Keep your marketing on point, on target and on budget by planning for that outcome.
Whereas many agencies and consultants will help craft your strategy – for a fixed fee – and then leave you with the task of executing against that plan, at Michael Mackenzie Communications we work alongside our clients to help build consensus around what goes into their plan and then use a divide and conquer approach to ensure the initiatives in the plan take root.
A somewhat different approach to client engagement.
Rather than hand you a standard proposal with a fixed monthly retainer, we start off each new client relationship with a messaging strategy session where we help crystallize your marketing messages and set the stage for successful marketing efforts that are well aligned with your business development and organizational objectives.
During the kick off messaging strategy session, we explore and evaluate four key areas of your business:
- The words you use to describe your business offerings (message)
- Who you sell to (target audience profile)
- How you sell to that market (sales process)
- The infrastructure currently in place vs. what is needed to support the sales process as defined (tools and instruments)
Typical messaging strategy sessions are 2-4 hours, depending upon the number of participants. The most productive messaging strategy sessions are held during the morning hours when participants are fresh and less likely to be interrupted.
The outcome of this half-day meeting is a summary and recommendations document from which we can set your plan and assign priorities.
This is Not a Marketing Strategy
The AJC has been running an ongoing advertising campaign featuring a street entertainer (or so-called “sign spinner”) and one of those directional signs under the headline stating this is not a marketing strategy.
The ads are eye-catching and entertaining so they work well in drawing the reader into the ad where they go on to promote their digital media services. Kudos to the creator. The problem is that digital marketing isn’t a strategy either and there’s the rub.
All too often business owners are lured into purchasing marketing tactics veiled as strategies, essentially purchasing solutions for problems they had not yet identified.
True marketing strategy defines a plan for reaching a specific goal. For example, a strategy might be: to increase the number of eyeballs to the website or foot traffic to your retail door as a strategy for increasing sales.
A marketing tactic is the highly practical thing you do every day to execute against that strategy. In this instance it might be hiring that street performer with the sign or the leveraging the digital media offerings of the AJC.com. Both are valid tactics to help execute against the strategy for increasing sales.
Take the time to develop a vision and the corresponding strategies first before you sign a contract for ongoing tactics. It will pay dividends in the long run and prevent you from finding yourself at year end with a significant marketing outlay for something that doesn’t align with your goals.