Advertising Advertise in the right places with measurable results
Top Tip: Stop Any Advertising That Is Not Working
Yes this is obvious but so many businesses waste a fortune on haphazard marketing that does not work! If you pay for a regular advertisement that doesn’t generate any direct enquiries/sales and is therefore not working for you ('working' means clearly profitable) stop it today, because we can assure you there are many more options available to you that will work.
E-Marketing e-shots, e-bulletins, e-newsletters, websites, customer surveys
Top Tip: Email your Customers and Prospects Frequently
If you're not emailing your customers and prospects (a 'prospect' is a potential customer who has expressed some type of interest in what you are offering) at least once a month (and probably more) then you're crazy. Simple as that!
Website & Internet Services Make your website work for you & increase website traffic
Top Tip: Test a Google Pay Per Click Campaign
Pay Per Click has emerged as such a powerful Marketing tool - and it's so inexpensive to test, it should be one of the first things you try out.
Many people try Pay Per Click for a few days, it doesn't work out and so they leave it. There are certainly some Pay Per Click 'secrets' that can make the difference between failure - and major success. Try it out. It's also a lot of fun!
Copy Writing Use the power of words to get exactly what you want
Top Tip: Re-vamp the Copy on All of Your Marketing Material
One of the most important 'first steps' is to make sure that you have great copy. ('Copy' refers to all the words you write to promote your product/service).
Other than when you are speaking to a potential customer, it is your copy that will be selling your product or service. It could be on your website, in emails, brochures, letters or advertising. The difference between bad copy and great copy is often the difference between a failing business and a highly profitable one.
For now, the one most important rule of great copy is that it needs to be about your customer - not about you. It needs to explicitly convey how they are going to benefit from what you are offering. Start with your website. Does your site clearly communicate how your potential customers' lives are going to be massively enhanced when they become your customers?
Direct Mail & print Full direct mail service
Top Tip: Ensure That Your Direct Mail Will Be Read
Tease the recipient by presenting them with something that they can’t not read. Teasers are phrases that describe what you offer. You will come across them everyday e.g. on the TV- at the end of a programme we hear "When we return after the break, you'll discover how to choose the right care home for your parents or which stocks and shares could be hazardous to your portfolio or how the school you choose today may affect the rest of their life!" This means that you are more likely to sit tight for the next part of the program. For many years, magazines have used teasers on their covers i.e. How to (do this), Why you should never (do this), When it's important to (do this), 5 mistakes to avoid when you (do this), And so on.
You can use teasers as the headings for your direct mail to attract prospects to your marketing message. Teasers will cause your prospects to ask for what you offer and read your materials from beginning to end. "How-to" titles are the most powerful because everyone wants to learn how to solve a problem or achieve a goal. You can also often replace "how to" with a number: "How to add value to your business" could become "7 ways to add value to your business". You can adapt your teaser to work based on a number of psychological appeals: Desire for gain (learning the secrets). Fear of loss (learning mistakes to avoid). Desire for intelligent action (smart ways), efficiency (cut costs), and effectiveness (improve results).
Public Relations Use the resources that you might not realise are available to you in order to build on publicity
Top Tip: Get involved
Get involved with as many community related activities as possible and make sure everybody knows about your involvement. You can do this by putting news updates on your website which inform people of what the business has been recently involved with or is going to be involved with. You can also approach the local press with a press release about your involvement with a particular event. Another really great way to get recognised is to sponsor high profile events in your area- whether they relate to your business field or not. The more you become involved with and associated to the community the more recognised within your area you will become, resulting in you being the first port of call for anyone with a need for your service/products and added exposure to word of mouth.
Event Management Make an impact at that event, stand out, and be memorable
Top Tip: Put together an ‘event survival kit’
An ‘event survival kit’ is an on hand collection of everything you need to make an event work for you- this obviously applies to the more simple events such as exhibitions and seminars rather than charity balls & product launches etc- but still it will come in handy for the more complex events too. Your basic event survival kit should consist of a banner stand with your company logo and a general key message on it, a stock of your company collateral (brochures, leaflets etc), a portable literature dispenser and a stock of company branded pens. Having this kit at the ready at all times means that with only a days notice you can attend an event looking professional and giving out a clear brand image. You can also build you basic kit by adding extras like a projector & projector screen, you could even ensure that you have a power point presentation template saved ready to input the specific info, this will also add clarity & consistency to your image as well as providing you with the feeling of being prepared to take on a seminar or presentation talk whenever the invitation may arise.
