A marketing plan for any company is a detailed set of ideas internally, externally, and even operationally, which are aligned, to develop a brand for the company. Media is easy, we all know and love that. Yet internal marketing is a form of communication we often overlook, and the processes clients interface with, such as call center, are key in how we answer phones and book calls. They all are different areas of marketing but need to be aligned and work together or else we can generate leads but mess up the conversion.
Some of these areas include a market potential/share analysis, a company SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis, a brand strategy, a theme, an external advertising and media plan, and internal communications plan and tying together how business processes such as booking calls, or website contact forms, all affect a client experience. Add to this sales process, pricing, strategy and even product choices and positioning, and it gets detailed quickly. So we need to slow down and ask, what are we trying to accomplish? And the answer is – build a brand, and deliver on our brand promise.
In fact, there are so many varying aspects to a marketing plan which touch any company, but in this brief article we will focus on one key aspect of contractor marketing that is often difficult or confusing to many.
We are going to focus on the brand promise.
Why? Well, the brand promise is the deliverable we want any client to experience, so in many ways, it is both simple and complicated, since many areas of contracting will interface with the concept.
A brand promise is exactly as it states: It is our promise to any customer of what they should expect to receive from our company. Which means it is not a slogan or theme, but truly a stated promise.
There is no right or wrong when it comes to creating a brand promise. However, there are certain elements of a brand promise that should be present, such as the capability to be measured for successful delivery.
Examples of Brand Promises:
The key to making an effective brand promise is making it stand out in the crowd noise of thousands of contractors, yet still being able to deliver it for the client. So, you should consider that as part of your external media and advertising approach. You will likely have a theme or slogan; the brand promise can be this part of your messaging if you want it to be, or you can have both.
The brand promise has to be measurable. Themes or slogans do not – they are designed to be memorable.
Many contractors have a theme/slogan and it is not strong enough in the sales message to get a client to react to an advertisement. Part of what we want to do as a marketing platform is realize, I have to get people to call; this is the primary measure. Then convert, which is also a marketing issue but more internally focused.
Evaluate your marketing, and ask yourself, do you have a great brand promise like these?
Examples of powerful brand promises:
Create a strong, effective, measurable brand promise and, as you can see above, they enhance the tagline. Taglines are memorable, brand promises are deliverable.
In my digital agency, our tagline is:
Dedicated to Contractor Success
Our brand promise is:
Delivering Innovative Digital Solutions
Consider what your main theme is and how a strong, effective brand promise can help you create leads but, most importantly, measure and convert them to sales and profits.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Gary Elekes is serial entrepreneur with a passion for helping others become more successful by sharing what he has learned over the past 3 decades working closely with all facets of the contracting industry. During his career, Gary has held senior management positions at Lennox and Service Experts. In 2000, Gary moved into entrepreneurship and started his training and consulting business EPC. Today, EPC continues to support growth oriented businesses aspiring to reach 20% EBIT. He also designed the very first web based learning platform for the residential contracting industry, which acts as a support system for training and learning in HVAC and plumbing trades, and has over 5,000 subscribers.
In 2003, Gary began acquiring contracting firms with a focus on developing turn-around opportunities. He also opened and operated several start-up businesses. In 2010, he added web design/SEO and online marketing to his company portfolio starting Imarket Solutions as a co-founder. Gary graduated from Ohio State University with a BSBA and also holds a Master's Degree in Business and Finance.