By Patrick Whelan, President, Great Reach Communications, Inc.
I recently had the pleasure of attending the Epicom / EFI Connect conference in Las Vegas. Here are some of my take ways.
- Step Up Marketing. In looking at cutting expenses, frequently one of the first cuts is in marketing. This can be a critical mistake.
- Control the External Message. One way to make sure that you are in control of the message is to stay in front of the customer both through marketing avenues and personal one-on-one visits.
While others are cutting back on client visits, communication, advertising, and public relations, you can use communication avenues as a differentiating tool.
As one print CEO put it: “…we are taking every opportunity to make sure the company is perceived as progressive, financially stable, and completely reliable.”
- Stay in front of your target audience with relevant communications. It’s absolutely critical to build and maintain top-of-mind awareness, as well as position your brand. Look for articles on the Web that have value to your clients and prospects and pass them along. There are also companies such as mine that will create that content for you.
- Save production and postage costs by utilizing email to distribute this information. Email is an effective and inexpensive way to communicate. Of course, it you want to add the element (and cost) of print communications, a cross-media effort will be even more effective.
- Some companies (hopefully, you’re one of them) will ramp up their sales and marketing activities in response business conditions. Communicate with your audience at least every 60 days (preferably monthly) to ensure that your message doesn’t get drowned out.
- Some companies will begin to cut back on their efforts. Take advantage of this. Overtake these companies in the minds of your target audience.
- Be an efficient marketer by utilizing your dollars to reach and effectively communicate with the largest audience possible. Sales is a numbers game. Each of my clients reaches between 300 to 3000 people every month for about the same cost as an expensive client dinner or a round or two of golf.
- Take the paddlewheel approach. People need to hear your message repeatedly. Pass on large, one-time expenditures and opt for repetition instead.