Printing Impressions

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TJ Tedesco

View from Mount Olympus

By TJ Tedesco

About TJ

T.J. is team leader of Grow Sales, Inc., a marketing and social media services company operating at the intersection of compelling content, clear vision and quality communication practices. In this blog, fire is a metaphor for print. Hang on, this ride will be weird...

Prometheus crept into Mt. Olympus, stole fire, returned to the lowlands, ran from house to house distributing it, got caught, was chained to a rock, lost his liver to a huge ugly bird and was rescued by Hercules. Leveraging his fame, Prometheus started Fire Enterprises Inc.  (FEI). Since fire was the hottest technology of the time, company success came fast and furious. Two generations later, fire isn't such an easy sale. Now led by Prometheus' grandson Org, FEI's growth is non-existent, competitors are pounding and prices are in the toilet.
 

Three Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

 
In the last blog, Fire Enterprises (FEI) Sales Tribe Leader Zoot showed Sales Apprentice Ganymede how to get clients to call him back by leaving them wanting more. This week, Marketing Tribe Leader Marka tells the tribe three marketing mistakes they should avoid. Remember, fire = print.
 
FEI’s Tuesday afternoon marketing meeting had begun. In the conference room, Marka stood at the whiteboard in front of the FEI tribe.

“I may be the Marketing Tribe Leader, but everyone at FEI is in marketing, in a sense,” Marka said. “It’s important for every FEI employee to have at least a basic grasp of marketing best practices. That’s why today I’d like to go over some common marketing mistakes companies make, as well as suggestions for how to avoid them.”

“We’re all ears,” Org said.

“There’s one important thing to keep in mind during this discussion,” Marka said. “The number one rule of marketing is ‘Do No Harm’. This rule trumps all others. Now, let’s move onto mistake #1.”

Marka scribbled on the whiteboard:
 
#1—Failure to use a marketing mix

 “Our marketing plan should include a mix of media, timing and approaches,” Marka said. “For instance, today it’s tempting to concentrate most of our efforts in the broadcast O-mail channel, since O-mails are easy to create and cost basically nothing to send. But putting all our eggs in O-mail—or any one channel—is the wrong approach. We must vary our strategy to include multiple touch points with prospects and customers—you never know which one will convince them to pick up the phone!”

Marka scribbled more on the whiteboard:

#2—Failure to follow up
“Marketing communications designed to support FEI’s sales efforts are made much more effective when they’re followed by a phone call,” Marka said. “That’s on you, Zoot. If our marketing strategy includes a promise of a follow-up, we’ve got to follow up!”

More scribbling on the whiteboard from Marka:

#3—Avoid differentiating on price
“A discounted price might get us a few one-time jobs, but it’s a poor long-term strategy,” Marka said. “Instead, let’s move the paradigm away from price by focusing on the unique selling proposition we offer customers. If we build our marketing message around what makes FEI different, we’ll have far fewer conversations regarding price.”

“Great tips, Marka,” Zoot said. “But you forgot one.”

“What’s that?” Marka asked.

“Always be nice to sales!” Zoot exclaimed.

Next week: Zoot gives sales apprentice Ganymede some tips for effective cold calling.
 
Today’s FIRE! Point
Failing to use a marketing mix, failing to follow up, and trying to differentiate on price are three common marketing mistakes that will hinder the effectiveness of your printing company’s marketing efforts. Avoid them at all costs.

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