I’ve been holding off with this post for a wee while now because quite frankly it didn’t seem befitting to write a ‘spring cleaning’ blog post whilst hailstones were annoyingly tap, tap, tapping at my window. But now that I can quite clearly see tulips flowering and the blue skies seem to be putting in an appearance for longer than the time it takes to swap the woolies in favour of something a little more suitable, I shall bite the bullet and get on with it. Gosh I hope I haven’t just jinxed it for the nation by declaring spring is finally here…?
Anyway, just like Mole in The Wind in the Willows, we must harness our inner ‘clean-freak’ only in this instance we will be dusting down and decluttering our business strategy and marketing material… it’s just the same really, but without so much elbow grease.
Now, before you undertake any task that requires identifying problem areas and overhauls, to avoid any repetition, confusion or time wasting you must have a plan. And the plan in question is of course your marketing plan. This is something that should always be close at hand for reference and strategy purposes so make sure it is still relevant and is working for you by bringing you closer to achieving the goals you set when you first wrote it.
Next it is on to your marketing activity and the simple yet effective things you can do to keep it current and reduce unnecessary spend.
If you send out marketing material chances are you will have a mailing list, you may even have more than one for different customer segments. Are these lists still current and applicable? Do you have any lapsed customers that may require special attention in order to make them return as customers or do you receive regular ‘return to sender’ items or bounce back emails? All these are clear signs that your lists are in need of a tidy up. Try and combine your clean up with data collection by sending out a ‘current details’ questionnaire to the people on your list to check if you have their information correct and to ask them for service feedback.
Now it’s on to your website, is it and its content in need of a review? The easiest way to tell this is to check if everything is up to date. Facts, figures, images and content are likely to all change and in order to still convey the right message should be checked regularly and updated when necessary. Do you have outbound and inbound links? Are they still working? This may not strike you as something that is liable to stop working but it can and does happen. And finally, are your contact details and opening hours correct? The answer to this is more than likely going to be ‘yes’ but just imagine if they weren’t and you were a customer trying to get in touch through unreliable information.
Now, Let me ask you a question, when you first meet someone either in the industry or that may be a potential customer, what do you do? You give them your business card or any printed material you have about your company and product. Now is a great time to assess the effectiveness of this material and make any necessary changes including updated titles or job roles, office premises, images and awards. After all, if you don’t tell them how will they know?
And finally, the ever increasing in popularity social media platforms. These may require the most work when it comes to your spring clean but once you have done it the rewards will be noticeable. When planning your cleaning crusade, think of the following:
Who do you follow, like or are in your groups or network? It may be time to start looking for more like-minded people and companies to follow in order to widen your reach.
How often do you socialise, do you need to consider scheduling posts or have someone do it for you? When you decide to be part of the social media community you need to commit to it, something that can be time consuming.
Is your content relevant? Are your posts, tweets etc. in keeping with your business and brand and are you interacting? Social media is very much a two way thing, why not give us a call if your want to know how to make it work better for you.
Gosh, I am exhausted just writing this and there isn’t even a duster in sight. But remember, you don’t have to undertake this mammoth task on your own; Debut Marketing has years of experience as the Kim and Aggie of the marketing world and we are always on hand to give you pointers and steer you and your business in the right direction. Next week we will be talking about frequency of customer contact so feel free to leave the tabard and rubber gloves at home!