Posts tagged marketing campaigns

Appeal to All Your Customers’ Senses

152493614 250x161 Appeal to All Your Customers Senses Sensory Branding: Help your prospect connect with your brand

The fives senses are a powerful force. If you want to really reach out and ‘touch’ your customers with your brand, sensory branding is NOT something to put to the side. If you are ready to market your brand, products, and/or services, sensory branding should be utilized immediately.

Without our five senses we wouldn’t know what life was. When you go to a website, what makes you stay there? The information? Sometimes…but even more so, the colors, the design, and the way it makes you feel is what causes you to stick around. Whether it’s a website, a business card, a newsletter, or a memo, in order to pick it up and really read it, the design must appeal to your senses.

Bold Colors and Designs

Bold and bright colors will get a clients attention, and poorly designed black and white won’t do much . A raised logo on letterhead with accompanying designs that match your company’s brand is just what you need to make the statement that cries out, “Touch me.  I’m engaging.”

Getting your clients to experience your brand in visually is one aspect of an engaging brand. Getting your brand deeply embedded into their psyche so they will continue buying it is the true goal. We are emotional beings and there is no way around that. Colors exhibit a certain feeling, an aura if you will. Colors trigger an emotional reaction that will help the client desire your product or service above all others. They will remember your brand.

Cementing Your Brand

Not every brand and logo has to be extreme. Simplicity is fine, and is sometimes the best way to go. Yet, if you don’t use color, even in a regular newsletter, it may not get the attention it deserves. Information is constantly being thrown at us from every direction. We don’t always have the time to look at everything. Your clients may not even give your advertisement, newsletter, or website another chance if you don’t use sensory branding.

Another important idea to remember is to use at least two sensory experiences when creating your brand image through sensory branding. Combining colors with scents, sounds, or word pictures will cement your logo and brand in your clients’ minds. Word pictures are elaborate, and interesting combinations of words or quotes that will bring your company’s branding to life.

Quit Making Up Response Rates – Measure the Right Way or Not at All

160910502 250x166 Quit Making Up Response Rates   Measure the Right Way or Not at All Figuring out how well people are responding to your marketing campaigns is vital if you expect to see a positive return on investment from what you spend on advertising. Too many people create large advertising initiatives, involving different types of media, without having the infrastructure to accurately measure the response rates of cross-media marketing campaigns. When you are able to track what is working and what is not working, you can route your marketing dollars towards what you have had verifiable success with in the past.

Each marketing channel has its own unique challenges which you need to be aware of and have a plan detailing how you are going to get a potential customer to visit your website, make a purchase, request more information, attend a webinar, or setup an appointment.

Direct Mail Marketing

Setting up a direct mailing campaign will get your message in front of your target audience. Generally, you will need to have a special website specifically for direct mailing recipients, or sub-page of your current website which is featured prominently on the card/letter. When someone visits that specific link, you will have your first bit of information to work with.

Every visit you get is from someone looking at what was mailed to them, then actually going to your site. While this is a good start, you still need to convert that visitor. This is where knowing the response rates of cross-media marketing campaigns is crucial since putting something in their mailbox has a cost. Your visitor needs to have their own unique way of making a purchase or generating a lead, distinguishable from any of the other methods you are promoting. If this is for a website, a separate order form should be available for these visitors to use from the link advertised on the mailing material.

Email Marketing

A successful email marketing campaign may look similar to a good direct mail marketing campaign. Getting a good “open” rate is a great metric to keep track of since an unopened email will never result in a sale. Once the customer opens it though they need to be convinced to click a link taking them to your site which identifies them as having come through an email. After they have gotten to your site and they decide they want to buy, they should still be tracked as an email user. They should also be tracked as to how they were first introduced to your organization.

Digital Campaign Marketing

Tracking visitors in a digital campaign is relatively easy since you can specify what link you want a visitor to go to once they click your ad. The important metric here is your (clicks:impressions) rate. If you are paying by the impression, you want as many clicks as you can get. If you are paying by the click, you want to make sure that your ad copy spells out extremely clearly what a visitor should expect on your site. The companies you purchase these ads from will generally keep track of these rates for you, all you need to do is get the visitor to a checkout page or lead generation form that is only easily accessible by clicking one of these ads online, as opposed to your generic checkout page.

