When you have an integrated marketing strategy, you can drive your online marketing program with confidence. That means planning on paper, including mapping out a purpose statement, value statements, customer personas (or segmenting), calculating customer lifetime value, and defining ways to improve and narrowly target all marketing material.
Internally-directed marketing strategies, which many companies say they lack (46% in fact!*), means that you might be:
- Driven by external marketing hot trends – that may not work for your audience
- Confusing strategy with tactics, like posting on Facebook (which is a tactic)
- Confused whether content and social media sharing is going to work or is working.
Starting with Value for the Client
It all starts with knowing your client and understanding the value you provide for them. And it’s not about years of experience, customer service, product quality, or anything else internal. If you read some of your testimonials, it might key you into some aspects that your clients love about what you deliver.
Write a Purpose-Driven Statement that you will keep internal. If the company has a purpose-driven statement written down, it can drive the larger marketing strategy.
Next, it has to come across in all marketing communications in its tone and personality. If you say your organisation will be: friendly and fully communicative, then does the website copy and brochure copy sound friendly? Do the account service people ensure full communication once a person comes on board?
We can brainstorm about these narratives by looking at the definite business value provided. The purpose-driven statement of Power of Words could be:
Listening to and empowering the business leader to impart their origin story and values, and letting these drive the language: Story-driven writing
What could your purpose-driven statement be? Ensure you write it out once in full (4-5 sentences) then in one sentence, and simpler still, again in a short phrase.
Are you Selling them Functions, but Missing their Emotional Needs?
Anthony Robbins found that people have certain emotional needs that underly their actions:
- Significance – e.g. social status, a high sense of worth
Which of these needs is most driving your users or clients? When most makers and doers talk about what they do, they focus on form and function. But what the customer wants is usually stemming from an emotional need.
And that emotional benefit will be a more powerful motivator than a set of features. That’s why a lot of mass advertising concentrates on a tangible customer benefit or outcome. Rather than talk about the beans in the coffee, they share a good brew with family (connection/love)… or seem to become more attractive with a celebrity (significance)
Is there some hidden value in your offering that overrides any penny-pinching they might have?
Client Segmentation and Common Needs
Another aspect of Integrated Marketing is research into needs of your clients. There will be various personalities that come to your site or presentations… and although each will have stronger need for say security, or new tech, or more status, a lot of these personas will have common needs.
This breaking up of customers into defined groups to allow for targeted marketing is called customer segmentation. This is kind of faceless stuff, like Marketing Mgrs & Directors, companies that have 20-50 employees, etc. It doesn’t get to the reasons for doing business with you.
But customer personas allows for a deeper kind of analysis.
Let’s look at the varied customer personas for an integrative marketing & finance cloud consultancy. I’ve added some invented motivations:
…. Small business consultants – who want affordable solutions that free up time
…. Marcomms Managers – who want to look good to their leaders and create better efficiency in their department
…. Financial Controllers – who want to have tech that works much better than currently (a focus on detail) – which will help them worry less about accuracy.
There are two crossovers here in the drive for better efficiency, but the emotional needs are going to be more important.
In a full customer persona though, you will look at roles/responsibilities, pain points, their problems, what options they have for solving the problem, and how it informs their behaviour. This full analysis will drive us to develop a better marketing message that speaks to their emotional needs.
Another aspect of integrated marketing strategy is defining the lifetime value of clients.
Client/Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)
This is based on:
- The last time they bought from you, how much? Work out the average value of a sale.
- How many sales do you get per year?
- How many years do they stay (on average)?
Multiply all these and then deduct the cost of doing a sale (acquisition cost) and direct overhead. This equals: $….. for each client.
When you have the Client Lifetime Value, you can analyse various client segments and look at what is profitable. You’ll also know the value you can spend on marketing and understand why retention and loyalty is so important.
When you have CRM software that helps this along, such as Salesforce or Zoho, you can get a deeper understanding of CLV and multiple-time clients/buyers.
Then surveys (which test loyalty and assess advocates in an easy 1-10 scale) can indicate if your level of delivery is on target and if someone might promote your brand to others.
You might not even have a survey… but always have an option at the bottom of client induction forms to promote your service to their friends. This will indicate the percentage of people who feel confident enough to refer you or at least advocate your service. That’s why an online form is way better – it provides easy access to social sharing through share buttons.
There are indications about what is most popular in your field that can be gathered from Google searches. This often shows up in Search Console data.
This does not mean the searchers are ready to buy – but an experienced marketer can understand what intent people will generally have by their keywords. Are they ready to hire or buy… or are they informing themselves with a longer question or general phrase?
So, keyword research is used here to find what part of the ‘customer journey’ they’re in when they come onto your blog or website pages. (Whereas other uses of these keywords come later on).
You can also use Google Trends for comparing 2-3 topics of competing trend searches that might be happening in your area. It can help with seeing the seasonal trends as well as what is growing in popularity over the past few years.
What Clever Integrated Marketing Strategy will you Form?
Now, you will need to gather all this data (keyword lists, Google Trends, and Search Console actual search keywords) into a clear and succinct marketing plan. This can then be used for:
- planning website content, blogs, email content, event descriptions, etc
- briefing external writers
- your search engine marketing keywords and advertising
In the next step, you can plan a content calendar and associated images that meets the trends data, events in the world, and the needs of your defined client personas.
Thank you to Lynda.com ‘Building an Integrated Online Marketing Plan’ for the base theories in this article.
Please ask us for a free website content review or a personal briefing to better understand how content marketing can target key clients for you.