How to Choose the Best Marketing Techniques
By Karyn Greenstreet
copyright © 2009, by Karyn Greenstreet. All rights reserved.
"I'm going nuts," one of my private clients emailed me last week. "There are so many marketing techniques, how in the world do I choose the best ones for my business, without making massive mistakes?"
Putting together your marketing plan and your marketing campaigns can be a daunting task. You hear rumors that a specific marketing technique is a "must" for your type of business, yet you wonder: Will it really bring the desired results before I run out of cash and patience?
There are over 30 internet marketing techniques and another 50 or more traditional marketing techniques. How do you choose among these 80-100 possible marketing techniques to find the most powerful ones for your business? Here are some things to consider.
The Purpose of Marketing
First, let's talk about the purposes of marketing. Knowing which goal you want for your marketing will help you choose the proper technique. There are thousands of books and websites on marketing, and by distilling them down to their core essence, we discover there are four primary purposes for marketing:
- Brand Awareness - Helping your target audience to become aware of you and want to learn more about your services and products.
- Lead Generation - Getting your target audience to request information and/or a sales conversation with you; also, for building a pre-sales relationship.
- Brand Consideration - Your target audience is considering buying from you or at least has included you in their short list of possibilities, along with your competitors.
- Direct Sales - Getting your target audience to purchase directly from you.
For example, you might use search engine advertising, like Google Adwords, for lead generation purposes, but it may be a poor choice for direct sales, especially if your target audience doesn't purchase that way.
Your Target Audience
That leads to the next thing to consider: Which techniques does your target audience pay attention to and respond to? This all depends on how well you have identified your target audience. Some audiences will not purchase directly from a business without first getting to know them (brand awareness, relationship building). If your audience buys services this way, then use one marketing tactic for brand awareness (such as public speaking), another for lead generation (such as SEO or your free offer), and a third technique for direct sales (like an email marketing).
Marketing Products Versus Marketing Services
If you are selling products not services, then you need a different mix of marketing techniques. Before working with me, one of my private clients tried to use the same marketing techniques to sell both her services and her products - with poor results. People purchase services differently than they purchase products; therefore, you need a unique marketing campaign plan for selling your services and a completely different marketing campaign plan for selling products.
Additional Things to Consider
Also important are your goals, the specific product or service you are selling, your timeline to implement this marketing campaign plan, and your budget. Budget includes both your financial budget and your time budget. Some marketing techniques appear to be free, when in actuality they take a huge amount of your time - time you could be spending more productively elsewhere in your marketing or business.
There is no silver bullet. Within each major category of marketing techniques, like social media marketing, there are a plethora of specific techniques to choose from. But knowing your audience, your time and money budgets, and your goals, and testing your results, you'll eventually choose the most productive techniques that you can use over and over again.