News & Events
#006 – Listeners Q & A
- 16th May 2017
- Posted by: Nicky
- Category: Episodes
Today’s Marketing Menu Podcast is so exciting – we’ve had questions from the listeners themselves!
Brilliant! That’s what we’ve been encouraging everyone to do. Let’s get straight into it then. What’s the first issue?
Right, so we have a question from Leanne. How much should you spend on a marketing budget?Download Transcript 60kb
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Good question! And one that probably affects every business, particularly at the beginning.
Basically, there is no one size ﬁts all. We need to consider things like ‘time’ and allocate a cost to it. Are you best placed to be running this activity? What stage is your business at – start up, growing or changing?
Am I right in thinking that it’s quite usual for a business to allocate a percentage of actual or projected gross revenue?
Yes, that’s right – usually between 3-5 percent for established business marketing and between 5-10 percent for start-up marketing. But that allocation depends on several factors: the industry, the size of your business, and its stage of growth. For example, during the early brand building years, retail businesses spend much more than other businesses on marketing – up to 20 percent of gross revenue. plan – the marketing budget is a component of the marketing action plan split between brand development costs and promotion increased conﬁdence leads to growing expectation Once you’ve developed your marketing plan and budget, it shouldn’t be ﬁxed or inﬂexible.
I guess there may be times when a business may need to throw in some unplanned activity, so at the end of the day, knowing whether the spend is helping to achieve marketing goals is more important than sticking to a budget.
True. Think back to podcast 1 when we talked about the importance of a marketing plan and action plan. This will help determine a budget. You have to know what your objectives are so you know what actions you need to take to achieve them. Then you can allocate cost to each action.
It would probably be helpful to break down your marketing budget into categories so you know where your money is likely to be spent. So, pen and paper at the ready, here’s what a typical budget might include:
- Website – designing or updating it, adding new content or images and hosting costs
- Search Engine Optimization – expenditure on tools and consulting
- PPC ad expenditure – pay-per-click ads on Google or Bing
- Video and photography
- Graphics – web banners, infographics etc.
- Events/ trade show costs – e.g. pop-up banners, handouts, freebies, travel and accommodation
- Social Media tools and services
- Social Media ads and paid promotion e.g. LinkedIn or Facebook ads, promoted posts,
- PR costs
- Print advertising
- Direct mail / direct marketing including print & postage costs
- Marketing technologies – marketing automation, email marketing, SEO tools, web analytics etc.
- Seminars and training
That’s an extensive list, Liz, and I’m sure listeners can think of other categories too. Or some that don’t apply but it’s a good guideline and then costs can be allocated. You can then calculate a budget based on what you really want to do.
Hope that’s answered your question, Leanne! What’s next, Nicky?
Well, here’s another question from Sarah. As a new business, how can I get my name out there?
I would say the first thing to do is to really spend some time building your social media accounts. For me, when my Twitter account started growing and I was communicating with followers, it really made me feel that I had arrived! The trick is to use the best channels for your business as not all of them will be appropriate. I always say be where your customer are so if they’re not on Instagram, don’t waste energy posting there.
I so agree, it’s about quality, not quantity. Recent stats say that 41% of businesses have received sales as a result of a blog, and 39% of B2B as a result of using twitter.
Saying that, it’s important to remember that social media are not sales channels, it’s more about raising awareness and we’ll be covering this in a future Marketing Menu podcast.
Sarah, you could also think about some more grass-roots type of marketing, depending on your business. Could you do a flyer drop in your local area? I recently had a flyer through the door from a landscape gardener and as it turned out, that’s exactly what I was looking for so it saved me trawling through Google.
I’d add that if you are selling stuff in the community, say like pond cleaning, household maintenance etc, then always drop a handwritten card or flyer into all of the houses in the street when you start work, saying you are in the area and if they get in touch you’re offering a discount say, or give them an opportunity to come and look at your work, so long as that’s okay with the homeowner of course
Yes, it’s true, sometimes it’s so easy to forget with advances in technology that sometimes the good old fashioned methods still work! Things like introductory offers and vouchers still work well and help with word of mouth recommendations.
And of course, there’s always local media who may be interested in a Press Release, particularly if you are a new start up business.
How about creating an interesting video and publishing it on your own YouTube channel?
Or you could produce a unique piece of insight or research and publish it as a blog. You could also run an experiment and publish the results.
You could run an event or open day to spread the word. Or do something to support a charity – that way you utilise their promotional channels too as well as supporting a good cause. Charity supporters are very loyal and you will be exposed to a large audience.
It might seem odd to offer something free but you could give a talk about your product or service, depending on your business. For instance, local libraries or business networking groups are very keen to support businesses that offer free talks to people when they are helping to develop skills.
