This morning, during a breakfast meeting, I was reminded that marketing can mean many different things to different people. In discussion with a local business man, we explored the marketing of a new service offering. It became clear that his approach and mine would differ dramatically, so I told him the following story.
I remember speaking for SME clients of one of the ‘big four’ banks a few years back and, following a 90 minute marketing workshop, I asked one of the delegates what had piqued his interest. His response was “The marketing bit!”
I was thrown for a few seconds as the entire 90 minutes was devoted to marketing. When I questioned him further it became very evident that his perception of what marketing was, and wasn’t, also differed dramatically from mine.
These days, I explain marketing as “Anything, and everything, that interacts, in any way, with prospective, existing and past clients to help them understand the value of buying from you and not your competitors and can help them to make a qualified decision”.
I often explain that every interaction has the possibility of leverage – from emails and website content, how the phones are answered, through the entire sales process, including proposals, to strategies for retaining and maximising the lifetime value of clients – and many more. Too many businesses that I have analysed only focus on what they consider key areas – often it’s just lead generation. Important as that is, it’s only one area where you can leverage the opportunities to build a sustainable, profitable and maximised business.
If you’d like to discuss some of the other possibilities, please feel free to get in touch.