Monday, April 23, 2018

Brand GPS: 9 Turns to Keep You from Going South

A company's advertising/marketing/branding plan provides vision and strategy for the tactical implementation of its brand. This is the launch pad, fuel, and navigation system for your firm's success. It provides the perfect road map for not only the brand's direction, but also the grounding on which its advertising and marketing strategies are developed.

9 steps to targeted directional marketing
  1. The organization's inspiration: What was the need that inspired its inception? The answer will be your unique mission.
  2. The firm's story: Who are the founders and why did they start the organization? How long has it been around and how has it evolved? What are its future plans?
  3. Review the touch: Review your touch points with your prospect and customer. This includes all printed material, your online presence, electronic and traditional communication, and advertisements and P/R. Find the unification of a singular message. If there isn't one, create it.
  4. Survey the landscape: Survey both your internal and external contacts. Ask their opinions about quality, quantity, responsiveness, understanding of the organization's mission and purpose, availability, engagement, etc. Use mostly multiple choice questions for better metrics, but offer comment sections and open ended questions to gain greater insight.
  5. Review the target: Your firm's appeal. This includes age, gender, economic status, special interests, and personality profiles. Consider the future as well. To whom do you want to appeal? What are the growth potentials of your current market compared to other markets?
  6. Spending trends: What's your industry doing? What kind of publications are available that offer a future look into the growth/loss possibilities for your industry? Are there technological advances or government regulations you need to consider?
  7. Online Analytics: Run diagnostics on your online presence. This includes social media engagements, website, online advertisements, back links, and technical mark up of your website's coding.
  8. Identify SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats): Time consuming, but worth it. Strengths and Weaknesses are those issues that pertain to your internal operations. Opportunities and Threats are those items that pertain to external conditions outside of your organization's control. It's important to entertain "what if?" scenarios.
  9. Competitive Analysis: Who are your competitors and what kind of outreach do they have? Ask many of the same questions listed above of your competitors and then compare/contrast to see how you fare.
After you've moved through these steps, share your findings with key players for in-put and buy in. Congrats! You've just completed your communication plan for a shared corporate vision

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