Defining your marketing goals and understanding your best path to success form the foundation for growth. A strong strategy starts by digging deep. To build a plan that takes you where you want to go, you need to do the work to identify “the who,” “the what,” and “the why” behind your company—arriving at a true picture of who you are, who you want to be, and who you want to reach. You must understand why you do what you do—the motivations that drive you and the specific needs you want to meet. And finally, you have to hone in on what your customers care about, what you offer that is genuinely different or better than your competitors, and what benefits you provide.
Once you’ve established these insights into your company and your customers, you can move right along to “the how” of actually implementing your strategy. By setting realistic, attainable, and measurable goals, you can craft a clear plan that helps your business look beyond the urgent and focus on the important—moving you toward a bright, blazing, “I-want-to-be-part-of-that” type of future.
The first rule of storytelling is to know your audience. The second rule is to know yourself. How well does your story connect with those who hear it, and how does it benefit them in an authentic, memorable way? Does it let people in on the unique essence, personality, and endearing quirks of your company—presenting a clear benefit of working with you and helping build meaningful relationships with customers?
Your brand story lives within the tangibles and intangibles of your company—from your logo, website, business cards, and brochures to the feelings and perceptions that your business conveys.
An effective, soul-stirring story is about showing who you are and why you care through a distinctive tone that extends beyond mere marketing communications and lights a fire to the entire customer experience. And remember, a story is only as good as the way it’s told. Craft your brand story, then spin that yarn consistently to just the right people.
Purchasing decisions are largely driven by emotions and the deep-seated needs that drive them. People are drawn to brands that stand up, stand out, and deliver personal, life-improving benefits, whether it’s confidence, security, prestige, or peace of mind.
Nothing conveys your brand better and sets emotional context faster than great design.
Eye-catching design elements that build brand recognition and loyalty can help bring your story to life across every visual touch point. So rev up your creativity and find ways of visually conveying your brand to assure a distinctly memorable and consistent experience—one that cuts through the smoke to help you burn brighter than the rest.
A great website is an indispensable workhorse in today’s business environment and the center of the modern marketing universe. Today’s tech-savvy, empowered consumers demand nothing less than an outstanding digital experience filled with helpful information, useful insights, and engaging content to help them understand and evaluate your value—quickly, easily, and regardless of device.
In the words of the late, great Steve Jobs, “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”
Yes, your website should be aesthetically appealing. But it should also be simple to navigate and easy to understand. Create a web experience that serves as the welcome mat and front door to your company—and to your CRM. Everything about your web experience should work to attract, engage, and convert qualified leads—catering to customer needs, communicating information clearly, balancing text and visuals, and prompting your customers to take action.
Content comes in many shapes, sizes, and formats. Customers demand it. Smart companies deliver it. And because search engines love it, your ability to be found online depends on it. And yet, creating good content requires far more than plopping in a handful of keywords for the sake of SEO or making sure your grammar is perfectly on point (though we wouldn’t recommend bypassing the proofing stage). It involves incorporating your overarching brand story in an engaging, original way throughout all of your marketing communications.
Use your messaging as an opportunity to clearly and consistently convey the purpose behind your brand promise, the value you bring to customers, and the identity you want to portray. Leverage marketing automation and CRM solutions to deliver a steady supply of highly relevant, useful, and engaging content to attract new visitors and remind your current customers that they have made a darned-good choice.
In this digital age, customers are finding more and more ways to engage with brands and businesses. The temptation for today’s businesses is to adopt an omni-channel marketing approach—attempting to be everywhere for everyone.
Instead of jumping on every digital bandwagon, go the optimal channel, or opti-channel, route to intentional, effective marketing.
Activate your brand with the right mix of inbound and outbound marketing campaigns that prove to be the most successful for your business. Evaluate paid, owned, and earned media as well as email marketing, direct response, social media, event strategies, sponsorships, speaking opportunities, direct selling, networking, and PR techniques to dial in the best solution for your business.