BETTER MARKETING FOR BETTER BUSINESS

Sharing our thoughts on the world of today's media.

Business Goals

Who is Your Ideal Customer?

The Right Message to the Right Customer

“How Do I Focus on Getting The Best Customers?”

As a business owner, this thought has most likely crossed your mind a time or two, regardless of how well things are going. One of the quickest ways for a business to waste money is not identifying who their target customer is when planning a marketing strategy. It would be imprudent to market a child’s toy to college students, just as it would not make sense to advertise a new cologne during Saturday morning cartoon shows.

Message in a bottle on a beach against the setting sun
Getting the Right Message to the Right Customer

In order to have a successful marketing venture it is imperative to know who your target customers are. Some key principles to help in identifying your best marketing group are:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Demographics/Ethnicity
  • Status, including educational status, financial status, and family status.

Now, some people will certainly fit into many different groups, and each of these groups will use media differently. This also means that their responses will be different to the various messages in the advertisement.

“But isn’t this discrimination?”

No, it’s not. Let me explain by using an example of the Tesla automobile. If you were marketing the Tesla today, who would your target audience be, and what could change that? The original Tesla was priced over $100,000, which left you with a limited target audience. It also had a strong appeal to the younger executives, as opposed to an older audience. Therefore, you would be wise to choose to target media that focuses on this demographic. That said, this is all about to change! Tesla is releasing the new Model 3 this year, and with it is a price tag of $35,000, which will massively widen its base of potential customers. The car will be much more affordable, opening it to more of the middle-income buyers. Add to that the appeal of an electric range of 225 miles, and you’ve got another target market in the environmentally conscientious.

Just a little bit of market research can take you a long way in making sure that you target the right audience, which is critical. Having a great advertising campaign going to the wrong audience is illogical, and wasteful of time and money. By learning who your target customer is, you’ll be able to use it to your advantage and work better with your creative team to come up with great campaigns. Creative campaigns with the right message for the right customer in the right media, creating a win-win in your marketing, and increasing your sales.

The Basics on Basics

Focusing on the Basics

Blog- the basics on basics

Every now and then most of us get a bit out of sync, sometimes for reasons beyond our control. Being out of sync can distract us from the basics, regardless of our roles.

So the question is how do I get back in sync or, maybe more importantly, how can I minimize getting out of sync? We know a couple quick google searches will get quick resources for specifics on what you may be looking for.

Quiet Planning time

Two key principles from Steven Covey,  author of “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”  to consider are “Be Proactive” and “Sharpen the Saw”. Being Proactive here refers to how one should work from their center of influence; the circle of people who you know and can help improve, and to constantly work to expand it. Sharpening the Saw is a turn of phrase Covey uses to describe how it’s not just enough to work for yourself and to work with others. To continually improve yourself and your goals you need to focus on balancing and renewing your own resources. Scheduling out quiet time on a regular basis- weekly, monthly, or even quarterly can help you practice these principles.

Quiet time is a good way to get consistent, review your goals, and re sync yourself. Quiet Time planning tipsAnd to quote the movie Karate Kid – “Focus Daniel-san”. Make time for yourself, and you may just get back on track.

Getting the Most out of our Day

Prioritizing Made Easy (Easier)

As leaders, many of us wonder how some people get so much done, while we are still under a desk load of things needing to be accomplished and never seem to catch up. If any of this sounds familiar, you have either mastered the skill of time management or you are wondering if this is a skill you will ever achieve. Hey, the new year is just around the corner, so now may be a good time to look at this skill. The good news is this can always get better and a little focus could go a long ways.

Steven Covey, well known speaker and author, in his book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,” covers his even habits. Habit number three focuses on this – Put First Things First. It is so important, he even has a book specifically on this topic, “First Things First.” Time management is a skill for life, not just work, that carries a great amount of weight to it. Those with great time management skills can attest, when

The Big Rock – Little Rock concept is not necessarily new. For those visual learners, it is a great tool to help see the bigger picture in time management. Too often some may get caught up in the little things (which may or may not need to be done,) – for different reasons. As leaders, by focusing on the “Big Rocks” sometimes the “Little Rocks” will take care of themselves. If you have a team you work with, consider doing the Big Rock – Little demonstration with them to help them better understand the importance of prioritizing their day/week and the value which comes with this type of short and long term planning.