Taking all of these metrics together will give you an accurate picture of the response rates of cross-media marketing campaigns, and show you where you should be targeting more heavily in the future.

Agency Uses Interactive Sitelet to Land New Business

When a Dallas-based advertising agency, VLG, needed to engage prospects, it opted to show off its interactive technology through a sitelet or mini-site. The sitelet used a mock company called Crescent Bluffs to demonstrate the amount of time VLG could engage the prospect in the demo.

I was engaged for 1 minute 41 seconds. I took VLG’s bait of virtually opening a hotel door to a room with a virtual key on the screen. I was then asked to meet them in the lobby and then in the restaurant to have a virtual lunch; and at the end of the lunch a virtual note appeared on the screen announcing how long our business courtship lasted. VLG then asked me on the screen if I would be interested in learning how to conduct my own sitelet campaign to create new business for my company.

check Agency Uses Interactive Sitelet to Land New Business

VLG’s campaign, Accept the Invitation, began by mailing a hotel napkin and faux hotel key with a note that read, “Let’s Meet.” The note sent prospects to a mini or microsite for a faux hotel named Crescent Bluffs. You can walk through the prospect experience here.

Because of sitelet successes such as VLG’s, other agencies and companies are using sitelets to launch a product, provide support functions and for targeted advertising campaigns. By using a separate domain name, you can choose a unique descriptive URL that pertains specifically to the campaign.

Flash, online databases and advanced programming can be combined to create powerful customer support tools. It is possible to preload your existing offline data or structure an entirely new database.

Another key benefit of using a targeted sitelet approach is that you do not have to significantly modify your existing company website for a specific campaign. You will want to integrate links and content for maximum exposure, but this is significantly easier than modifying website navigation and page structure.

How can you use mini-sites to bring in business?

 

It’s Not Too Early to Know the Marketing Trends of 2013

eight marketing trendsDo you feel like you’re constantly playing catch up? If so it’s particularly hard to stay ahead of trends. We can relate; thus the reason we’re posting a 2013 marketing trends piece in late April.

Take a breather and read the eight trends projected by Forbes and CIO Network magazines.

8 Marketing Trends Projected for 2013

#1  Businesses will pick and choose their social media platforms. Because businesses have had time to cut their teeth on social media and social media integration, they now have the confidence to align themselves with the platforms that make the most sense for the business. No longer will businesses feel obligated to be entrenched in all social media platforms. Doing so is nearly impossible and participating in all social networks is certainly not required to be successful in your niche. Pinterest works for fashion, photography, interior design and lifestyle businesses but not as well for manufacturers, municipalities, or musicians.

#2  Marketing strategies that simplify will soar. Because the world continues to move at a fast pace; accelerated even faster by 24/7 technology, any company that simplifies our lives or experiences wins more customers.

#3  Real-time marketing will replace campaign-based marketing. While theme-based marketing has ruled because it’s easy to plan around one theme that gets launched around a company-based timeline, it’s not very consumer-centered. Now that companies have married their customer relationship management systems with their online website orders, they have the data to launch trigger-based or real-time marketing that happens because an activity has taken place and merits another action being put into play to motivate the customer to take the next step.

During this year’s Super Bowl, Oreo used “real time marketing” to capitalize on the media attention that resulted when the Superdome experienced a blackout. Oreo had aired a TV ad earlier that night with a Twitter tie in that gained some new fans. When the blackout occurred Oreo leveraged their increased Twitter following by tweeting out a relevant picture reminding them that “you can still dunk in the dark.”

oreo It’s Not Too Early to Know the Marketing Trends of 2013

SOURCE: Oreo Cookie; Power out? No Problem

This picture went viral almost immediately and at last count has been retweeted over 16,000 times.

#4  Marketing success will be measured by sales. Instead of measuring lead generation, opportunity costs, click throughs and dozens of other metrics, marketing’s worth to a company will be weighed against sales growth.