And finally, of course, I refer you back to our last podcast about networking. Getting your face out there and talking to other businesses about what you do extends your reach. Even if the person you meet doesn’t become a customer, they may tell others about you.
Great stuff. So, time to remind listeners that if you are enjoying this Marketing Menu podcast, please do make sure you share and subscribe via iTunes, Stitcher, TuneIn or Blubbry when this item has finished as we’re a new channel and we’d really like to get out there and help as many growing businesses as possible by making some impact.
And our final questions is a cracker! From Richard – My business lends itself to video. We have loads of gadgets so doing short demos should/could be a fun thing to do. With no budget to get this done by experts. What do you recommend? Tools? Strategy?
Fantastic question Richard! And we understand your business is in the sale of promotional gifts and it does indeed lend itself to video. Obviously, in an ideal world, we would all have the budget to get a professional in to do it and it’s money well spent. They have the equipment and the expertise to make it look really good. But we know that it’s not always possible to do that. So, take a look at the videos that are on Facebook. Simple, little bite sized chunks showing people how something works or how to make something.
Yes, I love those cooking videos, I’m addicted to them, probably because I’m on a diet!
Exactly. People don’t have the attention span to watch anything too long so keep it short and snappy. But make sure you get the quality right. How many homemade videos have you seen where the sound quality is really poor and echoey and there is no atmosphere. The main point is to have a plan. Who is your audience? What do you want your viewers to learn? Make sure your message is clear and that you are getting the key points over in a language they will understand, and that the presentation is not too cheesy.
We don’t like it too cheesy at the Marketing Menu do we, Nicky?!
No we don’t! So if you haven’t got a video camera, you can use an iPad or phone to create a video but plan it and rehearse it so you get the maximum quality out of it. Using humour is always a little tricky as what one person finds funny, another one won’t so proceed with caution with that one!
So decide what type of video you are going to have and what tone you will use. It is an instructional video with a so-called expert showing people what to do or is it a more informal ‘here’s what we supply’ type of video?
Then think about location. Will it be in your office, another location or outdoors? Again think about sound quality as if you’re outdoors, you don’t want a howling wind as background music.
Depending on location, make sure the lighting is correct and that the product is not obscured in any way. I saw a classic the other day when someone was being interviewed but because of the angle of the camera, he kept obscuring his face every time he waved his hands around.
You may want to include members of your team to be part of it, as long as they are comfortable and not prone to stage fright or forgetting their lines!
I would recommend creating a storyboard. This is literally a visual representation of what each shot would look like and what you want to say in each. It can just be a set of squares with stick people in so you know, frame by frame, who is saying and doing what. Then you can write a script, rehearse it and make sure you don’t go over time.
Of course, you may not want people in it at all. It might just be a set of hands showing viewers what the gadget does but with someone narrating. So make sure you choose someone who is enthusiastic and upbeat. And sell the benefits of the product.
Thinking back to podcast 3, could you use storytelling to highlight the benefits of the products? Or testimonials? Would a customer say how well one of your products has helped them achieve their marketing objectives?
As we said in that podcast, storytelling is marketing but not in your face marketing.
Or how about trying something a little cartooney? There’s some great software called Powtoon, that’s p-o-w-t-o-o-n, which is really easy to use and you could create a cartoon character and incorporate some video of your gadgets while using the character to explain what they do using a voiceover or captions.
And you can use the video on your website and social media. Maybe release a new one each month or every couple of weeks to tie in with your seasonal promotions and your newsletter. Perhaps thing about running these regularly so that they become something people can look out for – I don’t know – throwback Thursday, Fun Friday, Marketing Monday,
Most importantly, don’t forget the call to action so that means including your contact details and website on the video.
Crikey, yes, it’s easy to forget to tell people what to do next!
Hope that’s given you some ideas, Richard. Let us know if you use any of them and how successful they are.
So listeners, once again don’t forget we also offer a free transcript of all our podcasts on our website The Marketing Menu.com so if you’re not already on our website head over there to download your copy.
And of course we’re here to tailor the content around your needs so if you have any questions, please do get in touch but most of all please share our channel with others who you feel may benefit from tuning in.
Yes, please do that as we’re a new channel and we’d really like to make some impact in the British podcast community.
Thank you so much for tuning in – we’re very glad you chose us amongst all the other podcasts and webinars out there. We very much hope what we’ve shared today will give you some great storytelling ideas to put into practice.
Yes, so tune in again on Wednesday 17th May when the subject is Building a Brand. Thanks everyone so this is a goodbye from me, Nicky from Media Box Marketing til next time.
And me Liz at Brilliant Fish PR & Marketing, goodbye.
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