How to create habitual ROI from your marketing efforts by creating a repeatable and scalable system that your team can run for you
Far too many small businesses are undisciplined with their marketing efforts, and it’s easy to understand why. It can be a daunting to get it all up and running and working effectively. Similarly, too many small businesses are looking for the ‘holy grail’ of what will work in terms of marketing offers for their industry. The bad news is that there is no such thing. You can speak to one company and they’ll tell you that Letterbox Drops work well for Residential marketing and that Cold Calling works well for Commercial. Speak to a different company and they’ll tell you the exact opposite; that they’ve tried Letterbox Drops and they failed miserably and Cold Calling has provided marginal results. And the same results will be found if you speak to companies about which offers and messages are effective and which aren’t; you’ll get a variety of different answers. This is one of the key reasons Marketing is so widely discussed and debated, there are any variables.
Thankfully, there are, however, some key disciplines you can quite easily start implementing in your business to transform your ongoing marketing efforts into a systematic, habitual and profitable process. We call this habit structure “The 6 M’s of Marketing”.
1. The “1st M” of Marketing: Market(s)
In most businesses you’ll usually target one of more of the following markets: Commercial Projects, Commercial Service/Maintenance, Residential Service/Maintenance and Residential Projects/Renovations. Each of these target markets have very different requirements, types of customers and ways of operating and making decisions. So, the first step is to get clear and list which of these target markets your business is geared towards, it could be just one or could be all four of them.
2. The “2nd M” of Marketing: Message(s)
As far as your message(s) goes, typically you should be thinking in three different streams of thought: 1) Branding; what are your UMSPs (Unique Meaningful Selling Points) or what makes you different, why should customers shop with your business? As a business owner, you’ll need to very clearly understand the market(s) you’re targeting and what they are unhappy with or desire from your industry, things like: Arriving on time, cleaning up after yourself, reliability of work performed, response time, work guarantees etc… 2) What is your Brand Personality and attributes including items like visual images, colours, fonts etc? 3) Call to Action Offers, time sensitive offers or discounts, savings etc... Typically these are run for a limited time, eg “For the month of February only…”
3. The “3rd M” of Marketing: Medium(s) or Mechanism(s)
This can be a daunting task. Your Mediums or Mechanisms are literally how you will get your message out to your potential market(s). With my clients, we use our ‘Marketing Mediums Selection Tool’ which has every conceivable way of advertising in it, over 60 potential Mediums and Mechanisms and we simply start by selecting the potential mediums to use and then refine it down from there depending on the clients annual marketing budget.
4. The “4th M” of Marketing: Money
OK, so by now you should have your market(s) clearly defined and the message(s) you will be communicating to them (both Branding and Call to Action messages). Additionally you should have a list of the mediums and mechanisms that you feel would be most successful in getting your message out. Now, you’ll need to do two things as part of the Money component: 1) Set an annual budget for marketing and 2) allocate those dollars across your selected mediums. How to do this is too long for this article, however, in a nutshell you are essentially producing an annual marketing budget that has the investment per medium and total spend for they year.
5. The “5th M” of Marketing: Manage
Now it’s time to execute. This area can take a lot more time than people estimate. To coordinate all of the activities in your marketing budget can be time consuming. You’ll have plenty of emails and admin type tasks to make sure all of the mediums in your budget are begin used properly, things like ad placement, copy of ads, account setups etc. Make sure everyone who is involved with this step have a plan and a way of working to deadlines to get everything done.
6. The “6th M” of Marketing: Monitor
Finally, you need to monitor the results from all of your marketing efforts. With my clients we have tools that allow us to track every single Lead that comes in to the business and allocate that lead to the medium it came from. From there we can review reports on critical results like: 1) Lead Target vs Actual by each Medium and for the Budget as a whole. 2) Number of Meetings or Quotes from each Lead and ultimately number of customers from each Medium and for the budget as a whole.
In closing, the main outcome of your marketing efforts should be (this is the definition we use when coaching clients to keep them focused on what the purpose of marketing is): “Consistently produce the right number of the right type of leads in line with the Budgeting Marketing Dollars and Company Brand and Image Guidelines.”
Your job as the business owner and leader of your business is to create a system and structure within your business that ensures you regularly and habitually, year in year out, do what is needed to achieve that simple outcome in your business. Follow the “6 M’s of Marketing” and you’ll be well on your way to making that consistently happen.
In closing, to answer one of the most asked questions in terms of Marketing: Which messages and mediums are the best to get results in your business? Short answer: The ones that your monitoring and tracking reports tell you are working and providing the needed leads and new customers. There are no shortcuts, you’ll need to be consistently trying, tracking and tweaking… stick to the discipline of the 6 M’s above and you’ll have created a system that your team can run for you and that will provide the answers to what marketing options are best for your business.
Eric J. Gregory is the Author of ‘Would you like Profits with that?’ and the founder of
Gregory Business & Trades Coaching which specialises in working with SME Business Owners
and Entrepreneurs. For more information about Eric and his company
Please see http://www.gregorybusinesscoaching.com
Search by Tags
I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!
'To help SME business owners and their teams create Quality Lifestyles through Business Success'