What does Tip O’Neill and marketing have to do with each other? The late, beloved Speaker of the House enjoyed influence that spread far and wide, nationally, and even, internationally. And yet, he was famous for saying and living the phrase, “all politics is local.”
It is a concept that every business and marketing plan also needs to embrace.
It is incredibly easy to get swept up in the latest trends in marketing and to make assumptions in choosing the tools that will help your business or organization grow. From all the traditional methods, like display advertising, traditional media like radio and television and digital means, including paid digital ads, social media campaigns, and the like; it can be a daunting task to choose where to spend marketing dollars.
But amid all the noise, often businesses overlook the one of the most cost-effective growth opportunity that comes from thinking hyper-local. That is, the power of your happy, satisfied clients or customers. Tip O’Neill knew that being a successful politician meant maintaining a strong relationship with his constituents at a personal level and by focusing on the issues important to them. This strengthened support and led to a most powerful campaign (and marketing) tool: positive word-of-mouth.
Working with clients, this is always where I begin the conversation. Because, how can you build a cost-effective marketing plan without knowing where your current clients have come from. You’d be very surprised at how often businesses and/or non-profit organizations have not captured this information. And taking it one step further, before spending dollars on one of the zillion ways to advertise your business widely, have you taken the steps to encourage referrals from your current client-base? Frankly it’s the low-hanging fruit that too many small and mid-sized businesses completely overlook in their marketing efforts, when it should be the first order of business.