It may take longer, it may take more effort, but in the end, integrated marketing campaigns are all that can be relied on to deliver consistent results.
Spending money on ad hoc marketing in a short term push to make sales is unlikely to succeed. Following the latest and greatest marketing trend because everyone seems to be doing it is often not the best idea.
A structured approach requires a solid understanding of the target customer and where the business is going. It requires a small business strategy and plan. Crucially, it requires the courage to abandon the short term view and allow integrated campaigns the time to produce.
An integrated marketing process delivers:
- Structure and measurement
- Improved results
- At lower cost
Structure And Measurement
Reactive marketing tends to focus on the number of prospects hit. It disregards if those prospects fit the target customer profile.
A more sensible approach is to build a promotional plan focussed on engaging target prospects.
Measure results then relate those results to historic data or reputable industry averages. Spend decisions can then be based on what is working well rather than guesswork.
Reduced Costs And Improved Results
When trying to get new customers, a drip, drip, consistent flow of marketing messages to prospects is far more effective than one-off, or short term bursts, of activity. It follows that the ROI on marketing spend on a integrated and consistent plan must exceed that of the Ad hoc approach.
Activities that are reactive and short term naturally tend to cost more than planned activities. Take the time to consider suppliers that offer the most value.
Following the latest marketing trend simply because everyone else appears to be doing it has been shown time and again to be a waste of time and money.
An Integrated Marketing Campaign
The first crucial step is to establish (top-level) what it is the business delivers to its customers, why that product or service is needed, who needs it and why. It is also important to understand who else satisfies the same need (competition) and how they go to market.
Only with the above step in place is it possible to establish the best way to reach the target customer base. What are the most appropriate marketing tactics to deliver information to the point prospects may find it and engage with it? How can those techniques be integrated into campaigns.
Once a prospect is engaged what are the best marketing tools to convert interest to enquiries and ultimately orders?
While the old outbound techniques such as telemarketing, direct mail and advertising all still have a place there is increased prospect resistance to these techniques. As a result, there is an ongoing shift to inbound marketing.
Integrated marketing campaigns that combines inbound and outbound marketing techniques is far more effective than an ad hoc approach. However, it does take time and considerable effort. It is important to focus on what will work for your specific business and market.
To learn more about the range of marketing tactics available read our marketing tactics guide