BT Group’s takeover of mobile phone network EE has been provisionally cleared by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). The CMA said the £12.5bn deal, first announced in February, was “not expected to result in a substantial lessening of competition” in the UK”. BT shares were up 3% at midday in the wake of the CMA statement. The deal is set to create a communications giant covering fixed-line phones, broadband, mobile and TV. The takeover more than trebles BT’s retail customers adding the 10 million it already had to EE’s 24.5 million direct mobile subscribers.
This causes us to look at things from a digital marketing agency perspective in relation to the development of digital marketing channels and in particular the adoption of mobile marketing strategies as we see the widespread use of technology, mobile devices and smart phones. The business fundamental of Channel marketing looks at the avenues that any company will adopt to connect with target market customers, with EE’s customer base added to BT’s technology one can imagine how the mobile marketing channel will become more and more refined from that which we see today.
The continued adoption of the faster 4G network allows effortless usage of ….. Video marketing
Social media marketing SMS text message marketing
….. all of which for the most part are accessed via the mobile devices of the consumer at large, this in turn is presenting the opportunity for companies to develop and execute specific marketing strategies that have been targeted for the mobile devices.
Whether the business that you run or work for is looking to develop specific marketing strategies that are focused around mobile, for sure the more targeted the marketing strategy is the more success and effectiveness will result from the marketing campaigns whether they be for lead generation, brand building, immediate purchase leading to the growth of the company in terms of market awareness and revenue growth.
As a business strategy consulting working with businesses from multiple market sectors on an international basis there are certain trends that are so dominant that for ongoing consulting and training sessions I cannot help but point them out.
One of these trends is the astounding use of mobile devices (smart phones, iPads, tablet computers & other mobile devices) by the population at large. Of course it could be pointed out that this is mainly for personal & social purposes; however – the business person must also consider those business purchasers looking for information (as we consider business to business marketing) and; those end user clients who are out searching for news and information using their mobile devices. Given the small screen size, it is becoming critical not to present searchers with a full blow website but with the reduced options given by your business mobile website.
One of the things to point out is that for those searching for news and information using their mobile devices is that they probably are not looking to read essays on your company, latest press releases and full length biographies concerning your business’ executive staff.
More to the point is that they wish to contact your company and find out where you are located. Granted, in some cases it may be that internet searchers are looking for detailed information but for the purpose of the mobile website – I am of the opinion that ‘less is more’. That is to say – when it comes to the options given on a mobile website, present the user with contact details and location information as a basis and; give them the option to access the full blow business wesbite as well.
As a business strategy consultant I am pointing out the fact that the options presented in your mobile marketing business website should be a subset of your ongoing business strategy (not an afterthought or something passed on to someone in the company who has some technical information & knowhow !).
What we call a ‘tap to call’ mobile marketing wesbite will be sufficient for the majority of businesses; this would in most cases have location map details included allowing the searcher to easily contact your company (and will have the option to access your full website).
Managers and business leaders – please do not relegate the decision making regarding the mobile business website that your company must have down to the technical staff. Bring the decision and strategy direction up to the business level discussions where revenue generation is being considered and how the company can bring more customers into the marketing funnel.
Mobile marketing business strategy is included as a full session in my consulting and training work – if you’d like to engage with a consultant with an international perspective and experience in working with multiple blue chip organisations, feel free to get in touch in order to discuss your business and internet [including mobile] marketing strategy today.
I have found that there is so much confusion around when it comes to developing and executing an effective internet marketing strategy. I use the word strategy deliberately as in discussion with various business leaders in London who have interfaced with many of those offering social media [with no experience working in marketing & developing marketing strategies] & internet marketing services; there seems to be a notion floating around that putting up a few facebook pages, twitter account and linkedin pages constitutes an internet strategy.
Having worked with and consulted for organizations such as Swatch Group China, Black & Decker, Iveco Trucks & Genworth Financial our business discussions centre defining markets, segmentation, branding, products, services and utimately revenue generation. Where the internet comes into play is how being used as a channel to market – that is either to :-
be used for communicating the message of the company
be used for delivering the product / service to the end user client
… of course, depending on the product or service offering the internet may be used for both of the above. If you are selling lathes or ball bearings then the internet will fit into your strategy for the purpose of promotion and communication of your message.
The internet is a very ‘big place’ and potential clients can be found
in vertical directories
via white papers
through organic search
via paid search
through video content
… and the list could go on and on !! The question to be answered is – where do we find your potential clients on the internet – and how do we best service them in terms of delivering quality, relevant content [as opposed to spamming people after you’ve gotten them to “like” your Facebook page !!]. I say this tongue in cheek but, the point still remains that many organizations are doing themselves a misservice by relegating the internet marketing activities [in some cases] to those who have the most technical understanding.
