One thing that can really help you reach your bottom line goals is to periodically review your marketing. Not just your marketing budget but your over all marketing as a whole and see what is working and what is not.
Sometimes you feel its difficult to see if your marketing is paying off or not. These simple steps will give you a better handle on that.
Take a look at your income- For starters your sales should be going up. Depending on your business and what industry you are in will determine what other factors you look at. Some of these factors are : How many leads your generating, are your billable hours also increasing with your sales, if you run a hotel do you see an increase in phone and online reservations etc. Make sure you look at all venues that will measure income.
Ask your Customers- Most business loose out on this becuase they just don't do it. Why not ask your new customers or leads how they found out about you? This right here will let you know if some of your marketing is paying off or not.
Do your Promotions Produce Direct Sales- When your running a special, or a promotion of a certain product of service, does it generate the fast direct response that your looking to achieve? If not then the venues your using are not working that well for this kind of advertisement.
Is your Marketing helping you sell?- Your marketing should be focused around your brand, product and services and should really give the potential client a great look what what your offering. If your marketing does not reflect your brand, product and services then your just throwing money down the drain.
Check your competition- Look around and see what your competition is doing. I know that most of us want to be unique but when your competition is taking business away from you then you need to see what they are doing, and what you can do to get the upper hand. It does not hurt to talk to your competition to see what marketing venues works for them. You will be surprised to see how many managers out there like to talk and boast on how they are raising sales for their business.
Keeping Your Marketing Fresh
When reviewing your plan you also need to ask yourself are you using the most relevant forms of marketing? Take this as an example for what I am talking about. Do you have a Facebook Page for your business? Do You have a blog? What about a Twitter Account?
If you are not using social media now, then you are way behind. Times of the internet are changing in a ways, that websites are still a valuable tool, but social media represents 60 percent in the decision making on choosing a brand, or buying a service. The day of referral has been taking place of a new form, and is going to change commerce the way we know it today.
Using Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr can be time consuming, so its always best that you assign these tasks to a key member of your team to take care of for you. Create the policy, culture, and what you want to utilize social media for, whether its for customer service, new items, new services, or all of these make sure you portray your business professionally on these powerful marketing sites.
Book mark our blog or subscribe to our RSS feed, since the change to social is becoming more of a foot hold on marketing, we will be writing a lot more on this subject in the future.
As everybody knows Social Networking is becoming more and more important when it comes to branding and marketing your business online and now in real life. People are more connected than ever with the popularity of social networking sites such as Facebook, MySpace and Twitter. Not knowing the actual number on this, we roughly guesstimate that at least 6 out of 10 people utilize these sites for business or personal use. So the question is: do you allow your employees to use Social Networking sites and allow them to connect themselves with your brand?
It all depends on your business and employees. I strongly encourage you to get your staff involved as it can help you grow your network to new customers. One major thing you need to address though is when your implement such an idea is that your employees know the proper way to communicate with a customer compared to personal communication with a friend.
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Your star front line employee might be well groomed, speaks very well, and sets a great example for your brand and business. However on their Facebook page you might find pictures of tattoo's, or that they are friends with known felons, or they have people on their page airing out their dirty laundry. Now this star front line employee has listed as their employer your business. One of your major clients comes across your employees Facebook page and remembers the good experience they were given and decides to add them as a friend. Once the friendship is accepted they now see what is on your employee's wall. Do you want that to reflect on your business?
That is one of the cons; there are so many pros as well. You could have a stellar front line employee, and that employee is really out promoting your business to their contacts, then their contacts promote to theirs etc, etc. These are just some things you need to ask before creating a Social Network Policy.
Making a careful Social Networking policy can help you protect your brand, and help grow your business. Check with your local HR laws before implementing such a policy as you do not want to infringe on someone’s rights. I am sure this will be coming up as a major question in the next few months with employers.