First things first, let’s rid some marketing “myths.”
All marketing does not take years and years to come to fruition. It may take years to achieve the end goal your company is working toward, however results and success come in all shapes and sizes prior to.
All marketing does not have to be extremely expensive. Yes, some people and some companies take a large percentage of profits and put it back into their company. Yes, others spend thousands of dollars on an initial investment or for a boost, if you will. But not every person and company spends an arm and a leg on marketing.
Marketing is always evolving, always changing, and typically remains somewhat unpredictable in terms of exact results. That’s why marketers now use A/B testing, primary and secondary research, hypotheses, and more—they prepare, watch, digest, and tweak the process to then repeat it until that particular effort reaps the benefits or results that he or she wants or needs.
But besides spreading the name of your company through different channels and to different types of consumers, what are the actual benefits on a day-to-day outlook? Is marketing and advertising truly necessary and essential to your company’s success? Yes. And ‘yes’ a million times over again.
No matter the size, industry, or success rate of your gig, it is in your best interest to invest in marketing. In fact, marketing should be included in budget expenses from the very beginning—in the planning and forecasting of your business. But why? Especially when you have a well thought out budget and feel there is absolutely no extra room (or finances remaining) to market.
Most entrepreneurs use or pay for marketing with the goal of gaining more brand awareness. It WORKS. It is impossible to push advertising, information, etc. in front of thousands of faces and not see positive results in awareness—not growth, awareness. You might not be a Coca-Cola fan, but you definitely know who and what the company is—right? It’s all due to advertisements and word-of-mouth. Awareness means eyeballs, and you need all eyes on your company.
Choosing a Marketer
Now if that’s not enough to convince you, the next step after awareness is making the choice. The choice that your customers have when deciding on you versus the “other guy.” A company with more brand awareness or more eyeballs, stronger marketing efforts, and a more related approach to its customers will win. In this case, a related approach is just one that matches the needs of your customers to the benefits and attributions of your company; what gives your prospective customers (and your competitions’ prospective customers) the best bang for their buck? Who do they relate the most to? Who do they want to buy from? Marketing will help answer all of these questions and form them into a plan to implement. The result? Customer acquisition and customer growth.
Marketing not only helps companies determine what they should offer, whom it should be offered to, but also how you offer it. The “how” holds the greatest importance. Promoting your company on the best channels, at the right time, with the perfect way of communication is tough; it requires research, planning, goal setting, and a lot of time. That’s why marketers exist and are here to help you put your plans into actions. Check out some of the best talent in the industry on UpWork, a platform that matches professionals to those seeking expertise or specialized help.
Not everyone’s marketing goals or efforts should be or will be the same, so avoid playing copycat. Discover your needs, implement your goals, and create a budget best suited for your business.
To start, small businesses are usually advised to spend a percentage of their gross revenue on marketing; there are many online budget calculators to help determine the exact number you should or should be dedicating to advertising.
Start crunching those numbers, setting your goals, and seeking out guidance for marketing. Be strategic in planning. Invest in your company. And watch it all grow!