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Client growth

Finding your niche!

Niching for your content and marketing – the third of six pointers in my ‘content strategy’ map (see earlier posts for any missed).

The widely documented topic – create yourself a niche, don’t be everything for everyone, it won’t work. When setting out your business strategy and business goals, you’ll have thought about your product and/or services, your values, your logo and your target clients. In a book I read recently, they justified the reason to niche as thus; if you have a small target market and service all the companies in that sector, you’d be too busy and effectively screwed. I’ve also met some business leaders recently who have two or more niches but they don’t overlap so that can work too just as long as they are kept separate. 

When you niche, your audience will know who you are and what you’re going to speak about and what services your business offer- instinctively and intuitively. You can become known for being a specialist in your field and that is worth a lot. It definitely helps define a marketing and content strategy!

Tips on niching:
Look at who your customers are
Think about what problem your business solves and what the heart of your agency is
Know your niche industry inside out
Know your niche market’s competitors
Test your niche market and analyse (you could create a separate website page and direct traffic there for several months and see how it tracks)

One of the biggest benefits of niching is building a strong following who will become your ambassadors and help you draw new opportunities in.

What do you think? Are you niche? Do you want to be more niche but don’t know how? Get in touch zara@extmktg.co.uk

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Client growth

Knowing your audience for your content planning

In my earlier article, I said for any content plan you need to know a few key things, one of which is your audience. So how do you ‘know your audience’? I have a lot of thoughts on this but I’ll try to keep it brief. 

Firstly, check your google analytics – how much traffic are you getting, from where, phones or web, what are they typing into google to find you and it’s always worth checking who is linking to you as for your reputation and insight into marketing spend, always good to know who- so check over a big timeframe like a year to be thorough. Gender / Age / Interests – you can do a lot of digging! From the age you’ll be able to appreciate what social platforms your audience are potentially using.

Secondly, who responds / engages with your content?

Third point – if you aren’t making much noise across any marketing channels then there won’t be much to analyse, don’t feel bad, ignore the above two points and just think about your TARGET audience!! Who do you want to be targeting, what do you want them to think and feel about the content you’re putting out and what is the action you want to drive them towards?

Fourth – Test, test, test – Try different approaches, different examples in your copy and posts, find what they’re interested in from you and your business’ content.

How well do you know your audience? Do you know exactly who you’re targeting with your content? Get in touch with any qs

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Client growth

How to create your Marketing Goals

We are ideating here at External Marketing about what it means to start your own content plan, inspired by a conversation I’d had recently and so I wanted to go through all the points to offer more insights to help get business owners started. 

The first thing to think about when writing a content or even marketing plan is setting the right goals. Yes, they should be SMART like any goals, we covered this acronym back at uni back in… 2004?! …And it’s still relevant today and probably will be for another x amount of years. 

Here is what marketing goals should do: 

1) Drive inward enquiries via website or otherwise 
2) Generate the right client type and size
3) Raise brand awareness
4) Grow the Founders/ Directors personal brands 
5) Empower influencer marketing internally and externally 

You need SMART goals in order to measure, otherwise there’s almost no point. Being scatter gun is sometimes what’s possible but without reflection and measuring where your new business opportunity came from for example, you won’t know where to focus your time on next quarter/ year.

Hope this helps. Any questions – please get in touch!

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Client growth

Sales strategies for agency owners

How to approach ‘sales’ is different for different types and sizes of businesses but there are some common themes and thinking where I can hopefully shed some light and provide some food for thought. 

Every business leader needs to have an idea of where they want to be in 3 years, even if it’s just the back of napkin plan, but something to aim for will give you 2 key things (1) an aspirational end goal (2) a position to work back from to where you are now and allow you to envision the steps necessary to get there in reverse order.

