Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Marketing: How Much Should You Spend on Marketing?

What's the age old question that's on everyone's mind these days? No, it's not "When will the recession end?"

Everyone wants to know "How much should you spend on marketing to get new clients?"

Let's face it; if you are not spending time and money on marketing, it's unlikely that you'll be growing your business in this economy.

I don't know about you, but I just doubled my willingness to step outside my comfort zone and then I doubled my marketing budget.

I am doing more advertising in print publications and online article banks because I'm looking to bring in new clients. I'm getting more leads, more sign ups for my newsletter, and more phone calls from advisors interested in hiring me. I'm also picking up the phone more frequently and calling my prospecting list. And guess what? ALL THIS STUFF WORKS!!!

Successful entrepreneurs don't wait around for clients to come to them. They develop a "Prospect Pipeline" based on three to five marketing activities designed to get their message in front of their ideal clients.

So, how much should you spend on marketing?

Answer: The average that you should spend on marketing across most industries is from ten to thirty percent of revenue.

You should spend more if you want to be more successful. If you are not spending this much right now and you want to increase your revenue in the next six months, then you need to create a new marketing plan NOW! Marketing is an investment in your company's success. Those who are scared to spend the money are the ones who don't grow.

Now is the time to double your level of willingness to be successful, and to spend more on marketing so that you will be a market leader as we come out of this recession.

Suzanne Muusers
Business Coach for Entrepreneurs and Financial Advisors

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

How Do You Measure Your Marketing?

You have 5 new clients this month and you're ecstatic and pleased as punch. You've been doing all sorts of marketing but who knows where the heck these new clients came from?
Maybe it's from your expensive advertisement in that monthly magazine? Could it be from your email newsletter that was passed around by one of your clients? Or, it might be from that talk you gave a few months back.

You should be measuring your marketing so that you know where you get the most bang for your buck.

How do you measure your marketing?

Here's how:

1. Start asking your new clients where they found out about you. Run a sales report either annually or semi annually and figure out where your income came from.

2. Create an Excel spreadsheet. One sheet for each year.

3. On the horizontal axis, create a column each of the following:

Name of Marketing Activity
Cost Annually
Annual Revenue from the Activity
Return on Investment (revenue divided by cost)
What you like or get out of the activity other than revenue
What you dislike about the activity
Time commitment ranked from 1-10
Future potential from 1-10
Percentage of your total income from this marketing activity

4. On the vertical axis, create a line for each marketing activity such as:

Specific networking groups
Email Newsletter
Article Writing
Public Speaking
Video Marketing

5. Analyze where your revenue came from last year

Are there any surprises?
Are you really getting a return on investment where you thought you would?
What are the most expensive marketing activities?
Where could you double your efforts to double your revenue?
Which one marketing activity is responsible for your source of biggest revenue

Don't just blindly throw money at your marketing. You need to know what works and where you should do more. You should also consider those activities that are more fun or rewarding than others.

For example, although it's costly and time consuming to belong to my local Financial Planning Association, the benefits I get are huge. I get to listen to speakers who address my target clients' biggest issues. And I'm right there talking to my Ideal Clients – financial advisors - a very worthwhile investment indeed. If you're not measuring your marketing, start today. You'll be glad you did.

If you'd like a sample excel spreadsheet like the one explained above, please submit a comment about how you currently measure your marketing and I will email you the spreadsheet.

Suzanne Muusers
Business Coach for Entrepreneurs and Financial Advisors

Monday, June 15, 2009

Video Marketing Workshop by Joey Sampaga

In a previous post I interviewed Joey Sampaga about using video marketing to grow your business. Joey has increased his mailing list from 300 - 2700 by using this very cool marketing tool in creative ways. If you are in the Scottsdale Arizona area, I highly recommend that you take his workshop.

When: July 8th from 10am to 12 noon.

Location: Scottsdale Resort & Athletic Club8235 East Indian Bend RoadScottdale, AZ 85250

You will learn:
*Create Effective Videos
*Why Video Marketing is the Wave of the Future
*How to Stand out from the Crowd & Be an Innovator
*Why Video is More Effective than Newsletters

More info: http://www.joeysworkshop.com

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Financial Advisor Marketing E-Course

I've just spent the last eight months writing a Marketing E-Course for Financial Advisors and now I'm done! The website went live yesterday and I even made a sale already.

Celebrations are in order!!

I've been coaching advisors since 2004, so I've learned about their challenges, problems, and solutions to those problems. Many advisors are lone rangers out there running a practice all by themselves. They tend to be a secretive lot, not wanting to share what works with one another. So what happens is that they don't really know how to run a practice like a business. Many don't get the mentoring they need to be really efficient, strategic, and effective with their marketing.

So that's why I created the marketing course. I wanted to deliver a course that would show advisors step by step how to create a profitable practice that runs like a business should. I think the biggest challenge I had during the last eight months was finding the time to research and write all the lessons (there are ten in all). But now it's done and I've already got passive revenue streaming in.

** What problems are you solving for your clients?
** Why do they come to you?
** What can you create that would help make their lives easier?
** Could this be a product you could sell?

This is what I call BIG PICTURE GOALS. We are oftentimes so immersed in our business that we forget to look at the future. If you can create products that solve your client's problems, you can create a passive revenue stream AND become an expert at the same time.

I ask you to think about the future, not just the present. Take action and create some big picture goals.

Suzanne Muusers
Business Coach for Entrepreneurs and Financial Advisors

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Marketing: How Adaptable are you in Today's Marketplace?

How are you adapting to the marketplace? A few days ago I heard an interesting story on NPR about how businesses are reinventing their products and services to appeal to today's consumer. A maker of expensive cigars has come out with "Nubs" – short cigars at a lower price point. Perfume makers are offering perfume in 1/3 oz size. Upscale restaurants are expanding their appetizer menus.

So what are you doing to adapt?

I KNOW all of you need to work on the BIGGER PICTURE strategies to move your business forward. So, work ON your business and move forward. See this article on my website about adapting to Business Success – Do you have what it takes?

Suzanne Muusers
Business Coach for Entrepreneurs and Independent Financial Advisors