2003, like 2002 before it, was a perfect example of the power of marketing. In this “slow” economy, demand for experienced employees and managers dropped. Most recruiters tell me their revenue was DOWN at least 20% or more for the past two years. However, those of my clients who continued to do marketing in 2002 and 2003 tell me their annual revenue was actually UP an average of 15%! That’s a swing of at least 35%! That’s the result of making a marketing plan and sticking to the plan.
Your first step is to set a goal for increasing your revenue in the coming year. The second step is to establish a marketing budget that equals 10% of your revenue goal, but this is where 5 out of 7 of all recruiters balk. Psychologically, most people want to avoid risk and are afraid of failure, so they are reluctant to spend money on marketing when there is no guarantee of results.
I can offer you this guarantee: marketing absolutely, positively works in the long-term. What I can’t tell you is how long the long-term is. For some of my clients, success has come within weeks or even within 100 brochures mailed. For others, it has taken months and thousands of pieces mailed.
For me, it took years before I got my own “recipe” right. My business is just my wife and I. We do some form of marketing every single week including the mailing of at least 2,000 pieces of direct mail, which is an annual total of over 100,000 pieces. This last year was our best year ever, in part, because we reinvested about 15% of gross revenue into our marketing plan. That means we got back over $6.60 for every $1.00 we spent on marketing. My typical client does even better and reports receiving $9.70 in revenue for every $1.00 spent on marketing. That means clients are getting almost 10 times their investment back when they make a plan and stick to the plan.
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Successful businesses are run the same way as an automobile is driven. When your car slows down as you head uphill, you press the accelerator to give it more fuel. Similarly, use marketing to fuel sales when your revenues slow down.
Are you going to make more in 2004? Or will you do nothing and let the economy determine your fate?