A few tips to avoid being a busy fool

A few tips to avoid being a busy fool

A few tips to avoid being a busy fool

  1. Plan, Plan, Plan– Understand your strategic goal and plan, plan, plan to ensure your activities match what you need to do to achieve that goal. You won’t know this unless you have criteria to measure your progress on your path to success. Eliminate any activity that doesn’t relate directly to your objectives.
  2. Avoid decision by consensus – groups and committees rarely make good decisions; they spend far too much time discussing minutiae and then ignore decisions when their personal agenda is not at the fore.
  3. Don’t let your sales team be sold to – The easiest way to get rid of a salesman is to say his products are great but you need a detailed proposal before you can make a decision. Call ended quickly, your sales team have a heap of work to do, the “client” just wanted rid of the call. Make sure there is oversight of all proposals before the sales team start on them.
  4. Never relax – if you relax in a meeting it is more likely than not to become unproductive and a talking shop. Some of my most productive meetings have been conducted standing up and to a tight time scale.
  5. Avoid rigid habits – why do the same thing just because people are comfortable with it? Change diaries, avoid fixed agendas, mix up the speaking order in meetings. Keep people on their toes and you will quickly identify those who can’t think on their feet…..
  6. Say no – not ‘I’ll consider’ it or ‘Come back to me, next week’ Busy fools allow their mouths to operate independently to their brain, just say what you mean. If someone can’t take it, are they right for your business?
  7. Ignore email – if the first thing you do at the start of the day is check your email and start responding, you haven’t planned your day! Begin by mapping out what you really need to achieve rather than allowing your Inbox to dictate your day.
  8. Learn – If you use office software whether it be Excel, Outlook or something else, know how to use it and if you don’t, do some on-line learning.  Knowing how to use the basic tools of your trade will save days! Most people don’t use these systems efficiently but an hour invested in training every few days will reap huge benefits over time.
  9. Act don’t wait – When you get an email or and enquiry, respond, file, delete otherwise you will be scanning them repeatedly becoming less and less decisive.
  10. Avoid the same brick wall – You make a decision, are working hard to achieve it but at the same point every time you get there you hit a “brick wall”. After the second or third hit you need to ask has the situation changed, do I need to review my decision or have I just taken a bad path? Busy fools have sore heads from continuously head-butting the same brick wall!
Fail to plan your marketing, plan to fail your investment

Fail to plan your marketing, plan to fail your investment

19

May, 2017

Business

Planning

Success

Fail to plan your marketing, plan to fail your investment

The first thing that must be defined in any plan before you even begin to think of allocating resources, is what is the effect you are trying to achieve? This sounds simple but is something that is worth spending a bit of time getting right as once this is defined then the activities, resources and budget needed to achieve that effect can be mapped. Achieving brand awareness in a new area is a different effect and will require different activities, to developing 500 leads.

Defining what you are trying to achieve will allow you to design your content output and then use the most effective platforms to get that message to where it needs to go.

 

Equally important are the indicators needed to check you are making progress with your marketing activities to achieve the effect you have defined. Indicators must be carefully thought through so that you don’t let your marketing team “kid you” that you are getting good return on investment (ROI). “I am frightened at the number of companies who still count stand footfall as their key ROI indicator.”

So, having made the decision to take a stand at a trade show I am sure you want to get maximum return for your investment. It is critical therefore, that you don’t see the trade show as an event that occurs between two dates at a specific place and rely on the audience drawn through the doors by the event organisers; hoping they will visit your stand and stop.

You must plan pre-event activities to draw people to your stand by stimulating their interest and then ensure a post-show series of activities to reinforce the message you gave to your visitors whilst informing those who didn’t make it, as to what they missed. Maxine Davenport, Head of Client Services at FortuneWest, gave me good advice and said how important it was to: “Be prepared, do as much as you can before the event including having at least your first round of communications ready to go as a follow up from meetings, even if it’s just a holding email.

Your pre-event activities should be aimed at creating a need in the targeted audiences to want to come and visit you at the event. Remember, event organisers want as much footfall as possible so there are many ways they can help you with this. The key to engaging with clients, current and future, is value adding content. The more you can give that informs, adds value or stimulates thought, the more likely they are to engage. According to a recent B2B Content Marketing Report produced by Holger Schulze, Group Founder B2B Technology Marketing Community on LinkedIn, the top content products for generating engagement are, “Case Studies followed by best practices, then “how to” guides and market trends. Less than 25% of people are interested in product related outputs and even fewer (17%) on competitive comparisons.

Schulze went on to say, “In addition to being the most effective content subject, case studies are also the most effective content marketing tactic. Blogging moves down to a close second and surprisingly, the number of marketers who mentioned social media as an effective marketing tactic drops significantly from 64 percent in our last survey to 36 percent this year.”

 

LinkedIn again tops the list of the most effective social media platforms to deliver content and engage audiences. This year, YouTube moves to second and Twitter moves down a rank to third.

Writing the content is one thing but seeking audience engagement is as critical and how it is posted out must be considered alongside what is to be posted. “LinkedIn again tops the list of the most effective social media platforms to deliver content and engage audiences. This year, YouTube moves to second and Twitter moves down a rank to third.” Confirmed Schultze.

You Tube is the second largest search engine, next to Google and is owned by Google. However, it coming as the second most effective social media platform emphasises the importance of video as a platform in your content marketing mix. Cisco quote that by 2017, 69% of all consumer internet traffic will be video. Its naturally engaging, if a picture paints 1000 words then one minute of video is worth 1.8 million according to Forrester’s research. Axonn Research found 7 in 10 people view brands in a more positive light after watching interesting video content from them.

With video, short targeted videos that can be easily distributed via LinkedIn or Twitter give an ideal way of reminding your show visitors of what they saw or informing those who didn’t make if of what they missed. However, you should remember to keep the content flowing after the event so customers come to you because they have built up a trust in your message. The worst thing you can do is pay a lot for a one-off video that you hope will generate traffic, it won’t. Always look at the statistics on a video providers you tube channel and if it is only in the hundreds of views after an event with thousands of visitors, then you need to find a better outlet.

Preparing the ground before an event will reap benefits at the event, and these must be exploited post event, otherwise you will have failed to plan your marketing so you should plan to fail your investment.

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