When it comes down to a ‘Sales Strategy’, I write them regularly for clients, it’s part of any thorough marketing strategy and ties in with a company’s positioning. Who you are as a brand and your business’s core values in combination will dictate who you work with and vice versa; who you want to work with will influence the brand’s TOV. A good sales plan needs to be ‘SMART’ and rigorously monitored to keep you accountable to it. If the sales plan is well designed but sales are not converting, it is usually because the business is not staying on top of its leads, pipeline and deal closing. You will know your weaknesses, and if you need to outsource tasks or even the writing of it, make that decision for your business, to help you get to your 3 year goal. 

Next, (as mentioned in my earlier article* <add link here) and I can’t stress this enough, you must make time for your sales! Make time to research and cold call new prospects, make the pitch relevant to their business, ask open questions, chase up proposals, chase up leads and catch up with your network. Get on top of all SQLs and MQLS, you’ll be glad you did! For every proposal I write, I expect about a 50% success rate. If you’re losing more than that, look into why and always ask when you have not been successful, but don’t take it personally, there’s always something to gain whether it’s a contact or knowing they aren’t the client for you. 

Pricing Strategies – this is a big topic and one I can hardly get into lightly, but there are a lot of philosophies and thinking here. Heard of Blair Enns?! He is passionate about value-based pricing, but that won’t be right for every business and potentially not during a recession and not always for a brand new client. Know your value and stick to it. Be consistent. Know what you are and what you are not, do not try to be what you are not it will dilute your brand and reduce the effectiveness of your client delivery. 

Closing strategies – the phase ‘always be closing’ some may say is out-dated but I think the message behind the technique is fundamentally valid, and, if used with robust emotional intelligence, will more often than not convert leads into clients. Once you have a client, it’s up to you to keep them loyal by constantly reaffirming why they work with you through the value you consistently add. 

You are done. No need to say more, no need for small talk – so many get the sale then talk themselves out of it with irrelevant chit chat. Do not commit this cardinal sin, instead: be professional, concise and above all respectful of their time and your own. 

Happy hunting.

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Client growth

My Top 5 Tips for a Tip-Top Year!

Aaahh, 2021. A brand-new year, and hopefully a brand-new chapter for all of us, too. In other words, an opportunity to ensure you’ve pivoted in the direction you know you need to head: visualising and planning for the clients you want to target, the headcount you want to achieve, and the profits you are determined to report.

I’m being asked a lot “where do I start?” – well naturally it depends on what you have done before, and I can certainly help business on that deep analysis. Perhaps you’re already storming ahead, and just require some fine-tuning? Or, perhaps you’ve done the groundwork and are keen to ‘dig deeper’ this year: Or, like many firms, you might want to go back to basics and rebuild your business a little differently. Whatever stage you are at, I can help you. And, of course, remember that the groundwork always sets the scene for future in-depth analysis. So, as a “Light Guide to the Basics”, here’s what I would suggest:

1)    Measure where you are right now

It is so important to check the temperature of your brand; where (and how) your business is listed; what people, sites or bots are saying about you; how many followers you have; and who’s visiting your website. When you input a new lead into your CRM, do make a note of how you connected: were you introduced by a mutual contact? Did they find you via a search engine? Did you meet by online networking? Essentially, if you don’t track all of this, how can you know what’s working, and what isn’t?

2)    Tidy up your sales pipeline

Business owners and sales professionals often grow to hate their chosen CRM software, so do keep asking if what you’re using right now still suits your business needs. Don’t be embarrassed if your ‘tool’ of choice is a simple Excel spreadsheet: personally, I’m a big fan of Excel; all areas of my life are logged in a spreadsheet somewhere, but dig a level deeper, and check if the columns and formatting are working as well as they could. Maybe you need something more dynamic… more analytical? There are a lot of sales CRM that are free that might suit your sales process better. Ideally, you should allocate a dedicated amount of time each week to track and act upon your sales pipeline. So, whatever your choice of solution, make it works 100% for YOU, at your present stage of business development. And acknowledge that it may well change over time – because it probably will!

