No matter the business or organization – a law firm, a labor union, a trade association, even a manufacturer – the marketing of products, services or concepts is all about relationship building.
The objective is establishing trust that the interaction will provide value. We lay the foundation for that relationship by branding – communicating in a short hand way that creates a top-of-mind connection between the audience and what your business or organization is all about.
Building and promoting a brand in a way that resonates and moves your audience is no small challenge in today’s multimedia environment full of competition and distractions. There are more options than ever before for reaching your audience but it’s harder to capture and maintain the attention that moves them to action. A good starting place is a Communication Audit – an intensive assessment of your communication materials, channels and marketing choices.
There are a lot of practical reasons why you might benefit from an objective review of your marketing materials and activities: Marketing Communication is both an art and a science; Trying to figure it all out is costly, confusing and time-consuming; and there are more choices coming your way every day.
Expert perspective will save you time, resources and aggravation and will likely yield insight to help you focus on what’s most important to move forward more quickly and effectively.
The audit is really just the first step in the process of developing a strategic marketing plan and it requires your involvement.
You will have to come to grips with two central issues: Your objectives and your audience.
A meaningful assessment of how well your marketing communication choices align with your priorities depends on how well you can articulate a sharply focused set of objectives and how well you can define your target audience.
There are questions posed in the audit that you may able to answer with confidence and some that you just don’t know. These responses will help to shape your strategic marketing communication plan by articulating who you are, what you do and why it matters to your audience. These answers will also identify the areas that need your attention.
On both counts you need a hard look at what you’re doing if you really want to make it better.
© 2017 Stephen Madarasz is a consultant specializing in Communication Audits, Assessments & Marketing Plans – Sharing and use of this material is encouraged, provided the source is identified and credited.