To further drive the point home – the industrial purchaser looking for specifications on sopecific building materials, lubricating liquids, ball bearings, metals or such product – where do they have to go to find out about your products ?? If you are expecting them to visit your website then maybe you need to revisit your internet strategy as the internet is a bit bigger than your website !! Revisit the list above and determine whether or not they will find you in these internet locations.
I say – bring internet marketing into the boardroom, executive level managers – this is not just about social media. When you are looking to hire someone to assist with your internet strategies, have a business level strategy discussion that does not include the internet. As about
business to business marketing
new product introduction
… and if your [potential] consultant can engage with you at this level, and she has a firm grasp of the internet, she will most likely be able to assist you in using the internet in your business.
If you would like to discuss internet marketing consulting in your organization – feel free to get in touch.
With the ever increasing widespread use of the internet for business strategy development, for advertising and for marketing – we attract clients from all over the world and with that prospective clients, as well as those clients who have had some experiences with us can say what they wish to about us – all online. This calls for organisations to be concerned about managing the reputation of their business online.
The topic of the relevance of the use of internet marketing for business to business sales is one that often gets posed by those marketing decision makers who get presented with options for spending money on things such as :-
Search engine marketing
Social media marketing
… and other internet marketing tools and techniques that (of course) should only be deployed as part of a defined strategic internet marketing plan that fits into the organization’s business strategy.
So, to the question of whether or not a SME, multi million or even billion dollar company can make use of the internet to sell items that other businesses need to function.
To deal with this question adequately in this post, let’s remind ourselves of some of the characteristics of business to business sales which consist of :-
Typically long sales cycles
Ateamof decision makers
Long term contracts
… there are of course other points to consider but those above will suffice for our discussion in hand.
First if we consider the sales cycle we need to bear in mind that the search for information on specification, functionality and other parameters in many instances take place online first, this is of course in addition to the traditional methods of browsing catalogues for the information needed to ultimately make a purchase decision. With the growth of the use of mobile devices and more people turning to the internet to consume the information they are looking for, the opportunity exists for businesses all over the world to be the ones providing the information (also outside of their main company website domain) in order to lead clients through stages of the sales cycle.
So we have touched on the sales cycle which could last for weeks, months or even years. The point is that our company can be the source producing the content that ourtargetend users require, this can be in the audio, video. text, multimedia, webinars and other forms that the internet allows us to produce content in. If the client needs ball bearing specification information, we can make it as easy as possible for them to find that information with us as the source.
As for the decision makers, the structure of the information that we produce should be crafted in a manner that will call for relevant viewing and input from various stake holders within the organisation (of course we will understand ourtargetmarket well enough to know who these decision makers are !!). As we engage with the decision makers this falls into the length of the sales cycle and the more engaged the prospective clients are, the more they will value our expertise and authority which at the time of the purchase will make the price become less relevant (in terms of them using a high price as a reason not to purchase).
In essence for business to business marketing, the smart thing to do is not to aim for on the spot purchases, whilst this could result in desired outcomes, the thing to aim for is that of quality lead generation. Using the Internet Channel Marketing framework, your company will decide which of the internet marketing tools is the most appropriate for engaging with yourtargetmarket for building relationships and taking them through the process of the sales cycle, binding them into our organisation as the go to source for quality education related to the products and services – that can be purchased elsewhere.
In conclusion, when the choice is to be made, the relationship that has been developed by using the internet marketing tools will result in us being as one of the main choices when it comes to making that all important purchase decision.
Is the internet appropriate for Business To Business Marketing ? absolutely so, if you are not actively using the internet for market to and engage with other businesses. Take a look at how you can integrate the internet with your existing business strategies today.
Any thoughts or comments ??
Feel free to get in touch – just hit the contact button above.
The brand positioning that a company – no matter what the size, that is if the company happens to be a
home based business
small and medium enterprise all the way up to the
… will have an effect and bearing on how clients view the company when compared to similar organizations who are seen to provide comparable products and services.
We do know that the largest companies have huge marketing departments often with specialists focusing on the positioning in the market place that the company takes – with that said, often the practice is to use outside agencies to develop the positioning strategy.
Smaller companies should focus on the core elements of their brand equity such as :-
… and drill down into the key components of these categories and allocate appropriate resources from within the organisation to work on those areas that have been identified as being the priority in terms of the overall strategic direction of the organisation.
Constant and regular focus on this and the pushing out into the market place of the message will serve to drive the positioning of the brand in the market place, this will ultimately serve to separate the organisation from the competition, engage with customers and therefore drive revenue.
