“Last year we embarked on the continuous journey of making our company stronger and better. The reason we were even able to start such a journey was we were building on an already strong foundation of quality, design, and service.
Our first step was to launch a stronger and updated brand. One that through consistent usage, will grow our perceived quality, name recognition, and customer loyalty.
This past year we have been concentrating on new and improved methods of customer communications and effective sales and marketing. We started this segment of our journey with a statement that was made at one of our planning sessions with our creative design firm: ‘Customers are still buying but they are buying differently.’ This statement becomes even more powerful given our present economic environment.
We also agreed upon four givens:
- It still takes on average seven contacts to make a sale
- Conventional approaches of direct mail and phone campaigns are becoming more costly and time consuming with in many cases response lead times being too long
- It is important to control costs and yet successful organizations do not cut marketing and sales activities during economic down times.
- And probably the most telling – over 72% of consumers now communicate electronically
So what is New Media Marketing? Would be more then happy to discuss in more detail the hows, whats, whens, and where but you will get a good picture by giving some examples of what we are implementing to bring more prospects into our community of buyers using today’s technology.
- More then ever, the web site becomes critical. We are completely overhauling our present web site to bring it from what is known as Web 1.0 (information only) to today’s Web 2.0. Today’s consumers look for and expect not only information but also collaboration and personalization. Our new look will be more simple, cleaner, and easier to navigate with the ability for viewers to ‘tap’ into other channels of communications and discussion. Also our brand will be more dominant. The web is one of if not the most important vehicle for branding in today’s business environment.
- You will start seeing on all of our electronic communications (web, email, electronic newsletters, etc) what we call “opt-in” capabilities. We are starting to constantly offer and request that our future and present community of buyers choose to provide their name and email. With these two pieces of information, we can proactively – electronically market without becoming spammers.
- In the very near future, we will be introducing our blog. We are still working on a name and look, but this will provide another networking channel where we will be able to provide information and opinions on various topics. Our blogs will encourage readers to make comments that we will respond to. We will be blogging at least twice a week. Blogs are critical to providing collaboration capabilities and also providing timely and up-to-date communications. From our blogs, viewers will also be able to link to our new web site.
- We will be re-launching our newsletter. But it will now take the form of a html(nice looking) email. These are known as ezines –electronic magazines. When fully implemented, we will be publishing once a month. Articles will have links to our blogs and web site for additional information.
- We will be expanding our email campaigns. We will not be abandoning totally direct mail, but a well designed, visual email piece is much more cost effective. It is how people now communicate and with email you get feedback within 48 hours not weeks.
- Like it or not, one of the fastest growing and impactful communications channels are the Social Media Channels. Facebook, Plaxo, LinkedIN, Twitter, etc. are becoming dominant forces in not only personal networking but also business networking. You will be seeing not only our company but each staff member, establishing presence in these Social Media Channels with always a think back to our web site. As a side note we have found out that these Social Media channels are one of the major methods that the googles of the world determine where your site appears on a web search.
- We will then move on to podcasts (both audio and video) so that we can provide communications on a longer term bases.
This sounds like a full plate and it is. But we are very excited. It is something that we all need to do to stay competitive. You see the secret is that every time someone clicks on our web site or clicks on our blog and from there clicks to our web site or clicks to open an email or clicks to read our ezine and from there our blog, etc - each one of those clicks is one of the 7 needed to move a prospect or keep a current client in our buying community. “