Small business owners have a lot on their plates. Believe me, I know . . . I am one, myself!

And because you’re so busy, there are probably days when you get so immersed in daily tasks that you’re not really working seeing a bigger picture. Sound familiar?

Of course, you might just be having an off day . . .

Or maybe your small business isn’t following a plan or aiming for a specific target or goal. Maybe you don’t have a marketing strategy in place, or the one that you do have isn’t being followed.

According to a 2017 report from Smart Insights, 49% of organizations don’t have clearly defined marketing strategies.

That means that approximately half of businesses are marketing in the dark!

A marketing strategy is essential for the health of a small business. Here are three reasons why, if you don’t already one, you need to develop one as soon as possible.

1. Organization

As I alluded to earlier, setting goals and working in sync is vital if you really want to accomplish anything significant. If your small business doesn’t have a marketing strategy, how are you and your team of employees supposed to work as one?

Are you all scattered? Working towards different goals? Just managing tasks as they come?

Remember, marketing is a team sport. A strategy makes your goals clear, and it also provides your team members with a blueprint on how to market your products and services.

2. Productivity

Without a written plan in place, how do you evaluate which of your marketing tools works best for each of your different products, services, and needs?

Have you taken the time to plot your different price points? Have you analyzed customer data to determine how you can best market to your target demographic?

If you don’t currently have a marketing plan, the answer to all of these questions is likely “no” . . .

A marketing plan will allow you and your team to manage and maintain all of these elements. You’ll be able to optimize every area of marketing, maximize your return on investment (ROI) for every marketing decision, and increase productivity at every juncture.

3. Growth

And most importantly, a good marketing strategy is critical for your small business’s growth. Without a proper marketing plan, it’s very likely that your business will get caught in a very common vicious cycle. Perhaps you’re familiar with it:

You ramp up your marketing efforts for a few weeks. For the most part, it’s working; and you’re able to bring in more customers, orders, clients, et cetera. Then you switch your focus from marketing to satisfying your new customers. Eventually, those customers leave and you’re back at square one – rushing your next marketing campaign.

Sure, your company can survive this way. But your business won’t grow. Until you learn how to serve your customers and market simultaneously, you’ll just be jogging in place.

A strong marketing strategy, on the other hand, will make it easier for your team to be consistent with your organization’s marketing efforts.