In previous blogs I've talked about the real purpose of marketing and about how to create a specification for your marketing. The next step to engineering your marketing is to brainstorm ideas and prioritise.
In an engineering design process, this is usually the most creative part. It's fun to brainstorm new features that you could add into your product, system or service. And it's always a useful exercise to do because you might come up with ideas that are quick and easy to implement while adding value to your offering. Even so, there will always be features that would cost more to realise than they'd recover in increased revenue.
If it'll be prohibitively expensive to include every desired feature in your product, you need to prioritise.
Which features are essential because the product won't function without them? Which are highly desirable? And which can be added into future versions or premium editions of the product?
In marketing this is often where business owners find themselves overwhelmed.
Every business owner I've ever worked with can write a list as long as my arm of the marketing activities they could do if time and budget were unlimited. But how do you know which activities will pay off? How do you know in what order to do them all to get the best ROI?
An unprioritised wish-list is overwhelming and stressful.
Where to start?
There is an answer. In any design process, whether engineering or marketing, all you need is a structured and logical approach to prioritisation. Marketing is the same and Watertight Marketing is good methodology for working out where you should be spending money and where you shouldn't.
I've already blogged about the mistake most business owners make thinking about the buying process as a funnel. This way of thinking leads to the logical answer: if you want to increase your sales, you need to tell more people about your product or service.
However, if you are spending money generating awareness but have customers leaking out further down the buying process then you are wasting money.
When you start thinking about the buying process more like a colander, you realise why this isn't logical at all. The logical thing is to plug the holes first.
But if you have a lot of holes, and most businesses (mine included!) do, then where do you start?
You start at the bottom.
Turn your marketing upside down
Instinctively you might want to start at the top, but I urge you to resist it: if you spend money on promotion before you fix your leaks, then that’s money wasted.
Plus, if you start from the bottom with your loyal customers (even if you only have a few customers) making sure they’re the happiest customers alive, two things will happen:
Taking this bottom-up approach forces you to address your marketing weaknesses in a logical order. The improvements build incrementally so that when you start spending money on generating leads, it will be money well spent. You’ll also have a sound, robust marketing machine that pays back for your business.
If you want to start implementing this process in your business to see robust, sustainable sales results, I'd love to help you. I usually start with a free 30-minute consulting call, like a "test drive", so you can see what I'm like to work with. Then we'd talk about what you want to achieve in your business and see if I'm the right person to help you.
If this sounds interesting, please drop me a line. I'd love to see if I can help.
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