We confront so many different options for contacting customers, messaging prospects and getting the word out about our brands and products. I was in a seminar yesterday about non-profit fundraising and the moderator said something that I thought was brilliant....
Perfect The Basics.
Worrying about your next tweet when you don't have a solid direct mail contact strategy and email messaging strategy is time mis-spent. Before you start creating a multi-channel marketing plan, make sure that you have the basics covered. Perfectly.
#1. Do you have good data? Is your data segmented in ways that help you run your business? Do you really understand who your customers are? Spending money on acquiring customers when you do not have the basics of capturing and analyzing good data is a waste of time and money.
#2. Does everyone in the organization agree and understand the top 1-3 objectives of the year? Marketing plans are drivers TO the objectives. Creating a plan merely based on what happened in the past will not move you ahead.
#3. Are you really good in executing in the channels that got you where you are today? If you are a retailer that uses direct mail to drive people to the store, have you perfected those tactics? Do you know your metrics and your ROI? Social media and leveraging newer channels is important, but again, not if you are not doing the basics well.
I have myself have been so caught up in playing in all of the channels that I have lost sight of the foundation. And if and when you venture out beyond the basics, understand what you are trying to achieve to support your main channels and plan. As marketers, we are always under pressure to try 'the next new thing" so that our senior management feels like the organization is not falling behind or out of step. We need to be the gatekeepers of SMART decisions to achieve our organizational goals.