There was a very interesting article in Entrepreneur.com by Alex Banayan who writes about where small businesses should be directing their marketing dollars. While the big guys like Apple and Starbucks are focused on brand marketing, Mr Banayan says, “Just because it works for them doesn’t mean it will work for the rest of us who work at small or medium sized businesses.” Which, as we all know, are most of the businesses in the craft beverage (wine, beer, spirits, cider) industry.
The small and medium sized businesses, according to Banayan, should be focused on direct marketing. He points out that, “Every dollar you spend on marketing should be tracked and expected to produce a return. Billboard and Super Bowl commercials only work for the 1%.”
I definitely agree with his points on only spending marketing dollars that is tracked and expected to produce a return. Small businesses (myself included) do not have the money or time to spend on marketing and advertising that cannot be proven to provide positive and profitable results.
However, I don’t agree that billboards are only for the 1%. For many wineries who are just off main highways used by tourists and travelers, billboards can and do produce healthy returns in visitors and product sold.
Banayan offers some rules from the book, No B.S. Direct Marketing, by Dan Kennedy, including:
Always Include an Offer, as that will reap you more customers, while not including an offer will create more awareness though it may not bring you more sales. You also need to include a call to action that is clear and direct.
Not only should you include an offer in your marketing materials, especially emails, but make sure to present an offer that will entice visitors to buy in your retail room. Take some time to redo your pitch to visitors that includes an offer. You want these visitors to buy now and come back again.