When putting together a marketing plan, it is important to remember that not everyone from your target audience will conveniently read the same newspaper on the same day that you put your advertisement in it. Likewise, they will not all notice the pay-per-click banner on the top of the trade website, or read a brochure you send them in the mail. And when you put it that way, all seems lost and marketing seems a hopeless activity that will never achieve the results you are aiming for. But all is not lost, you just need to learn to spread your activity out!
If in the past, you have spent all your marketing budget in one area, knowing what options to include can be difficult when it comes to writing your first ‘integrated strategy’. Even more difficult can be thinking of what options are out there. The list below will help get you started.
1. Direct marketing: if you send something directly to the consumer, this is direct marketing. This can include anything from a mail out of pamphlets, through to an email direct mailer that may target thousands of clients at once.
2. Print advertising: print advertising has been successfully used for years, and while digital is infringing upon its success, it is still valid for many target audiences. Don’t restrict yourself to local papers or the major metro, remember to also consider specific trade publications.
3. Collateral: while online media is growing, there will always be opportunities to put something in a potential client’s hand – so make sure you have something ready. Professionally designed and written marketing pieces like brochures, posters or business cards are still important!
4. Face-to-face: do you have the opportunity to get in front of your target audience? Whether it’s a trade show or a speech at an event, one of the most important marketing tools is still face-to-face communication.
5. Events: holding events is a great way to not only get your brand out there, but to spoil your clients and potential clients so they see how much you value them, and how much effort you put into communicating with them. A rule of thumb with events is if you don’t have the budget to do it properly, don’t do it. This doesn’t mean paying the national orchestra or PINK to come and entertain, but it does mean ensuring everything from your catering and choice of menu, to your venue, wait staff, entertainment, gifts and your staff should reflect your brand values and create the reputation you are aiming for.
6. Online marketing: something these days you can’t afford to go without is some form of digital marketing. You need to invest in a good (not a sloppy or amateur) website, and look into options such as social media, online advertising, SEO and SEA.
7. Sponsorships: above and beyond your own events, sponsorship is a valuable opportunity to have your brand become related to another major brand. One thing to remember when considering sponsorships is that return on investment can be difficult to measure, so make sure it’s worth it!
Guest Post Author Bio: Tom Mallet is an Australian freelance writer and journalist. He writes extensively in Australia, Canada, Europe, and the US. He’s published more than 500 articles about various topics.