Filed under: Tip of the Day
One of the most important ways to increase revenues immediately is to first fine-tune and increase your marketing efforts. After all, new business and new channels of revenue are the result of marketing campaigns that reveal new leads to call on. Whether it’s a new referral program a new online social network campaign or a new targeted print advertisement, distributors have to ramp up their marketing now to take advantage of an expanding market and new opportunities.
Here are five ways that you can expand your marketing efforts right now.
- Get organized. To effectively market to targeted audiences, distributors first need to get their lists and systems in good shape.“Coordinate, consolidate and clarify your many lists,” says Marsha Londe, owner of Tango Partners. “Identify your groups by business, title, or information that allows you to sort and target your audience. Once you’re organized, continually update. Then, you don’t have to go through this process again.
“Don’t send a mailing without first confirming or correcting your contact information. If you miss the intended recipient, you’ve wasted time and money, and missed an opportunity.”
- Coordinate a targeted mail campaign. “Coordinate the product with the message and determine your packaging,” Londe says. “The most important element is that the product they select has to have a reason or a purpose. It has to complement or coordinate the messaging. Who’s the audience, what are the objectives, and what’s the budget and time frame?”
- Fill the pipeline. Londe suggests that distributors plan out their next year’s worth of marketing efforts now. The reason? To fill your sales lead pipeline in case you run into a slow time.“Suddenly there can be lull in sales, and you don’t have anything in place because you haven’t planned,” Londe says. “If you plan ahead, come July or August, which is a really typically slow time, you can gear up for the holidays. When you’re going through next year’s Christmas list the December before, then you have one step out of the way. It’s organizing, sitting down with your team, and making a plan of what you’re going to do.”
- Get involved locally. While it’s a good idea to join the local chamber of commerce and make networking part of your new marketing efforts, just joining these organizations and showing up to meetings usually isn’t enough to get noticed.I joined a local chamber of commerce a couple of years ago, and nothing happened,” says John Zalepka, president of Corporate Brand Inc. (asi/168854). “I paid for a bold listing in the directory of all of the chamber members – still nothing. Then, I joined the golf committee. I attended a few early-morning meetings, where I met other local businesspeople with similar interests. Next thing I know, they needed a giveaway for the outing, and they had a $5,000 budget. This proves that sometimes, all you have to do is get involved.”
- Market yourself consistently. “Being busy is no excuse for not marketing yourself. Sure you’re busy now, but what’s your forecast for the slower months?” Zalepka says. “You need a pipeline of qualified prospects that you continually work until you convert them into clients. Pick up the telephone and call some people. Make the follow-up calls after meeting people at a networking event. Call your top 10 clients and ask them for a couple of referrals, then make those 20 calls another day. The bottom line is, do something everyday.”
From Education Adviser newsletter, vol. 30.