It’s another Monday morning and I have been thinking about what write today that would help my readers with their marketing. Racking my brains, I recall having written many times about particular marketing initiatives like direct mail, e marketing and advertising. I have written many posts on how to improve organic listings within search engines as well as tips and advice on areas like SEM and SEO. What is left?
It struck me that one area I haven’t written about is how much time and money an SME should allocate to marketing and what to expect in return.
Why is this? Well, in my experience, it is virtually impossible to do this. I don’t think there is a magic formula that gives the answer to these most common of questions. I have lost count of the amount of times I have been asked ‘how much do I need to spend on marketing’ and/or ‘what can I expect in return?’ When I reply that marketing is like a small bonfire; something that requires regular attention; something that requires nurturing; something that doesn’t burn on its own, I generally look back at blank and frustrated faces that are sometimes disappointed that I cannot give a definitive reply.
My advice has always been to prospects and clients to dedicate time to build marketing. If you are not a marketing person, bring in someone who is. Work with this person. Put together a plan. Test things. Be consistent. But above all, be flexible and open to trying new things. After all, how many of us weren’t even using social media 1-2 years ago? How many of us used to place adverts in the Yellow Pages and/or local media and then sit back with our fingers crossed waiting for the phone to ring?
In short, there is no magic formula to marketing. In my opinion, marketing is about laying foundations, setting parameters, adding value to the process and being consistent in the tone of what is being projected. It is about managing your businesses reputation and being at (or near to) the top of the list when a prospect needs your services.
Do you agree?