Sorry this month's
newsletter is running a little behind schedule, but, I've
had to add a 5th part to our Marketing Plan series which
is the primary reason for the hold-up.
Table of Contents:
Time - Typing Automation Tricks:
On an average day, I
personally respond to, type and send at least 20 e-mails -
most of which require more than the 5 word cave-man
response - go on, laugh, I know you've seen
If sending 20
e-mails a day sounds like a lot, then why do I constantly
have so many more that need to go out than what I am
sending? Have you ever felt like you just can't ever
get to sending all the e-mails you know you should?
In fact, I am so
obsessed with the amount of time I spend drafting
responses to e-mails that I tracked the time I spent in
one week. I was astonished when I learned that I
spend better than 10 hours a week responding to
That's one whole long work day, just writing
e-mails. In fact, there are at least 2 emails I send
every day that require as much as 20 minutes each to
compose: 40 minutes, just 2 e-mails... Something's
got to give.
Here is how I've taken back nearly 4 hours
of time and increased my outbound e-mail volume by 20% -
and I am still a hunt-and-peck typist!
e-mail responses - I
started using this trick years ago. I spent some
time drafting a really solid follow-up e-mail that I can
send to all the people I meet through networking. I would
personalize and customize the first and last
paragraph. The key is that the content needs to be
brief and succinct enough to be relevant.
new situations would emerge, I'd create a new version,
then, after sending, I'd always go into my sent folder,
open the e-mail, choose "resend" from the
"actions" menu, tweak it and then save 2 copies
into my draft folder in Outlook.
best part is that every time you use one of the stock
responses, go over it quickly to be certain that it is
accurate and up-to-date, thus, your stock responses should
never become obsolete.
is a great solution for churning out whole complete
e-mails. But, what about repetitive blocks of
text? Many of the e-mails I compose contain whole
blocks of text from several paragraphs down to just a
sentence that are somewhat repetitive. I've always
tried to make good use of the copy & paste function,
but sometimes finding the location of the needed text can
be just as time consuming.
Automator - I discovered this tool about
7 months ago and every time I type text that I think I'll
need to re-use in the future, I highlight the text, and
add it to the typing automator.
frequently used snippets, I can call the text from an easy
to remember short cut code. For example, I always
sign my e-mails, "To Your Success" and I use the
code "TYS", or to enter my contact info, I just
type "CNTCT1". Imagine never typing out all your
contact information ever again!
if you can't remember all the codes, don't worry, the
program always runs, and in 2 clicks, I can view my entire
content library, organized into topic and sub-topic
folder. In 2 more clicks, I can send the selected
text into an e-mail, word document, text box or any other
application that accepts text.
composed entire e-mails directly from the Typing Automator
interface. click-click, click-click, click-click,
done. What would have taken me 4-6 minutes hunting,
copying, pasting and editing is now down to 2 minutes.
There is a free
version that you can test to see if it works for you - download the free
version HERE. Go here
for more info.
Counts - Plus Get $200 of Free Tools:
you click a checkbox?
you have 2 minutes?
you like $200 of free
tested and currently in use by yours truly?
THE LINK BELOW NOW
MARKETING PLANS [PART 4]:
to the Podcast Here:
running time: 23:00 -- Download the MP3 here
our next-to-last installment of creating effective quality
marketing plans, we arrive at my favorite part, the
Strategy or to follow our analogy, "plotting the course".
You should recall that
in part 1 of this series we learned that an
effective, quality marketing plan
is part strategy,
and part road-map
and must encompass the present, the near future and the
We learned that
conducting a market
potential feasibility analysis is
like a COMPASS,
it orients us as to the direction we want to travel,
identifying for us our market – the "true north".
We also learned that we needed a ROAD-MAP,
to understand our environment and we used 3 tools, a
PEST analysis, Porters 5 Forces analysis and a Positioning
Grid to gain insight into obstacles, competition and the
topography of an industry.
our last lesson, we learned how to take an inventory using
the "SWOTS" analysis and we established a "destination"
using both the extrapolated method where we compound
current performance and a reverse engineered method where
we select a destination and back into our current status.
In both cases, we did not plot our course, or
determined the strategy that will yield the results we
seek. But, we
are getting close…
this lesson we take everything we’ve done so far, draw
extensively on our "tools", our compass,
our starting location
and our intended
destinations for year 1, 3 and 5 to chart
a path to move from where we are to where we
want to be within the constraints offered by
our compass and road map and our ability / resources.
the Marketing Plan
The plan for years three and five is mostly theoretical
Bear in mind that your assumptions will need to be
validated against the believability of your assumptions
and strategy outlined in your plan for years one and two.
Therefore, the bulk of an effective, quality
marketing plan will be spent detailing strategies
for the next 2 years and have 2 layers, the conceptual
strategy and the tactical execution strategy.
Ask 10 marketers to define the conceptual strategy of a
marketing plan and you’ll get 10 convoluted,
hard-to-follow statements full of meaningless marketing
jargon. My research has uncovered 10 such "requirements"
from many well-known marketing "gurus".
In a future issue of this newsletter, I will
attempt to clarify and differentiate each of these items,
but for now, here is a list for you to consider…
you try to figure out what all these statements are needed
for, and exactly how each is different from the other, I
will advise you to first develop your "Corporate
Philosophy". My friend Alan Chapman defines
is the perspective by which staff, customers, suppliers
and the world at large can truly align with the
In other words, how do you want all the people you
touch to conceptually mesh with your company?
