The wise marketer will take advantage of this critical moment in an economic cycle. If your company has been saving resources and restraining marketing spending, you can still position your company for favorable market share and future sales by increasing your presence now.
Despite stubborn unemployment and cautious consumers, the nation’s manufacturing grew for the fourth consecutive month in November, according to the Institute for Supply Management. While the overall U.S. economy has expanded for the seventh straight month, the recent stabilizing of the manufacturing sector suggests consumer demand should soon follow.
In the past several years, no moment has been more critical than this one for stepping up your media presence. Your email marketing will help bring in direct response leads, of course, but direct marketing response works best when your brand is highly visible in your target market’s media consumption pattern—particularly if your competitors are there.
Contrary to some of the chatter from the tech marketing blogosphere, branding still works. It always will as long as human beings have emotional responses. And at today’s point in the recession cycle, a well executed ad campaign is the smartest marketing move a company can make. So go ahead. Don’t worry, you won’t jinx the economic recovery.
If your company is like most these days, you have numerous PDFs on your Web site available for download. With this cost effective and user friendly tactic, many companies are missing the opportunity to let the PDF help close the sale.
Too often, the downloadable PDF is not professionally designed because you’re not investing in offset printing. Such treatment can lead to missed opportunities. When uploading documents in PDF format to your Web site, ask yourself, “What does my audience do with those documents, and are my PDFs doing their job?”
From investor relations to sales collateral, your PDF downloads provide a convenient means for potential buyers and investors to collect the information they seek. But do those documents rise to the level of your corporate identity? Do they enhance your brand? Do they build your image? Do they sell?
When researching a vendor, product or service, buyers commonly collect downloaded PDFs and spit them out of the office printer for later analysis. Product information, whitepapers, spec sheets, company fact sheets, annual reports – they’re all being downloaded and printed as we speak. While offset printing volumes are being reduced, the office printer is alive and well.
So treat the office printer like another media channel. When your company’s material comes out looking superior to the others in the prospect’s collection, you’ve just jumped to the top of the stack.
You’re about to launch a marketing campaign. You know the creative is on target, you know your message is compelling. You want an integrated, cross-media campaign. So, just take that ad creative and repeat it throughout your media mix and, voilá, we’re integrated! … Right?
A common but costly mistake.
While a good campaign has a distinctive look and memorable hook, the actual message must be optimized for each medium. For example, the most powerful and effective creative for a magazine ad can make for an ineffective email. This is due to the radical changes in audience mindset between the various media experiences.
When I’m paging through a magazine, I welcome ads that entertain and captivate me. If I receive an email with that same message, however, it could be an unwelcome intrusion in my in-box that has no value to me. With the same message, a marketer can score a favorable impression in one medium and completely turn off their target audience in another.
The passive medium of print begs for arresting creative, and in today’s world of shrinking print volumes it may be even more effective than ever. In the participatory world of online media, however, you are speaking to your audience in a completely different social context. The audience is actively engaged. They are in task mode. Social media is where they connect themselves to subjects of interest, and email is where they take action.
Think first about the purpose and context of each medium—Web sites, blogs, magazines, billboards, email, postal mail, T.V., social media—and then ask what value you need to bring to each. In going through this mental exercise, you may spark some promotional ideas that work better in the active media.
Tailoring your campaign for channel behavior can add promotional muscle to your offline efforts, and creative punch to your online communications.
A new study by Ad-ology shows that a vast majority of consumers view companies that sustained advertising through the recession as “being competitive or committed to doing business.” On the other hand, a given brand’s reduced advertising during a recession negatively impacts consumer perception.
This article makes it clear how, during a soft economy, buyers perceive an obvious pullback of advertising as a warning that a particular brand is probably in trouble, which, in turn, negatively affects the buying decision. A summary of the study’s findings can be found on the research firm’s blog, and the study itself can be purchased through the firm’s Web site.
As the economy shows some mixed signs of stabilization, make sure your company is not being viewed as having pulled your advertising. It is essential for a brand to remain visible throughout a soft economic period.