As well as being the time that leaves start falling, Autumn can be a brilliant time to run marketing campaigns and end the year with a real boost to your sales. The months of September through to November are a key period in any marketing calendar and if you are not currently geared up to start some proactive marketing initiatives, then it's never too late to develop a new strategy and get some new actions in place.
Where to start? A good place is to work on your contacts, a process called segmentation, targeting and positioning. This could look like you going through your various databases, some may be on CRM, social media, email contacts etc. and separating out the priority customers on that list, or customers that have defined purchasing patterns or activity. Getting data in good order, so you know who is actually on your lists and why, is a way of giving any direct marketing activity a real boost as the next stage, targeting, becomes much easier.
The fun side is now the HOW are we going to target our newly discovered segments of data? This is where priority comes in to play as we look at the most substantial audiences and those with the best potential for a good return on our marketing activity - for least cost.
It is usually true that it's far less cost to market to existing customers, so there is potentially a wealth of real potential on current or maybe slightly lapsed customers that can be re-invigorated by a well placed promotion, discount or even just a friendly, 'Hi there again' email.
Positioning, as the last part of the strategy, is just about how you differentiate your brand, trying to take an outside view of where you sit amongst the competition and what you could change to bring to the fore your unique features and benefits?
These simple steps get you to ask questions, and it doesn't take long before you are ready to develop the new marketing tools that will communicate with precision, the right messages tailored to your identified customer segments.