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A Publication of WTVP

While consumer spending is growing, it can still be a struggle to know how much to spend on marketing. With limited budgets, you’ll want to make sure you’re spending in the right places, so you should focus on where your key audiences are engaged.

Start by asking yourself if you are:

Different tactics lend themselves to certain audiences. Here are some of the tactics you need to consider if you are B-2-B (i.e., a janitorial supply company, consulting firm, medical supply company, etc.):

Some B-2-B tactics lend themselves to consumer marketing as well, but messaging needs to be approached differently. Below are some tactics that are more successful for B-2-C companies (i.e., fast food, movie theaters, jewelry stores, etc.):

A Scenario
Let’s say you are the sales manager for Hotel X, which takes in leisure travelers, but hosts meetings as well. Hotel X has both business and consumer audiences. As the sales manager, your goal for the next two years is to land twice as many meeting or conference bookings compared to the previous year. This particular goal, then, has a B-2-B audience—specifically, planners who will be making final decisions on when and where they will take their next meeting or conference.

Now, you have to prioritize which of the B-2-B marketing tactics you will utilize. Ideally, your budget will allow you to spend on all of them, but that is often not the case. So, how do you decide? Step into the shoes of your audience—the meeting planner.

Some planners may be ready to make a decision on where to book their next meeting immediately. They are researching online and paying close attention to mail that is directly related to their current need. In this case, tactics such as search marketing, online display advertising (relevant to the trade, i.e., a banner advertisement on the Meetings Focus MidAmerica website) and direct mail would be your best options. These tactics will hit your target right as he or she is getting ready to register for a new meeting location.

Other planners may not be in a position to make a change for several months, but you want to be first in mind when they are ready to make that final decision. In order to reach these prospects, employ a drip marketing program. A drip marketing program hits your target audiences with multiple messages over a longer period of time. Such tactics include email marketing (monthly or quarterly e-newsletters), social media and direct mail.

No matter where you spend, though, everything should be driving traffic to your website. This is why it is essential to have an up-to-date, fast, functional and aesthetically appealing site! This is the central force of your marketing plan. Users should be able to learn more about who you are and what you offer, and then take action (call, buy, register, etc.).

So before you blow your entire budget on the latest and greatest marketing fad, make sure you heavily consider whether or not your particular audience is actually spending time and engaging there. iBi

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