Marketing Communications – Revealed – 6 Maximum Steps to Improve Your Communications

Here are the best ways to improve your marketing communications to easily influence the buying decision of your potential clients:

1. Know your audience. Before you even think about writing your marketing communications, I recommend that you get to know the people to whom you are writing these for. You need to know their problems or their struggles in their lives, their language, the elements that can push their emotional buttons, their buying power, and the things that can influence their buying decisions. Knowing all these information can empower you to create ads and other communications that are focused to your target market.

2. Improve your vocabulary. Get to know the words that can make your marketing communications sound extremely powerful and know how to use them properly. “Weak words” or those that cannot bring huge impact will not be able to help you capture the attention of your prospects. Read as many ads as possible (those that have high conversion rate) and determine the words that they contain.

3. Communicate the benefits. There is only one thing that buyers would like to know when they are about to make a purchase and that is “what’s in it for me?” Make sure that you answer this question on your marketing communications. Tell your prospects ahead of time the benefits that they can enjoy and the selling points of your products and services.

4. They must sound upbeat and enthusiastic. The last thing you would like to do is to make your ads sound boring. Avoid that from happening by simply using words that communicate excitement or enthusiasm. You can use exclamation points but do not overdo it if you don’t want your ads to sound like they are shouting.

5. Make them scannable. Most buyers these days have limited attention span due to their demanding lifestyle. If you want them to read your marketing communications in their entirety, you need to make these easy on the eyes and scannable. Use bullet list when writing down the benefits of your products and use subheadings whenever appropriate. This can help your readers find the information they are looking for and just skip those ones that are of little interest to them.

6. Less is more. By this, I simply mean keep your communications short as much as possible. Just say what you mean and mean what you say. You don’t need to use fillers, big words, and lengthy introductions as these can just annoy your prospects.

What is the Marketing Communications Mix?

A lot has been said about the marketing communications mix but what is it really? Should a business owner be aware of these things or does it just happen? As a responsible business owner, you must be aware of the different aspects of communicating your product to your market. There must be different strategies and styles that you have to use so that it makes your brand stand out more and more each day.

While some aspects of the mix may not be outright applicable to your brand but still it has some bearing in one way or the other. Although there are a lot of versions of the marketing mix here are a few of those parts of the mix : personal selling, sales promotion, public relations and publicity, direct marketing, trade fairs and exhibitions, advertising, sponsorship, packaging, merchandising, e-marketing and brands. But the general components of the mix can be divided into four – product, place, price and promotion.

These four general ideas of the marketing mix can touch all the bases regarding your brand. The Product aspect of this mix would cover all that has something to do your product – from the innovation to the differentiation of your brand. These points are important because this will dictate how different your product should be and what your product can do for the consumers that is why they should patronize you.

Price is another part of the mix that will play a very important role. How much will the consumer pay for your product? Factor in the different values like material costs, competition, your share in the market and even how the consumer will put a value on your product. The law of supply and demand will also come into play – the more the supply, the lesser the price, the more the demand the higher the price.

The other P of the mix would be the Place. The place would guide you in planning your strategies in terms of the avenue where your product can be seen. This will answer the where questions. Where will you distribute your product? Are these distribution channels the place for your product to be? Where will you do your direct and indirect sales? E-commerce will also fall in the Place category of the marketing mix.

The last P would be Promotion. This is a very exciting playing field because you can go creative and imaginative in this part. All forms of advertisement will fall in this category. Even your online marketing strategies are a part of the Promotion part of the marketing mix. As this will be a broad playing field, it will be confusing especially if you do not have a plan of action. Here you will have to find ways of reaching your target market in the the places where they are seen frequently.

As you can see, it is a rather challenging mixture. But once you have gotten the hang of the marketing communications mix you can be sure that everything will just fall into place.

Marketing Communications – What’s the Plan?

When small business owners and managers start thinking about how they need to communicate with customers, often the most important part of the process is the one that’s given little thought – planning. Without a plan it’s possible, if not likely, a business’ marketing communications will end up being haphazard, more expensive than necessary and unsuccessful.

You should include virtually everything you can think of that will help you determine the best way forward. It’s also wise to ask other people, including, if possible, some of your customers or potential customers. Sometimes you can be too close to the business to know all the answers.

What do you want to achieve through your marketing communications?

It’s always good to have something to aim at. Be specific, be measurable, be achievable and don’t be too conservative. For example, to increase my customer base by 25% in the next financial year is specific, and easy to measure and most likely achievable with a bit of a stretch. You may find you’ll have several aims – list all of them.

Who is your target customer?

Who is your ideal customer? Who is likely to want to purchase your products or services?

Try to add as much detail as possible. For example, you might decide lawyers are one of your target customers, but add to this by listing where they are located, whether you’re targeting small, medium or large firms, and whether they specialise in any particular field. Then think about who makes the decisions in your target firms or households: owners or managers, sex, age, ethnicity, etc.

This work isn’t meant to limit who you would take on as a customer. The details will simply help later when you’re developing your plan, your messages and where and how you deploy them.

What are your products or services?

This might seem obvious, but surprisingly a lot of business owners/managers don’t necessarily know much about their products and services and can’t describe them in a way that most people can understand. If there are too many to list, just list the major categories.

Why should people buy your products or use your services rather than your competitor’s (your key selling points)?

Are you the cheapest or are your products or services premium quality? Is your service exceptional? Do you have the biggest range? Do you have free delivery? Do you make a coffee for your customers while they wait? There are too many possibilities to list here but it’s a good idea to list everything that is relevant to your business.

These points are often called your unique selling proposition but I believe you don’t have to be unique to succeed in business. You just need to do what you do well, and promote yourself just as well.

Does your business have a key message (e.g. McDonalds – I’m lovin’ it)?

Personally, I like these key messages. They succinctly tell something about your business; something that the customer can expect when they walk through your door (or your virtual door, as is often the case these days.) The key message should go hand in hand with ‘why should people use you’. For example, many businesses have a key message indicating they have the lowest prices, because that is one of their key selling points.

What image is your business trying to portray?

This is another question that goes hand in hand with your key selling points and key message. Do you want to be seen as professional, stylish, cheap, glamorous, etc.? Remember, it’s no point simply trying to portray an image in words; you have to live it. In my experience, customers don’t like businesses who can’t deliver what they say they can.

What is your budget for marketing communications?

You don’t need to spend a fortune and, if you’re like most small businesses, you may want to do thing a bit at a time. Get your business cards now, then a few months later a website. Next year, invest in a flyer and start an email marketing campaign. However, don’t be stingy; not spending enough money on marketing communications can hurt your business.

What skills do you have in your small business? Can anyone write, take photos or design a website.

Ask your staff – if you have any staff – as you may be surprised.