The buzz around the new year has faded along with all its new ideas and its accompanying budget. By now, you’re deep in the weeds of the year’s marketing calendar and you’re left with just one lingering question:
Where on Earth do you start?
Setting priorities when you need to reach a mountain of goals for your entertainment brand is hard, especially when you want — and need — to do everything. Plus, each task on your list likely involves coordinating with other internal teams and outside partners, and everyone is short-staffed. Aligning everyone’s schedules is a whole other task. But the longer you wait, the less time you have to get the results you need this year.
Prioritization paralysis can be a crippling condition, especially this time of year. However, it’s far from fatal. Just like the old joke about eating an elephant, you just have to take one bite at a time. And, just as importantly, make an informed decision where to begin.
Effective prioritization is key to your entertainment brand’s success
Establishing your first priority from a long list of your brand’s goals isn’t just an essential part of getting to work. It also allows you to set a clear focal point amid so many potential directions to pursue.
For example, imagine you want to give another person a handful of eggs. If you toss them over all at once, chances are none of them will be caught and you’ll make a big mess. However, if you pass each egg one at a time, the odds they will be handled properly are much higher.
The same holds true for your brand’s marketing objectives. If you have 18 key goals to pursue from the start of the year, it’s no wonder nothing has happened. You have to pick one goal in order to get things done. Then, you can move on to tackling what’s next.
How to decide what comes next in your marketing priorities
One of the core difficulties in setting priorities for your brand’s marketing initiatives stems from a lack of information. Along with missing key quantitative data to offer insights on your brand, you may also lack the qualitative information to reveal what customers really love about your products.
Moreover, the economic turmoil of the past few years may have upended your organization, leaving you short-staffed and unsure of your footing. Before taking your first step, the right agency partner can provide direction on the areas of your marketing calendar needing attention.
To be fair, no agency can wave a magic wand that makes every decision on your list disappear. Data is still the only way to make an informed decision. At We The Collective, we look to answer the following questions to set marketing priorities for brands like yours.
1. What are your constraints?
Whenever we’re onboarding a new project, we first need to know the shape of the sandbox we’re playing in. Limitations on budget, resources, and time build an idea of where your brand should direct its energies first. Do you have a team of 60 people who can be dedicated to the problem? Or will any work on this project need to be spread between two contractors?
At the same time, constraints also set up guardrails that drive creative thinking. Knowing the limits on a project focuses our efforts within a defined set of parameters.
2. Where is your customer in the marketing funnel?
Whether your brand follows a conventional sales funnel or builds a loyalty loop to create a longer lasting connection, you need to identify where your customers are. Then, you’re better equipped to create a campaign that can move them further along.
For example, if your customer is stuck before making a purchase, you may need to conduct more of a sales campaign that’s built on offering a discount. Similarly, if your customer doesn’t identify with the characters in your next game title, you can focus on building an awareness campaign to nurture a deeper connection.
3. Are your metrics telling the story?
Working in tandem with the funnel question, user data provides inarguable numbers that inform your priorities. Which part of your funnel is performing the best? What areas need improvement? Working from those details, you can either work on the underperforming aspects of your funnel or build upon your existing success.
4. What is resonating with customers?
Your brand should never chase trends, especially in youth marketing. More often than not, it’s a recipe for disaster. However, if your customers are responding to one of your brand’s offerings in a positive way, those insights should inform your next moves.
For example, the pandemic helped introduce “Cozy Games” to the marketing lexicon where young audiences pursued gentler, escapist gaming titles. If one of your titles is gaining traction under that term on social media, you can use that insight to follow your audience and double-down on your success.
5. What is the next step for marketing best practices?
Data provides valuable direction. But following marketing best practices provides valuable guidance when you’re deciding what’s next in your marketing.
For example, you should first gather some 500 beta testers to verify consumers like what you have to offer before planning your advertising rollout. Or, if you’re planning a website to support a product launch, you should set the site’s content strategy before rebuilding the CMS.
6. Where is your team most excited to go next?
If you’ve reviewed all these factors and still don't know where to start, you should follow the idea that attracts the most energy. If everyone on your team is excited about an idea, then you should trust their judgment and expertise. Ultimately, the results are likely to turn out better than trying to force an unpopular decision based on every other item on the list.
Still unsure of where to start? We should probably talk. In our experience, a conversation has provided a strong beginning to many great stories.