3)    Diarise time for creative inspiration and new business

I’ve worked with enough creative businesses – including some incredible minds – to know that spending time on client work, then supporting your team is how your days and weeks are going by, but is never going to get you the business growth you’re actually capable of. Schedule time in your diary to go down the rabbit hole of reading, scrolling, Googling…whatever it takes to seek out valuable inspiration. It’s worth it in order to conjure lots of ideas; and it will certainly benefit your client base.

On the flip side – do prioritise achieving your business goals. Your company may have a mission, but without a solid sales plan or an idea of how to attract and reel in those companies you’re desperate to work with – how are you going to do it? You do have to be in the right mindset, but half a day a week (let’s say a minimum of 3 hours) should get your head straight, and should motivate you to start chasing those leads, turning them into opportunities and winning more work.

4)    Write your idea of a sales and marketing plan

To me, sales & marketing sit in the same box. Marketing draws them in, but for the purpose of sales. And, really, 2021 is just like any other year: it has four quarters and 52 weeks, so your commitment to developing sales targets and SMART (Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Realistic, Timely) marketing plans should still apply. Being a business leader means you’ll always have a lot of ‘urgent’, ‘critical’ tasks to attend to; but, without the compass and map that your sales & marketing plans should provide, how will you know where you’re going?  

5)    Ask for help!

Ah yes. This old chestnut! I know that marketers, outsourced business developers, PRs etc don’t always have the best reputation. But if you pick the right expertise to partner with you, getting the right help can be a massive time-saving exercise. You went to the effort of getting a great accountant, right? So, do the same for the other aspects of your business that you want managing perfectly. After all, at the end of the day it all boils down to money.

So, those are my top 5 tips on where to start (if you haven’t already!) Sending you all my very best wishes for a profitable, killer year, and if you want to learn more about External Marketing’s expertise, you can contact me on zara [@] extmktg.co.uk, #externalmarketing #salestargets #marketinggoals #B2Bmarketing #creativeminds #positivity

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Client growth

Who’s booming during the pandemic – a good news story by EXT MKTG

Have any of you thought about the lack of good news stories? I’ve been asked many times ‘which sectors should our business focus on’? I’ve done some digging and I’ve found a whole bundle of growing companies and sectors and so read on for a dose of positivity!

Starting with consultants McKinsey, a report published at the end of September stated “Executives are more hopeful about the economy than they have been at any time so far during the COVID-19 crisis”. (Link) Good start and more to follow…

Looking at UK Manufacturing, something we’re always concerned about, a Guardian article reported “The PMI for manufacturing, which makes up around 10% of the economy, rose from 40.7 in May to 50.1 in June, while services, which make up 80% of the economy’s output, rose from 29 to 47.” 

Within Online Retail & Delivery Services sectors, Amazon have listed 15,000 job opportunities and Hermes have said they need 10,000 more staff as the shift home shopping continues and Christmas is round the corner. Within this scope, HGV drivers are also in demand as the number of job postings role by 9.7% as reported in this article by the Guardian. (Link)

Supermarkets Aldi and Lidl are also creating thousands of new jobs and are still opening new stores. Morrisons are also hiring 20,000 staff to handle online shopping and for covering other staff members who may be off temporarily. 

Ocado has been named the fastest growing UK brand according to BrandZ’s annual Top 75 Most Valuable Brands report, due to a 63.3% growth in brand value! Meanwhile also in this report, Deliver has grown by 40%! Boom. That’s some seriously great growth and hopefully helping restaurants keep going too. (Link econsultancy, they have removed the article now) 

Boohoo (owners of Boohoo, Pretty Little Things, Oasis, Warehouse and Nasty Gal) have seen their revenue grow by 45% according to a statement released at the end of August this year. And Nike’s digital sales have grown 82% year-on-year between June and August. 

Gousto (pre-prepared home meals) are creating 1000 more jobs and I’m sure their competitors will also be enjoying a boom. 

