When Starbucks launched the Pumpkin Spice Latte in 2003, there was nothing on the market that included pumpkin flavors. Sales of the drink far exceeded expectations and Starbucks sold 200 million drinks between 2003 and 2015. It also spawned an entire copycat phenomenon of pumpkin spiced EVERYTHING. Now you can buy pumpkin spiced gum, bread, marshmallows, potato chips (what?) and cleaning products. Pumpkin spice is everywhere.
Like the proliferation of pumpkin spice into places it probably shouldn't be (like potato chips) marketing ideas often spread into applications where they are executed with no thought or relevance. Content marketing is an extremely important digital marketing tactic in today's world, but there is no point in starting a blog without a content calendar, a strong writer to execute your message on a regular basis, and a plan that connects your content to your goals. Search Engine Optimization should be the base of your digital marketing strategy, but without SEO expertise, businesses often resort to the latest advice they found in a blog post or random article. This can lead to disjointed and ineffective results that hurt more than they help.
To ensure that your company takes advantage of trends rather than falling victim to them, it is important to step back and develop a plan based on a solid strategy. Now is the time of year to begin. Review what you've done over the past year. Using analytics, measure what worked and what didn't. Think about your overall business goals for 2018 and focus on executing those goals. Then build a digital marketing plan that provides continual progress over time towards your company's business goals. Your marketing efforts will be much more successful.
And you can still drink your Pumpkin Spice Latte if you'd like.
About Christina Steder
With 15+ years of experience in consumer product, professional service, and nonprofit marketing as well as brand strategy and client service, Christina provides strategic direction for our clients - linking their ongoing online and content marketing needs to business goals and ROI.
Photo Credit: Adobe Stock
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