"Don't blame the marketing department. The buck stops with the chief executive."
--- John D. Rockefeller
If more business leaders would take responsibility for the results of their businesses, there would be more effort put into the things that matter most. What I mean by that is as with politicians, we see more and more business leaders pointing fingers when the business doesn't produce as expected, particularly with publicly traded companies. But privately held company leaders are guilty of passing the blame too which is why many of those businesses don't survive or are barely hanging on.
One area of business that some leaders don't know how, and don't want to learn how to do, is the area of marketing. Marketing efforts typically get delegated to anyone available: the receptionist, secretary, installer, etc. When business slows down, the business leader will typically blame that person or department assigned to the task of marketing.
"The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself."
--- Peter Drucker
The task, (some say the art) of marketing should fall on the plate of the business leader or owner. He or she should at least head up marketing and outline what needs to be accomplished before bringing someone else to the mission. Marketing is just as important as checking the bank accounts, or reviewing sales numbers and should have a place at the top of the list of things to do each day.
"Every single thing I learned about marketing and building my business, I learned from my mom, and she had never been in the workforce. She just had great practical sense."
--- Barbara Corcoran
With the vast number of books on marketing for small businesses, one would think that marketing is a science that must be mastered before beginning. Marketing is as simple as knowing your target market and then letting that group know that you have solutions for them. It shouldn't be made complicated, but it should be conducted based on a strategy.
By formulating a marketing plan, it becomes an easier task to tackle. The marketing plan should include the type of people who will buy your products and services (target market), an avenue for getting your message to them (advertising), and a way to measure the success of your plan to make sure it is working and to tweak where and as needed.
"Firms need to ensure that their ability to provide effective customer service keeps pace with their growth. If you're marketing your firm to new customers, you better be able to provide them service when they do business with you."
--- Arthur Levitt
A commitment to always keep your marketing strategy honest is a must. You've heard before that you should aim to under-promise and over-deliver. Your reputation is a big part of your marketing plan. When word-of-mouth advertising begins to work for you, you know that you are delivering on your promises. Always be prepared to back up any claims you make in your marketing campaign.
"There's been too much attention on marketing. Can't we just talk about the paintings?"
--- Julian Schnabel
Talking up your products and services, either by you or others is great marketing. Some of the best businesses have ambassadors carrying the marketing message to the masses without even knowing it.
It is great to create a marketing plan and stick to it. Realize that it is a living plan meaning it can change with the changes of your business environment. However, marketing is just one part of the puzzle, but it is a necessary piece. Combined with providing great customer service, great products, and a great working environment, a great marketing strategy ensures success.
OSHA Hazard Communication Standard - What it Means for the Imaging Community
By Jennifer LeClaire
The new regulations provide specific information that must be included on each label. The major change includes the use of pictograms. Employers must train their employees to recognize the new warning labels and SDS formats by December 1, 2013. Are you compliant?
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What is Lenticular Imaging and Why Should You Know About It?
By Izzy Bromberg
Lenticular imaging technology of today has morphed an old print technology into new stratospheres and consequently breathing new life and profit potential for printers and marketers alike.
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