Marketing Plan 101

Every marketing plan should have 2 goals: to build your brand, and to create ads that encourage sales.

A strong brand builds trust and name recognition, while ads with a call to action generate sales. Your studio needs both. If clients don’t trust your brand, they become price shoppers, and the only call to action you can offer is a discount.

Unfortunately, some business owners believed that once social media (Facebook, Youtube, Pinterest, Blogs, etc.) became popular, they could quit spending money on expensive ads and focus on social media alone. Then when they stopped meeting their sales goals, they decided social media wasn’t worth the effort.

The problem is, social media isn’t a replacement for a flyer, a brochure, a postcard, TV, radio or newspaper ads. These are all calls to action. They generate sales. Only companies with million dollar budgets can afford to buy a “branding” ad that doesn’t ask a customer to actually buy something.

Think of social media more like reviews, testimonials, and word of mouth. It is part of a conversation. In addition to social media, your storefront, your website, your logo, your products/services, local community involvement, customer service, and even the way you dress and act in public can build (or ruin) your brand.

How much time and money should be spent on each? Certainly a 50-50 split is a start. But it is just as important to consider each of your marketing efforts. Are they designed to build your brand, or are they a call to action? Your marketing plan has two buckets. Are you filling them both?

As for social media, quit thinking about it as a way to generate sales, and instead, think of it as a way to build your brand. If it is properly built into your marketing plan, over time the sales will come.