Anyone who speaks small business also speaks survival. As an ambitious entreurneur you reach for the stars and work for the best. Often a piece of you becomes your business. We understand, your business is a very personal possession. And much like you would protect the roof over your head and your transportation to and from work, you also do everything in your power to protect the child that provides for you – your business.
Protection plans, which include survival, are often made out of habit. Did anyone have to tell you to obtain a company attorney or CPA? Of course not! You want to make sure your assets are protected should someone launch an attack against your company. Yet many business owners overlook the most vital element of their survival plan when operating a small to medium size business – their Marketing Director.
Don’t get me wrong, I understand why! The cost of such a growth asset seems intimidating when the 1990’s norm was limited to lawyers, accountants, payroll firms and insurance. However, in the 2010’s the markets have changed immensely. “Research upon research confirms today’s customer buying behavior is unlike any prior timeframe.” Said John Fox in his latest Huffington Post article. He continues:
Once the purview of sales, the new Google-enabled buying process (where Sales enters the buying process later) transfers much of the responsibility for customer nurturing to Marketing. This puts the Marketing Director on the very front lines as the point-person for the buyer’s “journey” with their company.
Is your stomach churning yet?
If your stomach is churning, you should relax because you have nothing to worry about. Reaching out to your customer base is easier than ever and the cost is much less than that of our 1990’s counterparts. (Not to mention a Marketing Director carries an ROI. Go figure!)
The benefits of the Marketing Director are listed all across the internet. What isn’t explained is the logistics of such a company asset. How much do they cost? Under what terms do they work with your business? What responsibilities fall under their belts? To many’s surprise, the answer to all of these questions can be summed up in one simple paragraph.
“The Marketing Director is no longer a luxury, they are an essential ingredient toward the success of any small business.” Stated Christopher Skraba, President of Ralston & Anthony Advertising at a recent event in New York City. He continued, “As a matter of fact we are so much so an essential element of business that the cost of our services has dropped tremendously. You and I alike are familiar with the multi-million dollar hype surrounding large campaigns for the Super Bowl. So naturally I don’t expect anyone to think marketing isn’t a multi-million dollar purchase. However in all reality your Marketing Director operates much in the same way your attorney does. A retainer is a such a beautiful thing. Imagine all-you-can marketing for 6 months? That’s modern marketing.”
John Fox finished:
For the first time it’s possible to link hundreds of various inputs from internal sources like engineering, sales and customer service with external feeds such as Internet search-related keywords, online advertising, competitor social media, third-party recommendations and all sorts of touch points into a model that yields profitable customers and measurable ROI.
Marketing and advertising have joined the ranks of the distinguished lawyer, CPA and insurance provider small business cabinet. With the retainer/all-you-can-eat model, small business are finding that professional marketing and advertising fits their goals and future success much more than was previously thought.