Thursday, May 28, 2009

It's the Brand Silly!

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The rise of Search and Social Media has triggered a lot of crazy assertions about the future of Marketing...for the record I define Marketing as any outbound communication a company has with their clients or potential clients.

You hear statements like..."Can Traditional Media and Social Media co-exist?" or "Search advertising reaches the consumer closest to the purchasing decision so therefore is the best."

I believe these statements are fundamentally flawed since it is all about the Brand silly! People want to focus down to one specific medium like Social Media or Search Advertising and say they are the best! Those people are missing the bigger picture. Building a Brand takes multiple marketing mediums working in concert. The smart marketer understands the strengths of each medium and chooses the ones that can best achieve the Brand's predetermined goals.


Traditional Media like TV and Radio help to build a Brand's image and perceived experience for the consumer.

Social Media like Twitter or Facebook allows a Brand to enter into a two-way dialogue with their key consumers.

Search Advertising allows your Brand to be in front of potential clients at the moment when they are closest to making a purchase.

The above list is only the tip of the iceberg for a Brand's marketing options but a GREAT start! By utilizing just the Marketing Mediums listed above a Brand can do the following:

1) Build an image in potential consumer's minds (Traditional Media)

2) Drive sales at an online or brick and mortar location (Combination of Traditional Media, Social Media, & Search)

3) Develop two-way communication with key consumers (Social Media)

The mediums to market a Brand have been transformed tremendously over the last couple of years due in large part to the explosive growth of the Interactive space. Even though some mediums may have changed the core marketing philosophies behind building a Brand have not. Having new mediums to market a Brand does not mean the old mediums are obsolete instead it just provides you more opportunities!


Monday, May 18, 2009

Setting The Marketing Budget

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You own a business and want to start inviting customers through marketing. Stop right there! Before you go any further you first need to set a marketing budget. The marketing budget is what you can afford to invest in a consistent plan to attract new customers. Marketing is not trying something for one week or one month then stopping...that is craziness. A proper marketing plan will begin to build a brand position for your company while also bringing new customers through your door.

Q: How much should I commit to market my business?

A: My recommendation for clients is to look at an initial marketing budget of up to 15% of their total sales to start.

Example: If your business does $1 Million in sales then I recommend you commit $150,000 towards Marketing.

As your business becomes more established the marketing plan should slide down to around 5-7% of total sales. The beauty here is the marketing budget will continue to grow because your sales will be growing.

Q: Why is it so important to set a marketing budget up front?

A: When you set a marketing budget up front it gives you a dollar figure to work with and helps in considering which marketing channels to consider.

Set the right marketing budget up front and it will put your business on the road to success.


Friday, May 8, 2009

Twitter's Master Plan

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Do you think twitter likes to remind us how much we enjoy their service? I think so and will use today as an example. There is not another company I can think of that would shut down a service for their customers during regular business hours. Twitter decided they would be doing scheduled maintenance at 2P PST/5P EST. Why not work on twitter after midnight? I am sitting here after 7P EST and still twitter is down. Over two hours of down time for a service that millions are using. Not a good business practice to keep your customers happy but maybe there is a bigger idea at work.

I know we all don't pay to use twitter currently but what if we did? I would be very upset losing access to my tweeps for an extended amount of time. I define extended as anytime over 5 minutes. Hey I like interacting with my followers...HA! What if twitter has a master plan at work here? Twitter might have chosen to shutdown during prime hours to remind users how much they would miss their service if it was to go away. I for one am sitting here writing this blog entry wishing I was with my friends on twitter. Maybe their master plan has worked and reminded me how I cannot live without the twitter service.

Does twitter have a master plan at work?