As the first full working week of 2015 begins marketers worldwide will be deciding how to invest their marketing budget. Here are the areas I consider worthy of investment in 2015.
#1 Hire personnel who are both creative and technical
Many companies have already chosen to hire marketing personnel in 2015, with some recruitment drives already in full swing! Investing in people this year is a great idea but is important your new marketer is both creative and tech savvy. Creative in marketing is always a must. You need an ideas person to drive your marketing efforts ahead of competitors. This person will bring original ideas that will excite customers. There is also growing need for marketers to be technically minded as more and more marketing is done online and involves analytics, both which require technical ability. A mix of the two is the perfect combination!
#2 Invest more in PR particularly in Online PR
In recent times consumers and businesses (in the case of B2B Marketing) are becoming immune to print advertising. PR comes across as far more trustworthy for customers and as a result they tend to pay more attention to it. This year you should invest more on PR than print advertising. There has been a surge in the amount of people reading online so as well as targeting your PR efforts towards traditional forms of print media also target online publications.
#3 Increase Mobile Marketing spend
Some say mobile browsing will take over desktop browsing this year. In my opinion this is a little drastic but no doubt the use of mobile platforms is growing rapidly. Optimising your website for mobile and engaging in mobile advertising should most defiantly be on your agenda for 2015 since mobile usage is clearly growing and will continue to grow this year.
#4 Spend more being social on Social Media
Interacting and engaging with customers on social media rather than simply posting for the sake of it should be the number one focus for businesses this year. This mainly comes in the form of labour rather than a cash spend, the time investment will pay off. The aim should be that customers want to visit your page themselves rather than being prompted to by posts on their feed. Marketers should aim to please on social media and use it to find out what exactly their customers want to see them do on social media in 2015.
#5 Invest in Blogging and Vloging
Their has been a huge increase in the amount of blogs starting up in recent times and company blogs are an ideal way to communicate directly to your customers. Similarly video exploded in 2014 and in the past few years videos for marketing purposes have grown steadily. Businesses should aim to be an expert in their field and provide advice to their customers on trending industry topics that their customers are interested in as well as providing them with advice. Companies videos can also be incorporated into their blog, both compliment each other well. This will help businesses to get noticed by their customers and cross promote each platform.
#6 Build a Microsite
Building a microsite to help and advise customers about your industry is hugely valuable. It portrays that your business is top of its game in your industry and your business is seen as being helpful. Most customers now go online and do extensive research on a product before purchasing it so making a micro-site is more important now than ever. Setting up a microsite is a great method of indirect self promotion and your customers will love you for it!
#7 Invest in Customer Focused Market Research
Research is vital to successful marketing, particularly research into your customers changing needs. It is key to great marketing for the entire year and wise to assign some of your marketing budget to market research which should be engaged in early on in the year so to help you with your marketing efforts going forward.
#8 Invest in the right online advertising
False clicks and fake clicks by bots and online scammers have been widely reported in marketing news this year. Choosing the right placements for your online advertising can reduce the chances of of false clicks. It is important for companies to choose the placement sites of their online advertisements themselves and not allow the display networks to chose what placements they 'think' are good.
For example cooking equipment advertisements might be placed automatically on a gaming site alongside a cooking game. It is however more likely is user is more interest in gaming rather than cooking.
Investing in search advertising is a safer bet. Use search advertising or choose your placements a) yourself and b) wisely to avoid wasting your precious marketing budget.
All the best to the companies deciding where their marketing budget will go for the coming year. I feel considering the above areas for investment will mean your on the right track for 2015. If you have any questions, comments or opinions I would be delighted to hear from you. Feel free to email me firstname.lastname@example.org or use the comment section below.