What is the common ground, the passion that
resonates with them? What is the core motivation that
drives their support?
that represent the emerging and converging ideas that need
to be considered include: Corporate Social Responsibility,
the Triple Bottom Line, Sustainability, Corporate
Integrity, Ethics, Love and Compassion, Humanity and
Morality, Congruence and Alignment (between employer and
a meaningful philosophy that reconciles all of these ideas
with the economic necessities of the organization; is the foundation
on which all the other marketing elements are built
- whatever the elements
are and however they are defined.
are, you’re already operating with a philosophy in mind.
You just need to be able to communicate your philosophy,
ethics and corporate position of integrity clearly, simply
and succinctly so that everyone you touch
clearly gets it. Mr.
Chapman has written extensively on this subject, so
instead of belaboring the point here, you can read more at
you have completed your conceptual strategy, from the
philosophical to the product benefits and positioning,
your next step will be to develop a tactical execution
what actions are you planning to take to achieve the
Tactical Execution Strategy
This is where I see many business owners attempting to
start with their marketing planning efforts.
This kind of impatience reeks of desperation and
worst of all, band-aid marketing – with no higher
vision, no clear purpose and no guidance. This knee-jerk
type of plan is only as good as what went into it and
offers limited results at best – if any at all.
An effective strategic marketing plan
is NOT a sprint event; it is an endurance event that
requires the planning of the previous three parts covered
in this newsletter.
tactical execution strategy will leverage a mix of
marketing channels that supports
your conceptual strategy. It will take into
account the work you’ve done to understand your market
and identify your "true north".
It will direct your initiatives relative to the
topography, competition and obstacles present in your
will call upon your assets, and strengths and have identified
your intended destination.
simply, this part of your plan is the actual steps of HOW
you intend to reach your goals and fulfill your objectives
and HOW you will measure the success of each
initiative, (also known as ROMD – Return On each
Marketing Dollars spent).
marketing plans I’ve seen expend a great deal of time
and resources to the acquisition
of new customers, please make certain you spend nearly as
much time on retention
initiatives since it is far more cost effective to sell to
a previous customer than it is to find a new one.
marketing plans require understanding the lifecycle stages
customers go through. There are 2 lifecycles, the
stages they go through as they become your customer and
mature into raving loyal fans or move on to another
other is the individuals’ personal lifecycle - observing
their unique life events and behaviors can present
key moments and opportunities to connect with your customer.
Every interaction between your company and an individual (or
lack thereof) provides an opportunity to improve the
relevance of your messages and the ROI of your campaigns.
The six stages of every customer’s lifecycle are:
- non-customers, yet fit the profile of a target
- in a trial stage, and need to have a good experience
in order to maintain a long-term relationship with
- have made repeat purchases however they do not use
- customers who buy only from you. Regardless of
the amount of money they spend, their buying patterns
are consistent and predictable. They tend to be your
raving fans, and represent your most powerful sales
– this group has become dissatisfied and no longer
feels they are getting a good value from your
business. As such, they have the potential of
defecting, and moving their business elsewhere.
– these customers have become so dissatisfied, that
they have moved their account into the care of another
which of these six stages each customer is in will let you
develop the right marketing and communication strategy to
better manage your relationship with that customer. The
process of marketing and communicating to customers
through these stages is often termed as "Customer
Relationship Management", or CRM.
and Marketing Strategies
Each of the six stages within a customer’s lifecycle is
the result of that customer’s unique experiences,
expectations, needs and desires.
order to fully maximize the revenue and
profit potential from each customer, different
sales and marketing strategies should be used for each
of the six customer types.
these strategies to the lifecycle stages:
includes all sales and marketing ideas used to acquire new
customers. The goal here is to convert prospects into
buyers of your product or service.
is used to move first-time buyers to limited buyers. The
objective here is to welcome new customers, educate them
to the many services you have to offer, and encourage them
to become repeat purchasers in order to build a consistent
Cross-Sell Strategies are used after the
customer has established buying patterns in order to move
them from limited buyers to frequent, loyal buyers. At
this point, you should begin encouraging them to try new
or additional services by providing incentives to
customers for higher spending levels.
Loyalty Strategy is
designed to recognize, reward, and say "Thank You" to your
most valuable customers. Keep in mind, "most valuable"
doesn’t necessarily mean biggest spending. These
customers may just regularly refer other customers to you
making them "valuable," even if they don’t technically spend the most
is a recovery effort needed to reinforce or restore value
to a customer when it has been lost. Key warning
indicators such as declining sales volume or customer
complaints are usually signs of customer dissatisfaction
and predict the likelihood of attrition.
is a specialized campaign designed to re-introduce, and
re-engage customers who have churned or been inactive.
While our human nature wants to resist admitting
any wrong-doing, you’ll be amazed at the positive
results some have had in turning ex-customers back into
homework for this fourth part of creating an effective
marketing plan, you will focus your efforts on
defining a conceptual
strategy and corporate
philosophy and begin to brainstorm tactics and
strategies to reach your market throughout every life
transition the customer faces and through every stage of
the customer lifecycle.
our fifth and final installment of creating effective,
quality marketing plans, we will discuss budgeting, the marketing mix, your message and creating a media or
you have questions, comments or feedback specifically
related to developing marketing plans? I encourage
you to send all responses to me at
I'll do my best to integrate answers throughout the
series as we go.
STAY IN TOUCH
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Topics For Discussion:
Plans (part 5)
Joint Ventures and Alliances
the Web for List Building
a Funding Strategy
and Evaluating Ideas
suggest a topic, ask a question or offer a comment?
Please send your input to me at
Chief Success Advisor
ALTI Success Strategies