I’ve also looked at businesses that have started during the pandemic; a BBC article named four female entrepreneurs that started businesses, these are; a beauty subscription service (Tingle), Caribbean food kitchen & delivery (MJ Eats), Date Night subscription boxes (Box42) and marketing consultant (CharlieComms). (Link)

Tech is clearly a winner right now, and according to AppsFlyer, there has been a rise of 35% in European e-commerce mobile app installs during local lockdowns in March and April, 12% higher than at the peak of Q4 2019 holiday rush- this is showing a predicts that for this year’s “holiday quarter” should be record breaking. 

And finally, the FT have done a ‘Top 100 Companies prospering during the pandemic’ and I’ve written out the top 25. (Link

  1. Amazon
  2. Microsoft
  3. Apple
  4. Tesla
  5. Tencent (online gaming, China)
  6. Facebook
  7. Nvidia (graphics chips for gaming, US)
  8. Alphabet (tech platform, US)
  9. Paypal
  10. T-Mobile
  11. Pinduoduo (ecommerce, China)
  12. Netflix
  13. Meituan (ecommerce, China)
  14. Shopify
  15. Zoom Video
  16. JD.com (ecommerce, China)
  17. Abobe
  18. Audi
  19. Abbie (pharma, US)
  20. Kweichow Moutan (beverages, China)
  21. Chug Pharmaceutical (pharma, Japan)
  22. Alibaba (ecommerce, China)
  23. Sea Group (tech, Singapore)
  24. Home Depot (retail, US)
  25. ASML (tech, Netherlands) 

So it’s not all terrible, we have to navigate ourselves and adjust all the time, this is no different. 

If you need ideas or just to talk and hear a positive voice, let’s talk. 

Zara, Founder and Director of EXT MKTG, zara@extmktg.co.uk, https://www.linkedin.com/in/zaradeegan/

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Client growth

Today’s marketing jargon explained

When I came up with my company name, I thought yeah it makes sense, it’s the abbreviation of external marketing – EXT MKTG – but it may take a while for it to be easily digestible. I think about it a lot and then started to wonder about current marketing lingo and how there are more definitions and abbreviations since I completed my marketing degree all those years ago. 

Thankfully, SWOTs, Marketing Mix and the 4 Ps are all still current/ valid but there is so much more, especially when you work in the field. Here’s what I’ve come up with as the most important and widely used, with a particular slant on metrics as this area seems to be where most the abbreviations fall. 

A marketing campaign – by definition – is a set of activities within a timeframe, using multi-channels and methods to promote a particular service or product, for example in terms of B2B, a new service being offered so that businesses can measure the existing projects of that service in the pipeline/revenue, and then from promoting it from October 1st, how many more projects or revenue is being generated from four weeks of buzz around it. Maybe it’s a new coined phrase for your service? Or have you moved into a new revenue stream from making a particular product or buying out services from another firm? 

Being ‘Channel agnostic’ – a slant on how to think about the customer journey, it’s not about the channel per se, but the communication received in whatever form by the customer when interacting with the brand or company. A business or brand communicates consistently and without preference to all channels, in the hope that consumer who sees the content become customers. In the B2C world, a brand seen to be ‘channel agnostic’ will position themselves as believing they are customer-centric and the journey starting with them but shouldn’t that always be the case? 

Digital communication evolves constantly but more recently it’s taken huge leaps, WhatsApp is no longer for just between friends etc. Digital is finally being considered within the marketing team’s job description instead of a separate department. Of course digital specialists exist, but the commerce or digital team should not be separated, they should be brought to the fore. Who are your digital gurus? Are their ideas at the start of your marketing and business development plans? Do you have SEO specialists on your books?

A report by We are Social and Hootsuite stated some great stats earlier this year; 

“More than 4.5 billion people now use the internet, while social media users have passed the 3.8 billion mark. Nearly 60 percent of the world’s population is already online, and the latest trends suggest that more than half of the world’s total population will use social media by the middle of this year (2020).”

