Marketing Basics

Your business success is directly related to how well you market your image, products and services to your customers. Existing customers are not our immediate concern. Keeping existing customers is based on price and how well they feel you service their requests. Your future success or growth depends on attracting new customers. A successful marketing campaign begins by evaluating who your customers are, by demographic or their buying habits and then developing the materials you need to attract them. Your new customer will come in contact with you in several ways. this include :

  • Email Signatures & Email Newsletters
  • Letterhead, Envelopes & Business Cards
  • Web Pages & Web Applications
  • Print Catalogs, Brochures, Flyers & Tri-folds
  • Trade Shows, Seminars, Banners, Posters & Handouts
  • PowerPoint and Flash Video Presentations
  • Shipping boxes, Labels, Product Boxing & Inserts

Are You Marketing Your Business Effectively?

The best books on marketing tell you to take all your material, anything we listed above, and lay it out on the conference table. Examine in detail what you see. Do you see the same colors, the same font, the same logo design, the same theme and layout between business cards and email footers. If what you see looks odd, outdated or mismatched, this is how you appear to your customers. You will be seen as unprofessional and perceived as not able to provide the quality of service your customers will demand.

Your companies perceived appearance or corporate capability will be determined by how professional you look. How well you appear visually by the material your customers see will greatly impact long-term growth. Effective image branding depends on continuity. Look at AT&T’s globe, the letters IBM or the words Coca Cola, all these companies use continuity in their message. If you saw the ATT globe you’d know it was ATT without anything else said. Your customers need to be trained in recognizing you by anything they see or hold in their hand that at a first glance says this is you. This is achieved by designing or redesigning every marketing piece you have to reflect a message of continuity. Everything is the same: color, font, theme (layout) and style. Every item projects an image of who you are and what you can deliver. It portrays your company as an effective business machine that any customer would enjoy doing business with. It also helps you to reflect an image of market size and stability. Even if you are only a company of two, you will seem much larger.

What Came First the Chicken or the Egg?

We’re not sure how to answer that one, but in the marketing world the question is “Where do I start”? Do you start with printed material or do you start with the website. The reality is neither, yet! Your decision should be based on what stage of marketing development you’re at with your company. Are you a well established company with an established clientele? Or, are you a new start-up with a great idea but not sure how to get your feet off the ground? Whatever stage you are at there are some de facto steps you should consider before you embark on any Internet or Print media campaign.

Do I Need a Website? Do I Need Marketing Material?

The answer simply is no. However, if you want to succeed and make more money than you are now the answer is a resounding yes. Every day you wait on making the decision to move one way of the other is another number of sales from potential customers that your competitor just got instead of you.

If you are a well established business making all the money you can handle then you probably already have a website and marketing material that are targeting the right audience. When the broad use of web pages came about in the late 90’s, many so called established companies, had the wherewithal and budget to get their name and products seen on the Internet. Yet is amazes us, that as quick as they were to take advantage of the benefits of online marketing, many of the sites today are the same ones created 10 years ago. In the 10 years since the first sites appeared, design and coding techniques available today have changed drastically. The result is today’s web designs are far more appealing and effective than those developed 10 years ago.

An established company with a ten year old website is making far less money and impact on available market share than an established company with a new, more robust website. So the question these companies need to be asking themselves is, “Do we need a new website”? Again the answer is no, but if you want to survive and stay competitive, then the answer again is a resounding yes.

However, if you are a new start-up or have not implemented any kind of a web or print marketing strategy then your first step should be to create or improve your corporate identity by gathering the material you do have and assessing its continuity. If its all over the place design wise then the place to start is to develop new material with a continuous and well thought out corporate brand campaign.

digital vision logo  Article Written By :Robert Schonhoff
Date : 10/18/2011


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