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The Best Starting Point for A Marketing Plan in 2016

Can you afford to invest in advertising and marketing without first having a strong business strategy that clearly identifies your specific audience as well as your goals?

The obvious answer is “no,” but most business owners and managers are already so busy, and their expertise is typically not in advertising, marketing or promotion. How do you begin and then consistently promote and measure your marketing success?

You can pay an agency, or you can find a strong local media representative to provide agency-like services without the fee. Both are viable options dictated by your budget. But finding that talent that will provide dedicated service to your business is easier said than done.

As local multimedia providers, we constantly coach our team members that their objective is to understand the needs of our clients, not to simply sell our. Once they have a clear understanding of those client needs, then together we can build a plan that provides solid, customized marketing solutions. You deserve that level of service from all of your vendors.

Always start with a needs analysis based on a snapshot of your business today with an eye on how you would like to see your business positioned in the future.

A customer needs analysis is sort of like going to the marketing doctor at least once a year to get a check up. Like your body, your business changes as it advances through its life stages, as do the available marketing platforms.

Sales Development Services conducted a survey of small- to medium-sized businesses to find the top attributes that are important to them in a media-advertising seller.

Here are the top five:

  1. Someone who knows my company and line of business (64%)
  2. Someone who knows my customers (51%)
  3. Someone who delivers what he/she promises (50%)
  4. Someone who knows his/her product (47%)
  5. Someone who is professional in conduct and appearance (37%)

If you are not working with someone who provides these attributes, you are being short-changed. Every kind of advertising and marketing product serves a purpose in a strong integrated program. Because most of us can’t afford to invest in all of the products out there, it is important you have a custom marketing solution that makes sense for your specific business and its goals.

When you look at the purchase funnel of your business you must determine how you want to market. What stage(s) are important to your business at any particular moment? Are you trying to create:

  • Awareness?
  • Familiarity?
  • Consideration?
  • Purchases?
  • Loyalty?

When you buy any marketing, advertising or promotion, you deserve and should expect phenomenal service throughout the entire execution of the program, from the beginning concept to the analysis at the end of the promotion.

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Mike Bennett

Written by Mike Bennett

Bennett is a 42 year veteran with a variety of experiences working in markets from Trenton, NJ to Truckee, CA and 20 locations in between. Most recently he was the publisher, advertising director and columnist at the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. A lifetime student of marketing he is now focused on his passion as a digital business development manager at CMNM. His goal is to help his customers reach their goals through sound and efficient advertising and promotion practices.

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