Women, Spirit & Money: Deliver-Ability - Does Your Marketing, Public Relations or Business Building Tactic Measure Up?

Successful entrepreneurs tend to be strong on deliverables. One real-life example shows that to grow your business, deliverables must solve your primary problem in specific, measurable ways.

Sherri L. McLendon

Sherri L. McLendon

Spending money on marketing that doesn’t work is a fear for many small business owners and entrepreneurs. Recently, I spoke to a feminine business leader unsettled by a marketing decision she now sees as a mistake: she signed a marketing contract for tens of thousands of dollars for “internet branding” of her business. Months later, she can’t see where the money is going – or how it returns.

In this particular case, the problem was threefold. First, the business needed re-positioning, not re-branding. A singular difference between the two initiatives is that a re-branding usually comes with a new name for the business, not a need in this case. Second, re-positioning the business’ marketing on the internet wasn’t the immediate, primary problem. Third and tellingly, the baseline income from the store front needs to be greater in order to fuel overall business development. In real life terms, 3-4 additional buyers need to walk through the door on an average day. The branding package she’d purchased wasn’t going to make that happen.

Setting the Stage for Increase

So our first steps? In this case, we rolled up our shirt sleeves and went to work immediately to revamp the appeal factor of the business’ current physical location, setting the stage for increase with:

• new, on-theme window displays made the retail location more attractive to ideal existing clients, plus women and families within the geographic service area

• the addition of color, pattern, and a selection of games to a family friendly gathering area

• relocation of merchandise for improved point of purchase access

• a first draft of a solid plan for next steps to increase foot traffic, sales, and regular clients

Within minutes of adding the on-theme window displays, a group of women stopped to admire the results – then walked in the door with their husbands. Cha-ching! They also spent time checking out the merchandise.

Most marketing and public relations pros would not consider hands-on work at this basic level. And truly, it’s something I rarely deliver. But in this situation, the decision was a sound one which created instant results which were happily measured at the register.

Bottom Line Benefits of Deliverables

When strategies drive tactics, the deliverables make sense – both to the communications pro and to the client. When the deliverables don’t get results in ways that can be measured in terms of real impact in the life of the business owner, then the marketing strategy has failed. If the deliverables are a poor fit for the phase of the business, nothing works. We may create deliverables all day long, but if the business owner can’t see the benefit on the bottom line, it doesn’t matter.

As a working definition, deliverables are actual things, items which can be counted with results that can be quantified. The logic is simple. The specific, quantifiable deliverables must help the client know, learn, or do something in her business which benefits her directly. The creation of a deliverable is executed using a “project model.” In marketing, these may be items such as a press release, a window display, a web page, or an advertisement. Often, a completed content deliverable, termed an “asset,” is used as leverage as one part of a larger campaign. If the benefits of a deliverable are indirect, then we should save that energy and redirect it where it’s needed most.

When we hear “I can’t promise my clients results,” it often means the practitioner doesn’t have a clear grasp on the results the client really desires, or the tactics or deliverables it will take to get the client to that place. Many salespersons will tell you that it’s easier to sell a “thing” than it is to solve a problem. But without a clear understanding of the outcome the client seeks, his or her “#1 problem,” the practitioner is unable to identify the specific steps and objectives to a beneficial solution with clear deliverables and measurable results.

Entrepreneurs Strong on Deliverables

Successful entrepreneurs tend to be strong on deliverables. Remember, each deliverable is a “project” with a production phase that can be reduced to specific steps, phases, and tasks, and reviewed according to a series of benchmarks and deadlines. As a client, you should know what is being delivered, when, and how to measure returns.

Each phase of a deliverable has a beginning, middle, and end, each with identifiable tasks which can be assigned and tracked by team members. If you need to track deliverables, consider using tools such as kanban boards, project management software, and spreadsheets or templates.

Distribution Delivers the Message

Deliverables must be delivered. It sounds logical, right? But the outcome a deliverable produces depends as much upon the distribution method and plan to reach your audience as on the deliverable itself. Why attach a pdf to an email if the research for your audience shows increased returns for html or inline text? Why create a rack card when what you really need is a good, mobile friendly email response? The right deliverable with the wrong medium or delivery method can be disappointing. Instead, research and test then tweak each deliverable to maximize response – and increase bottom line results.

Moneta Business Building Beliefs for Feminine Entrepreneurs

1. Money going out the door to build a business must be an investment, not an expenditure.

2. In an image-driven marketing economy, appearances count when attracting our ideal clients.

3. Existing, tended, happy clients whose needs get met will more often spend more money with us, which increases the average transaction value and referral rates without increasing expenses.

4. The feminine business leader feels heard and is able to bring her knowledge and creativity to the client attraction process at each phase of development.

5. Abundance sources from the feminine as a result of positive change agency.

Sherri L. McLendon, M.A., is a recognized Asheville area feminine leader, marketing public relations specialist, and content strategist with Professional Moneta International, www.professionalmoneta.com.

This entry was posted in May 2015 and tagged women spirit and money. Bookmark the permalink.

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