Did you notice the heavy focus at Print 17 on selling multi-channel marketing campaigns? It’s no wonder. These campaigns offer a great opportunity for growth. Unfortunately, I’ve seen more companies fail than succeed at doing it. Why is that? Lack the knowledge and confidence. It’s far too easy to stick within one’s comfort (knowledge) zone. To most companies, that’s ink on paper.
Think about how confident you are discussing and selling print. Imagine having the same confidence with multichannel solutions. That confidence would be a game changer, and gaining it is easier than you might think. Here are five steps to planning and setting up a process for developing the confidence to succeed.
- Start to think like a marketer.
Think like a marketer and watch your confidence soar. Many of these opportunities are free. Join marketing groups on LinkedIn. Subscribe to three to five marketing newsletters—and read them. (There are hundreds to choose from.) Join the DMA. Attend marketing events and conferences.
- Tap the experience of others.
Always be looking for marketing examples that enlighten and inspire you. Look for solutions you can promote to your target audience. You are bombarded with marketing messages every day. Make note of ones that stand out and why you like or dislike them. Keep an eye out for great packaging, direct mail, retail, email, social media, vehicle wraps, and client retention programs. Those from CVS and Kohl’s come to mind.
- Take a multichannel approach to your own marketing.
The best way to promote your multichannel marketing services is to use them yourself. When it comes to trust and credibility, seeing is believing, right? I see this almost every day. Print providers successful at selling marketing services are utilizing a multichannel approach in their own marketing.
- Start with the 90-day rule. Touch clients and prospects every 90 days with print.
- Be in their inbox. Add a monthly or quarterly email component as part of your push strategy.
- Pull them in with helpful blog content.
- Connect and engage with them on social media.
- All content should adhere to the 80/20 principle. Eighty percent of your content should be customer-focused. Twenty percent should be company focused.
“Know me. Trust me. Like me.” Let this principle guide your marketing efforts.
- Focus your efforts on a single solution.
There are tons of options under the umbrella of multichannel marketing. Being a “mater of all” is difficult. In fact, it is often the reason these efforts fail. Focusing on one solution provides a much shorter path to expert status and confidence.
- Pick a service and give it a name.
- Develop a tag line, followed by a bulleted point description that focuses on the benefits.
- Add customer testimonials as you get them.
- Use this content to create a sell sheet and product page for your website.
- Promote (push) this content via direct mail, email, social media, and blog.
Focusing on one multichannel service—and doing it really well—will make all of the above a very easy task.
- Develop a client retention service.
Client retention services offer a great selling proposition, and there is a wealth of content to support their importance. Customer retention is also scalable. Once you sell a customer retention program, it provides recurring revenue. Consider re-marketing or focusing on specific vertical markets, such as nonprofit fundraising or higher education recruitment, but keep in mind that a singular service focus providers tends to be an easier path to success than vertical markets.
Success with multichannel marketing will depend on your attitude. Think of developing your expertise as an opportunity, not a daunting challenge. Learning marketing is infectious and refreshing. Gaining expertise leads to confidence and enthusiasm. That translates into sales and success.
Always be reviewing and adjusting your efforts. Keep an open mind and listen to your customers and prospects. What are their challenges and obstacles? Your job is not to sell print (although that is ultimately what you want to do), but to help other companies. Print is a tool to get where they need to go. So are email, mobile, social media, and other channels.
When you start to adjust your mindset, you will gain knowledge and insights. Use this knowledge to navigate the future of your service offerings!