Five-Steps to Giving Your Company 50% More LIFFT®
There’s a saying that goes like this: “If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got.” Now that it’s 2008, what are you going to do to raise your company above the $1, $5, $10 or $25-million dollar benchmark?
In response to that challenge, I developed the LIFFT® Process over a seven-year period. LIFFT® is a five-step strategic marketing process that helps companies accelerate their growth – and manage that growth – without overextending their resources and their people.
In this article, I will take you through the Reader’s Digest version of the LIFFT® Process.
Step One: LAYER. Here’s an example. Let’s say you want to promote a new service to your existing client database. You decide that the first layer of promotion is to conduct an e-mail campaign that targets all your clients and prospects. You schedule these e-mails to go out three times over the course of a two-month period. Once this layer is set in place and running smoothly, you add the second layer. This would be in the form of a printed flyer or package, which you mail out to your clients and prospects to reinforce the e-mail campaign.
The process of layering involves determining each layer of promotion (i.e. e-mail, flyers, print ads, etc.), planning each step and most importantly, following through with the implementation. As you successfully execute each layer, you can proceed with the next. Always take into consideration whether you have the resources to pay for and manage additional layers.
Step Two: INFORM. Inform is all about the core message you want to communicate to your suitable prospects and your ideal customers. How do you know what your core message should be? It depends on who your ideal customers are. When I work with business owners, we first focus on identifying their ideal clients before creating the message. When you craft a compelling message, you will attract more ideal customers with greater ease.
Step Three: FREQUENCY. Do you find that your advertising strategies during the past year are not as effective as you hoped? Other than not advertising in the right place, which is the most common cause for its failure, there are two reasons why your strategy may not be generating results: First, not having the right message, and second, not running the ad with enough frequency.
If you are going to advertise, you must commit to a regular and consistent strategy for a minimum of 9 – 12 months. If you advertise in a shorter period of time, you are wasting your money. The prospective buyer must be reminded over and over again how you can help them. The reality is that your product or service may not generate a sizeable demand until nearly a year from the time you first started advertising. Frequency applies to all layers of your marketing action plan. Keep in mind this cardinal rule: More frequency leads to more awareness, resulting in more impact.
Step Four: FOLLOW UP. When clients work with our company, they establish a stronger presence in the marketplace, gain more traction over their competitors, and gain more ideal prospects. Yet, this means nothing if there isn’t a proper follow-up strategy. Based on my experience in advising business owners over the past eight years, I discovered that 75% or more of business is lost based on the lack of follow-up.
It is management’s responsibility to assign follow-up duties to his or her team on leads, proposals and opportunities with clients to build on an already existing relationship. This is a critical step in the LIFFT® Process. When follow-up is missing, the first three steps become irrelevant.
Step Five: TRACK. Once you have successfully layered your marketing initiatives, determined your core message, applied frequency, and put a system in place for follow-up – how do you determine which promotional activities are working and which aren’t? This is where tracking comes into play. By tracking each marketing initiative, you can pinpoint which activities need to be dropped, which ones need to be built upon, and ultimately where to most effectively invest your time, money and resources.
Recently, I had a client ask me if it was wise to continue spending $10,000 per year on Internet marketing. I encouraged that client to continue investing this amount and suggested an increase of 25%. My recommendation was based on the results I saw in the client’s end-of-year tracking report. The report showed that the client had received the greatest number of inquiries and conversions to sales in the following areas:
- Website contact form
- E-mails to the website’s central e-mail address
- Visits to the website prior to any direct contact
So, it is essential to track all of your marketing initiatives throughout the entire year. You may be surprised by what’s working and what’s not. The truth is found in the tracking.
Now that you understand the fundamentals of the LIFFT® Process, are you ready to get over the hump and take your company to the next level? If you are, then the LIFFT® Process will develop a structure for you in which you will be able to invest more wisely in your promotional endeavours. Isn’t it time you got the biggest bang for your marketing buck?
Jen DeTracey, founder of Lift Strategies Inc., helps organizations accelerate their growth and manage that growth without overextending their resources or their people. To find more articles, tips and information about Jen DeTracey, visit www.liftstrategies.com.