I’ve been writing blogs that coincide with each step of my 9 Step Marketing System for Sales Success. The system is focused on getting free publicity and using traditional marketing and transitioning to on-line/digital marketing to achieve double digit sales growth for lean operations.
At the heart of my marketing success and the heart of the system is free publicity or public relations, there are blurred lines between P.R., traditional marketing and digital marketing. I will do my best to break them out into chunks for explanation purposes and keep the lines blurry on purpose at the same time. I’ll keep the lines blurry because at the end of the day it doesn’t really matter how one defines these activities, what matters is that these activities are implemented and quite frankly they work hand in glove.
Public Relations and The Media
You need to make the media your best friend. Wow, did I just say that? That’s a pretty big statement. However, it’s true. If you want to stretch your marketing budget and reach beyond your wildest dreams you need to master the art of public relations. Quite frankly it’s not as daunting a task as it might sound. First of all traditional media keeps shrinking, which means there are less media outlets to target, secondly new and digital media is quite fragmented and specialized. This means there are only so many specialized media that makes sense for you to talk to. Finally you and your friends are the media, via your various social networks, newsletters, Email communications etc… Hopefully it easy for you to become best friends with yourself and your friends, associates, colleagues, network, etc… 🙂
The media is dying for stories and content. So target media you feel is appropriate for your message. Find a person at the media outlet who is responsible for getting stories like yours out there, cultivate a relationship with them and pitch your stories. Also engage your network to tell your stories for you and to share them on social media.
Social Media and Unbranding
My Unbranding Blog talks about “ambassadors”, it’s worth a read. Here is a short cut “Cheat Sheet” that outlines the Unbranding process at a glance. This seems a bit daunting at first but once you get started and get a rhythm it can really become part of your routine. You likely need to stretch your budget and get as much promotion as you can. Depending on the media if your story is newsworthy and almost any well packaged story is newsworthy, they will often reiterate your story word for word and or as mentioned above with their own view. I’ve built my career’s success on working with the media to tell the stories that I needed to get out and it has proven to be extremely fruitful. The value and leverage that is available through public relations is really quite mind-boggling. The real power of public relations is that a credible third party is telling your story to their audience, who they already have a trusted established relationship with.
So when they tell your story it is an extremely powerful endorsement of your brand, business, region and or destination, typically to an engaged and often large audience. What you want to do is combine the power of your free publicity with your marketing. Pubic relations is about creating awareness, profile and opportunity. It is not about driving sales although it can generate leads. That’s o.k. because you are not really spending money on P.R., you are however spending money on marketing and you want the best payout and ROI possible on your marketing spend.
P.R. Creates Awareness and Supports Your Branding and Marketing is a Measurable Lead Generator
Marketing has changed dramatically over the last few years and it has definitely shifted to digital and for good reasons. If you are are using traditional marketing strategies and tactics I strongly suggest that you begin getting into digital. The good news is you are likely already familiar with the tools like Facebook, Twitter, Google, Youtube, Constant Contact etc…
I just wrote a blog about this topic, click here to read it and get more information. I am going to highlight the key steps below.
“Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.” John Wanamaker
Marketing, other that direct mail which is expensive, typically was not directly measurable. Meaning you sometimes have a feel that it is working or not but you really don’t know. Well in today’s environment of tight budgets and high accountability that’s not acceptable any more. What is needed is a relatively low cost, ease of entry, measurable marketing system and voila the digital age had delivered such a beast. Use P.R. for awareness and brand building and marketing for direct calls to action, prospect and lead generation, sales, accountability and ROI.
How do you enter the digital world of marketing? I’m going to focus my discussion on Facebook – however most of these principles apply to Google, Youtube, Twitter, Bing, etc…
Do you know your ideal target market? If you don’t you need to define your target as precisely as you can. Once you have done that you need to build a basic marketing system which goes as follows:
Building a Basic Digital Marketing System
- Create a Facebook Campaign
- Target Your Market
- Include a free value added offer in your ad and offer it as a “lure” in exchange for an Email address
- Test your campaign – creative, target, offer
- Build an e-mail list
- Create sales opportunities, make sales 8 measure them against your spend
This is an oversimplification of the process, but if you start here you will start to find prospects and leads, you will find them for a relatively low cost and you will start to build a marketing system that provides sales and measurable ROI.
For more detail, check out my blog from last week or give me a call to discuss further. Click here for an at a glance Cheat Sheet for the process.
Please contact me if you need more information on e-mail marketing.
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I work with companies on their marketing, lead generation and sales throughout their life cycle – from start ups, to expansions to exit strategies and the sale of the company. My clients are from the private sector and public sector including economic development and tourism based organizations. Let me know if you have any projects you need help getting started on.
I offer FREE 60 minute strategy sessions to get people started or back on track. For more information Email me or give me a call today.
Is your marketing working the way you would like it to, do you need help, want more leads and more business? Download my 9 Step System for Marketing Success “Cheat Sheet”