#5   Mobile marketing gets taken seriously. Because more people purchased smart phones than PCs last year, mobile marketing will truly get its fair share of the marketing spending pie. While 90% of global marketing have a mobile site, only 20% of them integrate mobile strategies into their overall marketing plan.

SOURCE:“5 Surprising Marketing Trends for 2013,” Forbes, Jan. 23, 2013.

#6  Digital marketing agencies will double. In an attempt to manage their various online and social activities, small businesses are turning to digital marketing agencies. The demand will drive more digital agencies from owner-operated to consultants to creative boutiques.

SOURCE:“Follow the Money: Digital Marketing Trends for 2013,” Rob Eleveld, CIO Network, Dec. 20, 2012.

#7  All marketing campaigns will be integrated marketing campaigns. Do you remember 20 years ago when advertising agencies started calling themselves integrated marketing agencies to show that they were all inclusive of strategies such as direct mail, merchandising, public relations as well as advertising? Today if you produce a direct mail campaign, it would be foolish not to integrate the campaign by using a trackable 800 phone number, QR Code® or landing page (aka microsite).

#8  Google will start charging to access its analytics. In 2012 Google spent lots of money improving its analytics solutions and has put itself in a position to begin charging for the data it collects and stores. You might see this as early as 2014.

SOURCE:”Follow the Money: Digital Marketing Trends for 2013,” Rob Eleveld, CIO Network, Dec. 12, 2012

Do any of these eight predictions surprise or worry you? Tell us why in the comments below. We’re proud to say that 100% of our campaigns are integrated or multi-channel campaigns and 85% are variably printed.

How to Use the Pain Funnel to Drive Greater Direct Mail Response

When your product closely resembles another company’s product, the difference in which company earns the prospect’s business is often the company that can make the prospect feel enough pain to switch services to their company.

While many salespeople are trained to find pain, copywriters, account executives, and corporate marketers aren’t.  This is demonstrated when you flip through a stack of direct mail or magazine of ads. You’ll notice very few direct mail pieces that move prospects to the next level of the pain funnel.

pain funnel1 How to Use the Pain Funnel to Drive Greater Direct Mail Response

 

Understanding how to push the “pain” buttons of prospects in your direct mail copy and other marketing or sales materials will help you better position your offer drive towards a sale, according to sales trainer Jason Dixon of Neuberger and Company.

 

Words that Describe Feeling of Pain

When trying to make a prospect remember just how many headaches, annoyances, and dollars a problem is causing them, use these words in your marketing messages:

Aggravated Exasperated Left Out Spiteful
Alarmed Fed Up Lost Struggling
Angry Flustered Mad Stunned
Annoyed Foggy Miserable Stupid
Anxious Frantic Mixed-up Tense
Apprehensive Frightened Muddled Terrible
Baffled Frustrated Nervous Terrified
Betrayed Furious On Edge Thwarted
Bewildered Guilty Outraged Timid
Blue Helpless Overwhelmed Tired
Burdened Horrible Panicky Trapped
Cheated Horrified Perturbed Troubled
Confused Hurt Powerless Unclear
Crushed Ignored Pressured Undecided
Defeated Imposed Upon Put Out Unqualified
Despairing Ineffective Put Upon Unsure
Desperate Inept Revengeful Victimized
Dissatisfied Infuriated Sad Vulnerable
Distraught Intimidated Scared Washed Up
Disturbed Irritated Shocked Worried
Enraged Isolated Seething

 

Headlines, Callouts, and Subheads that Bring the Pain

Flip through a newspaper, trade journal, magazine or direct mail piece and see how many companies are pushing pain well. I did and estimate that one in 35 headlines or advertisements appeal to a pain point.

These are the ones I found in a thirty-minute search. Just think how your company could improve your marketing and sales conversations or clickthroughs on your landing pages by being one of 35 companies in your niche to leverage the pain funnel.right channel2 How to Use the Pain Funnel to Drive Greater Direct Mail Response

generations more How to Use the Pain Funnel to Drive Greater Direct Mail Response

the silent cry How to Use the Pain Funnel to Drive Greater Direct Mail Responseyour laptop How to Use the Pain Funnel to Drive Greater Direct Mail Response

Fear-based or pain-based advertising is one of the most effective forms available. People are either motivated by fear or desire.  There is LOTS of research that points to the fact that people will move away from pain faster than they will move towards pleasure.  Broadview Security uses fear-based advertising very effectively in this TV spot below.

