Choices

Choices. Some people feel like there are too many choices in the world these days. Especially when it comes to marketing. It’s true that there are more ways to get your message to your prospects and customers than ever before. And, from the customer’s point of view, there are more people pushing information to them than ever before. It seems like the noise level is high and getting higher.

Here”s How To Cut Through The Confusion
It’s been our experience that in any company there are always some set of marketing and communications solutions that fit their needs perfectly. Out of all the possibilities, this set of solutions is somehow right for the company, their market and their needs. The question is, how do you find the ones that are right for you?

We’ve developed a series of simple questions that you can use to help you decide what marketing and communications programs might be right for you. We’ll share the list with you here and give you more details about the questions if you need it. Here’s how it works.

Take any marketing or communications program you’re considering and rate it using these questions. Give it a number between 1 and 10, with 1 being no way and 10 being absolutely perfect. Add up the score and compare it to other possible marketing or communications solutions. You should have a better idea of what”s right for you and feel a lot more comfortable moving forward with your plans.

1. You are using an appropriate medium to get your message to your market.

Sure, you can make a silly video and put it on youtube.com. Sure, you can buy an ad on your favorite talk-radio program. Sure, you can create a web site using a “free hosting” service. But will it reach your market? Will it communicate the message you want? Will it result in an increase in business? There are proven ways to discover the right media to communicate your message to your market. Your marketing programs will benefit when you discover the best ways to get your message to your market. Remember, it’s the fish that must like the bait, not the fisherman.

2. You can afford to carry the program all the way through.

Many programs see the greatest results only near the end of the program when you”ve had lots of feedback and revisions to make it really fit your market. You may not get to the highest return if you run out of money half way through. If you”re betting on the new business you hope you”ll get from the program to pay for most of it, you probably need to align your marketing plan with your actual finances.

3. You have the resources to support the program.

I like to ask, “What happens next?”. Think through the program and make sure you can make the most of the response you get. If you”re sending people to a web site to fill out a form, make sure you have someone ready to receive the emails, a way to store and sort the emails, an automatic response sent back to the customer, and the sales staff to follow up.  Make sure your resources are there before launching the program.

4. You know how you”ll measure the success of the program.

Maybe you”ll count your new business card successful if the cards are delivered on time, with no typo”s, at a price within your budget. Maybe you”ll count your web site ad program a success if you see an increase of 20% in new leads. The best measures are things you can count and things that you know will add to your profit. Make sure every program has a way of measuring success. Make sure every program has a way to track those things that add to your profit. It”s the only way to continually improve your marketing, reducing your cost of sales and increasing your profit.

5. You have a plan to monitor and modify the program based on results.

Many people look at marketing as a one-shot deal. Marketing is a process. The world is always changing. Make sure you test different key elements in your programs and connect those results to the program goals and your bottom line. The most successful marketers never stop monitoring and improving their programs based on results.

Add it all up and see where you are.

Take a few minutes to consider how you”re marketing your business in the light of these questions. Rate your marketing from 1 to 10, being as honest as you can. A score of 50 is the best you can get. Anything better than 40 is likely to be successful. If you”re considering two or more marketing programs you”ll be able to decide which is likely to bring the best results. Look to see if one area is lower than the others and you may find ways to make any marketing program bring more return on your investment.

See what happens to your marketing and your business if you use these questions to evaluate your marketing and communications efforts. And, if you need an objective review of your marketing or want help learning how to market this way, get in touch with us.

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Marketing That's Right For You