Every business owner wants to be sure each dollar they invested into marketing (or anything else for that matter), brings the highest return possible. As usual it’s easier said than done, so let’s look into some of the ways that lead to smarter allocation of your marketing money.
1. Know your goals
As simple as this may sound, many businesses fail to have a clear and measurable goal. To increase turnover is not a proper goal, since you would already achieve it by selling one additional item. Not exactly the result you would expect, is it? Same goes with raising brand awareness, growth and many other instances.
When setting your marketing goals make sure they are attainable, time-bound and measurable. You will not be able to optimize if you do not know how far along in achieving your goals you are.
Setting KPIs (key performance indicators) could also help with your marketing optimization and achievement of the goals you have set. This would allow measuring your progress, as well as it would help with planning and overall understanding of where you are headed and what it takes to get there.
2. Do your homework
In marketing many things are interconnected – if you do not do your homework, it is very likely you will be wasting a portion of your marketing budget on things that bring little to no value. And by homework I mean marketing planning.
In order to prepare a proper marketing plan you need to answer lots of important questions about your business and environment it’s operating in. By answering them you get an understanding of what measures are likely to work in your business, what timing you should use for various promotions, how and what you should communicate, how to allocate your beverage marketing budget to get the best results and so on.
In addition to all of that, a predefined plan would prevent you from making impulsive and reckless marketing decisions, which usually lead to excessive expenditure.
Even if you have a marketing implementation plan for an entire year, you still need to analyze if the measures you have picked are bringing the value you expected. Monitor each of the tools you use every once in a while.
If you see that something is using a significant amount of your beverage marketing budget but is not delivering, go into the whys and wherefores of the situation. If possible, solve the cause of the problem, if not, reallocate the funds to the tools that proved to bring higher return on investment.
Please note, that some of the marketing measures you use, might bring results later than others or in combination with other measures, so do not omit them if the result is not as good as you expected straight away. Give some time for the market to react. Jumping from one approach to another too soon can also cause losses.
4. Make sure you are sending the right message to the right audience
As already mentioned in my earlier posts, it’s a huge waste of time and money, if you try to reach everyone. If you do not know your target and what they want to hear, you might just be sending the wrong message.
This is very much related to the analyzing part, since some measures you have taken might not work not because they were wrong entirely but rather it could be that the implementation was lacking at some point. Therefore make sure you know your target and have your positioning strategy in place before even starting with any kind of communication.
There might be some general rules that work for your type of business and it is very likely it would work for you too. However in marketing one size never fits all, so you can come up with the most relevant marketing decisions only by trying different combinations of tools and techniques out for yourself.
You can test many things without taking much risk, e.g. using A/B testing for your website, organizing a central location test or a focus group to get to know how a portion of your audience reacts to your new packaging design, taste of your beverage etc. And I am not even talking about all the guerrilla methods you could try out.
I hope this helps. Do you have some thoughts to share on the topic? What other marketing-related issues are you struggling with? Drop us a line or leave a comment below.
Original article was published in Beverage Industry Blog