Review your last few campaigns and if they aren’t focused on pain, you may be missing prospect engagement.  Pull your team together and brainstorm about the downside of not using your product or buying an inferior product or service than yours. Describe in detail the type of pain or frustration your prospect will experience by not using your service at all. Let us know your results.

 

To Pick the Right Campaign Metrics, Ask the Right Questions Prior to Launch

157000899 250x170 To Pick the Right Campaign Metrics, Ask the Right Questions Prior to LaunchSavvy marketers who wish to remain employed measure the efforts of their email, print and multi-channel campaigns. Amateur marketers wing it or use the wrong metrics in an effort to make the right decisions.

Visit any social media or integrated marketing agency lunchroom and you’ll hear the words click-through, long-term bounce rates, subject line pull, open rate and conversions being passed around like salt.

Walk into a top 50 mailer and you’ll hear teams talking about churn, expense-to-revenue ratio, repurchase rate and lead-to-sale conversion.

The best marketers select clear, concrete goals for their campaign and then choose the metrics that tie directly to these goals and set tracking mechanisms in place.

 

Direct Mail Campaign Metric Rights and Wrongs

The problem with only focusing on response rate as a metric is that it doesn’t tell you much about campaign effectiveness, according to Ruth Stevens of the Lenskold Group.  There are simply too many variables involved:  the list, the offer, and the creative.

Stevens suggests focusing on a more useful metric, like cost per lead.

 

Metrics for B-to-B Direct Marketers

Lead Generation Direct  Sales
, E-commerce, Mail Order Retention Marketing
Response rate Response rate Repurchase rate
Cost per lead Cost per order Lifetime value
Inquiry-to-lead conversion rate Average order size Churn
Lead-to-sales conversion rate ROI
Expense-to-revenue ratio (E:R)

SOURCE: LENSKOLD GROUP, 5 Essential B-to-B Direct Marketing Metrics by Ruth Stevens, June 8, 2011

 

Beware of Vanity Metrics

Vanity metrics sounds good but mean little. They are slung around in client meetings like Stoli in a Mad Men scene but they are more intoxicating than business

sustaining. Vanity metrics, including

  • How many names on the email list?
  • How many likes on Facebook?
  • How many followers on Twitter?

It doesn’t matter if you purchased an 80-million name email list for $800 if 80% of those names haven’t looked at an email in the past year or only 5% of the contacts match your Ideal Customer Profile. The metrics that might matter more across the sales pipeline, according to Hugh MacFarlane, author of The Leaky Funnel, are:

  • Sales qualified leads
  • First meetings
  • Proposals
  • Closed Deals

 

Proxy Metrics Can Help if Agreed Upon Upfront

What is a proxy metric? It is a metric used to “stand in” for a direct measure, when direct measurement is not possible. For example if a PR  or marketing company places a story in the New York Times and in the Waste Management trade journal, The New York Times carries more influence and clout for the client and his product than does a trade journal because of reach, readership, credibility, etc.  Therefore the agency can plug in an arbitrary number in its client reporting valuing this placement as compared to an easier to obtain trade journal placement with less customer focused impact.

In a B-to-B environment the revenue pay-off can take many months or even years. Proxy metrics come in handy to assess campaign productivity before the sales cycle has ended.

Robert Reneau of National Semiconductor assigns dollar value to each interim campaign outcome, long before the activity has resulted in a sale. When a customer downloads a piece of collateral, for example, they credit the campaign with $1,000. A product sample request? That’s $5,000. A lead entered into the sales force automation system earns $50,000. Though these numbers seem arbitrary, over time they have helped National correlate actual sales results.

Can You Recover from Major Marketing Gaffes?

mistakes, errors, marketing, businessPolitical gaffes follow a candidate from one campaign to the next. The campaigns of Romney, Biden, Clinton, Quail and Bush all confirm this. Remember Bush’s premature use of the phrase “Mission Accomplished”, Quail’s misspelling of “potato?” or even Clinton’s more famous situation that isn’t appropriate for this posting. A misspoken word or an entire scandal can take an entire mission off focus.

