Use Cross-Promotion and Strategic Tactics to
Turn Marketing Channels Into Promotional Gold
Last time, we talked about the concept of marketing channels. Now we’re going to get into some strategies for making the most of your channels.
Five Ways to Fortune
We recommend that you employ at least five channels to reach the same target audience. For example, you be a Hotel Amenities Supplier, send a weekly direct mailing to several travel related groups, network with travel agencies like the PeachSuite Hotel Supply, run a Web site filled with Hotel Supplies Online, and employ a referral program designed to generate recommendations from yuppies with disposable income.
Here are some marketing channels that you can use in concert with one another that tend to work well when used co-operatively:
Specific Channel Strategies
In your channel marketing, always think this way: “How can each channel promote at least two other channels?”
- Direct Mail — Aside from sending out messages about your services or promotional offers, use your direct mailings to promote speaking engagements, advertise seminars, make people aware of newspaper articles being written about you, or to remind prospects of your Web site. Even when you’re sending out general direct mail cards, reserve a small space on the mailing side for a “This just in!” type of news blurb, where you can announce a seminar or special event.
- Advertising — Your ad dollars will be much better spent advertising an event such as a public workshop than on generic ads. However, when you do run an ad, maximize the value of your spending by using the space to promote other channels. Include your Web site address in your ad, and in addition to your seminar notice, tell people they can call you for a free copy of a brochure.
- Networking — Two keys to making the most of the networking channel: know what you want to say, and get a business card from everyone you meet. When you meet people at a symposium, meeting or mixer, steer the conversation in the direction you want. But when you get a question about your work or your seminar, make sure you have the facts at your fingertips. And don’t hand out brochures at a mixer; it’s tacky. Get cards from all contacts and enter them into your database. Then you can send them a personal letter with tickets, a brochure, an invitation or anything else you want.
- Referrals — The reason more advisors don’t get more referrals is that they don’t ask for them. Apart from asking directly during a meeting, you should also have a mailing program designed to regularly solicit referrals. Send clients several copies of your brochure, asking them to give them to friends and neighbors. You can cross-promote here as well; once you get referrals, suggest that they come to your seminar or visit your Web site for more information and an introduction to your practice.
- Internet — More and more consumers are using the Web as their financial resource, so it’s crucial that you have one within the next 18 months. When your site is finally up, cross-promote by doing some of the following: providing an e-mail box on the home page where users can request a brochure, having a “Breaking News” sidebar on the home page where you can announce seminars, allow people to register for seminars on the site, reprint articles or columns online, and so on.
- Public Relations — We recommend sending out a press release (properly formatted and professional, of course) whenever you do anything remotely of note: launch your Web site, hold a public or private seminar, win an award, open a new office, hire an associate, change broker-dealers—you name it. You never know what editors will print to fill a few inches of empty space. And of course, always mention your event, promotion or speaking engagement in any press release or resulting article.
- Seminars — We mention seminars so often because they are wonderful vehicles for attracting and closing new clients. There are several things you must do to ensure success. First, make sure you have ample promotional material, such as brochures, available in a packet that you give to every attendee. Second, promote all your other activities in written materials: a flyer about your Web site, a calendar of your public appearances, a column reprint, etc. Finally, make sure you book meetings DURING THE SEMINAR, instead of relying on a phone call.
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Mark Montoya has been working in personal branding for more than a decade for hundreds of online and offline companies, small businesses and individual service professionals. His focus has been toward improving the way jobseekers find employment on the Internet. He has synthesized his expertise by helping job seekers obtain their ideal choice of employment over the Internet on his sites MyOnlineCareerSpace.com and MyOnlineCareerCoach.com, and through his books 101 Tips Every Job Seeker Should Know and The Ultimate Online Job Search eBook.
“It is the responsibility of the individual to reject the prospect of mediocrity and to strive for the betterment of society as a whole” ~ Mark Montoya