Marketing Myths

By | Marketing

How  many of these do you recognize in your business?

“All of our business is referral or word of mouth so we don’t need marketing.”

Who doesn’t love referral business? It’s great when a customer is so satisfied they recommend you to others.   But the reality is “hope” is not a plan and either is relying on referrals alone to grow your business. Not only are you leaving money on the table, you’re exposing your business to serious problems in changing market conditions. There is no reliable substitute for a well-crafted, integrated marketing plan that’s actively generating business for you every day.

“A Millennial will make our marketing more contemporary.”

Not really comfortable with social media or content marketing? Throw it to a Millennial, they’ll know what to do! Even large corporations made this mistake in the early era of social media. Find the right person for your marketing efforts based on knowledge, acumen and experience, and make sure they can match the tone of your brand and the language of your customers. It matters.

“We can’t afford marketing, we have no budget, we tried it, didn’t work.”

These are really just objections that screen out fear of spending money. Ask yourself this question; what if you were guaranteed a 2x or greater return on marketing spend? I bet you would write checks out all day long for that kind of return, no budget required. Marketing done well is a revenue generator, not a cost center. A good marketer knows how to generate ROI and puts in place a tracking system to monitor and adjust for best results.   I work with tools that generate return in many multiples for clients. Be open to this and you’ll be rewarded.

“We don’t need any help because I know everything about marketing.”

You may think you’re an expert but if your life isn’t dedicated to all things marketing there may be a few things you don’t know, and times do change. What worked in the past may not work for you now. Develop a relationship with a marketer who has real-world business experience getting results and is fully immersed on the latest tools and trends – and knows how to use them properly.

“No one cares about sales collateral or print materials anymore.”

The scary truth about your brand, your website, your sales materials is, you are being judged.   Your prospects and potential customers are unconsciously (the most dangerous type of consciousness) judging everything about you. Does your web site look shady, sloppy or old? Are your salespeople putting emoji’s or ribbons on your corporate logo? Sales material made with clip art?? If you’ve stopped producing professional collateral or brochures because you don’t think anyone cares, your customers have noticed and they are judging you accordingly. There is economic value to appropriately representing your brand using print, and without breaking the budget. If you’ve abandoned all things print or even basic brand management, talk to a professional about how to fully integrate your brand message across all platforms in a way that generates return for your business.

You Would Make a Great Podcast

By | Uncategorized

I started in the radio broadcasting business when I was teenager after I called a local radio station and asked for a job. I had no idea it would be the next 24 years of my life.

I loved the business and especially the spoken word format. Early on I was behind the microphone, then I was selling advertising to businesses. The last third of my career was developing salespeople, helping advertisers and growing station revenue for ABC/Walt Disney. I loved Radio, a lot.

Things changed, as they always do. I moved from “sales” squarely over to “marketing” and broadened my horizons. Digital, Social, Content marketing and all things non-traditional – I dove in. I’ve sold, bought and brokered advertising of all kinds. I’ve created marketing strategies, marketing plans, value props and slogans. I worked with millions in ad budgets all the way to, “we don’t really have a budget per se…”.

And then – what’s old became new again and I began to work with podcasting as an emerging content channel. The spoken word, delivered right to your iPhone! It was powerful 100 years ago and it’s just as powerful today. Only the technology has changed, and the good news is – you can take advantage of it for your business and start a podcast with a little help from an expert. Not hard, not expensive and very powerful.

Here’s 5 reasons you should be podcasting.

  1. Speaking is easier than writing and listening is preferable to reading.   Which would you rather do, write 500 words or talk about your business? Easy question. A well-crafted episode plan makes for an interesting audio podcast, without the stress of writing. Reading blogs? The current trend is, that’s too much work for most people. Podcasting breaks through.
  2. Podcasts are powerful. They give your customers and future customers a chance to get to know you and your brand. They are a great way to attract leads and a safe place for lurkers who aren’t yet ready to commit but want to know more. And when they’re ready commit – they’re really ready to commit.
  3. They give you positional authority and spotlight you as an expert. People do business with those they know, like and trust. A good podcast can shorten the time it takes to build a trusted relationship.
  4. Podcasts are content marketing. What you say can be re-purposed at length across all of your social channels, making your content marketing program much easier to keep up with consistently over time – without constantly generating original material.
  5. It’s not hard or expensive. But you won’t want to do it yourself. Ask me about a customized podcast plan for your business that is done-for-you, and includes episode planning, production, editing, syndication and promotion.

 

Want more? Reach out and let’s talk. alicia@hmarketingco.com or scheduleacallwithalicia.com

Are You giving Your Customers What They Really Want?

By | Uncategorized

Marketing is changing fast while you’re busy working on your business. It can be a real challenge to keep up. Regardless if your business is B2B, B2C, Retail or Professional Service based, customers want to connect with you in a personalized manner.

That’s more than just adding a name to the top of an email blast. How can you pivot your marketing efforts to give your customers and prospects what they want, when they want it?

According to McKinsey, here are 5 things customers said they value when it comes to personalized communications:

  1. “Give me relevant recommendations I wouldn’t have thought of myself.”
  2. “Talk to me when I’m in shopping mode.”
  3. “Remind me of things I want to know, but might not be keeping track of.”
  4. “Know me no matter where I interact with you.”
  5. “Share the value in a way that’s meaningful to me.”

While these suggestions may seem like you need to be a mind reader, they all point to one thing – relationship development. How can you greater personalize your marketing efforts and offerings in a way that addresses these customer values?

A strong hub-and-spoke content marketing program can help. As we wind down the year and look forward to 2018, there’s no better time than now to dive in to your marketing plan and set a process that will develop relationships that generate revenue.  We can help you with that.

As McKinsey notes, “Companies that deliver customers timely, relevant, and truly personal messages can build lasting bonds that drive growth.”

Convert Listeners to Buyers With Your Own Podcast

By | Uncategorized

Audio on demand is a powerful component to your content marketing program.  Digital habits are shifting and people are spending less time reading written content and more time with active audio and video.  Your own professionally created and branded podcast extends your marketing reach and affordably communicates both timeless and time sensitive topics to an audience interested in what you offer.

King of the Car

While videos are accessed on desktop, iPads and cellphones, most people can’t watch a video while they’re driving.  Radio in the car is noisy and full of commercial clutter.  CD’s are obsolete and lengthy audio books are a time commitment.  Making specialized, short-form audio a very powerful medium.

Your Brand, Where Customers Live

In addition to commute time, podcasts are accessed when video isn’t desirable such as during exercise, outside activities and screen “breaks”.  Reach your potential customers where (and when) they are most open to your message!

Expert Status

Storytelling and the spoken word makes you positionally powerful.  If your goal is to be viewed as an expert, explain a complex topic, emotionally connect to an audience or simply give potential customers a non-threatening channel to get to know you, podcasting is for you.

Content With a Dual Purpose

Make your podcast the cornerstone of an effective content marketing strategy.  Hicks Marketing offers done-for-you content distribution for all of your marketing channels.

Get Started Today

It’s easier than you think.  Your first podcast can be recorded in just a matter of days with the help of Hicks Marketing, your experienced guide.  Send me a note and let’s talk about it.  alicia@hmarketingco.com