The same can be said for the million dollar blunders made by the five marketing giants below.

Turner Broadcasting

One of Turner’s cartoon networks launched a guerrilla marketing campaign in 2007 that involved putting LED signs throughout the city of the flashing cartoon man. A Boston resident thought it was a bomb and called the police, which resulted in the shutdown of public transportation system and a $2 million fine requiring Turner Broadcasting to compensate the city for its emergency response time.

Gap & Coke

In 2010 Gap updated its logo design in an effort to appeal to a hipper audience. Gap switched back to its original logo within two days because of the backlash from its true audience of people who love their basics and aren’t trendy people. Who knows what the logo change and change-back cost Gap, but it probably was at least a million-dollar lesson to stay true to its loyal customers.

Gap’s gaffe proves that history does repeat itself. Remember Coca-Cola’s similar gaffe in 1985? Coca-Cola launched New Coke in an effort to keep Pepsi from gaining market share, only to enrage its loyal customers who began hoarding the original Coke formula and selling it on the black market for hefty prices.

Timothy’s Coffee

To extend their social reach, Timothy’s offered a coupon or a free sample for following them on Facebook or Twitter. The campaign was so successful, Timothy’s ran out of k-pak cups and later posted that free samples would be given out on a first come first serve basis. This went over like a cup of truck-stop coffee and despite an apology video; they were unable to recover from the gaffe of not being prepared to fulfill their published offer.

Pepsi

When Pepsi chose to pursue the International market of China, it failed to check the translation of its tagline, “Pepsi brings you back to life.”  The phrase translates to “Pepsi brings your ancestors back from the grave.” You may be laughing, but the marketing department and CEO of Pepsi weren’t. They were humiliated for not pre-flighting the phrase with native speaking Chinese customers. The cost of reprinting point of sale banners, signage and advertising cost just a hair more than the disgrace of Pepsi’s international gaffe.

 

Marketing Gaffe Prevention

While to err is human, there’s plenty of ways to reduce the margin for error. Here are a few suggestions to implement before you make history with a mega-marketing blunder.

Check your list twice

Don’t hit “send,” until you’ve checked your send-to list two or three times. Remember the agency employee who accidently dropped the F-bomb on Chrysler’s Twitter channel, thinking he was sending to his own peeps. Whoops.

Engage more eyes

Despite spell check and proofing, mistakes slip into marketing pieces because the individuals working on the piece go blind to their copy over time. Put a multi-tiered proofing team in place, as well as a pre-flight process for all your printed pieces and posts.

Take people out of the process

The beauty of print automation, is you do all the testing and proofing upfront (perhaps even for six months), but after that, all the data is pulled directly from your CRM or database and goes directly into the brochure, catalog, coupon, or direct mail piece, which eliminates the chance of human error. Print errors can cost a company millions. Verify your data, and partner with a company well versed in print automation if you need the assurance of 100% accuracy in your mailings.

In Philip B. Crosby’s book, Quality Is Free, Crosby estimates that the cost of quality for any company is 25 percent of revenue. Certainly far from free, but his book led to the “zero defects” movement that later was replaced by the Six Sigma movement because companies realized perfection was impossible. Six Sigma organizations are a bit more realistic, allowing an error rate of one in 1 million or less.

Whatever movement you’re following or quality assurance practices and systems you have in place, an error is costly to a company’s profits and reputation. Share your marketing blunders and any that you’ve headed off at the pass in the comments below. We’re all in this together.

Source:  Hubspot

 

Proven Ways to Get Your Email Opened and Your Phone to Ring

Direct marketing is about driving response.  It is about getting your emails or direct mail pieces opened, links clicked, and phones ringing.  As you work on your next direct marketing campaign follow these insights to drive your recipient to action.

How long is too long?

You work diligently scripting and coding your email campaign only to look at your analytics and sigh with disappointment. A meager open rate makes your heart sink. What can you do better the next time around?

You can try a different list, offer, subject line, or send time.  Most email experts recommend starting with examining the subject line. According to Marketing Charts, the length of an email’s subject lines plays a big part in earning a high opening rate. Subject lines of less than 10 characters earned a 58% open rate while subject lines of 50-59 characters earned a 42% response rate in March.