Source – We Are Social

What about looking at measures of success? What is successful for your business, ROI or hopefully more than that?! 

An article on how marketers should report marketing activity to CEOS stated that they care most about the ‘CAC’ (Customer Acquisition Cost) which is…. 

“This is your total Sales and Marketing cost: Add up all the program or advertising spend, plus salaries, plus commissions and bonuses, plus overhead within a given time period. Then, divide it by the number of new customers in that same time period. For instance, if you spent $300,000 on Sales and Marketing in a month and added 30 customers that month, then your CAC is $10,000.”

Source – Hubspot

What about Share of Voice, what does that mean? 

Share of voice is a marketing metric that helps your business determine how much exposure your brand is receiving. The primary goal of looking into your share of voice is to gain insight into the overall visibility of the brand. With that in mind, it’s also a useful marketing metric to utilize when conducting competitive analysis.”

Source – Alexa

Here’s an article on how to measure it (lots of other information out there!)

I saw a poll recently on LinkedIn that asked if I podded?! Its to do with conquering the LinkedIn algorithm – we are all having our content filtered / manipulated so we only see the content from the people you engage with the most, so if you have a big family and always like their posts, you will probably only see the activity your family are up to, which personally, I find annoying. I’d like the news in chronological order from all my contacts please, not this filtered version which gives me a very slanted view. 

Have you reported your MQLs or SQLs? These are Marketing or Sales Qualified Leads. Most of the time any business is excited about the prospect of a new project and getting proposals / quotes written and contracts drawn up so checking where or how the lead came from does not happen. It should! I always ask how did you find us or hear about us? Might sound obvious. Here’s a good article on the topic and includes info on lead scoring.

Some more links below for further reading and get in touch if you want to hear where I would put my marketing efforts / budgets these days. 

Zara, Director and Founder of EXT MKTG 

https://www.iabuk.com/jargon-buster

https://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/34054/the-6-marketing-metrics-your-ceo-actually-cares-about-cheat-sheet.aspx

https://www.articulatemarketing.com/blog/5-essential-marketing-metrics

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Client growth

How influencer marketing can make a difference to your business

Influencers are the latest buzz topic in the field of marketing and communications, and my latest ideation around that is ‘how does it translate from B2C brands to B2B’ and what is most effective. 

Quick dictionary definition- “Influencer marketing” is a form of social media marketing involving endorsements and product placement from influencers, people and organisations, my cynical side is saying it’s basically buying posts from people who have taken years to build up thousands or hundreds of thousands of followers! Case and point Kylie Jenner making $1m per post…! But when it’s comes to marketing a business though, there are tried and tested methods that work. 

Some more background; the levels of influencers are named as follows: Mega: 1 million + followers, Macro: 100,000- 1 million followers, Micro: 10,000- 100,000 followers and Nano: 10,000 or less followers. 

‘Influencer relations’ is different, it’s about building relationships specifically and the purpose isn’t always brand to the influencer, it can be fans, partners, or clients or having banter on twitter with another football fan for example. 

In the world of B2C, PR agencies and departments are wanting influencers to endorse their brands and will pay money for that to happen. Contracts are usually drawn up following an agreed brief, more details below as you read on. 

As I’m interested in how the negotiation works and set-up of brands and instagrammers words, I’ve gone out to some accounts I follow and asked for their opinions and insights. The results were so mixed and the ASA’s rules came up, they have only defined certain aspects of influencer marketing (see link) so a lot is still unclear. The most succinct description communicated was as follows: An #AD was always paid for, but #Gifted and #PR samples are given (free) but in return for content, that content would have to be approved by the brand prior to posting. There’s usually a written brief, key messages and hashtags, photographic style and comments, tags and timing that need to be used and final approval needed. 

Interestingly sometimes, so I’ve been told, brands don’t always like the photos or copy and demand changes or reject the content, even though the influencer has thousands of posts in the same style shown publicly on their feeds. It’s disappointing that fees are being discussed before thorough research is being conducted. 

