Growth Insights for CEOs

Striking the Right Marketing Balance

Posted by Stijn Hendrikse

Five Ways To Tip The Scales In Your Favor

Striking the right marketing balance.jpgToday’s business is under extreme pressure to employ go-to market tactics that are spendy, flashy and noisy – but after the smoke clears, have they truly engaged their intended consumer for the long-term relationship?

So how do contemporary businesses strike the balance between the short-term marketing tactics that have a very quick return – but are also less scalable, and inhibit exponential growth -- and others that have a far longer return?

Fortunately, I do not think that these concepts are mutually exclusive – that, in fact, there are some marketing levers that are attention grabbing, but inherently scalable, and – with the right balance -- will eventually deliver the kind of consumer loyalty and stickiness that you’re looking for. Here are just a few examples of what I’m talking about:

1. Pay-Per-Click versus Solid Web Development: Fight the instinct to dump a horde of cash into search marketing right from the get-go. Instead, first invest in a homepage that makes your brand look good and help cultivate support from shareholders and prospective customers and brand ambassadors.

Marketing-Tactics-graph2. ROI Isn’t Always EVERYTHING: The desire for quick results has abetted a dangerous trend – that everything has to have a measurable ROI. Now, it’s true that most marketing tactics these days can be measured for conversions – whether it’s content sharing or sales. But given that some marketing levers are meant to be viewed as an investment, over time, it’s important to emphasize this when dealing with tactics on the “B-side” of the curve – where the longer-term growth will be derived from.

3. Social For Today, Social For Tomorrow: Twitter and Facebook – which live firmly on the upper-left of the curve graphic, are vehicles that are geared for immediacy – more noise, more followers, more likes, etc. In the short term, you may win the popularity contest (which is helpful), but you’ll need a “long tail” to whip your way to a socially-plugged in future. Long-tail marketing – using networks like Quora, Reddit, Disqus or even some LinkedIn groups – are where you’ll cultivate long-term positive social impact. 

4. Home Pages versus Landing Pages: We’ve established the importance of a nice homepage – important in the “upper-left” part of our marketing world as it will build your domain authority. But over time, the balance should include multiple dedicated landing pages that help you convert better and ensure relevancy with a targeted component of your customer base.

5. A Cool Brand Is Only The Start: Of course you need to launch with a great logo, a well-conceived company or brand name, eye-catching colors and the like. You’ll need these items to be taken seriously and to convey a professional attitude. But again, when the scales tip toward the lower-right part of our graph, you need to start A/B testing everything – alternate versions of logos, content, messaging, email headlines, etc. This will ensure you remain current with those people who constitute your loyal consumer base. 

A marketing balance – like any effort that requires a modulated approach – can in fact be a challenge to achieve, given the pressures at most companies to get it done yesterday. But I hope, between what we’ve discussed here, and the accompanying chart, that you can find the right fulcrum for your enterprise and resist the entreaties to overspend on today’s tactics.

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