Marketing-Right Place, Right Time

Billings marketing is about right place at the right timeMarketing your business is being in the right place at the right time.  It is why Google is running ads on websites all across their network right now.  The idea?  To push the feeling their ads are the only ones that work.  After all, when you appear in search you are in the right place at the right time.

It is also wrong.

It is undeniable people almost always use just the first page results when they do a search.  42% of searchers click on the first result they get believing in Google’s infallibility of getting them the best answer.

If marketing were that easy,you could be to buy Google Adwords and call it a day.

It is not.

New Marketing World

The internet has opened up a whole new world to businesses and customers.  The new connections you can make with your current customers and connections with people who have never heard of you is enormous.

People want to do business with companies they know and believe in.  That’s why using a good mix of advertising is the best way to improve your business. With so many choices, it is hard to decide what the right mix.

There are over 20 different ways to market your business in the Billings marketplace.  No one can afford to be in all places at all times.  The use of a professional to help you with your strategic plan is not difficult or costly if you make the right choice.

You could Google for one, of course, and take the first name on the list.

Partner in Marketing

Or you could look for a partner with a wide range of marketing skills including buying, planning, writing, and producing high quality performing advertising solutions. The partner would be experienced in TV, web, billboards, print, mobile media and radio among others. Now it would be great if that first Googled name had all those qualities, but if you did not know the first company, what then?

I know which one I would take.  And it probably isn’t using Google’s first result for something that important.  At least not without additional information.  That is why your marketing mix is so important.  You have to be known in ways additional to an online presence. Your potential customers think the same way.

Professional help for your website and your marketing is only a click away.

Back to School–Billings Marketing School

Billings marketing goes back to schoolWith school starting in Billings this week, I was thinking about how each year began.  We began to rehash everything we had learned at the end of the previous school year.  The idea was you could not move forward with new material until the old was covered.  The same thing applies in your Billings marketing too.

There’s a couple of trusims in marketing.  One, is we get so busy at times we stop doing the things that always worked.  Two, the basics are always the basics.  If you get lost, look back at the start.

Today, I want to encourage you to look at the start of your business before you market it.  Nothing will kill a bad business like good marketing.  The reverse is also true.

Six Basics of Billings Marketing

Here are six questions to return you to the basics of good marketing;

  1. Who is my prospective client and what good or service can I provide them to solve their problem?
  2. What makes my solution better (cheaper, faster, more convenient) than others on the market today?
  3. Who makes or delivers a service similar to mine in my market area?
  4. What is my USP? (unique selling proposition) How am I different from my competition?
  5. What kinds of media do my prospects (the people who buy my products) use?  This could be internet web sites, radio or television stations, certain print publications, direct mail, etc.
  6. How will I communicate my USP in places my prospect frequents?

Chances are you have known these answers and lived by them at the beginning of your business.  It is possible, especially in Billings, you have been in business for awhile and forgotten about being a startup.

The Independent Professors in Billings Marketing Agencies

A good way to get back on track heading into the new school year and holiday time is to go back to school yourself.

There’s nothing wrong with getting a little guidance from people who have been teaching and working in Billings marketing for a long time.  You might consider these professionals as your own personal tutor in getting marketing help.  Just like going back to school, no one ever lost by applying the basics to their new year.

Print Dead in Billings Marketing! Long Live Print!

Billings marketing print good or badIn markets like ours, there is a lot of focus on print media.  Even people not in the print business see it as something they must have or read most every day.  The reality is the local Billings newspaper has less readership today than it had yesterday. Based on Audit Bureau of Circulation stats I have seen, only slightly over 27,000 people or about 15% of Yellowstone County’s population actually get the paper.

Forbes.com printed a great article on the advantages and disadvantages of print as an advertising medium.  Here are some of their points.

Print Advantages in Billings Marketing

Tangibility – A print piece is a physical thing. Magazines and newspapers can stay in houses or offices for months or years, while Internet ads can disappear into cyber space instantaneously.

Credibility – There is something about print that gives a sense of legitimacy. The saturation of popups and banner ads on the web can be overwhelming and the fear of spam and viruses is enough make people weary of clicking. There is no imminent danger in a print ad.

Branding – Print ads are excellent for solidifying your brand identity. Your ads should have a consistent aesthetic in terms of fonts, colors and types of images to establish brand recognition.

Target Marketing – Placing ads in publications such as specialty magazines can effectively reach niche audiences that may be more difficult to target online.

More Engaging – Consumers are more engaged when reading printed material, unlike websites, which are often skimmed in as little as a 15 second visit. A study shows that people read digital screen text 20% – 30% slower than printed paper. (Alshaali & Varshney, 2005)

Less Print Ads – With more and more businesses relying solely on the Internet for their advertising needs, the decline of print publication can actually be used as a marketing advantage. The publications are less crowded, allowing more room for your ad to shine, and possibly even cheaper prices for that ad space.

QR Codes – Placing QR codes on printed pieces is an excellent way to bridge the gap between print and web. When scanned with a smartphone, the QR code will take you to a homepage or a special offer page that lives on the web.

It is interesting to note Forbes.com attempts to defend print are more about what it is not (we don’t have viruses, people read us differently, we don’t have as many ads) versus what it is (a tangible product you can hold, and a declining way of advertising a business.)

Print has a place in Billings marketing.

As Forbes.com said,

The best way to market your business is to utilize as many channels as possible to reach every corner of your target demographic; this should not exclude print.

Print should no longer be considered a must have in terms of your Billings marketing campaigns.  The decline in readership and movement to other sources for information is rapidly driving the print business away.

How much you use and how you use it is part of a well planning Billings marketing strategy.  Getting professional help to develop and execute that strategy will prevent you from overspending on print, web, or any other form of media.

Look for someone who is focused on your top line when you look for a Billings marketing company.