In the B2B sector, I believe influencer marketing is defined in a variety of ways, yet all publications and articles state how incredibly important it is to every marketing mix and that it should be a big part of every marketing strategy. It’s another channel that needs careful consideration and its own internal discussion and planning. One article I read, defined B2B influencer marketing as ‘an area of marketing that focuses on working with key leaders to drive or showcase a brand message. It is also often said that influencer marketing B2C gets results within 30 days, but B2B can be six to twelve months. 

Some opinions are that the main audience groups for B2B influencer marketing are your clients and your team, whereas others have discussed credible industry experts adding value to your content. Your clients and your employees are two massive ‘influencer’ audiences who can or will speak volumes for you- can they succinctly discuss your business’ values and best case studies? I think that all three of the above audience groups (customers, team and credible industry experts) need to be communicated to clearly in order for them to repeat the messaging to their networks, but for your business to be actually doing influencer marketing – I think one-to-one business to market expert communication – is the definition of B2B influencer marketing. 

I also believe it could be argued that it isn’t a new section of your marketing strategy, and it’s something all businesses are doing anyway but now it’s a topic that needs focus and it will, in time, reward your business. 

The topic can be boiled down to really excellent communication; using word of mouth well and spot-on content marketing to generate buzz. This is something I hope all businesses are currently doing, and it is also something I’m able to help with, I wrote an earlier blog on communication here too. 

Something I learned in my early days of sales is that ‘people buy from people’. I’m Zara Deegan, Founder and Director of EXT MKTG, get in touch for more views and insights into marketing your business or brand. 

References: 

https://www.forbes.com/sites/shamahyder/2019/07/02/why-influencer-marketing-is-the-next-hottest-thing-in-b2b-marketing/#29fc224c1192

https://cmo.adobe.com/articles/2019/3/5-tips-for-successful-b2b-influencer-marketing.html

https://www.pressboardmedia.com/the-top-100-instagram-influencers-in-the-world/
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Client growth

Getting communication right

In my first article I wrote about making the right decisions for your business, and then touched on how to communicate your message. There’s a reason there are A LOT of communications specialists around: because the discipline is so broad. Internal and external communications both have unique considerations and corresponding channels, so in this article I want to focus on HOW a business leader can deliver news internally.

The nuances in communications – for instance, sharing a piece of good news versus announcing a new company strategy – need to be considered very carefully, as it is vital that the message is delivered coherently, considerately, and with care. This may sound obvious to those of you who are GOOD communicators, but I’ve been in company announcement sessions looking at the Partners of my firm asking myself “What the hell are they on about?!”, and wondering how what they’re saying impacts the rest of the team. 

I actually find that internal communications can be muddier than external. In part this is due to the levels of familiarity that colleagues, sub-teams, teams, departments and offices all have with one another, not to mention the range of communications channels. From memes to memos, from signage to WhatsApp message – a new starter might find it takes him or her quite a while to figure out what the hell is going on, unless internal communications has been carefully strategised. 

An organisation’s size and composition and the frequency in which its leaders want to communicate are likely to be two of the biggest influencing factors when it comes to deciding upon the most appropriate communication channel. Some of the most popular platforms in use at the moment include: 

  • Slack – calls / messages 
  • Workplace by Facebook – newsfeed, calls / messages, you can do polls, set-up events – like facebook for people, but for businesses to use. 
  • Microsoft Teams – calls / messages. I tried to find other features, but the only feature that makes it unique is that it’s part of the Office 365 which your business may have anyway so it’d be free but so are most others! 
  • WhatsApp – calls / messages 
  • Skype – calls / messages 
  • Moxtra- software that is white-labelled and customisable- so everything from calls and messaging to task management and document storage. 
  • HipChat – developed by Atlassian – calls and cloud storage, apparently has good security and good search functionality 
  • Trello – subsidiary of Atlassian – ‘collaboration tool’ 
  • Atlassian – project managing / comms
  • Blink – messaging and cloud storage
  • Fuze – calls / messages 
  • Zoom – calls / messages 
  • Chatwork – business social networking tool for small businesses (chats can be conducted privately or in a group. Chatwork also offers task management, video calls and CMS). 

