Thursday 1 October 2009

Marketing (promotion) results with limited budget

Last week I spent three days at PICNIC (#picnic09) in Amsterdam, it is the biggest festival covering innovation and creativity in Holland, and perhaps Europe. Up until May this year, I was still involved in the event as Interim Head of Marketing, so it was lovely to be able to enjoy PICNIC, rather than rushing around like a headless chicken working on the event.

At PICNIC 08 however I was involved in the maddness, so I know how hard the girls worked to achieve what was achieved in such a short time span. Congrats to the team!! This blog post however is about achieving marketing results with limited budget, so I will draw from some experiences in the marketing of PICNIC and equally from some learning experiences in other organisations.

5 tips for budget marketing:
  1. It starts with a plan: Create added value for the audience, the "purple cow". If it is a me-too product/service you will not succeed even with huge marketing budgets. So fulfil an unfulfilled need with your offering, find some advocates for it and off you go.
  2. Select your target audience wisely: Keep the audience tight, small, niche preferably, then your limited resources won't be spread too thinly and you will benefit from more word of mouth in that niche.
  3. Create partnership opportunities: Barter agreements, where no money is transferred just mutual benefit and a win win is found for both parties. Select partnerships based on target audience overlap and filling gaps in your offering that would please the audience.
  4. Focus on below-the-line & online marketing: Your budget will go the furthest with one2one efforts like email, direct mail, communities, blogs and social media marketing. Additionally these tools are far more measurable, flexible and timely, so you can track results and change tactics accordingly.
  5. Become a thought leader: Announce something very relevant and timely based on your experties. Create a relevant list/twitter following of journalists/bloggers/other thought leader. It is easier to find a local media angle to start with and becoming an expert resource on this topic.

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