In our last segment of this seven-part series on the Seven Principles of Modern Marketing, we reviewed the importance of establishing and maintaining a cohesive, talented team through better hiring, firing, (re)training, evaluating, and motivating practices. Once your team is on solid footing, well motivated and devoid of the dreaded “weak links,” it’s time to consider your marketing strategies themselves.
Many companies look at marketing as a series of sprints from Point A, project conception, to Point B, campaign completion. While it’s true that short-term marketing needs, goals, and strategies are important, failing to consider long-term marketing needs, such as asset building, is a critical misstep that can ultimately cost you the race.
Finding A Balance
Finding a healthy balance between short- and long-term marketing needs in this “new normal economy” can be a challenge even for companies with excellent marketing staffs. There are a lot of moving pieces in modern marketing, as we discussed in Part 1 of this series when we examined the categories of modern marketing: Paid, Owned, and Earned Marketing. The key is to take the time to plan properly and to align your plans and activities with your organization’s short- and long-term goals.
For example, if you have a short-term goal of increasing sales of Product A by 15% in the next 12 months, then your marketing activities are obviously going to be geared toward short-term lead generation and selling Product A. However, if you also have long-term growth goals or, for instance, want to launch two new product lines in the next 36 months, then your team also needs to focus on asset building, which includes lead generation and long-term brand building, all while working on the Product A campaign. Striking this balance will facilitate smoother transitions between campaigns and better overall marketing results in the long run.
It’s very easy to be so focused on a single goal that we become myopic in our efforts, consumed in the needs of our short-term projects or campaigns. But marketing is more of a relay race than a single sprint. Each sprint leads to the next, but if we don’t plan ahead and consistently prepare for the next leg of the race, we lose momentum, and in marketing, that means we lose opportunities, time, and money.
How does your company strike a balance between long-term brand building and short-term lead generation? How do you handle lead generation, long-range planning, and short-term marketing activities? Do you divide your staff into teams, or does each team member work toward all of the common goals? Leave us a comment and let us know what’s working for you!
Next up: Saving time, effort, and money through customer retention.