Running any business you will eventually have to deal with the grey area of ‘Marketing’. Every successful business – small or large – needs to market the company’s products and services. You can have the best products and services in the world but if you do not market them, your competitors will generate more sales. Have you ever found yourself pondering, “How come I lost that contract? Our product is superior and better value for money?” The classic case is in the video market: Betamax were in competition with VHS, we remember Betamax fondly, it is universally recognised that they were of higher quality than VHS but VHS were soon in every household because Betamax didn’t market their product.
In this blog we plan to take you through five simple steps; these steps must be done for every marketing product – from a simple leaflet, to the most complicated website.
STEP 1 – Plan it out.
This step can be carried out in several ways; brainstorming, concepts, ideas, every conceivable thought related to the project, it gets put on down on paper. It is good to sit down with a few colleagues, a blank sheet of paper and write down everyone’s ideas. This is sometimes referred to as ‘on the back of an envelope’ planning. For example we’ll look at promoting a new charity ‘Cards for African Relief and Development , “C. A. R. D.”;
C.A.R.D. Charitable organisation:
Further PR / Marketing
Even if we were just doing a simple A5 leaflet, still do a mind map. Do not dismiss any idea and include everyone, the more of your colleagues that get involved, the more likely that they will support the project and will ultimately help sell the product or service as well as have a clearer understanding of how your company works.
By clearly planning your project and objectives you will be in better control of the budget, no hidden costs, and more importantly can stick to your deadlines easier. As for deadlines, be realistic. We give a ballpark figure to a client at the earliest possible stage; many small costs add up, commercial costs for good quality design, artwork, production, print and delivery. For example it’s almost impossible to give a cost for a website without a detailed brief and then a client often would like changes and additional work.
TIP: Get a copy of all the marketing material you have produced for your company over the last 6 months lay on a table, business cards, leaflets, newsletters, e-newsletters, advertising, brochures, advertising, banners, posters, banner stands, review your activity and ask yourself; does it a have a consistent message? Is it good quality? Does it reflect the standards of your company? Are you proud of every single item? You’re only as good as the weakest item on show! Is there enough variety to promote your company? What did it cost and what was your return? Continually ask yourself this, that is how you ensure you are taking your company or your project in the direction you want.
STEP 2 – Research
STEP 3 – Thumbnail Sketches
STEP 4 – Mac Visuals (What is this?)
STEP 5 – Finished Design and Artwork