Seminars Have your target audience come to you
Top Tip: Cost effective seminars
Seminars are a great way to bring a captive audience to you. They can be implemented very cost effectively especially if you collaborate with another business in your area who links to the service/product you offer but obviously isn’t a competitor. For example a law firm may link with an estate agency and accountancy to give a seminar on buy to let property. This way the businesses involved can share the cost of the seminar and increase the numbers at the seminar as the target audience is bound to be interested in at least one if not all of the subject areas involved.
Support to existing Marketing function For special one off promotions, events or campaigns
Top Tip: Know When to Ask for Help
Sometimes you know exactly what to do and how to do it and you are in fact doing it, but you are so busy that to keep the momentum going can prove physically impossible. By asking for someone to help on an adhoc basis you can get the help you need on one or two specific activities and keep the campaign going and not ground to a halt or slowed down simply because an extra pair of hands is needed.
Telesales Follow up & get results
Top Tip: Get on the Telephone
If you're not using the telephone as a major part of growing your business, you should give it serious consideration.
Using the phone to acquire new customers can involve a fair amount of work, research and trial and error, although when it works, it can be massively profitable.
Supporting your other marketing activity with follow up calls is also something that people don’t usually do (i.e. calling the recipients of your mail shots or eshots), however a follow up call allows you to gain an insight into your target audiences interest levels and gauge how well received the initial activity was. It can also be a great catalyst in arranging initial meetings with prospective customers/clients.
Communication Planning For current, prospective & lapsed customers
Top Tip: Be Relevant In Your Communication
By splitting your current, prospect and lapsed customers into separate categories and adapting your communication to each of the three categories you can become more relevant to each of your target groups, rather than sending the same eshot/mail shot to your whole database. If you wanted to be really clever you could also split your current customer’s category down further by looking at their recent buying activity- this will help you to cross and up sell and also help to ensure customer loyalty.
Brand Evaluation Brand development & management
Top Tip: Know your core demographic
The first rule of branding is to know who your end user and core demographic are, be as focused and specific as possible. Begin to formulate a picture in mind of who these people are, i.e. gender (if possible), age, location – build a visual picture. Once you have a good idea of exactly who you dealing with, you can then begin to target your brand image and marketing material towards them. Have a strong corporate ‘look’ keeping design, logo, and colours consistent across all material you produce. The aim is to have a cohesive look which is instantly recognisable when applied to a variety of products: business cards, promotional brochures, website etc.
Constant assessment of the demographic as you grow and change is also essential, as you expand or shift in direction or where you see your business focusing, your end consumer can also change so be sure to maintain the relevance of your brand according to your target consumer.
Shelli Walsh, Director, Shell Shock
Campaign Planning For existing or current products
Top Tip: Plan Your Success
If you are going to invest in any marketing activity, whether the investment is a time investment, the cost of printing flyers or the cost of a marketing consultant you must always plan right up to the end result. If your activity has a clear path to follow it is more likely to stay on the right path and successfully reach your end objective.
Implementation Maximise your marketing strategy through a clear, systematic, planned implementation
Top Tip: Think outside of the box
When it comes to the implementation of any strategy, not only marketing strategy, a clear overall plan is essential. A good way to be sure that you have thought of every possible aspect contributing towards a successful implementation is to brainstorm your plan of action. Include in your brainstorm all external factors effecting or affected by the implementation i.e. the weekly schedule of your target audience- it’s no good planning to send out a big Direct mail campaign on a Thursday as your target is not likely to receive it until the Monday (if they work in an office) when they will have hundreds of other pieces of mail to sort through and a full inbox to deal with. By thinking out side the box and taking into account as many external factors as possible you will be as prepared as possible and the end result should be a highly effective, smooth running, complete implementation.
Marketing Audits Evaluate your current status & come away with a marketing and communications plan
Top Tip: Use a Fresh Pair of Eyes
Sometimes taking a step back is the only way to move forward- by taking a step back to see the big picture of your company you will be able to see your strengths and weaknesses. However, when you are so involved with the day to day running of the business it is often difficult to see what can be done to improve the weaknesses and maximise the strengths of you business. By getting a third party with a fresh pair of eyes involved the way to move forward becomes much more clear to see and can be broken down into simple easy to deal with steps.