From what I’m aware, all chat platforms have the ability to have groups set with a topic, just like WhatsApp group, so rather than being a ‘new’ feature, it’s something we have all come to expect. But in terms of business software, the list is much, much bigger! And when it comes to server storage, collaborating on live documents, accounting, expenses, HR, project managing, social media management, website software, marketing mailers and CMS, the list is endless! 

We spoke to Communications & Engagement specialist and famed copywriter Helen Greenwood and asked what she considers to be the three most important aspects when developing an internal communications strategy. Helen’s response was “audience, relevance and timing”. She followed on to say: “People are far more likely to pay attention to a piece of communication if it’s clear that it’s relevant to them – for example, if the content of the communication influences how they feel or act. That means businesses have to think very carefully about how to craft and position their communications if they want their target audience to take notice. As most organisations comprise multiple audience groups, this may mean that one message has to wrapped in a range of ways in order for it to land successfully and achieve the intended results”.  

To discuss your communications issues or complaints for how communication travels or gets lost within your organisation, please get in touch with us via Contact button, we’d love to help.

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Client growth

What is External Marketing

By definition, external marketing is the action of promoting your business to people outside your business, otherwise it’s internal marketing and that definitely has lots of benefits too. External Marketing takes many forms, it can be your website, social channels, market research, advertising to clients or your target audience, media coverage etc, the goal is attracting new business and winning more clients. Everything that is communicated to people outside your business needs to be ‘bang on the money’. The communication has to speak directly to who it’s targeted to. This doesn’t always have to be for commercial gains, it could be to attract new talent to your company or to celebrate a milestone or an amazing new hire. I like to think of it as beating a large drum! 

My company, External Marketing, helps businesses get better known – my five word strapline! I think it’s clear and self-explanatory what we’re about, the objective is to tell my clients that our specialities are broad but ultimately we will help them ‘get better known’. I started my career in the press office of Vivienne Westwood, which began to teach me how my marketing degree was relevant in the real world. Having the brand/media alliances for the right product was the main prerogative, but the day-to-day for the interns was juggling the product across the publications. I continued for four other roles in PR before moving into Business Development and then in roles that crossed over Business Development, with PR and Marketing. Big lessons were learnt along the way and I’ve tried to learn as much as I can from every experience, looking at how businesses attract clients, win business, market themselves properly, use various channels of communication and what to do when you’re busy vs when you’re quiet. 

Positioning your business right is something that needs time, care and precision. Time needs to be spent thinking carefully about who your business is and where you want to be positioned.

According to the citation on wikipedia – the most detailed explanation I could find on market positioning- it is ‘one of the most powerful concepts of marketing’ and I fully believe it is. Cutting to the chase – positioning is about the perceived value of the product/service/brand, what does it feel like it should cost, what do you think the experience with ‘it’ will be? If you bought an iPad, you’re buying an expensive tablet with cool packaging, via an easy and engaging e-commerce site or from a gorgeous Scandinavian style store filled with plants and ‘tech gurus’ but was it worth it in hindsight? What’s included in the price is the care that Apple has taken over the product hardware and software but also the after-sales and free service you get while the product is under guarantee but most importantly, you’re buying into their brand and the brand they’ve built attracts customers like bees to nectar; flipping the traditional model of selling to customers. 

This is relevant to your business because if think about Apple or another company or brand you admire when you think about your positioning – what do you like/ don’t like and what might work, then get in touch, and we can discuss that further. If you get your positioning right, the bees will come in swarms. 

I’m Zara Deegan, Founder of External Marketing, get in touch via the Contact button.