Earlier in January of 2011, I had an opportunity to interact again with the well known technology CIO (Chief Information Officer) Kamalesh Dwivedi, in the land of rising Sun. Kamalesh is truly a CIO for the global companies, as clearly evident from his success in a very short time at the Japanese company, BellSystem24, head quartered in the heart of Tokyo. He lives in Tokyo, a long way from his adopted hometown of Denver, Colorado in US and his parental village Kesath, Bihar, India (population 5000-6000). In just over five months in Tokyo, he already communicates in broken, simple Japanese with the leaders on his staff. The seven lessons of success that he practices, based on my observations, hearing and interpretation are:
- Focus – Remain focused, keep executives and other people focused around few things that can be accomplished successfully.
- Mentor – Mentor leaders, peers and technology leaders. Ingrain the language of business in technology leaders.
- Flexible – Be flexible in accommodating the needs of the customers (internal or external).
- Communicate – Communicate, communicate and communicate often at all levels of organizations, the projects, programs that are in focus.
- Brand ambassador – Be a brand ambassador for the company, not just yourself or your organization or your unit.
- Marketing – Marketing is one of most important key to success for any business or unit. So market internally (as a CIO) effectively.
- Celebrate – Celebrate often with the team and extended team for both minor and major accomplishments.
Thanks to the Qburst team for migrating my blog to the latest Wordpress version. I am now ready to share what I have to offer. For last few months I have been mentoring three start ups in Internet, Media, and Energy space. The following five marketing approaches have worked for them.
- Consistent Press Releases – Highlighting the customers, the company growth, the people of the company, the products and services in a consistent manner at a regular interval provides a boost in building the share of voice in the market place.
- Sponsoring A Local Event - Sponsoring local events like the sports league, the robotics competition, the Lego league and other school events provide name recognition among the future customers and current audience.
- Leveraging Social Media – Creating profiles and contributing relevant information on various social media channels lead to new opportunities for connecting with customers and affiliates.
- Be Your Own Mobile Bill Board – Displaying your web site (URL) or Company Name via stickers, magnetic sheets on cars that are company friendly (like yours, spouses, friends) clearly shows a rise in visitors and conversions, at least from the local geographic area.
- Cautious Online Advertising – Online advertising is an art and a science, that many people do not understand. As a start up, engaging with SEM and other service providers could drain your resources very fast. A carefully measured approach with targeted online advertisement at a smaller scale is the first step to enter this area. Do not get carried by services provided by many SEM/SEO marketing companies, unless you understand the return on investment.
In tough economic conditions, it is important to keep an active marketing campaign. However, the execution of marketing campaigns need to change for most businesses due to the drastic change in one of the key principle-the cost of marketing. Using PREPARE steps one can create and cost effective marketing campaign.
7-Steps for Active Marketing Campaign During Tough Economic Times
- Public Relations – Leveraging the public relations should be a key part of marketing. It is one of the channels that can cost nothing if done correctly and could be executed at the desired geographical area from local to international depending on the customer.
- Reap Benefits of Remnant Space – Many advertising time slots on Radio and TV are not sold in time and are considered left over. Companies will sell this remnant space for great discounted price, specially when the time lines are tight.
- Email marketing – Use Email marketing where ever possible in place of direct mail, as it cheaper and provide good tracking history.
- PPC (Pay-per-click) – Pay-per-click refers to online advertising. In this model, advertisers pay for every advertisement that is clicked by the Internet consumer. One of the fast methods for placing advertisements and viewing the results.
- Always ON marketing – Having your own website or online presence that provides customers information about your products and services, acts as always ON marketing.
- Rethinking Social Interactions - Human beings are all social beings. Rethinking about how you interact socially is important. Leveraging the social media tools like Facebook, blogs, tweets, message boards, etc. can provide access to large segments of customers.
- E-seminars – Sharing information and knowledge with audience using inexpensive tools is a great way to market. E-seminars and Webinars are quite easy to to produce and can be deployed for almost little to no cost, but can generated interest in your product and services effectively.
All marketing activities should be open, relevant and focused on customer satisfaction. The success of marketing should be measured by the strength of customer relationships that the organization has with its customers. Using steps above one can keep and active marketing campaign in a cost-effective manner.