With 2019 well underway, you have probably spent some time reflecting on the achievements of your business.
When you do your own review, how happy are you with your success in 2018? Have you achieved your sales goals and managed to grow? Did you increase the number of customers like you had planned? How many customers did you retain and how happy are they with you and your business?
Many of our own customers at Marketing Entourage (particularly established medium-sized businesses) initially approached us because their customer acquisition and sales had plateaued and they were looking to transform their business.
To ensure a great start to 2019, it is essential that every business owner/leadership team have an honest review of both marketing and sales performance.
Do you want to just press the reset button and do the same things again this year or are you ready to do something different? Read on for our business marketing ideas.
A great quote from Abraham Lincoln is ‘Give me 6 hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first 4 sharpening the axe.’ By spending time on creating an effective marketing strategy, this ensures you have clarity and a laser focus. Once this is achieved you can create an effective plan that will give you structure and then focus on implementing the right tactics that will provide the results you desire.
Nowadays, the way you need to market to your target audience has changed. Anyone who has watched the TV show 'Madmen' recognises the old/ traditional way to market. The show portrays an era where the ability for new or existing customers to make their own informed decisions was limited and they ‘relied’ on the stories told by advertising to decide whether a product or service was something they wanted to purchase.
Today, thanks to the constantly growing capabilities of the internet, your potential customers can do their own research and have the ability to create their own opinion rather than feeling the need to be sold to. The days of marketing and sales being separate departments is becoming ‘old school’. Smart businesses look at the entire buyer’s journey from awareness to consideration to making a purchase decision. Once the decision is made the work doesn’t stop. The cost of acquiring a client is far more than that of retaining and this is again where marketing can help in business when companies are able to turn buyers into advocates and help share their stories of success.
The ‘new way’ to market and transform your business starts with your marketing strategy to help develop the following:-
- A clear understanding of the value you provide to your target audience and why you are different from the competition.
- A strong brand that includes how you look, sound, and what you stand for and your reputation.
- A deep understanding of your target audiences' needs, goals and content that talks to them in an unobtrusive and personalised way.
- A great shopfront (website) that attracts passers-by as well as people seeking your product or service.
- Sales and marketing alignment in a system that works together to generate marketing qualified leads, converts them to customers and then retains them as advocates.
Finally, what about the ‘elephant in the room’ that no-one likes to discuss - your budget.
How much should you invest into marketing?
Successful business owners and leaders have changed their mindset and now look at their marketing budget as an investment to grow their business rather than an expense.
What if someone could guarantee that for every dollar you invested in marketing it would create at least a 6 time return in revenue?
It is possible to do this but many businesses need help.
There is free support out there that can help. For example, AusIndustry run an Entrepreneurs’ Programme that includes a business evaluation from a private sector Business Advisor, grants for growth opportunities and collaboration opportunities.
This programme is available to businesses that fit within a certain criteria ($1.5M to $100M annual turnover or operating expenditure and operating for at least 3 years - note there are additional requirements to be eligible).
So, now that you have read this, how ready do you feel for 2019?
Are you ready to fire on all 4 cylinders? If you need help in business and are looking for a way to create your own marketing strategy but don't know where to start, download our '10 Steps to A Killer Marketing Strategy' free eBook and achieve business success in the new year!
by Phil Ore
Written by Phil Ore
Phil Ore is the co-founder of Marketing Entourage, co-founder of Entrepreneurs&Co and global ambassador for Inspiring Rare Birds. He has dedicated his professional career to helping people and businesses succeed through human centred strategic design, idea generation and brand expertise to improve the customers experience. During his global career, Phil has been fortunate to have had a wide range of roles working for, and alongside, some the worlds largest corporations and brands. Phil is passionate about the Australian startup ecosystem and is a mentor, advisor, MC, and panelist for various social impact, NFP, entrepreneurship and technology based businesses and events.