I believe the main goal of marketing is to build awareness about your business and offerings. But does it create buyers? No. Engagement does!
Marketing versus engagement
Now more than ever it’s difficult to get customers through the door. While the internet has been a crucial tool to help businesses flourish, it’s also made it much easier for competitors to enter your industry and take pieces of your pie! Competition is high and savvy customers pick and choose who they want to buy from.
I took on a client recently who was a leader in their industry only a few years ago. Over the last 12 months he noticed a significant decline in his business and wasn’t sure why. His marketing plan had stayed exactly the same (it worked before, why change it?), so he was struggling to identify what was going wrong.
To increase sales, you guessed it, he did more marketing. His campaign included banner ads, local radio advertising, flyers, print advertising, directory listings and more.
All of these activities built awareness of his company but they were all very “push” focused. By that I mean, pushing his business onto potential clients.
Myself, I prefer the “pull strategy”, where clients are drawn to you through an effective and authentic engagement strategy.
After working together over 90 days we implemented an engagement strategy that not only transformed his business but also changed the way he thought about marketing.
One of my main focuses during the process was to help my client build more sustainable business relationships along with implementing a nurture strategy. In our last month working together he brought in $40,000 of strategic partnership sales, all through simple engagement!
I’m fascinated by engagement strategies and I’m always learning about how to engage clients more effectively. Here are just two examples:
- Build Relationships.Don’t just throw someone on a list or cold call, use a mix of online and offline strategies to start an authentic conversation that adds value.
- Become an Authority.Writing and speaking are two great ways to position yourself as a mini celebrity in your ideal clients’ eyes.
It’s time to get engaged
So ask yourself, are you engaging with your audience? When a prospect comes in, do you implement a 45 day engagement process that converts them into buying customers? Are you staying ‘top of mind’ with your clients even after the initial sale is completed? How engaged are the people on your database right now? Are you simply sending sporadic emails with information about your services, or are you engaging with them by providing value and building trust?
Today is a good day to start thinking more about your pull strategy (engagement), rather than your PUSH strategy, (marketing).
What do you think of marketing versus engagement?