1 piece of advice that will improve your marketing

So you want to improve your marketing? Well brace yourself, I have a simple tip that will get you back on track.

One of the most influential people in the development of my approach to marketing, was a consultant I worked with for all too short a time, when I was in London. A chap called Ian Thomas, who gave me the most fascinating and enjoyable job interview of my life and has since set up a brand consultancy in Oxfordshire.

Anyway….Ian pointed out to the company I had just started working for that we needed to “Clear up, Calm down and Concentrate”. I expect he says this to most businesses. I do. The fact is that people tend to spread their efforts too thinly instead of gradually trying different things, monitoring what works best and doing more of that.

It sounds simple – and it is. But it’s a trap that most businesses fall into and until this stops, you will struggle to improve your marketing.

It’s OK to reduce the amount of marketing activity that you do so you can do less, better. This might sound counter-intuitive but there’s no point in being a busy fool if it’s not yielding the desired results. After all, it’s quality not quantity that counts.

What’s more, try to match effort with activity geared towards achieving the objectives without getting distracted into spending time and money on keeping up with competitors or trying the latest trend. By all means schedule in some trials – and keep reading and learning – but look for an appropriate time to test it out. Look at your plan and spot a time where there’s the a lull in activity then leap on the opportunity to try out a couple of new things.

Now back to those all important objectives: for every new idea you need to trace it back to an objective, Which objective does it help to achieve? Is it the best way to reach that target market? What results to do you hope for, specifically? How soon will you see those results? Is it worth the effort / spend? Once that’s all clear. Crack on!

For example, there really is no point in spending a lot of time and effort trying to get an article in the Telegraph if your objective is to get more local business. Yes, it’s nice to see your name in a respected broadsheet but, the truth is, this type of activity is more closely aligned with increasing national visibility of your brand and bolstering credibility, not driving local sales. It’s like using a paintbrush to hammer a nail into a plank – it’s the wrong tool for the job.

And finally, everyone in the team should be able to tell you your business & marketing objectives. The more they know the more they can help to focus effort on the right activities. Make this small change and I promise you will quickly improve your marketing and yield better results.