This is a critical question that is being answered on a daily basis by the most successful corporations around the world. This extremely important topic is one that is relevant for every business …
… no matter what industry or size of organisation. In other words the question to be answered is :-
what is you Promotional Channel Marketing Strategy ?
… of course, we know that Channel Marketing can readily be split into two main categories, that of delivering your product and/or service to the market place and; the specific channel used to promote your company’s products / services.
In some cases you can use the same channel for both consumption and delivery but in many cases there will need to be a careful blend of pushing the message of the organisation through specific channels and, using various channels more that others and therefore driving customers to take specific actions in order to get them into the marketing funnel.
One of the best things you can do today is to stop and take a blank piece of paper and consider the blend of channels that you are actively using the promote your products and services to the world at large.
The blend is critically important as the blend that you use will be based on the results of your market segmentation activities in line with who you are selling to and where they congregate in terms of what the best medium is to use to deliver your message to them.
This is but one small part of a component of developing a business strategy.
Thoughts, comments ? want to work together [nationally or internationally] ? feel free to get in touch.
The question that many small business owners as well as executives from some of the largest corporations in the world have asked and are asking is, ‘what about the internet’ ?? …
… My response is that the internet is to be viewed as a marketing channel for the corporation.
That is as a marketing channel to promote the company’s message through as well as using this particular channel to possibly deliver products and/or services to the end user client.
As many organisations are struggling to fully incorporate the internet into the core business strategies, I have devised the Internet Channel Marketing seminar which focusses on the main things that executives need to be aware of in order to go forward and develop their strategies with fully incorporating the internet.
I say that to mean that the internet should not be viewed as an ‘add on but as a key component of the corporate strategy, for this to happen of course, there will need to be certain changes to the organisation both in terms of structure as well as mindset.
If this topic is of interest to you – view the video above and – if I can help you by answering any of your questions, running a seminar, consulting or if you just fancy a chat !!! Feel free to get in touch.
As I was discussing during my radio program a few weeks ago, China is now officially the world’s second largest economy …
… overtaking Japan and as far as we can see the business opportunities will continue to rise in the coming years. After my very first business consulting seminar in Shangai [in Channel Marketing Strategies] focussing on the Internet and Distribution,
it was very educational for me to learn from some of the executives who I was standing in front of for days delivering the first of many marketing strategy seminars and consulting sessions.
Having managament from different industries all desiring to have their needs met meets with certain challenges, however as I am striving for excellence – I was happy to stretch myself up into new comfort zones.
With there being a shift from China just acting as a manufacturing arm for many of the world’s Multi National Companies to being an economy that is innovating and producing goods and services that needed domestically and internationally, we see a corresponding need to learn from the west in terms of process management and strategy development. The point is that – by learning in the form of taking in business consultants from the West, the country will save itself years in terms of trial and error, not to mention the amount of money that goes with that.
With all of the dynamics that goes into piecing the economies of the world together, as a business consultant I can see many opportunities for strategyt consultants like myself to lending a hand to the development of the economy of China.
With that said, I look forward to many more interactions and learning from as well as assisting Chinese [based] companies to grow and prosper as the dependency on the strength of business China continues to be one that is growing.
Marketing training programs are essential to businesses given that marketing is the heart and soul of any organisation.
In addition to this, taking into consideration that we are living in tough economic times where there is a constant battle going on for the products and services of the organisation in question to get noticed by the end user customer.
With budgets being cut in all areas of businesses, executives realise that the amount of attention and focus that is put on marketing training programs has a direct bearing on product sales and revenue generation. Whilst executing the marketing training programs that I provide and working with company leaders and personnel directly we can see various trends within most organisations.
One trend is the danger of continuing to do what has always been done, this is where credit has to be given to managers who continue to make monies available for staff at all levels within the organisation to attend marketing seminars and workshops. Of course, it is important to make sure that the appropriate marketing training provider is chosen to be able to provide relevant perspective and challenging questions and comments to the attendees.
Indeed, it is the diversity of thought and perspective gained from paying attention not only to the industry in which we work but by also looking at works in other industries and applying specific principles to our organisation. This is where a skilled marketing trainer with a varied background, education and experience can be worth their weight in gold to any organisation and contribute to generating extra revenues and acquiring new customers and holding onto existing ones.
If your organisation is stalling or suffering from doing the same things over and over again, could it be that paying attention to existing marketing strategies and well as …
Developing Marketing Channels
Ideal Client Profiles
Understanding the Contribution Margins with Distributors
Developing New Marketing Categories …
… help towards the overall development of the business ?
Always interested in knowing what you think – make a comment or hit the contact tab above.