A couple of weeks ago, I was talking to a prospect about marketing for her local eatery.
She had previously spent money on advertising with little success and was considering spending more time and money on social media. Like many business owners, she knew she needed to do something, but wasn’t sure where to focus her time and energy on her marketing efforts.
Through the course of our discussion, I asked her a simple question — what has worked before?
After thinking for a moment, she said that getting mentioned in the media always sent customers her way.
That’s where she needs to spend her time.
Could this company benefit from a comprehensive marketing campaign? Probably.
But, if she does nothing else, focusing on media relations would be a good place to start.
Which Marketing Efforts Have Worked for You?
Some of you reading this might think this is the most obvious advice in the world. And, perhaps it is.
But so often, businesses get caught up in shiny object syndrome that they forget that success often comes from mastering the marketing basics and sticking to the tried and true efforts that have worked previously.
That might mean you consider “old school” marketing tactics such as advertising, media relations, printed materials and direct mail – especially if those tactics have worked for you before.
Or, you might focus on ways to show your customers the love to encourage them to keep coming back.
No, this advice isn’t sexy.
And, this might not make your business incredibly cutting edge.
But, it might mean the difference between increasing your revenue and profits and having another down month.
Determining Which Marketing Efforts Work Best
So, how do you determine what works? Hopefully you are measuring and tracking your marketing efforts.
But, if you don’t have a complex CRM or tracking system in place, there are some simple things you can do to see where you should spend your time and money on marketing:
- Ask new customers how they heard about you.
It’s a simple question, but it can give you incredible insight about what marketing efforts are driving business. If you’re not regularly asking this question, find a way to bake this into your new customer process.
- Look at the numbers. When has your revenue increased? Can you correlate that with a specific campaign or marketing effort? See if there’s anything that might indicate where the bump came from.
- Track analytics. Spend time in Google Analytics and see what’s driving traffic, leads and sales. Is it search, social or referral links? Discovering where these customers are coming from can give you great insight on where to focus.
- Get feedback. What marketing efforts have caused your prospects and customers to take notice? Think about emails or comments you’ve received after previous efforts. Or, talk to customers or send a survey to find out what efforts have resonated most.
If you’re looking for more customers, you don’t always try something innovative or new. Sometimes, you simply have to focus on what works.
After all, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
What do you think? What tried and true marketing efforts work for your business?