Random Acts of Marketing
In last month’s newsletter, I urged you to “Plan to Plan Your Marketing Plan”, and provided seven important items to consider when doing so. Well, it is time to actually do it – It is time to make a decision about what you want to accomplish in marketing next year, and how you plan to go about it. In other words, it is time to put down, in writing, how marketing strategy and efforts will be leveraged to accomplish your organization’s goals in 2018.
I recently met a successful attorney who runs a very large and thriving law firm, with offices in several states – Let’s call him JT. We discussed their past and current marketing efforts as reference points for future planning. After discussing proper marketing planning, budgeting, and tactics, JT told me that to-date, the firm has only “committed random acts of marketing”. I liked the phrase a lot, and I thought it was right on. I told him that with his permission, I would be using it from now on!
As a marketing firm that offers marketing leadership and marketing services, we see companies committing random acts of marketing all the time. By ‘random’, in this context, I mean marketing activities such as purchasing booth space in a trade show, but not announcing participation to customers and prospects ahead of time; without setting measurable goals; and without a defined way to follow up with leads. Another example would be offering a 20% discount to everyone, even to customers who don’t need or want it, and neglecting to promote it properly.
No matter what the random act of marketing is, most of them exhibit the following characteristics:
- Not part of an overall organizational or marketing strategy
- Each one of the acts is not individually well planned (budget, timeline, delegated responsibilities, etc.)
- Absence of defined measurable goals
- Often not effective
Two additional important things to remember regarding your marketing plan:
- Costs: When marketing activities are not planned well, costs tend to be higher than they should be otherwise, due to last minute purchases of collateral, promotional items, late reservations, etc.
- Bad Experience: Even with best intentions and the most creative marketing ideas, if executed poorly, efforts will yield poor results. These discouraging experiences tend to cause management to be less likely to approve future marketing efforts.
- Reputation: Your customers and prospects are watching. Low attendance, failed promotions, and other lackluster performances reflect badly on your organization, and will discourage customers and prospects from paying attention or participating in future activities.
Make every ounce of effort, every penny of your budget, and every minute of yours and your staff’s time count! Plan your marketing efforts for next year, and do not just commit random acts of marketing!
Duke Merhavy, MBA, Ph.D.
President & Chief Marketing Officer
This is the time of year to give thanks and express gratitude, and we want to thank our clients, friends, and other readers of our newsletter, for another great year!
We love what we do, and we enjoy seeing the impact we make on those we work with. We wouldn’t be here if you were not giving us the opportunity to serve you!
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!
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