What’s Working in Marketing Workshop by Panel of Experts Recap

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Recently I attended an interesting marketing workshop hosted by Walsh College. Featuring a panel of four marketing, advertising, public relations, social media, and face-to-face marketing experts, they discussed what tactics they are currently seeing as producing the best results for small and medium sized businesses. Following presentations by each of the experts, participants were then broken down into two smaller groups to discuss and share best practices with the experts, and answer any questions.

 The lady sitting next to me asked about how to track marketing campaigns' effectiveness. Of course I talked to her about Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Using Microsoft Dynamics CRM you can create marketing campaigns, track the campaign’s costs through marketing activities, build marketing lists, track the campaign responses, track what leads are assigned to sales, see what opportunities get created, and record what sales close. Sorry about the run-on, but Microsoft Dynamics CRM does a lot of stuff! And, it is designed in such a manner that all this marketing data is all tracked automatically without someone having to update this information manually each step of the way. If you want to learn more about Microsoft Dynamics for marketing automation, you can read our earlier “It’s Year End – Do You Know Where Your Marketing Dollars Are? You Do with Microsoft Dynamics CRM” blog.

 Anyway, here are some highlights from each speaker’s session during the What’s Working in Marketing Workshop:

 1) Mark Young of Jekyll and Hyde Advertising: He mentioned that the #1 mistake in advertising that companies make is splashing their company’s name big and bold right across the top of an ad. Prospective customers don’t know who the company is and really don’t care. It won’t get their attention. Good ads are like news stories and must be about the reader and explain what’s in it for them.

Mark had a lot more interesting ideas and tips to share, but I don’t have room here to share them all. However, I would like to share his closing thoughts because they are near and dear to my heart as a Sales and Marketing Director. Mark noted that advertising is accounted as an expense according to accounting rules, but in actuality it should be viewed as an asset. When people buy companies, they buy the intellectual property and the brand. Marketing and advertising build a firm’s brand and thus the value of the company.

 2) Matt Friedman of Tanner Friedman – Strategic Communications: He talked about using public relations to get your marketing message out. “In the last five to six years, media has changed,” Matt said. “Broadcasting has really become narrowcasting and there are fewer journalists than ever before.” If you want to get a story on the TV you need to come up with visuals (TV is video based, a paper press release won’t work), take the act on the road (like a restaurant’s chefs doing studio cooking tutorial for anchor) and find the today angle. The majority of reporters go for what’s current and right in front of them. They don’t have time to do lengthy features anymore.

Radio is still holding their own. News/talk is still getting consistent ratings and NPR is doing really well. Morning drive time is still really good for business-to-business. If you want to get radio coverage you have to message succinctly, time it for the maximum hook, and reach out to the news people directly. Fortunately for companies with a message they want to get out in the press, the internet has made news reporters more accessible than ever.

 3) Anita Mitzel of GraphiColor Exhibits, a trade show display design and production company: Anita talked about how social media has traction right now and that it is kind of the opposite of face-to-face marketing. Trade shows have been around forever. They can be very time consuming and expensive. There are a few things that companies exhibiting at tradeshows can do to make the most of their trade show investments.

  1. Train the booth staff on how to engage and qualify.
  2. Have an ice breaker.
  3. Follow-up with the attendees.
  4. If you can’t afford a nice display, then don’t bother to exhibit.

“The #1 problem at tradeshows today is the booth staff spending more time looking at their phones than at the attendees,” Anita emphasized. “Put your best foot forward and be available to attendees. No talking among yourselves and put away your phones.”

 4) Paul Chambers of Core3 Solutions, Crain’s 20 In Their 20’s, Digital Innovator: Paul’s presentation was about digital marketing in today’s world where most people are getting their news off the internet. He started with a list of what’s hot and what’s not. Hot is Google Plus and content marketing, infographics, blogging including video blogs, and mobile. Not hot is link building and being social to simply be social.

He also said that Facebook is mostly for personal use, Twitter is most useful for business, and LinkedIn is very business oriented. There are also several emerging trends that Paul highlighted including the death of boring static webpages (new sites will have more dynamic content like Amazon) and text based online advertising will be going away.

 This was an excellent workshop hosted by the Walsh Institute of Walsh College as part of their Hot Topics Workshops. For more information about their workshops please visit www.thewalshinstitute.com/businessLIVE.

 Want to enrich your company and make your business life easier?  Contact The TM Group today for more information at 248-489-0707, email jennifers@tmgroupinc.com or visit our website:  www.tmgroupinc.com.

by The TM Group, Michigan Microsoft Dynamics CRM Partner


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