With so many methods of advertising available today, it’s hard to know exactly where to allocate your advertising budget. With this in mind, there are some things you can do to increase your chances of spending your money right.
Distinguish Your Marketing Budget From Your Advertising Budget
The terms ‘marketing’ and ‘advertising’ often get confused for one another, but it’s important to know that they aren’t the same thing.
Marketing is an all-encompassing category that includes all things that help foster client-customer relationships. This includes market research, customer support, business development and also advertising.
Advertising is a subset of marketing and refers to the process of getting a message (about your business and/or products) to your target audience. It includes mediums such as radio, television, online, print and pretty much anything that has human eyes looking at it.
In general, your marketing budget should be somewhere between 10-20% of your company’s gross revenue. You should investigate a little bit about what is correct for your industry, but this is the general range. Your advertising budget should be about a third of your overall marketing budget.
Determine What Your Goals Are
How you spend your advertising budget is going to be heavily influenced by what your business goals are. Figure out if you want to:
· Increase brand awareness
· Increase sales
· Sell additional services
· Launch a new product
By the way, you aren’t restrained to doing just one of the above. You can have multiple goals for different elements of your business and create an action plan for each.
In addition to outlining your goals, you will also need a way of measuring if they have been achieved or not. If your goal is to “increase brand awareness by 30%”, what is your method of measurement? Website views? Enquiries? Sales? Once you have a measurement framework, then you will be able to start looking around for different advertising pathways.
Speak To Advertising Agencies
The next part of your journey is to determine where you are going to spend your money and you’re not going to be able to make an informed decision without some stats.
An advertising agency will have access to information about how effective different advertising mediums are. You can find some information online, but it generally tends to be very broad and not specific to your chosen industry and location. An agency will have access to current stats and media reports, which can be incredibly helpful.
While it isn’t 100% necessary to deal with an agency to receive guidance, a trial-and-error approach comes with an element of risk. It may take some time to realise which forms of advertising are working for your business and which ones aren’t if you go at it alone.
There are literally hundreds of ways to advertise, but only a handful that will be effective for your business. That’s why it’s better to make an informed decision from the get go.
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