BABC Member Storyteller Promotions
Marketing and Advertising is a necessary part of any business. Regardless of the services you provide, your customers, clients and prospective clients need to know you exist. Word of mouth, networking, personal referrals are all a significant part of the promotional process, however, without a brand for those people to resonate with, you are essentially wasting time, effort and dollars. There is a significant cost to customer acquisition and retention; so, why would anyone want to waste money on something that did not bring continued value to both parties.
Consider the following scenario; You plan on attending a trade show where your target market will be attending en masse. You are told by the event planners that they expect four to five thousand attendees. Good Lord, it’s a gold mine! You quickly set about making all the plans to be the most attractive and best prepared exhibitor at the show. You have your table, your booth, your staff is all primed and you arrive bright and early, armed with all the goodies designed to attract the attendee. Hundreds of the nicest and newest pens your budget could afford, stacks of post it note style writing pads and maybe a few other gadgets designed to lure the catch in.
But did we spend one bit of preparation even thinking about who our ideal client is? I mean really identify who they are? If you answered, ‘No” You're not alone. More than half (62%) of all respondents in a recent marketing survey were not sure if their marketing and advertising program was as effective as it could be; similarly almost half (48.9%) are concerned that their program was not promoting brand awareness, an extremely important component in an ever increasing competitive market.
IDENTIFYING THAT IDEAL CLIENT
Every company that provides a product or a service has an ideal client that fits within a certain demographic. This is not to say that you do not have a diverse set of clients within different industries that provide a strong base for your business. However if you look deeply at your client list, I can almost guarantee that the twenty percent that produce eighty percent of your revenue probably come from a particular set of properties, industries or professional vertical. If you want to attract more of that twenty percent, than you have to think about how to advertise to them at that moment when they realize they need your product or service over that of your competition.
First lets get that Ideal Client in mind. Create a physical picture of what he or she looks like. Identify their work environment. If your typical decision maker for example is a property manager, in what kind of property setting does he or she work? What are the things that he or she works with everyday? What tools can make their life just a little easier? It becomes important when you answer the following question; Where exactly are they when they realize they need you? The property manager at a commercial building is likely to have an entirely different working environment than that of a hotel manager, or a warehouse manager; how about that construction manager? Without that picture in your head, you cannot begin to figure out how to advertise to him or her at the previously mentioned moment.
Let’s go back to our trade show supplies, you arrived all ready and primed with branded pens and post it notes only to figure out that the primary work environment for the ideal clients attending the trade show requires them to use a tablet or specific software. What do you think is going to happen to those branded pens and notepads you laid out so neatly in your booth? I can almost guarantee they will not be with them when they realize they need you. We need to focus on putting something in their hands that is useful to them every day.
The majority of business owners are positive or extremely positive about the prospects for growing business in 2016 according to recent surveys. We all should be, the future is up to us. Similarly, as business owners we should be good stewards of our finances. Whatever your advertising strategy for 2016, please make sure you are working with someone who will be as good a steward of your finances as you are. Make sure they help you make great decisions; decisions that do not waste advertising dollars and helps you control costs.