Now that 2011 is upon us, it is time to make those New Year marketing
resolutions. We all know what some of the top personal new year’s
resolutions are – afterall, we make them every year. How do we make those
same principles work for marketing?
First of all, you need to know how much your marketing
“weighs.” How much do you actually spend on all of your marketing
efforts is an important number to know if you are trying to reduce it. Add it
up. Yes, it is harder than stepping on the scale but losing marketing weight is
a whole lot easier than getting rid of fat. Trade shows, mugs, pens, pencils,
highlighters, clipboards, t-shirts, advertisements, yellow pages, commercials,
websites, brochures and all of the rest of the ways you spend money to spread
your message – add it all up.
|© 2010 iStockphoto.com/Yunus
What’s the damage? Now you need to decide what is working for you
and what is not. You also need to take into consideration what it costs you.
For example, you could kick your free
facebook page to the curb because you think it is not working
for you or you could decide that because it is free it has a much greater
return on investment than say … mugs, and you could decide to spend a lot
more time updating it and keeping it fresh. When was the last time anyone
searched online for your company and found your mug?
Now, suppose you decide that all your marketing efforts are working and
you don’t want to get rid of any of them. Then I say get fit.
Don’t just look at what you’re spending, look at when. You
love your aluminum water bottles. They are a big hit and everyone is always
talking about them. You even have a photo gallery on your business facebook
page of your patients, with their water bottles, holding them up. However, when
you take a closer look at the numbers you realize that they are so popular and
you are always underestimating your orders so you spend a lot of money on rush
jobs and overnight shipping. Get fit. If you ordered 1200 water bottles last
year in small rush batches, how about you order 1200 water bottles in one big
– probably heavily discounted – batch with ground shipping? Or at
least break it down to larger quarterly purchases. Look for other ways to apply
the same process.
Get out of debt
Run, don’t walk, to your yellow page advertising contract. Review
it carefully. Back in the day when people needed the yellow pages to find you,
big advertisements were okay. Now, it’s a lot easier for you to “get
found” online. Make sure you’re not spending valuable marketing
dollars that you’ve locked into a contract.
If you can, invest more time and money into your website, but be
cautious and keep those investments as lean as all of the other areas of your
marketing budget that you are toning up.
Learn something new
What marketing budget? If you don’t have a marketing budget, start
one for 2011. While you are doing that, put into place the first three
marketing resolutions and you are already on the right track. You will learn a
lot about not only what marketing efforts are working for you but also about
where you can make changes to affect your bottom line.
If you don’t have a business facebook page or a business
twitter account, hire your teenage child/niece/nephew, friend
of the family, to set one up and teach you how to use it. This can be a
valuable tool to reach your target audience. With updates and occasional
promotions listed here, you will grow a fan base quickly – at no cost to
Disclosure: Elizabeth Mansfield has no
direct financial interest in any of the products mentioned in this article nor
is she a paid consultant for any companies mentioned.