Your marketing budget, and how to spend it

So, the boss has signed off on a marketing budget and there are a 100’s ways to spend it, but where do you start?

You can start by:

– Mapping out the next quarter and list any key events, trade shows, important dates, etc
 Not every event will be relevant to your business so its important to be selective. Think about how you want to position your brand and who your target audience is. This will help to whittle down to a few, carefully selected, high value events.

– Write down the marketing tools you would require making each of these a success
 If we take the example of a physical event, the methods you use could be a mix of traditional and digital. For instance, you may require a branded display stand and exhibition materials to ensure your company stands out against other exhibitors / competitors. You might also look for ways to entice people to your stand in the form of branded merchandise or giveaways.

On the digital side, you may send out an email marketing campaign prior to the event to let your customers know where they can meet you. You may also invest in some push marketing like Facebook Ads to ensure as many prospects as possible know about this event to increase your chances of meeting new customers.

– Make a separate list for marketing methods that you haven’t considered but might be worth exploring
Could you write a blog or newsletter that is relevant to the event you are exhibiting at, or a service you want people to be aware of? Is the marketing campaign worthy of some PR?

– Speak to some marketing professionals to help you decide
It can be useful to engage with an independent marketing consultant to ensure that your marketing efforts are efficient and well executed. Having said that, you might be a marketing pro, but a little advice from an industry expert could help you make the most of your excellent plan.

Take action
Know your deadline and plan backwards from that date. Always allow an extra few days (or weeks) at each stage to factor in any possible delays. Creating a timetable of steps you need to take might be useful here to ensure you stay on track. Get some quotes in to ensure your maximising your marketing spend.

Ultimately, you want a return on the investment. Whilst some methods could provide a faster return (Pay per click, Facebook Ads, etc) others have a longer term before the investment comes to fruition (SEO). Ideally, you want a holistic approach to ensure all your customer touch points are covered.

The beauty with branded merchandise is that it can be intertwined with other marketing methods to create a complete marketing campaign. For example, adding a QR code to merchandise can bridge the gap between your digital and traditional marketing efforts.

Well designed, high quality and useful merchandise will be kept by the receiver for a longer period of time than something that is just given away ‘willy-nilly’.

Get in touch if you’re looking for new and exciting ways to engage your customers.

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