Your Five Step Marketing Plan in 2016
Here’s your five-step marketing plan for the New Year. You’re welcome.
Most of us don’t have enough time to write a detailed marketing plan in flowing prose. You just want a few ideas that work. Once you have those ideas just implement them and track results.
These ideas, in their simple format, are your 2016 marketing plan. Here are five ideas that have worked for contractors:
1. A “We Love our Customers” promotion in February for Valentine’s Day: Give customers a $25 (or other dollar amount) coupon good for any of your company’s services. Expiration date is Dec. 31, 2016. You’ll be getting these coupons redeemed all year long. Track how many are redeemed and the dollars generated through their redemption. If you are like most contractors who I know use this promotion, the return on investment is more than 100 percent (i.e. you generate more than you spent on the promotion).
Sending these coupons as a postcard is most effective — both from results and cost. Get them ordered in January and mailed to your customers February 1.
2. A “July Fourth” patriotic, Independence Day promotion: Like the “We Love our Customers” promotion, this one isn’t used much. You might include three coupons -- all expire in 60 to 90 days. The coupons could be for service, a product, or a free product/service.
Sending these coupons as a postcard is most effective — both in results and cost. Send them the last week of June.
3. A “We Want You Back” promotion: This is sent to all customers who have not done business with you in the past 18 months to five years. Give them an incentive to use your company again. A coupon for $25 dollars (or another amount) or a dollar amount off an equipment purchase, or a free product or service, is a good bet to get them back. Don’t be surprised when customers call saying, “I hadn’t heard from you and I thought you went out of business.”
This promotion can be sent any time during the year. Generally you will send it in the busiest times of the year — when former customers need your company’s services most. It’s the best time to get them to react, call and spend money with your company.
4. Have a contest in your slowest month of the year: This promotion is done during the slowest month of your year. If your company hits $X in revenues, a revenue that the company has never hit before, then everyone in the company and their spouse/significant other get to go out to dinner at a great restaurant in your area. And you pay for the babysitters, too.
This builds esprit de corpsbecause everyone will think of ways to generate income. You will get great ideas and find out which ones really work well. When this goal is reached, it proves that your company can hit revenue goals higher than ever before.
5. Have a contest in your busiest month of the year: You might think this is crazy, but this is actually more fun than the slowest month of the year contest. Everyone is already working hard. This gives them the incentive to make one more service call or talk with one more customer about your company’s products. Your sales will be the highest they’ve ever been when you reach this goal. There will also be less complaining about how busy you are and more emphasis on: “We’re busy and we like it.” People won’t complain about the extra hours’ work or being tired. They are generating the revenue for a specific reason that benefits them.
When you reach this goal, everyone gets a monetary incentive — usually a few hundred dollars. This is enough to make an impact on the employees but not so expensive that it causes you to lose money in a busy time of the year.
The key to all of these marketing ideas is to track results. You will know which, if any, of these marketing ideas worked well. Keep doing the ones that work well and amend the ones that didn’t work well (or don’t do them again).
Everyone in your company can pull together to reach the company contest goals. They will point out the dead weight, i.e. employees who aren’t doing what they should be doing to help reach the company goal. You and your employees will know who needs to go through what I call my “Career Readjustment Program” and not be a part of your team any longer.
Implement these ideas to increase revenue, customers and esprit de corps among your employees.