How do firms maximise the chances that their marketing and business development efforts deliver the expected value on time and within budget? In our experience, the key to success lies in mastering four broad elements, which when combined make up a methodology for successful marketing that improves ROI (Return on Investment). And we’re not just talking leadership and marketing teams, the entire organisation has an important role to play:

1. Share a common vision

While outputs and deliverables are obviously important, you need something that captures the hearts and minds of your people and your clients. To have impact, you need a strong foundation and an integrated approach. A vision enables everyone to understand their role – they know what to do and why they are doing it.

2. Focus on strategy instead of exclusively concentrating on budget and deadlines

Marketing and business development initiatives tend to over-focus on budget and deadlines rather than strategy. There is also a tendency to focus on what we are trying to sell, rather than what value we are giving clients.

The process should begin with business alignment. Once this is achieved, marketing objectives should be defined, challenges identified, and target audiences determined.

3. Master technology

High-performing marketing teams embrace technology and use it to create efficient processes to achieve their objectives.

A professional services firm wanted to implement a new CRM system. The leadership team saw it as an information database instead of the end goal, which was to successfully manage the firm’s interaction with current and future clients. With milestones and launch dates constantly being pushed back, the CRM implementation ground to a halt along with all business development activities.

In contrast, another firm was able to re-scope and upgrade its current CRM system quickly and efficiently even though many internal stakeholders thought doing so was impossible. To ensure success, the project team introduced rigorous internal testing and rollout plans helping to gain stakeholder support. It invited support from across the firm to iron out issues at the outset and listened responding to the needs of individual teams. It also introduced clearly defined project stages which meant the team was able to test, understand issues and implement fixes before full implementation took place.

4. Use proven methodologies and processes

While no two marketing initiatives will be identical, most share certain characteristics. And because no two people or teams will approach a solution in the same way, a firm will benefit from standardised processes that will improve effectiveness and efficiencies.

Process-led marketing enables for adjustments and optimisation. It drives consistency and quality saving time and money and maximising ROI. Good management distils a firm’s processes as a proven approach which works.

Next steps

There are lots of good tips available on how to improve your marketing effectiveness. Some will focus on theory and some will more practical. Our view is that you need a system. A replicable, efficient system distinctive to your firm. One that helps your marketing activities to continually improve and deepen the impact of your brand.

Tom Horigan

Founding Director

www.horigan.co.uk

Contact us for a no-obligation review of these four areas.