Marketing is a big blanket term. To get your footing – here is the definition of Marketing:
Marketing is the process of performing market research, selling products and/or services to customers and promoting them via advertising to further enhance sales. It generates the strategy that underlies sales techniques, business communication, and business developments. It is an integrated process through which companies build strong customer relationships and create value for customers and for themselves.
Marketing is used to identify the customer, to satisfy the customer, and to keep the customer. With the customer as the focus of its activities, it can be concluded that marketing management is a major components of business management.
With this generic definition of marketing in mind, I’d like to discuss two kinds of marketing all companies should be engaged in on an ongoing basis:
1 – Get Them!
Most business owners know they need to “market” their company, and often they spend loads of money on advertising – some good – some not so focused. Most traditional mass-media advertising (i.e. Billboards, TV, Radio, Magazines, Outdoor, and even Web Ads and SE Ranking) represents the category of “New Client Generation” marketing. This kind of marketing does three things for you
A) It Introduces your company to new prospects/customers.
B) It helps to make your company/brand recognizable, and
C) if you are lucky (and have effective marketing creative in place), it will help generate sales.
So… New Client Generating Marketing = Get Them!
2 – Keep Them!
To their detriment, many businesses ignore one of the most powerful forms of marketing at their disposal, and that is “Client Maintenance” marketing. There are rare occasions where Client Maintenance marketing doesn’t pay off, but in 99% of cases we have worked in, Client Maintenance marketing is cheaper, more effective and easier than New Client Generation. This kind of marketing does two things for you:
A) It keeps your company/brand top-of-mind so some other company doesn’t steel your customers, and
B) It creates a brand community of customers who spread their experience with your product/service to their contacts and connections.
Now there are tons of variables that effect how you initiate, integrate and implement Client Maintenance marketing, so the trick is developing something that works for your industry/client base. Some initiatives are simple, like publishing a company “newsletter” or blog to keep-in-touch/educate/inform. Others are more elaborate, like sending out emails so clients can answer a short survey about their experience with you. You get info and they get to feel like they are important and engaged with your brand (and may have the opportunity to win a small prize).
So… Client Maintenance Marketing = Keep Them!
You can see how the two kinds of marketing work together to first “Get Them!” then to “Keep Them!.” One without the other is like serving a cake without the icing. You may get some people to eat it, but you could offer a much more valuable brand experience, one they will be happy to partake of over-and-over again, if you sweeten it up a little. Don’t just spend lots of marketing dollars to reach new customers only to have to replace them over-and-over. Initiate the Keep Them! efforts, and you will improve marketing effectiveness and ROI dramatically!