Marketing…for a profit

Profit or action is after all the purpose.  If you are spending time on social media, have an ad in print, a recording on the radio, commercial on TV, a member of a group or club don’t you want it to bring you return on your investment usually in the form of new clients?  We are all scrambling for visibility and once gained it is the customer entering your business that justifies it all.  So let’s get to it!  In helping someone as an individual or as a business entity the same questions are asked across all industries; What works? Where should I be? Whose group should I join? How much time is enough?
ALL GREAT QUESTIONS! 
As I prefer to be lengthy & detailed when giving a seminar but short when it comes to blogging this will be a little shorter & to the point.  Mainly because I’m impatient and when I want a solution I don’t want to read a thesis to get to the answer & I assume my readers might be like me.
So what can you do? 

Let’s take the first two questions,”what works” & “where should I be“?  If you’ve been using marketing in any form you’ll know that this question has a different answer for every industry. Each company will need to have a firm grasp of who their clients are to best answer this question.  (Next months newsletter will go over how to find your clients in more detail!)  For an example today let’s use my clients; they are the industry leaders, business owners, innovators, entrepreneurs and the ones I target have these factors in common; early to rise, readers, actionable presence, 65% or more exercise, they’re members of 2-3 network or non-profit groups, plus a handful of various other commonalities.  So when I plan my marketing strategy I take into account these factors as well as a few other statistics gathered from tracking reports.  All this leads me to know that to reach my clients I need to be seen 7-9:30 am, early afternoon and around 9 pm.  My marketing efforts should be concentrated when possible around these times, with media that they subscribe to and on sites that cater to these commonalities.
For any start ups, 2nd level businesses or even corporations know that word of mouth & social media advertising are the leading avenues of a solid marketing for profit plan. These should both be an integral part of your marketing plan.
Let’s look at the next two questions, “Which groups should I join” & “How much time is enough“? You need to be a part of more than just your companies circles.  Businesses that keep a connection to their community show a 78% higher success rate than ones that don’t.  But knowing which community groups to be a part of & how many is also a question I answer all the time. Unless you are in the marketing or media business (2) two to (3) three groups is a good number as you don’t want to overstand out4 extend yourself.
My favorite saying, “Where ever you are be there”!  If you are a member of one or twenty groups you will not benefit if you can’t participate and be a value. When picking choose from the following.
Keeping a diversified membership of leading groups in your community will help you keep an eye on changes, growth, community needs, and where your clients are.  Plus, it keeps your referral resources plentiful and beneficial.  So my recommendation prior to choosing one, two or more groups to join as this is part of your marketing for profit resources is to visit them all and ask yourself two questions:
  1. What can I bring to this group that adds value to it or its members?
  2. What can I receive personally or professionally from being a member of this group?
You want to make sure the industries/members represented in the group are valuable, the requirements of the group can be met by you, and the meetings fit in your schedule.
Lastly for this article at least is the question that everyone asks & usually has the most difficulty with, mainly because we all know that time is our most precious commodity; “how much time is enough”?its about time
This is also a question with variables the first being whether you are a start up, 2nd level, full growth or even if you have plateaued.  For start up businesses an average of 20-25% is the minimum amount of time you should be dedicating towards your efforts.  This is an estimate & it depends on several factors including your budget abilities or competition levels.  I know when I first started my company I spent well over 50% of my time on marketing and later leveled it off to about 30%.   Something to think about is that there is a real profit value that comes from investing sufficient time to lay the groundwork for getting future sales.  So marketing for profit in the right places, with the right amount of time, using the right content should have a significant place in your business day, if you are indeed wanting continued success.

Just a little food for thought:

  • Marketers saw an increase of 74% in website traffic after devoting just 6 hours per week in social media.
  • Business-to-business industries should be spending around 12-15% of their revenue on marketing to succeed.
  • Companies in end-use consumer industries should be spending around 20-25%
  • Our customers encounter anywhere from 5-20 thousand forms of advertising in a day; billboards, t-shirt ads, news, email, flyers, posters, bumper stickers…etc when you are resting they are seeing your competition. Make sure what you do, when you do it – stands out
  • Businesses advance their objectives and sales sooner by allocating more time and money to marketing–sometimes as much as 20-30% or more…

The businesses that aren’t continually looking for the next customer, evolving and changing their marketing efforts no matter where their business growth level is the one that will get left behind.  We live in an era where our consumers are smarter, complex, value driven and impatient.  To meet those needs you have to know them on a deeper level and be able to adapt to their desires on many levels.

Remember be seen, connect honestly and give them what you yourself would want when making a decision to buy anything; visible value in your solutions and you’ll do well.

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One thought on “Marketing…for a profit

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