Marketing on a Budget
Another benefit to this approach is that, when Mel is out sick or on vacation, another team member can jump in and provide support.
My contact with Mel is not limited to IDEA. We also speak through Skype, instant messaging and email to ask questions, clarify requests, change priorities and more. And there is a weekly Marketing team meeting because Unmana Datta, Mel and I get together to brainstorm and plan projects. By the way, Unmana is based in Pune, India, and has also never met Mel in person.
One of the reasons this approach works so well is that Mel is dedicated to marketing projects. He has become the keeper of the Affinity Express brand. As a result, I never have to tell him what colors to use, how to treat the logo or even what I look for when editing things like our PowerPoint presentations. This is a huge time-saver. Fortunately, I have more than enough work to keep Mel busy full-time. But if he worked on my projects and handled two other clients because the volumes were lighter, that would be just as effective for my purposes.
Having been in marketing my entire career, I can tell you that if you said to me ten years ago that I'd be working this way, I would have called you crazy. That's why I understand there is skepticism and disbelief when we first engage new prospects, especially when dealing with marketing departments.
The typical objections I hear are:
- "People in other countries can't understand the style I'm trying to achieve here in Dallas, New York, Tecumseh, etc."
- "It would be too hard to communicate and explain what I need—I need to speak to someone face-to-face."
- "Transferring files would be too hard, especially for every new order."
- "I have very specific branding requirements and you can't possibly get it right with so many other clients."
- "Once I see a first draft, I get new ideas or want to change things to see how they will look."
- "There is a huge range of support that I need."
These are all very valid concerns and are the same ones I used to have. And I'm the first to admit you might encounter some of these obstacles, depending on the capabilities of the provider you choose.