We all know that it’s tough out there at the moment and are having to justify all marketing spend. When times are tough it’s often the marketing budget that gets cut first, but as everyone who works in marketing communications knows, this is the time when investing in marketing is most important. We just need to recognise that although investing is crucial, so is clever spending.
We work with clients of all sizes, from all industries and are asked on a regular basis for advice upon how to get more from a marketing budget. We have plenty of tricks up our sleeves to help you stretch your budget that little bit further and here are our top 6 ways to help you get more for your money:
Be true to your objectives
Today’s media can offer an overwhelming volume of opportunities for an eager marketeer; brochures, online advertising, social media, leafleting, direct mail, radio advertising, press advertising, exhibitions… the list is endless! To really stretch your marketing budget it’s imperative to focus on who you’re talking to and what your objectives are – if a marketing activity doesn’t take you closer to hitting your objectives then the answer has to be NO, no matter how fantastic the pricing! Cutting out this superfluous marketing activity will mean more of your budget remains to be spent on activities that perform better for you.
Practice affiliate marketing
This is a business practice used by many companies to stretch their marketing budgets, whereby organisations who work in complimentary fields share advertising space, data or even broadcast marketing communications on behalf of one another. This is a strategy that can be applied to almost all businesses; if your organisation provides a garden design service and you meet somebody whose company rents garden machinery you could share data, share an exhibition stand, swap online advertising space– the ways to work together and stretch marketing budgets are endless!
Bundle projects with suppliers
Agencies love working on ongoing campaigns which incorporate a variety of media and will often offer attractive rates for large projects with multiple items incorporated – so rather than commissioning work piecemeal or spreading the work between a number of agencies, ask one company for a bundled price if they manage everything. Don’t forget that design agencies will often not only design your brochure or website, but can also print or build them for you too. That’s our job!
Ensure that direct mail is targeted
DM is a popular medium due to an attractive conversion rate, but with these higher levels of response comes higher costs. Luckily logical thinking in the early stages can help keep direct mail costs to a minimum. The golden rule of this medium is targeting, we know it’s so tempting to mail everybody in your database for ease, but by only contacting to the most relevant records you can make considerable savings on both, print and postage. Further postage costs can be reduced by planning ahead allowing you to post second class and keeping your envelope size down to ensure that it fits within Royal Mail’s ‘small letter’ size.
Benefit from printing economies of scale
There are very attractive economies of scale to be benefited from when ordering print, we’d advise you never print 3000 units with the intention of printing more in a few weeks. Think through the next 12 months of activity and purchase print in bulk now to take advantage of those economies of scale. Don’t forget to take advantage of our knowledge and experience by asking us if your print specification can be tweaked to print more efficiently; sometimes changing the number of colours, changing paper stock, or even tweaking shape/size of your item can offer significant cost savings.
Take advantage of social media (but only it’s right for you!)
Social media is widely used (and abused!) to stretch budgets by marketers around the globe, and done correctly it can be an amazingly economical way of reaching your target audience. Executed ineffectively it can be a time and resource drain. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that social media is completely free, the software may well be, but don’t forget that time your staff spend focused on social media they’re not focused on other, potentially more effective projects.
We hope that you have found our tricks of the trade useful and would love to hear about any ideas you have used to successfully stretch your marketing budget.
Want to learn more about how our services could benefit your business?
Let’s get together and explore the potential.
Contact us on +44 (0)20 8360 8244