Does your marketing effort need a little blue pill?

Does your marketing effort need a little blue pill?

If you can't keep it up, to a professional level, you need to consider whether it is wise for your business to conduct campaigns on platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or even a blog on your website.

Marketing is an active participation sport. You cannot win standing on the sidelines; you have to be in the game to succeed.

We have all gone on to sites and seen the last blog post was made over 12 months ago or looked at people's business Facebook pages only to see the special offer at the top of the feed expired last July.

These sort of potential (and actual) customer experiences do not enhance your reputation, quite the opposite, they damage it and cause a loss of credibility. Active marketing is like owning a dog; it is not just for Christmas, it is for life. As your marketing is a public facing aspect of your business, you must keep it sharp; you must keep it effective.

The most important aspects to consider with regards to ongoing marketing effort like social media or blogs is relevance and capacity. Firstly, is an ongoing, weekly changing, marketing activity relevant to your business model? Do you sell a wide range of products or services that such avenues will let you promote effectively? Secondly, what is your capacity to produce or even just manage this activity to keep it effective?

A good place to start is to look at your competitor's actions and effort. You need to understand what they are doing and work out the relevance and potential threats to your business. Not that you just want to be a 'me too' marketer, but you do need to be very aware of what they are doing.

Next, you need to plan your own choice of activity, you need to set up accounts with the various platforms, and you need to understand how each work, to deliver an effective message.

Back in the days of trade magazines and journals, each year they would publish a feature list they would send to advertisers. This would show the advertiser the best editions of the publication to use in their campaigns. You need to do a similar thing. You need to work out a features list of what and why you want to promote aspects of your business, and how this fits into your production capacity, your stock availability and your yearly schedule of work.

Once you have done the planning, you then need to work on the content, both text and images that you will use. I suggest you get at least two months’ worth of your planned activity 'in the can' ready to use and endeavour to be two months ahead at all times. This will allow for you to slip a little if you are very busy but still maintain your planned activity.

This is all a lot of work, but it can be very rewarding regarding increased (or even just retained) business.

However, we do not live in a perfect world and doing the above is often a great aspiration, but we simply cannot do it due to the nature of the businesses we run and the time and other resources available to us.
So what can you do?

You can outsource this marketing activity to a company who can help you to do what you want. For most people running small businesses, this is probably the only way a scheduled campaign of activity stands any chance of actually being achieved.

The trouble is that many business owners think that they can do the work themselves and they resent paying for it to be done. The illusion that has been created is that anything to do with the internet is easy and DIY capable. There is a lot you can do, but unless you are 'working' on the internet all day every day, you are never going to understand what works and doesn't work fully.

However, nobody can do everything in their business. Most business owners have accountants and pay them to do an essential role to help them. If you consider a marketing company to have the same status as your accountant, you will understand that paying someone for professional help and advice brings you a bigger return.

Unless you are going to be active and have the capacity and capability to do this work effectively yourself, you need to engage a professional marketing company. Like your accountant, they will help you make more money.