Over the last decade, I’ve continued to see the dramatic rise and fall of marketing technologies that over-promised and eventually proved to be too good to be true. I’m not as anxious as I had been years before in pushing clients, or even our own budget, into new strategies. Because I’m a technologist, I try everything and the results almost always come back to great marketing efforts.
Before any experiment or any existing effort, I answer the following questions:
- Who am I trying to reach?
- What is the best means of reaching them?
- How much effort will it take?
- Are there other efforts ongoing that I can incorporate to maximize this effort?
- How will I measure whether I’m successful?
- How long will it take to see if we’re successful?
- What did I learn from the marketing effort that can be applied to the next?
These types of questions often help guide you to the right medium, the right budget, and the right time. They help you keep from being distracted by new, shiny, and exaggerated efforts. Technology is a means to optimize, automate, and measure our efforts – but it’s not a replacement for the human interaction we have with our prospects and customers. Technology doesn’t instill trust and authority, humans do.
This approach can be applied to everything you do, whether it’s a conference you’re speaking at to a Tweet that you’re publishing. These questions will keep you focused on your budget, your timeline, your resources, and – ultimately – whether you’re successful or not. Even more important, you’ll learn how to leverage other mediums and channels to maximize the impact of your efforts.
Asked frequently, these questions will keep your team agile and able to adjust your marketing strategies over time to better reach your customers.