What do you want to achieve?

Reviewing some marketing materials recently has made me aware of a fundamental problem many small business owners have and that is a lack of understanding of what they are trying to achieve. The lack of a clear objective leads to woolly and ineffective marketing and no compelling call to action.

Be specific

It’s tempting to try and throw in everything including the kitchen sink but if you do that your message will be unclear. So before you start to design your flier, brochure, advertisement or other marketing collateral take some time to think:

  • what do I want to promote?
  • who will be interested in this?
  • why will they be interested?
  • how will what I’m promoting help them?

Be specific. It’s unlikely that you will be able to promote everything you offer in one flier so really home in on what you are trying to achieve with your promotion. The clearer you are the more successful your promotion will be. It will help if you decide what you want a prospect to do when they have read your communication.

What action do you want your prospect to take?

Spell out what you want your prospect to do.

Spell out what you want your prospect to do.

If you know what action you want your prospect to takeĀ then you can structure your communication to achieve that outcome. Do you want someone to call you? Should they visit your website? Would you like them to book an event? Maybe you want them to download an e-book or to sign up for a newsletter?

Don’t be tempted to confuse your prospect by giving them options. Decide on one call to action and one only.

What is your relationship with your target?

In part your call to action will depend on your target customer and your relationship with them. An existing customer might well respond to ‘buy now’ but if this is the first encounter with your prospect they are much less likely to be ready to buy. In this instance you will want to be building trust and developing understanding so your call to action might beĀ ‘visit our website’ or ‘request a brochure’, or ‘register for a free webinar’.

So put your thinking cap on and decide what call to action would get your prospects following your instructions. We can then look at how you structure your message to get them to do as they are bid, coming soon…

Glenda Shawley helps owners of small businesses understand what matters to their customers and then communicate this in a way that turns suspects into prospects, prospects into customers and customers into fans.