By Pip Evan-Cook
Traffic wardens get a bad rap. Even a VERY kindly traffic warden, who is excellent at their job, does charity work on weekend, and is kind to animals may be treated like Darth Vader’s slightly-less evil twin on a daily basis.
Marketeers, on the other hand, get a ‘good rap’.
What do I mean by this?
As a breed we are attributed with mystical and impressive powers, that we simply don’t have.
To the uninitiated, marketing is often seen as an art, involving lots of mysterious processes, magic spells, and gut feel. Marketing experts are the high priests of this art, but, though we are often very nice people AND kind to animals, we really don’t deserve this sort of high esteem.
Because, marketing is actually a science. While there may be a creative skill involved in the daily work of developing campaigns, or reviewing graphics, the actual job of putting together a successful marketing strategy is largely based on a set of processes, that anyone can follow. All that a marketing consultant does for his or her client is to help unlock these processes and guide you through them.
Trying to fathom these processes out for yourself with no training is seriously hard, and it is really overwhelming. Just as designing a house with no training would be. If I were to try it, I’d probably forget that my bathrooms need to be close to my main drain access, or which way the sun is going to be shining into my windows. An architect, wouldn’t.
There are many elements that can come into play when you are creating a marketing plan, but a simple strategy can actually be boiled down to only three components that are a REQUIREMENT. Once you have got to grips with understanding these, all the rest of the stuff is detail.
So, what are the 3 vital components of a good marketing strategy?
1. A Clear Description of Your Dream Customer or Client.
You might be thinking: ‘my client is anybody who wants to buy it!’ But, in order to attract people to work with your business, they need to feel some kind of connection with you. They need to recognise you as someone that they want to buy from. And, unless you refine your message so that it appeals to a specific audience – by focusing on the key benefits and attributes that that group is looking for – it will be simply too vague to resonate with anyone.
I’m sure you’ve seen this in action. You could be either a ‘Costa’ person, or a ‘Café Nero’ person or an ‘anything independent’ person. Somehow or other, those coffee chains have communicated with you, and you’ve selected the one you like best, and your preference is not just based on the taste of the coffee.
When you refine down exactly who you want to work with, in an ideal world, and then build a marketing strategy specifically for that type of person, you’ll find that they start finding you. That doesn’t mean that all the other type of people will stop coming, or be turned off, but you’ll have a focus, and that will be attractive.
2. A Plan For Building Connection With Your Dream Client
Once you know WHO you want to sell to (ideally), you need to research where they go, who they listen to for advice, which social media platforms they like to hang out on (etc), and then develop a list of activities that you can do to reach out to that person in those places.
While you are carrying out these activities, your number one objective is to build a connection with each and every individual you come across. Whether it’s in the way that you create your content or how you answer the phone, there are lots of steps you can take to make sure that your dream client is taking your message and remembering it. To find out 8 easy techniques for building connection, you might like to get a free copy of my guide: Building Connection with your Dream Client, you can get your hands on it here.
3. Customer Journey Roadmap
This is your plan for processing individuals as they turn from total stranger into your biggest fan. The customer journey involves six steps: awareness, interest, evaluation, trial, adoption and loyalty. At each stage, you should identify one or two activities that will help your prospect to move to the next stage.
For example: you might advertise on Facebook (awareness), promoting your most popular blog post (interest). Within your blog post you could mention a special guide that you also have available (evaluation). When you send the guide, you could also promote the free taster session that you offer (trial). During the free taster, you could mention your paid for services (adoption) and once someone has started paying for your work, you could offer them to sign up to your repeat purchase rewards scheme (loyalty).
As long as you do each of these stages well, it will be quite natural for people to progress through them and you’ll find that your business is building itself!
Concentrate on getting these three elements right and you’ll be well on your way to a marketing plan that will ensure consistent revenue, while kicking your competitor’s butt.
If you need more guidance on demystifying marketing, why not visit www.marketingarchitect.co.uk and sign up to receive my weekly blog post. I promise: smoke and mirrors are most definitely NOT included.
Our guest blog this month is from Pip Evan-Cook, The Marketing Architect, www.marketingarchitect.co.uk