Advertising and marketing are the fuel that propels every business down the Marketing Highway. With enough fuel in your tank, you can accelerate and pass your competition. Or, you can choose to be conservative and just keep up with traffic. The worst mistake any business can make is to let up on the gas, or worst, shut off the engine and coast to save gas. Once a business realizes that everyone is passing them by, they have two choices: restart their engine and floor it to try and regain speed, or continue to coast to a stop, which means going out of business It is no secret that restarting and accelerating takes more fuel and time to regain what was lost, than staying at a steady speed. Studies have shown that businesses that stop marketing for one year, requires up to seven times as much cost and effort to recover what they lost.
Over the years, I have heard many reasons why clients want to cut back, or even stop their advertising programs. Most of it has been because of the lack of understanding, or appreciation for the value of marketing cutting costs, along with the misconception that they can save money and still retain their level of sales. Naive marketers may think of adverting expenditures as overhead that can be cut or redirected at any time. Some consider it a necessary evil and the money can be better spent elsewhere. These are fatal mistakes.
A very successful client once informed me, “We need to stop all advertising for a couple of months, because I need the money to rewire the shop.” That would be like saying, “I can’t put gas in my tank for a few months because I am buying new tires.” Thank goodness I was able to convince him to continue marketing, and today that firm is a multi-million dollar enterprise.
The fact is, all businesses want to be on the road to success. However, traffic varies with each… industry… products and services… competition… sales goals… and the companies’ ability to sustain their marketing. Traveling on the marketing highway is a combination of a suitable vehicle, that has been tuned-up for maximum performance and adequate fuel to propel it.
In this analogy; The vehicle is the size, capabilities and efficiency of the business structure, products and services. Like all vehicles, businesses are different, ranging from small compacts to large commercial models. The tune-up is the marketing strategy that maximizes performance to reach yours goals. The fuel is the marketing budget needed to sustain the journey.
So, whether you are an existing business that has been on the road for while, or a startup enterprise that is planning a trip. It all starts with a Marketing Analysis to determine company factors and opportunities, and to structure a marketing strategy for the optimum performance and a budget to move down the road. Contact: Tom Smisek, Marketing Consultant Orange County.