One-Size-Fits-All Marketing Plan Doesn’t Really Fit
The idea of "one-size-fits-all" is nice if you are on the production/sales side. Reducing the number of variables in manufacturing helps simplify pricing and inventory. But for the consumer? I am pretty sure LeBron James and I won't fit into the same size shirt. It's the same with marketing.
A one-size-fits all marketing plan is a failure in the making. Even if you follow a plan from a successful competitor or copy a big brand’s tactics, there are so many variables that need to be considered.
Each marketing plan should be custom built based on the current and anticipated market place as well as incorporating business goals. When looking at marketing budget allocation, think about:
- Past marketing activities
What worked in the past? What failed? What activities need to carry over from last year? Look for opportunities to build on effective campaigns and messages. No need to bailout on a success just because a new month is on the calendar.
- Needs of the field
Advertising is fun, all of the creative ads in colorful publications and familiar websites. But if the sales team or distribution network needs tools and resources, it is important to make sure the channel is prepared to support and close sales when your marketing delivers traffic to them. Keep a budget in place for up to date literature, web resources, and external lead-generating activities like tradeshows or customer events.
- Try something new
Don’t be afraid to allocate budget into something new, different, or in an area you (and your agency) have been watching from afar. See a new social media site that might be a good fit (remember when Houzz.com was just starting)? Do you have a region that could use a bump in support? Look at your needs, not just what others are doing. If you continue to follow the pack or maintain the status-quo, you drastically reduce your chances of gaining new customers.
For one company, social media might be the best place to allocate a large budget percentage. But others, sales tools and dealer support efforts offer more value to your sales. Having a narrow focus on the marketing needs of your company will limit the sales-generating success opportunity.
It's fun to watch TV commercials and seeing your company on the screen. But stop to consider where you are as an organization. Who is your target market? What are your overall business needs? What is your unique selling proposition? One marketing tactic might be what your competition or other companies choose to do, but it is your budget and your company. One size never really does fit all, and never for a marketing plan.