Lessons from The Marketing Performance Blueprint by Paul Roetzer
Recently I read The Marketing Performance Blueprint by Paul Roetzer and I want to share some of the content that I feel is most relevant to my small business clients and future clients, along with my thoughts on applying these ideas.
“Gone are the days when a marketing stimulus, such as an advertisement, direct mail piece, or cold call, leads directly to a sale. Google found that shoppers reference an average of 10.4 sources before making a purchasing decision.”
My take on this quote is that with the advent of so many avenues of information a business can’t rely solely on one or two ways of spreading the word about their products and services like they used to. Not only are consumers savvy at doing research but the resources they use are ever changing. The key is not to rely too heavily on any one method of marketing, but to diversify your efforts as much as possible without stretching yourself and your budget too thin.
While my business provides services focused on web, email and social media we recognize that these are not the only methods of attracting new business. For our business we do other marketing efforts as well and recommend our clients do the same.
In marketing and sales it is about being at the right place at the right time to solve a problem for your client. (In a majority of instances you will have no idea when and where that might be so you just want to make sure you are in as many places as possible so that when people are ready, they find you easily.)
“Most business leaders know that the digital transformation will be critical to their success in the next few years, but the ‘lack of urgency’ is cited as a frequent obstacle. Ironically, success itself may be one of the largest culprits in creating complacent cultures. Too often business leaders become comfortable with historical success and lack motivation to change their ways.”
Many business owners slow down or stop their active marketing efforts when business is good, due in part to this ‘lack of urgency’ in acquiring new business. Then when the busy time or season is over they realize they need a big marketing push, of course there is typically a gap between when you start a marketing campaign and when most of the business comes in. Sure there are some techniques like paid online ads that work faster than others, but they are more expensive and typically are harder to close since these clients may have been unaware of your company prior to finding your paid ad.
The key in business is regular marketing efforts, even if you are above capacity currently it is critical to keep marketing, these may be the times to establish some campaigns with longer lead times on the sales process. For example, when you are busy with work in one area we recommend creating a new landing page which focuses on keywords searches for a secondary product or service which might not be as seasonal. Another example would be establishing a newsletter for clients and prospects to further cement your word of mouth following to make it easy for your existing clients and prospects to refer new business or keep you at the top of their list for when they are ready (which often may occur when you start to slow down).
“SEO, now more than ever, is about creating content and websites that users love and are willing to share.”
…”Focus your team on providing value, answering questions, and producing quality content.”
We often get questions from prospects about how to rank well on Google using Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and this quote summarizes our philosophy well. While you want to have a site that looks nice and is professional, the key to SEO is good content and ease of use for your current and future clients.
Google regularly changes its algorithm on how they rank websites, but their purpose in doing this is to weed out the organizations that are using techniques that ‘trick’ Google into placing them higher. Google tries to reward companies that offer unique and valuable information. While there are techniques that consistently work well, it is because these techniques are commonsense and work well for users that visit your website.
Summary for Small Business:: Marketing is most effective when there is a mufti-faceted plan. Provide valuable information to your target audience through a variety of outlets to help them do their research. A soft-sell approach where you offer resources and information works best for most industries, we are in a period where the consumer drives the sales process most of the time. It is important to recognize that and make your business as visible as possible with as much information as possible to get the prospect to contact you when they are part of the way through the sales process. This has its advantages and disadvantages, while you may not get as many leads as in the past from your marketing budget, they are typically much better qualified so your closing rate should be significantly higher than in the past.
Now Our Shameless Plug: eRose Web offers many marketing services to help you promote your business, please look over the info we share on our website and in our various social media outlets linked on this blog, to see how we might be of service to your business and its marketing efforts to help prevent dips in your sales cycle.