If you’ve looked through any of our services pages, then you’ll see that we regularly ask the questions;” What”, Why?” and “How?”. This is because these are the three most important questions that any marketer, PR practitioner or copywriter should be asking.
- What do you want to do?
- Why do you want to do it?
- How will you do it?
In our view, great marketing should always achieve something.
If you are investing your hard-earned marketing budget into a new resource (whether it’s a series of blog posts, a corporate magazine or even a corporate event) then it’s vital that you’re clear on what you’re trying to achieve. Without this clarity, it’s almost impossible to be successful with your marketing goals.
At Gatekeeper Communications, we work closely with our clients to become an extension of their business. We always take the time to help our clients understand what they are trying to say, which audience they want to reach, and what outcome they want to achieve. This approach allows us to ensure that our clients are making the most of their marketing budgets and experiencing the most effective value for money.
We’ve worked with many of our clients for several years and our innate understanding means that we know exactly what they want to achieve, and how. But for new clients and projects, we always go back to these three simple questions.
What do you want to do?
When you’re considering your marketing mix, then it’s important to ensure that your strategy is in place before you start thinking of what specific tactics you want to use.
This means that you need to decide what you want to achieve. Are you looking to engage with new customers or are you reaching out to your existing customer base? Do you have a specific product or service that you are trying to sell, or are you simply trying to increase the number of followers that you have on social media?
Marketing has so many different facets, that it’s important to be clear about what you want to achieve before deciding on how you want to do it.
Why do you want to do it?
Once you’ve decided what you want to achieve, it’s important to think about “why?”. Is it because it will genuinely make a difference to your business, or is it because you’ve seen competitors doing something similar and you want to copy them?
The “why” of your strategy is just as important as the “what”.
Doing something just because everyone else is doing it, is one of the easiest ways to waste a large proportion of your marketing budget. We understand that marketing is a very individual process. What works well for some companies may not work well for others.
So much can depend upon who you are as a brand, what services you offer and what sectors you work in. It can even depend on where you are located in the country; for example, if you’re a rural Suffolk company, you could make public jokes about farm life but if you were a city-based organisation, any rural jokes could easily be lost in translation and come across as patronising and ill-intentioned.
Once you are clear on what you want to do, and you’re confident that you have valid reasons for why you want to do something, you can start to think about your “How”?
How will you do it?
The “How” of your marketing strategy will determine the specific tactics.
Perhaps you want to use your website to generate blog content which will answer any common Google searches. Or maybe you want to increase your social media output to boost your audience reach and engagement. You may want to host an event which will allow you to meet your audience face-to-face.
It’s almost certain that whatever you want to do, there may be a variety of tactics which will work together in harmony to achieve the same goal. But it’s important to remember that you need to evaluate each tactic on its own merit. You need to be confident that the various “how’s” will each be effective.
Once you’ve determined your specific tactics, we recommend incorporating a mild SWOT analysis of each tactic – this way, you can establish how much time is worth spending on each item, and what levels of investment may be required. Those with the biggest Strengths/Opportunities will have a much greater impact than those with high levels of Weaknesses/Threats.
Independent advice can be hugely beneficial
If you’re a small company, then it can be easy to get lost with your marketing. After all, you’ll be so closely involved that it’s sometimes difficult to evaluate if something will work effectively. This is where external, independent advice can be hugely beneficial.
We regularly work with clients to offer comprehensive healthchecks to determine if their marketing is working as effectively as they could. We take the time to look at whether the content matches the brand, or if it’s engaging the audience and allowing you to achieve what you set out to do. Our report not only identifies what your strengths are, but it also allows you to benefit from a series of recommendations to make further improvements.