by Jeannette K. Waldie, CPP APMP Fellow
I work with clients on a wide range of business development and business communication projects. It no longer surprises me that they think of the project as a stand-alone effort, with no connection or influence with the rest of their communication, whether it is social media, their website, sales or even proposal development.
So why is that a problem? The problem is this – when you and your employees are not consistent in what you tell your customers what do you, why you do it, and why they want to hire your service or product, you are diluting your brand and your message. You also spend more money than you need to on your business development and marketing efforts.
Here’s what you can do about it:
- Have an annual review of all your marketing material, including your website content and social media. Look at where the message has strayed or become diluted. Even more importantly, does your message/slogan/tagline still get a response from your customers? Or has a new message appeared that gets a better response rate?
- Survey your customers at the end of each project or order and ask their opinion about your company, service, or products. Ask them what they think makes you great! Record their responses and include them in your annual marketing review.
- For each new marketing effort, have a member from each department the effort will touch involved.
- Have your sales and marketing team survey all departments for input when developing new material. Trust me! They’d rather have all the information up front, even if it is more than they need, than scramble to make changes later.
- Pay attention to what marketing or business development collateral are impacted by your new project. For example, if you create a great new resume for a senior executive, make sure the new information is updated in his master resume and on his bio listed on the website. Otherwise, you will have a disconnect that might make your potential client go “what?”
- Share any new materials with the whole company! Create a central repository where employees, especially marketing and business development staff can find it. That will save time and money because they can reuse rather than creating something from scratch.
Whenever we create a new marketing piece for my company, we review the website content to see how it needs to incorporate that information. We also look at resumes to see how they need to be updated to highlight related experience. We’ll also look at how we want to introduce the information using social media. When we do this, we are connecting the dots between all our communication. We will also have a random number of Associates review the new marketing piece and ask them “does this match who we are and who we say we are?” Lastly, we store the new marketing piece with all our other marketing, and business development collates on our cloud-based drive, so everyone can easily access the information.
By linking all your communication and marketing collateral and resources together, you deliver a consistent message to your customers and increase the impact of your message.