With the New Year closing in fast and most everybody in the midst of budget planning, undoubtedly you are looking at what strategies to use for the coming year. It is time to evaluate what has worked, and what has not. How to utilize some of the new media, and ultimately what works best for the specific markets you work with.
While this can be somewhat exciting and also a little daunting, it is also critical that your plans remain true to who you are. In other words, what is your brand – your differentiation within the market place you serve? For many businesses or organizations, if you are really honest about it, there is very little that separates you from everyone else. If you say price, well then good luck, because the first person that comes along with a lower price and you are out of luck! Some would say personalized service or the highest quality – but again, this is pretty tough to rely on when everyone else in the market is saying the same thing!
Hopefully you do have something more – a real differentiation that you can hang your hat on. Or if you are a non-profit organization, your mission is one that can really have an impact or resonate with your donor audience. Or as Seth Godin would suggest – a Purple Cow!
While this blog post is not intended to help you define your brand, it is a reminder that whatever marketing plans you intend to engage for the next year, be sure that they remain true to this identity. Especially within some of the social media avenues, it is critical that you encourage discussions that relate to who you are, and why you are different. Maybe initiate a contest to have clients share why they use your services, or perhaps you could enlist a video testimonial from a client that talks about why they use your business as compared to another – based upon your differentiation!
Your LinkedIn page should also communicate this message within your bio, or through recommendations from customers “who get it.” The point is, even with all the new media options available, your brand police should still be actively a part of these strategies – monitoring the message and what people are saying about it. Do you employ others to possibly market your organization – either on staff or through outside sources? If so, gather them together to review your brand and identity. Get everyone on the same page, from website manager to print provider – from social media guru to search engine optimizer, and everyone in between. You have so many options today, but it is critical that they are all saying the same thing!
So you might ask, what is our identity at C L Graphics – what differentiates us? We are a marketing and cross media resource. We strive to offer more than just print services for our clients, we provide advice, ideas, information, knowledge, marketing strategies. Try getting that from most any other printer!