MarketingChartsEmail Proven Ways to Get Your Email Opened and Your Phone to Ring

Survey-related emails had the highest click rate (33.39%) while appeal-related emails had the lowest (14.63%), according to information supplied by Informz. Emails sent in the morning had the highest open rates based on metrics collected from more than 600 million emails sent by more than 700 companies. While emails sent in the morning had good open rates, they also had the lowest click rate.  (Source:  Pure360)

Most importantly, “Tell it, don’t sell it,” according to the researchers at MailChimp. You gain trust and credibility by telling the recipient what’s in his email rather than trying to be clever and sell him. A subject line that reads “April Newsletter from Martha Stewart” will more likely be opened than one that reads, “The Easter Bunny Might Skip Your Home This April.”

You can try a different list, offer, subject line, or send time.  Most email experts recommend starting with examining the subject line. According to Marketing Charts, the length of an email’s subject lines plays a big part in earning a high opening rate. Subject lines of less than 10 characters earned a 58% open rate while subject lines of 50-59 characters earned a 42% response rate in March.

 

Dimensional Mail Gets the Phone Ringing

As featured in the Aug. 2012 Deliver magazine, financial advisor Phillip Board of 1 on 1 Financial got 75% of 40 affluent investors with at least $500,000 to invest to call him based on a 3D direct mail piece he co-produced with his agency, Echo-Factory.

These soon-to-retire A-list prospects, received a black box with a note that read, “We haven’t heard from you,” printed on the outside flap and “We figured your phone must be broken,” on the inside flap. The box contained a cell phone with 20 minutes of talk time on it and Board’s number programmed when the prospect pressed “1.”

The cost of the mailing was more than worth the business earned, according to Board. He was spending up to $7,000 to earn one to two clients and this more targeted, customized, personalized approach was much more cost-effective.

Are you making it nearly impossible for your prospects not to open your emails or pick up the phone because of the offer or what they received in the mail? If not, follow suit with these tips and ideas. Highly targeted, relevant, offer rich emails and direct mail campaigns should be nearly irresistible.

Marketing Management & Execution Solutions: So What Do You Call Them?

Reading a dictionary

Searching for the right words to describe the marketing automation, management, or exection systems you're looking for? Maybe we can help.

**This is a re-post from Mail Print’s early days of blogging.  Our readership has grown quite a bit since then, so I wanted to resurrect an early post.  Enjoy!

Marketing Asset Management. Print Automation. Marketing Automation. Communications Portals. Distributed Marketing. Web-To-Print. Confused yet?

Wouldn’t it be nice if everything fit in a nice, neat package that is easy to understand and explain?  In the world of marketing communications management, many people would think the above terms all mean the same thing.  I actually think they don’t.  I think there are so many terms because each means something a little different:

Marketing Asset Management:

Focuses on creating an online library of digital marketing assets such as logos, templates, stock photography, videos and radio ads  for use by centralized marketing staff or a network of remote users.

Distributed Marketing:

A term coined to define organizations that have many local markets that are marketed to differently, whether marketing strategy and execution is controlled by a central marketing department or the local stores and locations.

Web-to-Print:

The ability to order printed materials through an online printing management system. Typically, this reduces a company’s inventory waste and improves the customization available on the printed pieces.

Communications Portal:

A central repository for ordering and downloading all types of marketing communications and assets, including email, logos, direct mail, radio commercials, fliers, buck slips, etc.  Marketing Communications Portalsare very useful for distributed marketing organizations.

Print Automation:

Eliminates human intervention in creating printed pieces.    This could be obtained via a web-to-print application or communications portal that also employs print automation, or could be a standalone system that creates printed pieces automatically based upon data streams and live data feeds.

Marketing Automation:

The process of triggering marketing communications to a specific individual or audience segment without human intervention.  This differs from print automation in that the automated marketing campaigns could include email, direct mail and other channels, by themselves or combined.

I’m sure there are many more terms and buzz words that I haven’t noted here. Just like any rapidly advancing technology solution, new terms are created every day.  The most important thing to understand is what you really need in a solution, regardless of what it is called.


