all on a calendar. 

For example, I know for my mastermind, I hold two retreats every year in the spring and one in the fall every six months that all my mastermind members get to come to for free. Sometimes, I open up the doors for other women to join us as well. 

But I have to plug those into the calendar and figure out when I’m going to start talking about these if I’m going to invite others in or want to have all the spots filled by Mastermind members be the start of each retreat. Other questions I ask to flesh out my tasks are: “What are the big things that I want to do inside my Facebook group, the #GirlBoss club? 

Mapping out your marketing plan last like this allows you to not only do the fun stuff that moves you forward but also still accomplish the daily work of being a business owner without forgetting to work ON your business.