I once was asked to critique a client's presentation of her new marketing plan. She offered a thorough strategy with convincing arguments. She had a schedule, a reasonable budget. Everything about the plan seemed viable. Except for one small problem: I was sure that her CMO would approve it, but her CFO would not.
And that's the problem with most marketing plans that I see. We're still talking about brand awareness when we need to be talking about sales.
Now, understand-I know why we talk about brand awareness. For many kinds of marketing-TV, print, radio-brand awareness is all you get. But in digital marketing, you can usually measure more, except we sometime settle for brand awareness.
I still see clients buying ads for reach. Why they need reach, I don't really know, because I can't find any correlation between more reach and actual sales. When you are stretching for more reach, you are likely reaching less and less qualified prospects. So, maybe you do make them aware of your brand, but if they don't buy, who cares?
To your CFO, sales is what matters. My theory is that if someone buys something from you, at some point they became aware of you.
If your marketing plan speaks CFO, not only will your CFO approve it, but you might actually make some money, which is kind of the point of marketing.
Mike is an expert in search marketing, search technology, social media, publishing, text analytics, and web metrics, who regularly makes speaking appearances.
Mike's previous appearances include ClickZ Live, RKG Summit, Ticket Summit, Webdagene, the CiTE conference, and the Forrester Marketing Conference.
Mike also founded and writes for Biznology, is the co-author of the best-selling Search Engine Marketing, Inc., and sole author of Do It Wrong Quickly, named by the Miami Herald as one of the 11 best business books of 2007.
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