I am finding that many small companies are taking the short and easy way out when it comes to marketing. Quick and simple approaches are great, but not if they are sloppy and ineffective.
Just recently, I received a pamphlet in the mail. I am not sure where they got my company name and contact information, but that didn’t stop the correspondence. As you know, I am all for marketing on a budget, but the pamphlet was very poorly constructed, obviously created from a home printer with low quality paper, and then folded unevenly with ink smudges. But what bugged me even more is that all that was contained in the envelope was the pamphlet. No introductory note, no indication of how they know me or my business, and no explanation about why they are contacting me. There was a company name, address and phone number but not a website address so that I can find out more information about the company and its services. I guess they were assuming by just sending this information I would automatically want to do business with them. In the trash it went.
If you are going to utilize a direct marketing strategy, you should understand your target market and how to best interact with them. I would highly advise if you are going to send something unsolicited via the mail or even email, include an introduction and provide some background as to why you are sending the information. Did you meet me at a networking event and if so what did we talk about? Why do you think I need your services?
Building relationships is the backbone of any good marketing campaign and there are ways to create a more personal marketing strategy while still staying within a budget such as:
- Provide a contact name and number so I know who I can call directly. This is much more personal.
- Include handwritten note if at all possible, but if the volume is too much at least provide a letter to indicate why I should read further. Remember it is all about me. Why should I care about your product or service?
- No obvious sloppiness allowed, check for spelling and grammar.
- What is your call to action? There should be something to encourage me to take some sort of action…..visit your website, get a free consultation, call you for a quote or more information, download valuable content, receive a complimentary trial or sample. You get the idea.
- Make it easy for me to get more information by including a website address.
- Be clear about what you do and how you can help.
- Distinguish your business from your competitors. Why are you different?
- And make this a part of an integrated strategy. On average it takes about 8-10 marketing “touches” before someone will recognize your company name and remember what you do unless you happen to contact someone when they are in the market for your product or service. Minimally, you should some sort of follow-up process that can be managed with some sort of CRM system such as the contact management software contained in the BD-PRo Marketing Toolkit.
The competition is fierce out there, so review your marketing tactics and consider ways to make your approach more impactful. Stay away from sloppy marketing which could compromise your brand image and not produce the results you anticipated.