Think Like a Great Architect to Design that Historic Campaign

marketing plan, business plan, marketing, multichannel marketing, marketing strategyMarketers wear many hats to design campaigns that earn loyalty, likes, sales, or donations. To start your next project with a zero-based obstacle point of view, think like a great architect. How would Le Corbusier design the rollout? How would Karl Rove remove the competition from the campaign, and how would Julia Morgan (first woman licensed to practice architecture in California) approach the challenge to design a resort complex that would become a movie star destination and national landmark?

For nearly 28 years, Julie Morgan was given all the money, creative leeway, and support she needed to design William Randolph Hearst’s Casa Grande in San Simeon, CA. The finished product is 165 rooms and 127 acres of gardens, terraces, pools, and walkways.

Consider the similarities of the planning complexity to some of the multi-channel marketing campaigns you must architect.

Imagine the multi-channel marketing campaign you could create if you had all the time, all the money, and all the creative reign you wanted to make your mark in the world. What would you build and what would its impact be on your company, your career, the world?  Would you go down in marketing history with the same notoriety of Steve Jobs, David Ogilvy, Sir Richard Branson, Seth Godin, or Jack Trout?

“Marketing is not a battle of products, but of perceptions,” says Jack Trout

As a master architect of great buildings, Morgan can teach us much about pulling off the seemingly impossible and delivering on a large scale.

 

Plan Everything In Advance

When designing a great campaign or castle, plan everything in advance. Don’t put a stake in the ground or purchase a URL until you’ve designed the whole project. This will help you see potential glitches, move pieces around before you become committed to a direction, channel, theme, headline, call to action, or timeline.

Planning everything in advance will insulate and protect your budget from unforeseen blunders. The Hearst Castle cost $4 million dollars to build in the early 1900s. Too many buildings (and marketing projects) go way over budget because of poor planning or poor communications or both.

 

Optimize Every Square Foot

Though Morgan had hundreds of acres to work with, she designed the estate down to the trim on the baseboards. In the marketing realm, use everything at your disposal by working every channel into the marketing mix. When you time your direct mail to land between correlating emails it can yield double the response rate of email alone and have the best conversion.  And when you time your sales representatives to make contact following a drop, they’ll be much better received.

 

Make it Personal

Ms. Morgan created intimacy among the grounds, guests, and guest houses by weaving in Hearst’s art collection. You can create intimacy by weaving in personalization, most importantly looking in your database for data points that allow you to create highly customized and personalized messages.

 

Leave a Legacy with Your Artistry

Ms. Morgan designed a Mediterranean Revival style castle that is reflected in the main house and three guest houses. The towers of the main house, or Casa Grande, take their design from a Spanish cathedral. The estate is now a national park for the State of California with thousands of visitors each year. Are you thinking like an architect when you design your campaigns?

Will your campaign be deleted, acted upon, or game changing in your industry? It’s easy to churn out standard email copy, typical landing pages, and to-be-expected self mailers, but how are you stretching your skills as an architect to design something unforgettable, undeniable, viral, fruitful, and your legacy?

 

Build it So It Captivates

Building your campaign with a strong foundation, it sets the groundwork for your next multi-channel masterpiece. The rebar you need to strengthen your foundation, is multiple methods to capture any and all activity such as surveys, contact forms, landing pages, 800 numbers, social share buttons and comment boxes.

Be sure whatever response mechanism you use is monitored and responded to by a team that can act quickly. Also make sure each channel has its own landing page so tracking is pinpoint accurate.

 

Finally, don’t forget to make your campaign speak directly to your prospects with intelligence, integrity, and interesting copy so they’ll be more apt to open your campaigns when they arrive. It’s easy to get focused on the technical aspects of the digital campaign that the human aspect suffers.

I hope these best practices resonate with you and give you a baseline of where to focus your efforts on your next multichannel campaign. If you’d like more ideas for building a campaign, review the 10 Greatest Guerrilla Marketing Campaigns of All Time. Between this list and the designing of the Hearst Castle, you should have dozens of fresh ideas to leave your thumbprint on your next campaign.