Do Business and Politics Mix?

Lessons We Have Learned (Maybe)

In the past couple of weeks, we have seen more passion for our political process than many of us can remember seeing and hearing in a long time, if not the most in our lifetime. The beauty is in the big scope of things; we are still seeing many people passionate about what they believe to be “Our America” and we are protected by the very First Amendment of the United States Constitution to express our beliefs freely and openly.

As a business owner or President of a company, you have one goal, which is in your mission statement of core values, and in the bigger scope of things, and regardless of whether you sell widgets or serve people, you must ensure your company is around to support the people who work for the company – growing professionally, getting paid, etc. A decision also must be made towards whether you talk about politics freely with your team, your customers, or your community – and if so – what could be the ramifications if this is not met with the same openness and passion which it was intended. By many accounts, there are three things which should not be talked about in the workplace – religion, sex, and politics. This, however, is for good reason.

Business and Politics Blog Cover

In the past week, just after the election, many companies have come under fire for “mixing” business and politics. Take GrubHub CEO Matt Maloney, in his post-election e-mail to his employees. In this e-mail, he ended it with asking those to reply to this e-mail with their resignation if you do not agree with his statement. The e-mail went public, and GrubHub had to spend time re-communicating this message. At a further look, they are a publicly traded company (NYSE: GRUB) and their stock went from almost $39 per share on November 10th, to a low of $34.88 on November 11th – a loss of about 10%, when the broader market was up approximately 1% for the same period.

One can also look at New Balance. They have had some backlash with their support and people have been burning their shoes and vowing to never buy from them again. As a private company, they don’t have shares “in the market” but they do have people who buy their shoes and I am sure they don’t want to lose sales. This challenge exists for all businesses and how “politically active” should they be, if at all.

Of course, if legislation is preventing your company to some degree, of course one can’t remain silent. But in seeing what has been happening the past election, we may need to “think and plan a bit more” in deciding what and how we communicate when a company decides to jump in to the political arena. There is good reason to avoid the big three – religion, sex, and politics – in the workplace – and this past week has made it clear the potential challenges businesses face when mixing in one, of these three.

How to Make Your Customers Your Biggest Cheerleaders

In today’s fast world of communication bad customer service will spread like a wildfire. AND, so will great customer service. Repeat customers, and customers who refer you, are the epitome of a successful business.

In working with our clients, we often find our conversations turning to customer service. As someone who runs a business, either as the owner, manager, or both; you know how important great customer service is to your business. The questions we have to ask ourselves are:

  • How do we know we’re giving great customer service?
  • Are we asking our customers?
  • How is our referral and repeat business growing?

If you were to ask ten of your customers how they would they rate your business, what would they say? And how likely are they to recommend your company to a friend, family member, or neighbor? Lots of questions and yet no answers.

How to make your customers your biggest cheerleaders blog

What you can you start doing today (or in the near future):

  • Define excellent customer service. What does this mean for every employee/team member in your office?
  • Measure it! Ask your customers, create a questionnaire to see if you are giving the type of service you want to be giving.
  • Set expectations and provide any necessary training.
  • Reward improved performance by team members. Recognize improvements as they happen along the way. All positive reinforcement.
  • See if you can reward your current customers in a way which wows them. Maybe this is better service, maybe this is a gift (think outside the box), and if you need ideas, ask your team and your customers. They may have some great ideas you haven’t thought about.

If we invest in advertising our business, then we need to invest the time in checking on our customer service to answer these important questions. Our customers should be our biggest cheerleaders! Think about this: If your receptionist, cashier, sales person, service tech, etc., is not giving service to cheer about, how much more do you have to invest in advertising to hit your business goals for the year? It all starts with the person greeting your customer for the first time, whether on the phone or in person. Either way, this is the first impression your customer gets of your business. Is the impression your customers are getting a WOW or is it a dud? (P.S if it isn’t a WOW, then maybe it is a dud!) In many businesses, this first interaction with the customer may be the deciding factor towards making the decision to do business with you. Could the first impression improve? And if it can improve, what could this mean for your business?

An effective marketing plan will help your business and its goals. Even more importantly, an incredible customer experience from your team will really help your goals. The money spent in training and in rewarding your current customers will provide a solid return on investment, immediately and in the future.