systems

Systems to make your marketing easier and profitable

Kiffin Blog Guest - Renata MathewsonGuest Blogger – Renata Mathewson from Maple Marketing.

Renata has been helping me with my marketing since I first met her in 2006. She taught me systems that make my marketing easier and more profitable. I attended her marketing workshop last year and it helped me plan out and budget for my marketing activities.

Over to Renata …

Systems and marketing – an obvious combo or an odd couple?

Some people think marketing is a bunch of creative fluff – intangible activities that just add costs to the business. But it’s not! When done properly, marketing can be an easy revenue generator for your business, not a cost centre.

 

So why, then, are so many people doubtful, frustrated, even cynical about their marketing? Quite simply, it’s because they haven’t systemised it.

But how can you systemise marketing without losing the creative flair, the innovative edge? The steps below will help you be creative in your marketing, while keeping your focussed, on track, and working towards generating more revenue.

Step 1 – Set some objectives

So often I hear business owners say, “We tried some marketing but it didn’t work. And it took up so much of our time, energy and money.”

There are a few things going on here. First of all, when marketing “doesn’t work” it’s usually because clear, specific, measurable objectives weren’t established. With every marketing campaign you should start with objectives. What are you hoping to accomplish?

So start with looking at the big picture. What are your overall business objectives? What are you building? What are you working towards? An example here might be, to build a national operation with stores/offices in each of the main city centres.

Then more specifically, what marketing objectives do you have that will help fulfil these overall business objectives? So examples here might include: to increase brand awareness, to grow sales in each major centre, to create an emailing marketing list, to create or grow a presence on social media, etc.

We can then break this down even further with every marketing activity we do. Every time we send an email newsletter out, or every time we do some advertising, we need to set clear objectives of what we want to achieve. And then structure the campaign around those objectives.

Step 2 – Set some measurements

Going hand-in-hand with this need to set objectives, is the need to have quantifiable measurements. The other reason why people often say that marketing activity “didn’t work” is because there were no real numbers or measurements to use in assessing whether an activity worked. For a marketing activity to work, we must be clear. For example, if you place an ad, what is it that you want it to do? If your answer is something along the lines of increasing brand awareness, then you have to be really specific and include something you can measure. Can you put your social media profile links in the ad and entice people to visit them for a specific reason? If so, then can you define what your brand awareness around social media was before the ad? How many followers did you have? How much engagement did your posts generate? Then compare these measurements after your marketing campaign. Knowing what you’re going to measure – being really clear about how you will determine whether something “worked” or not – will also help you make each marketing activity very targeted. This leads us to the next step in systemising our marketing.

Step 3 – Identify your targets

We cannot say it enough – the key to effective marketing lies in knowing who you’re marketing to. You must have a very specific target audience in mind when you invest – time, money, resources – in marketing. As the saying goes, if you market to everyone, you’ll sell to no one.

While it would be nice to think that everyone will be interested in our products or services, the reality is that targeting everyone is an inefficient way to market.

So when we talk about ‘target audience’, let’s think about targeting as prioritising, not limiting. Who do we want to approach first? Who do we want as a client before others? Once we convert them, others will follow.

Another way to think of it is to ask, if we have limited marketing funds, where do we want to allocate them first? Which client segment do we want to attract first?

Step 4 – Put it all down in writing

In my opinion, the most effective tool or system you can use when you run a business is a Marketing Plan. Having a raft of ideas circulating around in your head is not the most effective way of turning them into profitable marketing activities. Get these ideas down in writing, and before you know it, they become a list. And that list of ideas becomes a task or project list. And we all know what happens when we have projects – especially with timelines. We take on a different mindset and focus, and we work (or delegate or outsource) until they’re complete.

Getting the fundamentals down in writing – things like objectives and target audience – is also a necessity for the business. The more you can get information and intellectual property out of your head and down in writing, the better prepared you are to grow the business. Systems and plans make it much easier to out-source, to delegate, to hire, to build a succession plan, to sell a business.

So systemise as much as you can – even your marketing. Writing a marketing plan is a big task the first year you do it. But in subsequent years it gets easier as you build on the year before. Like many other effective systems in a business, if you put the time in upfront to get it done properly, it will actually save you a lot of time and money in the long run.

For more information on any of these steps, please get in touch with Maple Marketing Ltd on [email protected] . Our Kickstart might be what you need to get started. Or you might be ready for our Marketing Tool Box which just launched!

How to get the MOST important actions done !

What are your Most Important Actions?

I would add another question in here from my systems coach perspective …

” Do you have a system for taking  actions on a daily basis  ?

Have you done this ? Wrote a list of important actions and not booked in the time to complete them? I have in the past.

Welcome a world where you set yourself up for failure .

Your daily actions will be often be progressing you on a larger project. Knowing what comes next, who needs to do what, how things need to be done is part of the big picture plan that needs some thought and structure. That is another blog article in itself.

Apply the Keep It Simple Sweetheart ( KISS ) principle to your actions. Yes I did change the last word from Stupid to Sweetheart. (Because – why would I want to put myself down ?). Set yourself up for success by ticking off your important actions as soon as possible. Then look at other things on your list.

Whether you use task tracking software or a good old pen and paper it doesn’t matter. Getting the important stuff done first is the focus.

Find a way that suits you. I gave up using paper list 9 years ago and have returned to them in the past six months. Reason – I found I missed the physical act of writing. I also like the act of taking a pen and crossing things off the list as I do them. I gives me a lot more satisfaction than ticking the off in my tasks lists in software.

Your To Do list should have …only 3 Important Actions Per Day

How to get the MOST important actions done !

The system I use to ensure I get things done is this.

  1. Write it down on my daily / weekly planner
  2. Set appointments in my outlook calendar
  3. Tell someone I will do something by a certain date ( accountability )
  4. Turn off all distractions !

What do you use to keep track of your Most Important Actions on a daily basis?

Like some help with your systems ? email me now [email protected]

To Do(2)

The secrets of using templates and how they save you hours

Often we open a new document and just start typing this can cause headaches down the line when we need to tidy it up to present to a client.

Most of us have had no format training on how to make the most out our software – How many times have you had to edit each individual heading or block of text ?

To make your life easier set up a couple of branded word templates so you can start with the correct formatting in place. Simply make global document changes whjen you need to update a style and ensure consistency across you communications.

I recommend that all my clients have a Portrait and a Landscape Microsoft Word Templates. ( we may also create a manual template, form templates etc…)

Kiffin Microsoft Word Template

Kiffin Microsoft Word Template

These templates will most often contain

Branded styles for

  • Header & Footer
  • Headings 1 – 5
  • Title page ( first page different for longer documents such as manuals, reports, ebooks)
  • Table styles
  • Checklist / bullets
  • Numbering

 

 

 

Before your jump into making a document here is a simple table for you to use when you are creating new documents or reviewing existing ones.

What does my document need to communicate?
Document Creation Guidelines
Questions Your Answers Actions to TAKE
Who? Who is this document for (audience) and who owns it in-house?
Why? Why has this document been created? Does it have a specific purpose?
What? What is the purpose of this document and what must be included?
Where? Where will this document be used/ accessed from?
When? When does it need to be released or actioned?
How? How will the document be used and updated?

 Microsoft Word Template Special

Microsoft Word Template special for $185