Cross Your T’s Before You Cross-Promote

Ideally you should be able to combine different projects and programs all across your organization in an effort to improve the results of each. But for many, the cross-promotion inevitably gets stalled because the proper steps are not outlined and objectives are not determined from the very beginning.

The rationalization behind cross-promotion should always be to provide a better solution or a better experience for the consumer. It only makes sense that the marketer’s efforts become more efficient by providing the audience with two or more simple messages that help address a need, want or desire. Therein is a definition of truly effective marketing.

The emphasis should be on simple. Once you start down the pathway towards confusing the audience, you lose all tangible benefits and start backsliding into becoming ineffective and wind up alienating the customer, rather than embracing them.

Take for existence an organization whose first purpose is to serve it’s constituency by running high quality events, as defined by excellent customer service before, during and after all interactions. This type of challenge may be a tall order, but let’s make it even steeper by creating a secondary revenue stream which provides products to make the experience even better for participants.

While the secondary stream of income may be important to the organization, it is not the initial benefit the customer is searching for. Alas, it is the marketing team that needs to combine the two into the most effective and relevant message possible in order to position the product and the service as one package to provide the answers to all of the customer’s needs.

Even for the most experienced team this is a difficult balancing act for many because there are so many different factors at work.  Usually there are different departments engaged, each with different business objectives. It is the organization that properly balances the competing factions which will reap the rewards. And it’s marketing job to walk the fine line and never lose sight of what’s in the best interest of the customer.

While arts organizations might not always lean towards these situations, it’s not too difficult to imagine cases where they might be at the intersection where marketists can come under fire. However, by using smart strategies and a good dose of common sense, you should be able to use all the assets at your fingertips to create workable solutions for customers and the organization that benefits all.

This entire conversation is based on the fact we all need to create points of differentiation between our organizations and our competitors and use everything in our toolkit to maximize each interaction with our constituencies.

One of the facts we all face is that we are in competition not only with each other, but with the thousands of marketing messages both professionally and personally that bombard us each day. Why not take that limited time, which if you are lucky enough to have connected with your audience, to create the most amount of impact to positively benefit your customer?

Here are three simple tips:

  •  Keep your message simple and straightforward.
  • Don’t confuse or clutter with content that is distracting or may cause your audience to tune out.
  • Put yourself in the shoes of your customer and see if the change of perspective means you need to re-evaluate the approach.

Nothing will frustrate an audience faster than if you alienate them with insider talk or messages that seem to be self-serving to the organization. Do the right thing for the customer, and more times than not, you’ll find you may have found a better answer on how to engage and serve them better in the future. It takes hard work, but then anything effective in marketing is very rarely the easiest.

 

About

Sean King has been consulting with small businesses and non-profit organizations for 25 years. Currently, Sean is a principal in the Aspire Consulting Group providing solutions and training for arts, events and non-profit marketing professionals and their organizations. Clients include Youth Education in the Arts (YEA!) and a growing list of satisfied organizations. Sean speaks regularly throughout the U.S. including at the IFEA Annual Conference, Arts Reach Conference, AFP, 92Y, CiviCRM User Summit, PA Council on the Arts, Michigan Festivals & Event Annual Conference. Sean serves as the Marketing Chairperson for the Hamilton District Main Street, a program of the Allentown Chamber of Commerce in Allentown and is a Co-Chair of the Arts & Culture Committee for the Upside Allentown initiative. You can follow Sean on Twitter @skingaspire or email him anytime at sking.aspire@gmail.com

Posted in Fundraising, Marketing, Marketist, Synergy

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About Sean King
Sean King has been consulting with small businesses and non-profit organizations for 25 years.  Currently, Sean is a principle in the Aspire Consulting Group providing solutions and training for arts, events and non-profit marketing professionals and their organizations. Clients include Youth Education in the Arts (YEA!) and a growing list of satisfied organizations. Sean speaks regularly throughout the United States including at the IFEA Annual Conference, Arts Reach Conference, AFP, 92Y, CiviCRM User Summit, PA Council on the Arts, Michigan Festivals & Event Annual Conference.  Sean serves as the Marketing Chairperson for the Hamilton District Main Street program in Allentown and is a Co-Chair of the Arts & Culture Committee for the Upside Allentown initiative. He also blogs a artsmarketingblog.org.  You can follow Sean on Twitter @skingaspire. Sean resides with his wife Natalie and son Haydn in the global crossroads of Fogelsville, Pa.