New technologies are the rage in marketing these days, and most are not fads. The digital world is a new reality for us all, however most business decision makers are not knowledgeable enough to make decisions on where and how digital marketing tactics should be used? Most don’t even know what different digital marketing tactics are available. Nor do they understand how best to use them within their marketing strategy.
So, who can help them determine the best use for these new technologies?
While some of the latest tactics are really “Bleeding Edge”, others are becoming more main stream. They include:
Search Engine Optimization
The first two, Search Engine Optimization and Email Marketing are the oldest of the new technologies. As a digital technology their age is a testament to their importance. They are the staple of Internet Marketing and have the closest relationship to what has become the new standard bearer of marketing in the new millennium, the Website.
One of the biggest mistakes that businesses make is to think that as long as they have a website, people will find them and know what they do. This is one of the biggest misconceptions in marketing today. Given that the number of websites is presently well over 7 million, how in the world can you be seen if you don’t actively market your website? That thinking is akin to printing a full colour brochure in the “olden days”, and locking them away in your bottom drawer and never handing one out. Not too SMART!
Email marketing on the other hand has become the staple communications tool. It has developed more specifically into a technique that can be tracked and measured – something that has become the hallmark of measuring Return on Investment in marketing. It has morphed into a very sophisticated tool that has extensive uses in conjunction with Marketing Automation Systems that are quickly becoming important in lead generation, lead nurturing and lead scoring activities. After all, in most businesses, generating good quality leads is a prerequisite for generating top line revenue, the starting point for growth (or maintaining equilibrium) in a business.
We’ll discuss more of these tools in next month’s newsletter.
Marketing Tip…from Neville Pokroy
The advent of these more sophisticated technologies is making marketing more and more of a science, something that business owners have always craved. However the applications are becoming more complex and the use of SMART Marketing is crucial to optimizing these new techniques.
With many businesses still unsure how even the basics of traditional marketing can and should be used, how can we expect them to understand the more complex applications without educating them?
SMART marketing is the starting point because it is built on the premise of affordability and measurability. It assumes that each organization has different needs and what is appropriate for one company in a specific market is not always appropriate for another company in the same market. Each company has different needs and constraints and they should be considered when building a plan.
So what is SMART marketing and how can it help me?
SMART Marketing S – Specific: all marketing must be definitive and appropriate, and must have pre-defined outcomes for success. By having the end result in mind you will be able to create something that can also be measured. While at times it may be a stretch, it should always be perceived that it is realistic and reachable. Appropriate may mean different things to different people, so make sure that you understand your audience in this regard. M – Measurable: measuring success or failure is key to understanding whether the investment has been worthwhile. If at all possible, marketing efforts should be built with tools that have measurement in mind. A – Affordable: it is no good developing marketing that a company cannot afford. Creating the appropriate mix that delivers affordability and results is the key to success. Know your budget and what needs to be delivered. And stick to finding the right solution given these budgetary constraints. R – RaMotional (Rational and Emotional combination): a combination of rational and emotional will create the most meaningful and impactful communications. While most decisions are emotional, they are supported by rational justifications. Addressing both will maximize your effectiveness. T – Targeted: know exactly who your target audience is. Make sure that your message is developed to resonate with the defined audience. General messages will not accomplish anything but mediocre results.
SMART marketing will allow you to clearly identify what tactics do not fit with your strategy, and what tactics do. If you review the options open to you and weigh various options against each other using the SMART criteria, many decisions become natural. The challenge often is: what are the various tactics do I need to weigh against each other? This list is sometimes quite extensive and very often business people do not take the time to evaluate various options against each other. That’s where marketing help can be of assistance.
Don’t take the shortcut automatically. It is often the easy way out but not necessarily the SMART way. It could cost you much more than you need to spend. Get some help if you need to. It’s the SMART way to go.
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We specialize in Business Growth. We deliver to clients' a sustainable future by helping them define where and how they wish to grow. And then we make that happen, together with you.