“Is marketing and advertising worth it anymore?” This is a question many marketers, brand directors, online marketing experts, and advertising agencies and companies ask themselves. Don’t worry, I’m going to tell you in this article WHAT WORKS, and HOW to get your marketing and advertising to work.
What is NOT Working? It seems that no matter what method you try these days, you’re not getting the results you want (or at the very least not at the sales level they could be). You may have tried Google Adwords, Youtube video ads, twitter advertising, bing advertising, cpc and cpm ads, facebook ads, craigslist ads, groupon and living social, trying to go viral, you name it! None of it works! Sometimes one of those methods works a little, but not really.
WHY? Customers don’t need anything anymore. It’s not about finding a need and fulfilling it like it was in the old days. It is about WANTS not needs. You know the benefits of your product and service, but a potential customer could care less. In general, the people of the world are satisfied and have everything (if not more) than they could possibly need. So, unless you’re selling an affordable cure for a disease to a sick person – your ads are going to get ignored.
WHAT DOES WORK? A customer may not really want or need anyTHING, but they will always value belonging. Human beings are social, and we like to be a part of something. This is why Celebrity Endorsements and Sponsorship Marketing still work.
THE MISTAKE MOST MARKETERS AND COMPANIES MAKE:
You know a celebrity or popular influencer can help create buzz and Customer Want for you, but you probably think you can’t afford the millions of dollars it takes to get one. THIS IS WRONG! The mistake most marketers make is they only focus on the top 10 celebrities at any given time. You DO NOT WANT Taylor Swift, Pitbull, Rihanna, Justin Beiber, Daft Punk, Robin Thicke, Angelina Jolie or whoever is the top tier celebrity at this given minute. YOU DON’T WANT a top 10 celebrity because you WILL NOT make enough money off their endorsement to pay for their ridiculously high price tags. Even major companies like Pepsi make this mistake – they go for solely the cool factor, and miss out on the real numbers.
HOW TO AVOID THIS MISTAKE, AND GET INFLUENTIAL MARKETING THAT WORKS:
STEP 1: Choose a celebrity that’s popular and influential enough to reach an audience, but one you may not have heard of before. Ask around, do google searches, there are many such celebrities. Most of us only know the top 10 celebrities, and don’t go any further. I chose international rock star Anand Bhatt for my marketing campaign. I saw he had a good amount of twitter followers and a google search for him yielded a lot of results. His endorsement did not cost me millions of dollars, in fact he worked with me within whatever budget I told him – and I received a lot of press and made a lot of sales. I profited from the Anand Bhatt endorsement in a matter of months. Now that’s impressive turnaround for any campaign, and I was able to afford it.
STEP 2: Figure out your budget and LET THEM KNOW EXACTLY WHAT YOU NEED/WANT from the endorsement. Do you want some publicity buzz and are ok with your existing sales? Or do you want an increase in direct sales or website visits but don’t care about media attention? Both? Knowing exactly what you want and communicating it is important. HERE’S A FORMULA ON HOW TO FIGURE OUT YOUR BUDGET SO YOU CAN PROFIT: In grad school I learned that a 2 year ROI is important (the investment should be able to be recouped within 2 years or less). So if I profit $X per month, I want to pay less than X times 24 (24 months in two years). For example, let’s say I make on average $1,000 every month from my business. Then, 24 times $1,000 is $24,000. That is my proposed budget that I will want to spend on the celebrity marketing. If I only made $100/month than my budget is only $2,400. Make sense? So when I approach the celebrity I NEED TO MAKE THE FIRST OFFER! I offer $24,000 and let them know that I want publicity buzz/increased website visitors/increased direct sales. This way they will come up with the appropriate plan to give me what I need without quoting more. Worse case they say no, and I move on to the next celebrity. I have nothing to lose by being very specific with describing the amount I’m willing to spend, and what I expect for that money.
STEP 3: Secure the endorsement and EXPLOIT IT! Once you get the rights to use the celebrity’s name and get them to talk about your business, get your money’s worth by retweeting and sharing every post/facebook mention they give you. Send out press releases and announce to everyone you can about the endorsement relationship. And contact the celebrity/their manager once a week (or once a month, depending on what you’re doing with them) with suggestions on what you would like them to say about your business to their fans. Don’t hesitate to ask for their marketing guidance, celebrities and their managers are professionals in promotion and we may as well benefit from their expertise and successes.