Too much marketing is an afterthought – companies launch campaigns when they need business. The problem with this approach, of course, is the timing. If you wait until you need business to seek it out, you are a bit late to the races.
The 1st quarter of 2016 is well behind us. What better time to evaluate our progress to date? Better now than playing catch up in August!
When business is good, many companies lay off their marketing efforts. Big mistake. Quiet spells in marketing today inevitably equate to slow business periods in the future. If we are to maintain a consistent flow of income, marketing must be a constant.
Marketing, quite simply, drives sales. It is highly likely your sales this month are the result of marketing you conducted 3 months ago when business was slow and you had the time to cycle through your marketing tactics. When business picks up, we tend to grace our marketing efforts with a lesser priority. Thus, we practically ensure the next slow period.
Here are a few tips to keep business walking through the door twelve months a year.
Each and every day, touch an existing client. Call, e-mail, send a newsletter, attend an event.
Each and every day, locate a new prospect. Did you go to the barber? You were surrounded by prospects. Did you have your car serviced? Same thing. Get pulled for speeding? Never quit thinking about marketing.
Periodically research your competitors. How are they reaching out to potential clients? If it is working for them, consider how their tactics might work for you. Better yet, let’s one up their tactics. Look to improve your competition’s best efforts.
Monthly, review your marketing plan. Are you where you hoped to be after the first quarter? If not, can you ascertain why?
Quarterly, rewrite key portions of your plan. Get outside assistance if you need it. Our industry is graced with loads of low-cost assistance with marketing, sales and customer service.
Yogi Berra once said if you don’t know where you are going, you might not get there. Business is tough and competitive, but it happens one client at a time. Work with a plan. Set a goal for yourself of adding one client a month to your existing roster. With diligence and hard work, that is an achievable goal for anyone.
Richard Earls is the Publisher of Travel Research Online, an online travel industry resource dedicated to enhancing the professional lives of travel agents.