Chet Holmes, author of The Ultimate Sales Machine, has been called one of the greatest business growth experts in the country. His advice starts with one simple concept: Focus. Instead of trying to master four thousand strategies to improve your business, zero in on the few essential skill areas that make the big difference.
He lays out 12 key strategies to turbo-charge your business in his new book and, not surprisingly, one of those is marketing. In a chapter entitled, “The Seven Musts of Marketing,” Chet lists the marketing weapons:
- Direct Mail
- Corporate Literature: Brochures and Promotional Pieces
- Public Relations
- Personal Contact: Salespeople and Customer Service
- Market Education: Tradeshows, Speaking Engagements
- Internet: Websites, E-Mail Efforts, and Affiliated Marketing
His company consults primarily with large companies who use all seven, but he concedes that small to mid-sized companies may not be able to afford to do them all.
THE EIGHTH MUST: STRATEGY
The fact is, there is no shortage of weapons, so you have to pick and choose your weapons strategically to get the most impact. Most of our clients who are CAM Members don’t use all seven weapons; we develop an overall marketing strategy to help them get the most bang for their buck.
We work with them to identify specific sales objectives, marketing budgets and time schedules. Then, with our expertise in everything from Web development to corporate literature to direct mail, we put together a strategy that maximizes sales while minimizing expenditures. We liken each weapon to a finger on a hand, and when coiled together and rolled into a fist, these weapons together pack a powerful marketing punch.
INTEGRATED MARKETING: TYING IT ALL TOGETHER
The term “integrated marketing” has been around for decades, but Chet uses the term “stacked marketing” to explain his approach. It involves coordinating all of your marketing weapons rather than having varied and conflicting messages from each weapon. With stacked marketing, you develop a consistent message, look, theme and slogan that carries throughout your marketing efforts.
Marketing does not exist in a vacuum. Marketing encompasses everything that impacts business success; it is part of an overall sales strategy based on customer behavior. The focal point of all efforts needs to be on customer insight. How can you add value or create a positive experience to create a more engaged audience? It’s about building a real relationship with your customers, because customers crave credibility.
The key for all of these marketing weapons is that they work together. Do your salespeople use your collateral material? Does your advertising drive leads to your website? Are you promoting referrals at every turn? Are you getting qualified leads at tradeshows and funneling them to sales?
Making it all work together is the most important “must” of all.
As a business consultant, Chris Hippler helps clients avoid mistakes when possible, and fix them when made. He is president of Capital Letters a business-to-business marketing company that focuses on getting results for clients through print and online communications. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or (734) 353-9918.